Who am I?

My name is Thom Kearney, Thomas to some, and for those of you that don’t know me here are a few words about what kind of a person I am. They are based on a little navel gazing, one or two self awareness exercises and chats with a few folks I trust.

In no particular order I am:

  • Honest – what you see is what you get. In one job a co-worker came up to me to tell me I was too honest. Students are sometimes shocked by my honesty but usually come to respect it. Honesty is hard work.
  • Value driven – I have always tried to live my life by some basic principles: be fair, equal opportunity, open to diverse opinions.
  • Inclusive management style – I try and get many points of view before making a decision. I also work to create an environment that fosters autonomy while maintaining accountability.
  • Creative – always looking for new ways of doing things, lay down the parameters but allow people to be creative and innovative.
  • Kaizen – generally I am not satisfied with the status quo and believe that we all have a responsibility to make things better. On the other hand, I also believe that “good enough is” and that perfection can be the enemy of progress.
  • A big thinker – one of my bosses told me that’s why he hired me.
  • Versatile – whatever it takes to change!
  • Collaborative – even when its hard.
  • Entrepreneurial – 6 companies, GCPEDIA business unit – big things on a small budget.
  • Intuitive – over the years I have discovered that how I feel about something often leads to finding the right path.

Some other random thoughts:

  • Good enough is. A VP of Mitel Networks had me work that into a project charter once and it has stuck with me. Perfection really is the enemy of progress.
  • Management and leadership are two very different things. Management is putting a ladder up against a wall in the most efficient way possible. Leadership is making sure its the right wall.
  • Communication is hard.
  • Everyone is different. That’s one of the reasons communication is hard, its also the strength of diversity

There you have it, Thom in a nutshell. Or at least my version of it. If you know me and would like to add something please do, either good stuff or I am always looking for opportunities for improvement!


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