“Keep the window of the mind open to let the fresh thoughts come in like fresh air.”— Debasish Mridha

One of the delights of our walks around our woods and grasslands is being surprised by dragonflies. These are amazing creatures both in their beautiful colors and in their means of locomotion.

I am not the only one inspired by dragonflies. Five years ago I attended a talk by Elizabeth Turtle. The idea she was presenting was to build a dragonfly-like drone and have it fly about on Titan, one of the fascinating moons of Saturn. This idea was competing against others for the opportunity to go to Titan.

Titan is interesting! It is the second-largest moon in our solar system – it is bigger than the planet Mercury. It has a subsurface ocean of water. It even has rain, although it is a methane rain. We expect to find that Titan has the building blocks of life similar to earth.

I see why Elizabeth Turtle wants to go there.

Seeing the dragonfly on our walk, I remembered that I needed to check on the mission to Titan. And I found that the dragonfly idea won. The dragonfly will fly with the launch scheduled for 2026. Also, Elizabeth Turtle is still on the mission. There is a lot to do to prepare for a billion-mile journey to be able to sightsee around a place no one has ever been before.

We can learn so much from others, perhaps especially from those with specialties outside our sphere.

Look at the pictures of the Dragonfly Mission, and you will see some of what we can learn from dragonflies.

Consider the people expanding our knowledge of the solar system, and see the benefits of patience, persistence, and planning.

Who will you learn from today?

Yours in the calm pursuit of excellence,


Alan Willett

You may also like:

Endurance Is Not Always a Virtue

I have seen leaders show great endurance in leading marathon projects. They are putting in marathon hours. The sweat sheen on them and their teams is obvious, even heroic.

Do You Need a Win?

A client wrote to me recently with a note that said simply “I need a win.” Have you been there, where it feels like you have faced a sudden losing streak and quite simply there is a need for a win? I have. I expect Elon Musk is looking for one with Tesla.

The Reader’s Edge

The exceptional leaders are voracious consumers of information. They listen to audio books, they read books, they seek out others to hear their stories. The things they read spans multiple genres, time periods, and cultures.

ANNIVERSARIES ARE IMPORTANT MARKERS

"Ritual is important to us as human beings. It ties us to our traditions and our histories." — Miller Williams, Poet My wife and I just celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary. Even though real work of building a life together happens in the minutes and hours between...

LEADERSHIP ON FATHER’S DAY

"Welcome to Sherwood!" — Robin Hood Father's Day was a delight for me. My family treated me a number of fun things. I was served breakfast in a hammock. I was treated to a delicious cold milkshake at a local ice-cream shop. My daughter and I have a plan to go buy some...

SUDS MAY SPILL, BEER SHOULD NOT

"I have never had to face anything that could overwhelm the native optimism and stubborn perseverance I was blessed with. " — Sonia Sotomayor One of my best clients and I were enjoying the start of our day at a local coffee cafe. We covered a range of topics and one...

PERSISTENCE, PREY, AND IDEAS

"Language is the means of getting an idea from my brain into yours without surgery. " — Mark Amidon The Washington DC zoo has this very interesting roulette-style wheel located just past the cheetah exhibit. You spin the wheel to find out if you caught your prey, your...

ANTICIPATE INFLECTION POINTS

"A strategic inflection point is a time in the life of a business when its fundamentals are about to change. that change can mean an opportunity to rise to new heights. But it may just as likely signal the beginning of the end." — Andrew Grover There are a wave of...

PATIENCE, PASSION, PERSISTENCE, PROGRESS

"Even though it is not always easy… being a planetary scientist is one of the coolest jobs on the planet!" — Elizabeth (Zibi) Turtle   Imagine exploring Titan! And to be clear, I am not referring to the planet Titan of Thanos (Avengers), I am referring to a...

Making the Leap

Paradigm leaps take need, courage, and sweat. You will notice a different look and feel to the newsletter this week. Earlier this year, I became unsatisfied with a few key things and decided to make some changes.