Oh it’s been a fun week, so much positive has happened, and nothing could dampen my spirits. Even the unexpected.

I’m always amazed at the tactics of some…and equally amazed at how their not-so-positive commentary can lead to positive outcomes (thank you). This has been my experience many times in my life. And that’s why I’m posting about this.

F2W LESSON #1: Strong, successful leaders remember that negativity can promote positive reactions.

In spite of our efforts to always stay grounded at 10,000 Beds, to focus on our mission, and provide ethical and honest support to those seeking treatment for addiction, there will always be someone who hears something negative and spreads that hearsay without reaching out to me or anyone at 10,000 Beds for clarification (trust me, this will happen to you too). It’s a given.

We understand human nature isn’t always as stellar as we hope it is, and we’ve got big shoulders with nothing to hide, so as frustrating and time consuming as this kind of thing can be, when it happens it’s simply another issue on another day for me to deal with. And as a leader in your own organization, you need to approach similar situations with the same attitude: one more thing on the to do list, take notes, do your homework, ask for people to come forward with information they are concerned with, listen for crickets and hope for a voice, and carry on.

In the middle of the chaos there is always something of value, if you pay attention. And  an effective leader pays attention.

At 10,000 Beds, we are consistently working to improve our policies, procedures and practices. We are a small nonprofit with an all-volunteer staff and we are knocking it out of the park, but we aren’t perfect. No organization is.

We ask people to share concerns with us when they have them, and I always wait with a hopeful heart, but normally…..

Crickets!

Some people love to stir the pot, but are not ethical enough to take their concern to the person who needs to know. They prefer the chaos.

Leaders need to hear first hand when there are concerns, when something seems wrong. We can’t be everywhere. We need those eyes and ears who observe things we may not. Drinking fountain conversations don’t cut it. It’s important to share concerns with those who have the responsibility to fix things. And to stay clear of the chaos.

How can a leader fix something if no one brings it to their attention?

Anyway, people are people, but today was miraculous. New partners, new supporters, and so many emails, texts and private messages from partners and friends who have buoyed me up and brought me back to where I need to be: doing the right things, leading 10,000 Beds forward, ignoring the chaos, and helping more people.

So thanks. Have a glass of lemonade. It’s on me.


Jean Krisle, affectionately known to many in the addiction treatment industry as “The Godmother of Recovery”, is the CEO/Founder of 10,000 Beds, Inc. a 501c3 nonprofit organization. The mission of 10,000 Beds is to connect those seeking help for addiction to those who are willing to help by providing addiction treatment scholarships.

Jean and her husband Hal are currently #OnTheRoad4Recovery to elevate awareness, change perceptions of recovery, and connect with partners new and old. You can reach Jean at jean@10000beds.org. You can support 10,000 Beds by clicking here and making a contribution today