Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Power of Inspiration

In contrast to the frenetic activity that appears to dominate this season, for me, year-end is an important time of reflection and reconnecting. I like to review my journal, look at all the photos we took throughout the year and try to recapture a little of the wonder that recently fell from the treads of life. It's also a time when I am particularly aware of the need for inspiration to thrust forward into the adventure of the year ahead.

Inspiration has blazed a trail of extraordinary accomplishment across the pages of history. It is the breath of the divine that fills the sails of human creativity and passion, driving us forward into a hopeful future. Remarkable works of art, innovation, and courage were fueled from this combination of purpose and energy, sometimes even in the most seemingly impossible situations.

A few weeks ago, I was recharged by a rare visit from Eric Peterson, founder of Mitra Imaging, a medical imaging company that was acquired by Agfa in 2002. Since that transaction, Eric has been using his time and resources to continue the legacy of "Making a Difference". The audience was captivated as Eric shared his participation, and more importantly, his passion, to see a dramatic improvement in health care in northern Guatemala.

Having established the Tula Foundation, Eric partnered with a number of organizations and individuals to actively put in motion this vision. By accurately identifying the challenges and focusing on putting the right resources and infrastructure in place, Tula is making important inroads towards improving the quality of life in one of the poorest and neglected provinces of Guatemala.

"It's really not about technology, but all about the people that do the work and helping them make the right connections", Eric emphasized. Using his experience in empowering talented people and teams, and in growing a healthy organization, Eric was instrumental in putting in place a a solid strategy for ongoing future improvement. The fruit of this vision is beginning to take shape as these initiatives have translated into the first class of local nursing graduates, and in a fledgling tele-health program to support these new medical personnel in their remote locations. Throughout his talk, Eric conveyed a deep sense of satisfaction and excitement from that result from his personal involvement in pursuing this purpose and vision.

In his usual manner, Eric was candid and witty, and his passion thoroughly contagious. But more importantly, what he represented was the magic, the inspiration of what is possible, the critical ingredient for tackling these daunting challenges. As you look forward to the new year, I hope this example will challenge you to reach beyond your own limited view and see what is possible... with a little inspiration!

Wishing you an awesome New Year...

Howard Lenos

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