Latest from Tommy Spaulding

The Sixteenth Second

The Sixteenth Second

A few weeks ago, I was having dinner with my daughter, Caroline. She’s heading off to college in a few years, so I’m trying to spend as much time with her as humanly possible. We got talking about school, and she mentioned offhand that her GPA was 4.35. “I didn’t even...

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Humble & Kind

Humble & Kind

I’ve been a full-time student and teacher of leadership for the past 30 years. I’ve coached and been coached by everyone from high school seniors to Fortune 100 CEOs. The most common question I get, no matter whom I’m coaching, is this: “What’s the most important...

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Open Your Doors

Open Your Doors

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, more than four million refugees have fled the bombing and devastation. I read recently that nearly a million displaced Ukrainians have settled in Poland. Over 150,000 are now living in Krakow, increasing its population by 20...

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Rip the Page Out

Rip the Page Out

  I have spent most of my life working with young people and helping them grow into the leaders of tomorrow. Ever since I founded the National Leadership Academy and the Global Youth Leadership Academy over two decades ago, I’ve talked to hundreds of thousands of...

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Keep Moving Forward

Keep Moving Forward

I first met André Van Hall when I moved to Denver two decades ago. At the time he was the general manager of a major downtown hotel, but soon after he became CEO of the prestigious Denver Athletic Club. André was a legend in the hospitality industry and a dear friend...

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One Million Miles

One Million Miles

Last week I boarded United Airways flight 1131 from Denver, Colorado to San Antonio, Texas. As I settled into seat 7C, I felt bittersweet. I was looking forward to visiting my good friend Bill, who was retiring from his thirty-five-year career in the hospitality...

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Embrace Your Shortcomings

Embrace Your Shortcomings

The other day I had lunch with my good friend and mentor Timmy, an executive at one of the largest nonprofit organizations in the country. He runs a team that mentors thousands of teenagers every year. I’ve known Timmy for decades; he was my first boss out of college,...

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Too Busy

Too Busy

In August, my fourteen-year-old son Tate is leaving for Shattuck-St. Mary’s, the top hockey prep school in the country. It’s been his dream to go there for many years now. Since Shattuck is in Minnesota, it means Tate will be leaving home for good. We’ll see him on...

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Why You Do What You Do

Why You Do What You Do

Like anyone, I have a lot of important files in my office. Taxes, client information, payroll, and so on. But if the building were burning down, there is only one file I would take with me. A file so important I wouldn’t even think about the rest. It’s not marked...

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What’s Your GPA?

What’s Your GPA?

Last year, about 1.3 million high school students took the ACT, a standardized test used for college admissions. The exam, which evaluates English, math, reading, and science, is graded on a scale of 1–36, with the average score being a 20. In 2021, there were just...

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