Posted on January 1, 1970 by Blake Leath

It's been raining for days in North Texas.  We get rain here, but rarely like this.  Everything feels cool to the touch, moist, and downright soggy, from my shoes in the closet to the oversaturated yards across the street.

One of the interesting byproducts of such rain is the mushrooms.  They are growing everywhere.  Here are a few from our neighbor's house:

The mushrooms remind me of a story.  Several years ago, I found myself a thousand feet below the earth's surface, working with colleagues and interviewing several miners about their employer.  I asked an innocent question: "How clear is your organization's vision?" 

"Wow," a miner shouted back, standing knee-deep in an echoey ink-black cave...water dripping from the 'ceiling,' his headlight beaming me in the eyes, "that's a joke, right?  They treat us like mushrooms around here."

"Mushrooms?" I asked.  "What do you mean, 'mushrooms?'"

"They keep us in the dark and feed us sh_t."

"Ah, mushrooms.  Got it."

And away he picked.

Note to self and all leaders: Do not treat people like mushrooms. 

Fertilize, cultivate, and nurture people, yes.  But equally important, communicate, give 'em plenty of air, and let the light shine in.