September 28, 2012

(Not) The Retiring Type?

"I go on working for the same reason that a hen goes on laying eggs."

Henry Louis Mencken
20th century American journalist

One day you could stop working.

Should you?

September 27, 2012

How Sad Is That?

"There is nothing sadder than a young pessimist."

Mark Twain
19th century American humorist

I don't know about that.

There's not much joyful about an old one either.

September 26, 2012

Promise Not To Tell Anyone?

"What is told into the ear of a man is often heard 100 miles away."

Chinese proverb

What are the consequences if a secret you share with someone is told by that person to someone else?

Answer that question before you tell them.

September 25, 2012

On Or Off The Person, An Empty Suit Still Is

"Charm strikes the sight, but merit wins the soul."

Alexander Pope
18th century English poet

Whatever gets you in the room.

But once in, you need to perform.

September 24, 2012

I Need You?

"Make yourself necessary to somebody."

Ralph Waldo Emerson
19th century American poet/essayist

Good advice on a personal level in addition to business, but certainly in business.

People sometimes pay for what they don't need, but always pay for what they do.

September 21, 2012

Something for Everyone

"Never contend with a man who has nothing to lose."

Baltasar Gracian
17th century Spanish philosopher

And never enter agreements favorably only to you.

One way or the other you will pay.

September 20, 2012

You Wanna Know Something?

"He who knows little, quickly tells it."

Italian proverb

Having knowledge you don't use is of no value.

And only telling others what you know is not, by itself, action that will lead to positive results.

September 19, 2012

Titling At Preordained Windmills

"In all things there is a law of cycles."

Publius Cornelius Tacitus
1st century Roman historian

I advocate doing all you can to affect the change occurring around you at all times.

But you must first determine which is naturally cyclical.

There's no point working to change night into day.

September 18, 2012

You're One Of Three

"All mankind is divided into three classes; those that are immovable, those that are movable, and those that move."

Arabian proverb

A pretty neat summary of business personalities as well.

Those who don't, those who might, and those who do.

Which are you?

September 17, 2012

I'm Outraged!

"Exaggerated sensitiveness is an expression of the feeling of inferiority."

Arthur Adler
Late 19th/early 20th century Austrian medical doctor

Mind you, not being sensitized, only being overly so.

And not just for sensitiveness; when it comes to business it's a good idea to moderate all your emotions.

September 14, 2012

What's Your Potential?

"Lord we may know what we are, but not know what we may be."

William Shakespeare
16th century British playwright/poet

And all too often, we know neither.

Do you?

September 13, 2012

The Political Manager

"Politics is the art of the next best."

Otto von Bismarck
19th century Prussian German statesman

Whether in government or business, the term "politician" more suggests manipulation than management.

More often the first, much less the second.

Do your coworkers see you as a politician?

September 12, 2012

Decisive Indecisiveness?

"I must have a prodigious quantity of mind; it takes me as much as a week, sometimes, to make it up."

Mark Twain
19th American humorist

Carefully considering the facts prior to making a critical decision is as important in business as is making timely decisions.

How do you find balance between the two?

September 11, 2012

Are You Your Greatest Admirer?

"He who is in love with himself has at least this advantage, he won't encounter many rivals."

Georg C. Lichtenberg
18th century German scientist

In business, as in life in general, there is a very fine line between confidence and self-aggrandizement.

Too little of the former, too much of the latter, either way . . . you lose.

Be careful not to cross over.

September 10, 2012

The Real Deal?

"It is a great advantage for a system of philosophy to be substantially true."

George Santayana
Late 19th/early 20th century American philosopher

And no less so in business.

If what you are selling does not warrant being sold, you won't be selling it for long.

September 07, 2012

What As Much As How

"Erudition can produce foliage without bearing fruit."

Georg C. Lichtenberg
18th century German  scientist

Presentation is important but it is little or nothing without substance.

September 06, 2012

What They Want To Hear, Not What You Think They Want To Hear

"Who speaks to the instincts speaks to the deepest in mankind, and finds the readiest response."

Amos Bronson Alcott
19th century American educator

Note to marketers:  Determine the instincts of your target audience and forget the tired platitudes.  

Not easy to do, I know.

But it is the heart of effective communication.

Most advertising doesn't work but only because most advertising is done poorly.

September 05, 2012

The Power Of Past

"The rewards in life go to those who are willing to give up the past."


But giving it up should not include ceasing to learn from the past.

Never stop doing that for it is understanding of what has been that becomes the foundation for what will be.

September 04, 2012

Your Reputation Precedes You

"The reputation of a thousand years may be determined by the conduct of one hour."


We do more remember the bad than the good.

Think before you act and speak.