The Not So Secret Service

Here’s a consultant’s evaluation of the mess in Cartagena: • The incident reflects poor hiring, poor management, poor supervision, and poor controls. Senior people need to be fired, not just the agents involved. • This kind of brazen behavior almost always reflects a continuing and wider-spread problem. That’s why the transgressions become so flagrant, because the limit keeps being pushed so long as no one is caught. • The President has not set a good leadership example by leaving this …


Antiquated Axioms

We often justify our action or inaction based on highly questionable axioms: Beauty is only skin deep. But that seems more than deep enough for most, since virtually everyone in the media is good looking; we spend billions on hair dyes, exercise, cosmetic surgery, and air brushing; and people still stop and stare at beautiful women (and there are all those beauty contests). Measure twice, cut once. Yes, unless you make sure you have more than enough material to cover …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/16/12

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

April 16, 2012—Issue #134 This week’s focus point: For most of the entire post-World War II period, there have been three points of economic alliance: Japan, Europe, and the U.S. That is now clearly changing for the first time in a half-century to an emerging six points, with the addition of China, Brazil, and India. And there is an important question as to whether Japan and Europe will remain economically strong enough to have equal stature in the group over …


Coach Class on USAir

I recently flew to Phoenix and back first class on USAir and they did a very nice job. In fact, I handed out two recognition certificates to the flight attendants on each flight. However, I  must not know any longer what it’s like to fly in the back. While waiting in the priority line to board, I noticed this woman behind me absolutely wolfing down a ginormous breakfast sandwich. I was looking when she boarded later to see if she …


Open or Closed to Learning?

I’ve found that some people are far better learners than others simply because they allow themselves to be open to it. I received an email a few hours ago from someone who read Million Dollar Consulting, and wanted to tell me his key learning point, which he thought I should include in future editions. “It’s about projectors,” he wrote, “and how you can choose the exact right one for your presentation. You haven’t really included that point.” He’s right—I didn’t …



Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/9/12

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

April 9, 2012—Issue #133 This week’s focus point: Consensus is something you can live with, not something you would die for. We need to accommodate legitimate, diverse points of view. Too often we move from the issue to the person. Once we question the legitimacy of the other person, we end honest debate and emotion precludes logic. We need to disagree without despising, debate without demeaning, understand without undermining. We’ll never gain influence if we demonize those who disagree with …


In Case You Were Wondering What I Was Thinking….

• Self-absorbed people have no sense of humor because if they engaged in laughter it would take time away from talking about themselves. • Apple succeeded in large part because Steve Jobs simply fired people who didn’t cooperate. Compare that to the silos and turf wars you find in so many businesses today. • The absolute worst situation for a small business are relatives in key positions who aren’t performing. The owners can’t improve them and won’t fire them. • …