June 29, 2012

Thankfully Working

"The best way to appreciate your job is to imagine yourself without one."


Unfortunately, the people who understand this the most are the ones without the jobs.

If you're not happy with your current job do all you can to find a better one, and as you do, be thankful you're working.

June 28, 2012

Regrets, I've Had A Few

"Maybe all one can do is to hope to end up with the right regrets."

Arthur Miller
20th century American author/dramatist

Meaning, you will regret things with the only question being, what?

Whatever they are one of them shouldn't be that you often could have done something to improve your situation, and didn't.

In your business and personal lives, think, plan, act.

June 27, 2012

Beneficial Apprehension

"If you are not afraid of doing it then it's not worth the effort."

Mike Stay
Business Wisdom reader/contributor

How many of your "wins" came without some fear of failure?

Can there be meaningful victory without the potential for meaningful loss?

June 26, 2012

The Day Ahead

"The first hour of the morning is the rudder of the day."

Henry Ward Beecher
19th century American politician

Because, if you use it for such, it will set the course for all the hours that will follow.

It's product . . .  the day's agenda.

June 25, 2012

A Voyeur Or Participant Of Progress?

"We love to overlook the boundaries which we do not wish to pass."

Samuel Johnson
18th century British author

The sweet spot in business is being agressive enough to always be moving ahead.

Too agressive and a loss may mean the end of your business.

Not enough and everyone passes you by as though you were standing still.

How's your risk balance?

June 22, 2012

It's What You Get Done, Not What You Do

"It's not enough to be busy.  So are the ants.  The question is:  What are we busy about?"

Henry David Thoreau
19th century American naturalist/philosopher

The apparent suggestion that what ants do is not all that important, aside, there is truth in this.

How much of what you do for a living is "important"?

Is whatever that is enough to justify keeping you?

June 21, 2012

The Importance Of Making Mistakes

"By seeking and blundering we learn."

Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
Late 18th, early 19th century German poet

If you only go where you know, you'll not likely get where you want to be.

June 20, 2012

You Have To Choose

"Man who stand on hill with mouth open will wait a long time for roast duck to drop in."

5th century BC Chinese philosopher

Wanting, hoping, wishing, expecting . . . none of these will in and of themselves get you what you want.

Neither will working hard insure you will achieve your goals.

But if you were going to bet on just one, which would it be?

June 19, 2012

That Should Be Obvious

"To spell out the obvious is often to call it into question."

Eric Hoffer
20th century American philosopher/author

Some do this out of a sense of insecurity, not certain they've been understood.

Others do because they know what they've said is not obvious.

And a few simply change their mind in the brief moments between having and expressing a thought.

Understanding how often each of these applies to you is the hard part.

June 18, 2012

The Never Ending Quest To Satisfy Want

"Want is a growing giant whom the coat of Have was never large enough to cover."

Ralph Waldo Emerson
19th century US poet/lecturer

Do you want more than you have?

Most people do.

If so is it a problem for you?

June 15, 2012

Planning to Relax

"Spare moments are the gold dust of time."


Seems counter-intuitive to think about planning leisure time, but how much of it ends up wasted if you don't?

Note to self:  Must plan to relax!

June 14, 2012

Everyone Thinks So!

"I guess the definition of a lunatic is a man surrounded by them."

Ezra Pound
20th century American poet/intellectual

You are a manager and everyone but one of your staff is convinced that one individual is wrong, the rest of them right.

While you understand why they feel this way, you privately wonder if she may be right, the rest of them wrong.

What do you do?

June 13, 2012

Let's Try Something Different!

"One of the greatest pains to human nature is the pain of a new idea."

Walter Bagehot
19th century British economist

Strange too because "new and improved" is standard, very successful marketing text.

How receptive are you to change?

June 12, 2012

Imagine That!

"To know is nothing at all; to imagine is everything."

Albert Einstein
20th century German-Swiss-US scientist

Well, I do think knowing counts for something, but less so when it gets in the way of imagination.

How's your balance between knowing and imagining?

June 11, 2012

The Complete Package

"Personality is everything in art and poetry."

Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
Late 18th early 19th century German poet

Another example of a thought that applies equally if not more so to business.

You have your MBA, 10+ years work experience, and still your career isn't going as well as you planned.

There's more to it than you might have understood.

June 08, 2012

On The Merits Of Being Cautiously Agressive

"Caution is not cowardly.  Carelessness is not courage."


I have one individual in mind who has consistently demonstrated balance between managing aggressively and being overly cautious.

And when I think of his failures they are almost always the result of being too much of one or the other.

June 07, 2012

The Managerial Responsibility

"Jesting is often only indigence of intellect."

Jean de la  Bruyere
17th century French satirist

Not always but enough so to (hopefully) cause you to pause and think about what you say.

Particularly if you are in a position of power.

June 06, 2012

Key Man

"There is no indispensable man."

Franklin D. Roosevelt
32nd president of the United States

While I've always known this to be true, I haven't always acted as thought I did.

My ego occasionally made me out to be more (to myself) than I actually was.

What about you?

June 05, 2012

Perfect Mediocrity

"Artists who seek perfection in everything are those who cannot attain it in anything."

Eugene Delacroix
Early 19th century French artist

What role does perfection play in business?

A lot of company mission statements talk about "seeking perfection", but I've never known one that came anywhere near close.

Nor many managers who really attempted to.

June 04, 2012

The Envious Mind

"Worth begets in base minds, envy; in great souls, emulation."

Henry Fielding
18th century English novelist


You have only two choices.

You can can wish you had, did, thought whatever you see that has value.

Or you can contribute to make something of equal or greater value.

Which will it be?

June 01, 2012

"Truth never damages a cause that is just."

Mahatma Gandhi
Late 19th/early 20th century Indian nationalist

Remember this the next time you are in a meeting, listening to opinions contrary to yours.

They may be wrong . . .

. . . but what if they're right?