Joy News

Release Joy

Release joy. Phillip Kane’s blog.
Image credit: Telemundo


This week, Argentina defeated France in the FIA World Cup in what was arguably one of the greatest sporting events of all time. Within the match were many breathtaking moments of skill, sportsmanship, and sheer determination ‐ not the least of which was Gonzalo Montiel’s penalty kick to seal the championship. But it was what came immediately after the Montiel kick that was, for me, the most enduring memory of the tournament.

Telemundo announcer, Andres Cantor, in calling the goal, burst forth, releasing an exclamation of nearly a full minute and a half, at times shouting, other times whispering, and at other times sobbing, that can only be described as pure, unadulterated joy ‐ one that I will never forget, and that moved me to tears, for only that I understood the joy that he felt. That’s because joy is unmistakable. Joy is also contagious. And the world needs more joy in it, because with Joy, human beings accomplish more together.

And that’s the point for the week.

During this season, it’s appropriate to speak of joy.

Regardless of what you believe, the notion that more joy brought to the world is better than less should be beyond argument.

But for so many joy has gone out of style. It’s become more fashionable to choose cynicism, hate, cancellation and division instead of joy.
But having one or the other is a simple choice: between one that makes the world a better place, and one that doesn’t.

See, joy makes it impossible for any negative human condition to persist. With joy, anger, hate, strife, despair, loss, or any other self‐indulgent emotional state or relationship between us and others cannot exist. Because with joy, there’s no room for these things. Joy has no time for negativity.

And because of that, with joy, almost anything becomes possible ‐ like that which many of us believe happened in a stable 2,000 years ago. Because joy opens the lens of possibilities. With joy, we focus on goodness, hope, and what can be. With joy, we want better for not only ourselves but those around us too.

Teams where joy is persistent are bound together tightly, like a cord of many strands. Not easily broken, these teams endure more, move with greater force, and rise to greater heights propelled by the sheer force of joy that makes anything otherwise absolutely unthinkable.

So, be like Andres. Release joy.

And win.

To learn more about the author, click HERE.

To purchase a copy of Phillip’s new book, please follow this LINK.


Choose Joy

Choose joy. Phillip Kane's blog.
Image credit: The Daily Mail

Saturday, March 12, 2022

This week, I saw a video of a group of Ukrainian children joyfully playing just outside a train station in Poland. They had just arrived there from their war-torn home, having fled, leaving everything behind, except what they could carry. The camera panned to their mothers, who looked beaten down, suffering, in angst – some audibly sobbing. But the children played on. 

One might suggest that they had yet to figure out what was happening to them. I prefer to think they simply hadn’t yet figured out how to feel sorry for themselves. 

See, feeling sorry for ourselves isn’t something we’re born knowing how to do. We learn it from adults. And from the moment that self-pity enters our lives, joy starts seeping out of it. 

And that’s the point for the week. 

There is a distinct lack of joy in the world. 

More than partly because there’s far too much self-pity in it. 

We learn, then teach our children that regret for what we don’t have should overtake joy for what we do. 

Those Ukrainian children weren’t thinking about what was lost. They weren’t thinking about anything it seemed – except the joy of being alive and playing with one another. 

Leaders that unlearn how to feel sorry for themselves have more followers. It’s simply because joy and gratitude are more attractive than dread and regret. 

It’s also because those who approach life and their work with joy and gratitude rarely forget to show appreciation to others. They also focus more on what people deliver than what they don’t. They praise effort, celebrate progress and encourage improvement. 

They don’t tear people down for the 4% they didn’t do; they build them up for the 96% they did. They don’t demean the 99 they have by longing for one that got away. They see falls as opportunities to pick someone up, not to put them down. 

As a result, people seek opportunities to join teams that these people lead. 

Better people attract better people and together they win more often. It’s just a fact. Doubt it? Just look around you. 

These people aren’t Pollyannas. They don’t practice false or toxic optimism.  They recognize that life includes downside, hardship and loss. They don’t pretend that these things aren’t real or that they don’t hurt. They know that they are and that they do. But they don’t dwell on them or allow them to consume their lives. They know that everything in this life is temporary and that even on the darkest of days, there is something to be grateful for and to be joyful about. 

Mostly it’s the souls of those they are responsible for, who watch them and learn from what they do, and who emulate the example they set. 

Like anything else in life, it’s a choice. To wallow around in self pity or to choose to be grateful for that which we have. To celebrate the piercing ray of light in the darkness, however small, or to curse the dim. To shake a fist at the sky in anger and self-sorrow or to open our palms toward heaven, arms outstretched in joyful praise for every good thing in our life. 

Choose joy. 

And win.

To learn a bit about the author, click HERE.

To pre-order a copy of Phillip’s new book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring: Letters on Leadership, please follow this LINK

Image credit: The Daily Mail


Grab a Front Row Seat to Joy

Grab a front row seat to joy. Phillip Kane’s blog.
Image: Andre Jackson | Unsplash

August 26, 2021

This week, I had the chance to meet Chris and Jenny O Calleri of Huntington Jewelers in Las Vegas, Nevada. At one point in our meeting, Jenny O shared something particularly poignant about her business – something that makes being in it especially gratifying. Being in the jewelry business, Jenny O says, gives her an opportunity to be a part of the most joyful moments of other people’s lives. For her, proximity to such joy would not be possible anywhere else. It’s why Jenny O does what she does. And it’s clear that she gives every bit as much joy as she gets. 

