Flies In A Bottle

A famous scientific experiment put honeybees and houseflies in a milk bottle, with the closed end toward a window. The expectation was that since honeybees are known to be far smarter than houseflies, they would more quickly exit. However, the “smarter” honeybees thronged toward the light, and all eventually perished in the closed end of the bottle. The “less smart” houseflies flew random patterns until every one eventually escaped out the open end of the bottle. Sometimes, harder work, whether …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 3/15/10

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo®’s mission is to help readers to thrive. March 15, 2010—Issue #26 This week’s focus point: People tend to forget, sometimes resulting in forgiveness (as with a celebrity or politician with transgressions), and sometimes in assuming they did more than they actually did themselves (as with a consultant or services provider who contributed greatly, but not lately). Keep your name, value, contributions, and brands in front of people. You needn’t do it arrogantly, but you must …




My Life in the Fast Lane

Ronnie, who owns the high-end spa where I get “done” and The Lovely Maria works once a week, was in Paris on a clothes buying trip for her store. She is having breakfast at Angelique, a well-known, “in” cafe, enjoying her “dessert” of Mont Blanc. The woman next to her, well dressed and well spoken, comments on the place and the Mont Blanc. She is just returning from an assignment in Moscow. “What do you do?” asks Ronnie. “I’m a …


The Language of the Sale

When you are talking to a gatekeeper, human resources person, or anyone on a “fishing trip,” refuse to share your approaches, fees, or (heaven forfend) to send a proposal. Instead, say this: “In order to evaluate whether I’m right for you and you’re right for me, I have to meet the person with the fiduciary responsibility for this project. I must hear from his or her lips what is expected, what will constitute success, and how much they intend to …


A Little Night Music: Ms Jones and I

We saw A Little Night Music last night on Broadway, and it was the right music. We attended the original over 35 years ago, and we realized that this was our last chance to see Angela Lansbury on stage, and our first chance to see Catherine Zeta-Jones on stage. Stephen Sondheim is, like a very old Macallan, an acquired taste. (If you don’t believe that, then throw away two hours of your life watching Sunday in the Park With George.) …


Beatles May Become Extinct

I was conducting a workshop recently and the hotel meeting director, who knows me, learned it was my birthday, so she arranged for a cake during the afternoon break. I thanked her, and told her I am 64. “You don’t look it,” she said tactfully. “Well, who ever thought I’d be singing that song?” “What song?” “When I’m Sixty-Four.” “I’ve never heard it.” “It was the one by The Beatles.” “Who are The Beatles?” With that the room stopped, and …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 3/8/10

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo®’s mission is to help readers to thrive. March 8, 2010—Issue #25 This week’s focus point: The recovery is clearly underway in the US, somewhat more slowly in other places. There is quite a distance to go, but if the stock market has the same performance this year as last, it will surpass the pre-recession levels. Stay away from “doom and gloomers.” Here’s your key: Crisply identify what value you bring to clients (How are they …