DASM: Bank of Montreal, Where I Don’t Want My Money

I was a client of Diners Club for 20 years. When it became simply another type of MasterCard, I stayed with them. I paid my bills in full, each month, for 20 years. Unbeknownst to me, Diners Club cards were taken over by Bank of Montreal. Not long after, I received a form letter telling me my credit had been limited to a cap of $20,000 “after a review of my spending and credit information” and it basically explained they …


Alan’s Monday Morning Memo – 1/30/12

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

January 30, 2012—Issue #123 This week’s focus point: Be judicious in terms of those to whom you choose to listen and heed. Very few pundits and prognosticators are ever held accountable for their predictions, whether financial, social, political, or technological. Most who claimed they “predicted” the Great Recession were “predicting” it for 20 years. I hardly find that useful. Those who said Steve Jobs’s departure would devastate Apple are seeing record performance numbers from that company, but if it stumbles …


The “Next Level”

There are certain words and phrases that, while originally well intentioned, have become hackneyed and trite. “Have a nice day,” “meaningful,” “impactful,” and “good to great” all come to mind. I’m not merely fossicking here, because “We want to go to the next level” has become one of those tendentious phrases that seems to mean so much but results in so little. Whether that “next level” is financial (which it usually is), or competence, or repute, or anything else, I’ve …




The Dog Star: It’s A Long Fall Off A High Horse

(The Dog Star is a symbol of power, will, and steadfastness of purpose, and exemplifies the One who has succeeded in bridging the lower and higher consciousness. – Astrological Definition) I have a new, free video series on RESOLVE: http://www.summitconsulting.com/resolve/ and, as I frequently do, I use my dogs as examples throughout the videos. I talk about how optimistic they are every day, and how they integrate learning. The responses to the series have been fantastic, but one person wrote to …


Alan’s Monday Morning Memo – 1/23/12

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

January 23, 2012—Issue #122 This week’s focus point: I’ve read that Picasso’s mother told him that he would become Pope if he joined the clergy, and a general if he joined the military. But he reported that he preferred art and “I became Picasso.” The great architect Frank Lloyd Wright said, “I once had the choice between hypocritical humility and honest arrogance, chose the latter, and have never regretted it.” I’m suggesting that, short of tedious smugness, we take some …



Why Consulting Isn’t Rocket Science

I’ve known a couple of actual rocket scientists, and they were nice people, but they were  no better than I at trying to open plastic-sealed tools, operate the cable remote, or understand why Snookie is even vaguely interesting. Fortunately for all of us, consulting is not rocket science. Here’s why: • The obvious solutions and improvements are usually the right ones. (Occam’s Razor). • You often have to merely cut to the chase: “He can’t be helped, coached, or re-skilled, …