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LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

Got Mojo?

BY STEVEN A. MORELLI, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

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I have a tune stuck in my head. It’s Muddy Waters’ Got My Mojo Working morphing into Jim Morrison singing “Mr. Mojo Risin’ ” from LA Woman. Yes, it is as irritating as you would think. It developed as I was writing about symbols of luck accompanying this month’s feature. One of them is the mojo, which is a small bag of magical material, according to an African American hoodoo tradition. The item is described as imbuing the owner with self-confidence. But that might be backward. Isn’t the owner investing confidence in the power of the mojo? Here’s the difference: Have you ever gone into a situation where you felt like you couldn’t lose? And odds are good that you didn’t lose (or at least felt good about what you were doing). Well, you had your mojo working. Thinking back on the most successful people I’ve known, they had some kind of mojo going on. They had confidence in something beyond them. You could just see by looking at them that they were unshakeable, either in life or in the task they had at hand. Take Gen. Stanley McChrystal for example. Looking at him, you wouldn’t think he has ever had an off moment, he has never been knocked down. Of course, everybody has bad days, but he doesn’t carry them as burdens. He looked like a winner up on stage at LIMRA’s annual meeting in October, yet he talked about failure. He discussed how things were going badly in Afghanistan when he was the chief of the Joint Special Operations Command. “We weren’t winning yet,” McChrystal said, which was the military way of saying they were losing. His solutions helped turn around not only the Afghan conflict but also to rethink how war is waged. He and his advisors learned that it is all about the network. The enemy was using the power of networks against greater forces, so the might of the U.S.

military had to break it down to relationships. It was one-on-one understanding and respect of allies in the coalition but also of the people throughout the effort. He reminded himself of his creed from his days as a U.S. Army Ranger: I will never leave a fallen comrade to fall into the hands of the enemy. “No matter what, I will come back for you,” McChrystal said. He remembered that it is always relationship first. You have to care about the people who work for you more than yourself. Gooey talk from a general, right? Obviously, McChrystal is a secure guy with confidence in his network. His mojo is his people. What goes into your mojo bag? Steven A. Morelli Editor-in-Chief

6 InsuranceNewsNet Magazine » December 2012


December 2012