SEO: Seriously, Egregiously Overrated

Every day we’re besieged by people from foreign lands extolling the virtues of search engine optimization and how they can dramatically improve our business if we send them money. And every day we hear all over the social media here at home from “social media marketing experts” about how they can dramatically improve our business if we send them money. I think very few of any of these people have ever been successful at selling anything except selling this kind of …


The “Why” Is Often Obvious But Missed

Bentley loves to run up and down the yard at full speed every morning. He does it maybe a dozen times. I tried to figure out if he were trying to beat squirrels out of hiding places, or get a quick view of everything, or playing alpha dog. Then I finally go it. He just likes to run. I was being too “deep” about a simple, surface phenomenon. In my high school days, as an exchange student, I toured Cold …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/20/15

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

This week’s focus point: The tighter the comparison, the better the distinction you can identify. “Apples and oranges” is meant to convey a poor distinction, not a good one. But comparing a McIntosh with a Delicious apple is a tight comparison. Thus, comparing best and worst performers doesn’t provide as much useful, specific information as comparing best and next-best. This is why realtors and appraisers spend so much time evaluating house sales according to “comparables,” homes in the area which …



Why People Don’t Move

1. They listen to the wrong people (like the nutcase on Facebook claiming that milk kills). There are more people giving advice to coaches today than there are good coaches. 2. Complexifying. Our job is to simplify, but we think that making things tediously complex adds to our gravitas. It creates gravity, not gravitas. 3. Seeking perfection. This murders excellence (even more than milk), and it saps initiative and speed. 4. Fear of critique. I have news for you, the …



The Hypocrisy of the Media

Britt McHenry, an ESPN reporter, was caught on camera berating a towing company employee with comments about missing teeth, education, weight, and so on. It was an exercise in self-absorption and self-importance of volcanic measure. ESPN suspended her for a week. (A TV poll showed that 84% of viewers thought she should be fired.) Imagine a politician doing that? He or she would be hounded for weeks and perhaps forced to resign. The media outlets would seize on it. But …


Who’s Behind the Curtain in Oz?

I used to think Dr. Oz was a personable, articulate, brilliant medical doctor when I saw him on programs showing emergency room treatment in hospitals. When he got his own TV show, he seemed to become Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. He slowly transformed from provider of pragmatic medical device to hawker of potions and pills, with clearly questionable medial underpinnings. Finally, some fellow surgeons at Columbia have publicly protested his behavior and asked for his ouster as vice chair …