June 28, 2013

HUH?


"Every other enjoyment malice may destroy; every other panegyric envy may withhold; but no human power can deprive the boaster of his own encomiums."

Samuel Johnson
18th century British author

I've made this point before including citing my 6th grade teacher Matthew Kim. Nonetheless it's worth repeating.

Mr. Kim taught his students to "Speak not so you can be understood but so you cannot be misunderstood."

Samuel Johnson has much wisdom to share and I've included many of his easily understood quotes in this blog.

This isn't one of them, at least not for me.

June 27, 2013

I IMAGINE THAT . . .


"My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened."

Michel Eyquem de Montaigne
16th century French philosopher, essayist

More than in the past we do this regarding the future.

Be pessimistic if you must but if it prevents you from acting, you have a serious problem.

You
 

June 26, 2013

IT'S ALL IN HOW YOU LOOK AT IT


"One sees great things from the valley; only small things from the peak."

Gilbert Keith Chesterton
Late 19th/early 20th century British journalist, novelist and poet

Very little in life is "always" true, this included.

However recalling this during difficult times may help.

June 25, 2013

I CAN'T WAIT TO SHOW YOU!


"The mind conceives with pain, but it brings forth with delight."

Joseph Joubert
18th century French moralist

We enjoy sharing what we worked hard to create.

What does that say about what is easy to do?

June 24, 2013

ORIGINALLY I DIDN'T THINK SO


"The more intelligent one is, the more men of originality one finds. Ordinary people find no difference between men."

Blaise Pascal
17th century French mathematician, physicist and philosopher

A bit judgmental but point taken.

Original thinking does not come easy (and no I'm not the first to conclude that.)

June 21, 2013

Act when you know you should.


"We dance round in a ring and suppose, but the secret sits in the middle and knows."

Robert Frost
Late 19th/early 20th century American Poet

And all too often we know the "secret".

Denial is a costly luxury.

June 20, 2013

For better or worse, you did it!


"Everyone is a self-made person but only the successful admit it."

Unknown

The first step to improving yourself is to own the fact that you made you.

If you can't do that much you have little chance of becoming something better.

June 19, 2013

Only knowing how to get to places you never go to gets you nowhere.


"Today the tyrant rules not by club or fist, but, disguised as a market researcher, he shepherds his flocks in the ways of utility and comfort."

Marshall McLuhan
20th century Canadian communications theorist and educator

Not by a long shot.

I founded, grew, and sold what was at the time the consumer electronic industry's largest independent market research and database marketing company in the world.

No one did more research than we did and while much of it was acted upon, much of it was not.

Memo to managers: Don't buy research you don't use.

June 18, 2013

Make mistakes to learn not to make mistakes.


"One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty counsels. The thing to do is to supply light and not heat."

Woodrow T. Wilson
28th US President 

Makes sense.

But how do you balance the time necessary to develop "cool judgment" versus "hasty counsel"?

Do you always know which you have?

Maybe Will Rogers had the answer.


June 17, 2013

It Just Pisses Me Off When I Lose Mine!


"The happiness and misery of men relies no less on temper than on fortune."

Fran├žois de La Rochefoucauld
17th century French writer

Temper

The one thing in business you cannot afford to lose.

June 14, 2013

Well?


"The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone."

Harriet Beecher Stowe
19th century American writer and philanthropist

If your business, your career, is not going to be the success you originally envisioned, are you really OK with it being because of things you knew you should but never attempted to do?

Do it!

June 13, 2013

Own It!


"All business depends upon men fulfilling their responsibilities."

Mahatma Gandhi
Late 19th/early 20th century leader of Indian nationalism

Excuses may explain why you didn't accomplish your goals but they don't excuse your failure.

Ultimately it comes down to put up or shut up.

No one gets paid forever simply explaining failure.

June 12, 2013

Competitive Kindness


"You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late."

Ralph Waldo Emerson
19th century American poet/essayist/lecturer

What if any role does kindness play in business?

Does it have a formal place in business plans?

June 11, 2013

IF I CAN THINK IT YOU CAN (HOPEFULLY) DO IT


"A society made up of individuals who were all capable of original thought would probably be unendurable."

Henry Louis Mencken
Late 19th/early 20th century American journalist

A company as well.

Somebody has to actually do what the original thinkers conceive.

June 10, 2013

STANDING ALONE


"Things are not to be judged good or bad merely because the public think so."

Publius Cornelius Tacitus
1st century Roman historian

And yet it is difficult to oppose majority opinion.

If you are a senior manager in a position with subordinates, peers, and superiors, do you (ever, often) go against what most believe, and if so, how?

June 07, 2013

THE COST OF MONEY


"Money often costs too much."

Ralph Waldo Emerson
19th century American poet/essayist/lecturer

We can all benefit from remembering this however I specifically want to call this to the attention of new college graduates.

Work hard for financial success but not to the point that doing so will cost you in other, often more meaningful ways.

June 06, 2013

WHAT WILL BE NOT WHAT IS


"It is a fact that you project what you are."

Norman Vincent Peale
20th century  preacher/author

But not necessarily what you will be.

You can change.

It won't "just happen" but you can become something better assuming you plan to change.

June 05, 2013

AND LET ME TELL YOU SOMETHING ELSE I WILL DO


"Thunder is impressive, but it is lightning that does the work."

Mark Twain
19th century American humorist/writer

Envision "lightning" as what you do, "thunder"what you say you will do.

Get the idea?

June 04, 2013

A VERY DIFFERENT DAY


"A man may be a pessimistic determinist before lunch and an optimistic believer in the will's freedom after it."

Aldous Huxley
20th century British author

Which is to say, things change.

Plan to create the outcomes you wish to see happen.

Start by accepting that whatever currently is today won't necessarily still be tomorrow.

June 03, 2013

I DON'T WANT TO HEAR THAT


"A blind man will not thank you for a looking glass."

English proverb

You may be right, the other person wrong, but rarely will anything you say cause them to change their mind if they aren't predisposed to do so in the first place.