Jonathan Mills

stretching people, stretching organisations, stretching nations



The practise of patience – enhancing emotional intelligence

“Patience is the ability to keep a good attitude while working hard for what you believe in” (Marc Chernoff) We all get irritated or frustrated at times – long queues, traffic that doesn’t seem to move, a lady in the… Continue Reading →

Developing character excellence

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man, true nobility lies in being superior to your former self” (Ernest Hemingway) Character (or perhaps ‘honour’) is a trait that most would like ascribed to them and yet the… Continue Reading →

The beauty myth

News display stands and bookshops are full of magazines with covers that seemingly represent beauty – men and women who have it all in terms of looks and physical attributes “to die for”. Rippling muscles, perfect proportions, expensive make-up, designer… Continue Reading →

Conquering debilitating anger

For the most part, anger is a part of everyone’s lives. Handled positively, anger can act as a “red flag”, as a warning that something is wrong or as a catalyst for change. Not dealing with anger, however, gives rise… Continue Reading →

“Impossible” is just another word

I love watching cricket in all its forms, but the excitement generated from a T20 (20 overs per side) game is catching. In a moment, one is sucked into the drama and emotion of the match and shortly, one is… Continue Reading →

Living life meaningfully

Living life meaningfully in all the stages of life is perhaps the quest of many. People crave for significance and desperately want to leave an impact – something worthwhile for which you will be remembered. Being the best student, being… Continue Reading →

The grit to get going

David Thomas was born in 1932 to an unmarried mother that he never got to know – he was given up for adoption at 6 week’s old to Rex and Auleva Thomas. Auleva died when Dave was just 5 years… Continue Reading →

A leadership character that should exist rather than skin-deep beauty

A beautiful evergreen tree graces the area outside my bedroom window – commonly called “Yesterday-Today-Tomorrow”, the endemic Brazilian brunfelsia pauciflora, with its mauve, lavender and white sweet-smelling flowers, provides a perfect picture for the onlooker and lovely aroma for one… Continue Reading →

Facilitating healing when you have hurt someone

All of us make mistakes – we are “human” after all! Some of us make really stupid errors – a moment when no thought is given to a particular action, when no real thinking is applied to the possible consequences… Continue Reading →

Taking responsibility against all odds

I travel to some countries where things don’t really work. The roads are sub-standard, the drainage is poor if it exists at all, the power supply is intermittent, sewerage systems are less than optimal, water supply is dubious in terms… Continue Reading →

Using your giftedness to contribute

When at home, and particularly in the spring and summer months, we like taking the dogs for a walk in the evening – the day starting to cool and the wind hopefully dying and coming to rest, probably to regain… Continue Reading →

Leading with influence

One of the most impactful African words that I have ever come across is the North Sotho word “seriti”, meaning breath, spirit, presence or “shadow”. The word, in one of its renderings, refers to a person’s “presence” or the shadow… Continue Reading →

Leading with character and competence

One of the more “revealing” experiences that I have had upon arriving in my mid-life years is that of realising that the 20/20 vision that I had as a younger man is not going to last forever – a visit… Continue Reading →

Don’t tackle members of your own team

A colleague of mine shared a personal story of her son, when still very young in junior school, playing rugby for the first time. He had gone to practice during the week and came home beaming about his experiences –… Continue Reading →

I hear you …

I had the privilege of facilitating a workshop at an hotel in Franschhoek in a beautiful setting in the winelands of South Africa. A lady, who had lost her father in an unfortunate motor vehicle accident just two weeks prior… Continue Reading →

The leadership vacuum?

Dr Stephen R Covey passed away on Monday 16th July 2012, after suffering injuries in a cycling accident about 3 months prior  to his death. You may remember him as the author of the best-selling business book of all time… Continue Reading →

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