I continued to think about Jenny’s words on my flight back to Ohio. And suddenly, it occurred to me that for Jenny O, the joy is simply more obvious. The truth is, we are, all of us surrounded by joy. Every one of us has a front row seat to the joyful moments in the lives of those around us. It’s just that we’re often too preoccupied to see them. 

And that’s the point for the week. 

Each day, something joyful happens in the life of someone we know. Whether it’s big joy, little joy or in-between joy, there’s joy to be found – if we simply pay attention. It might be the engagement of the new guy in accounting; a passed driver’s exam of your assistant’s youngest son; or the sweet 16 of one of the driver’s twin daughters.  All of it joy, occurring right before our very eyes, but hidden behind the veil of a simple choice on our part to be less present in the lives of those we lead.  

It’s choice that, I think, Jenny O would say is nutty – to miss out on the chance to be a part of the rarest of human emotion – to grab a front row seat to joy – when it’s sitting right outside our door.

True leaders, though, choose to be present in the lives of those whose care has been entrusted to them. They know their birthdays, the names of their children, and when something important is about to happen in their lives. Because they do, they tell those around them, even without saying a word, that they care about them, that they matter, and that they are interested in them as human beings, not just as a means of production. 

As a result, trust flourishes and along with it effort, loyalty and dedication to the cause of the whole.  Teams with truly present leaders give more because they get more, and, as a result, they rarely ever lose. 

But even more than that, for the leader who becomes more present in the lives of others, their own life becomes dimensionally better – more complete, more interesting, and, well, more joyful.  

So, grab a front row seat to the joy that’s always been there. 

Be present in the lives of others. 

And win.

To pre-order Phillip’s new book, follow this link: 

Forgiveness Joy

He is Risen Today!

He is risen today!

Sunday, April 4, 2021

Jesus Christ is risen today!  Allelujah, Allelujah, Allelujah!

I love Easter more than any other holiday. Even Christmas. 

For Easter is foremost about redemption. It’s about knowing no matter how badly you’ve messed things up, you can find forgiveness and eternal life in Him. 

That is the promise of the passion and resurrection of Christ. 

It was the promise He made to the thief on the cross and its the same promise he makes to each of us. 

The Christian faith is often criticized for its prodigal son feature. That even a death row inmate who confesses and repents prior to dying can find salvation. Many find it unfair – that they’ve lived righteous lives for decades only to have someone get the same reward for a moment of the same behavior. 

I love that. It’s why He came. It’s why He made fun of those with their long-tasseled shawls. His day’s version of the woke crowd. Because they sinned too. Every day. And they were no better than the tax collectors, prostitutes and thieves that Christ freely welcomed into the kingdom of God. 

He came for all of us. 

The best of us and the worst of us. 

He died for us and he rose for us. 

As a promise. 

Of redemption. 

Found simply. In love for Him and our neighbor. And sorrow for those times when we fail. 

Happy Easter.

To purchase a copy of Phillip’s book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring: Letters on Leadership, from John Hunt Publishing, London, please follow this LINK.

To learn more about the author, please click HERE.


Release Joy

Release joy. Phillip Kane's blog.
Art: Don Drumm Studios, Akron, Ohio

February 8, 2019

On my daughter Charlotte’s dresser is a small pewter plaque from a local Akron artist. On the plaque are only two words, “Release Joy.” Charlotte, who we call “Chuck,” has never needed additional encouragement in this regard. Whether from creating an entire multi-generational family from unopened soup cans and a Sharpee marker to bringing lavishly decorated cakes home for special occasions of her own invention, Charlotte naturally wrings every bit of life and happiness out of every waking moment. Charlotte releases joy.

Recently, I shared with all of you the list of “Rules” that I have for my life. I have more than once considered adding “Release Joy” to the list. It is probably only that I don’t want 13 rules that I haven’t added Release Joy. And adding two rules swells the list to 14, which isn’t as neat and tidy as 12. So, I’ve been content to leave the list alone, leaving Release Joy to suffer the fate of poor alternate, waiting for another rule to fall off the list. But Release Joy is truly as important as any of the other 12. That’s because, personal happiness matters. 

And that’s the point for the week.

Performing a task with or without joy will make the difference between a job well done or not. The presence of joy will affect the quality of human relationships; when it is absent, relationships suffer. Having joy in our hearts for each day we are given makes good news feel even better and bad news sting a little less.

Joy, like any emotion, is automatically and freely shared. It can light up a room. Ignite passion in others. Heal a hurt. Elevate. Propel. Calm. Inspire.

When each one of us here spends more time releasing joy, (which is almost never found in things, by the way) and less time looking for reasons to be sad, angry or disappointed, we will accomplish more together. We will keep each other safer. We will teach each other more things. We will reach the heights we have dreamed of together. We will win, together.

And when we do, we will be happier, for we have sought the better part, the joyful art. A life better lived, where people we have the privilege to interact with smile more, laugh more, help each other more, watch out for each other more, lift each other up more, and win more. 

So, be like Charlotte. Release joy.

And win.

If you like the blog, you’ll love the book. To purchase a copy of Phillip’s book, The Not So Subtle Art of Caring: Letters on Leadership, from John Hunt Publishing, London, please follow this LINK. “Letters” is based on 85 story-backed lessons Phillip used while leading actual teams to accomplish extraordinary things. It is an outstanding resource for those who wish to commit to becoming the sort of leader that people WANT to follow.

To learn more about Phillip, please click HERE.