January 12, 2021
As good as your word
Four years ago (plus a few months) I was campaigning to elect Hillary Clinton, door to door in Lewiston. I found myself in a conversation with a new Mainer, perhaps his first vote, and he really wanted to know, “What’s the worse thing about Donald Trump? What’s the biggest reason you're not voting for him?”

I decided pretty quick. “The worse thing is that he lies.” I explained how we can never trust what he tells us. He’s like a traitor, to us, the American people.

For me, once someone is a confirmed liar -- President Trump or anyone – it’s hard to see the point of debating anything with that person or doing anything of consequence based on what they say. Everything after that is suspect. The value of every word is discounted.

When I meet somebody new it’s like starting across a footbridge that I’m not sure of. I begin my steps carefully, listening and watching.....
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How to build trust
From the balcony of the State House in Augusta, Maine, I explain how simple it is to build trust (not easy but simple). And how easy it is to break it.

It's about alignment between words and deeds.

And transcript
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Here's the promo blurb. In spite of deep political divides across our nation, Craig Freshley has a vision for peace. He believes we can disagree with each other, strongly, and get along with each other.

Winner of the 2019 American Civic Collaboration Award, Craig loves to tell stories and lessons from the Make Shift Coffee Houses he organized and from his 15 years as a professional meeting facilitator.

Here's what someone wrote after. "Sincere thanks for a great Rotary meeting yesterday. It was the highlight of my week. And I believe that President Joe Biden should engage Craig to schedule Make Shift Coffee House sessions for our elected officials, leaders of federal agencies, and leaders of national political parties on a regular basis for the next 2 years."
Maine Coast
Sea Vegetables

Each week I feature one of my clients to give you a peek into my work world of really great people and stories.

I don't have many private-sector clients but this company is a long time favorite. Started by Shep and Linnette Erhart in 1971, Maine Coast Sea Vegetables ships several hundred thousand pounds of sea vegetables (think seaweed) to customers all across the United States and Canada each year from Downeast Maine.
Seraphina, who is Shep and Linnette's daughter, grew up in the business, moved away for a time, and has returned to her rural roots where she is now the General Manager.

I have been working with Shep and Seraphina and their team for almost ten years navigating through some big strategic decisions.

As a company they are very keen on collaboration and consensus decision making and recently completed a transition to employee ownership. They highly value their relations with their harvesters -- the folks out on the water -- and often loan them money on easy terms. They have a very high ethic for maintaining sustainability of the resource and Shep is a trusted advocate in the industry.
Just one more thing: They have a terrific new website where you can not only buy direct but you can learn about the nutritional benefits of sea vegetables. And recipes!

This video starts in the middle with an interview with Shep.

To Help You Get Along
Written and published by Craig Freshley. Thanks for walking along with me.
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