Dismissed

In US Navy tradition, when a commander loses faith in a subordinate’s judgment, that subordinate is removed—almost always a career-ending move. The admiral running the Pacific Fleet has just removed the three-star admiral running the Seventh Fleet, which has had four separate accidents over the past year involving two destroyers and two cruisers. (The Seventh Fleet has only 12 destroyers in total,  and there are only 22 cruisers in the entire US Navy, globally.) That might not be a bad …


Jumping the Dragon (A Critique of Game of Thrones)

Game of Thrones is “off the book,” meaning the writers are no longer using the work of author R.R. Martin. The episode this past Sunday shows the decline in creativity, drama, and common sense. NOTE: TRIGGER WARNING, SAFE ZONE SEEKING, I’M ABOUT TO REVEAL THE EPISODE. GET THERAPY IF YOU READ ON. We now have a sappy love story between Daenerys and Jon Snow. My dog knew that one of her dragons was going to get killed as soon as …


Podcast – The Uncomfortable Truth – Episode 14: Contrarianism

“Why taking an opposite view is a public service and how to do it.” Transcript: I’m Alan Weiss and The Uncomfortable Truth today is about contrarianism. Yes, that’s right. My very first brand was “the contrarian.” At the time, quality was the big deal. Quality circles, lean and quality approaches, and black belts about quality. So, I wrote an article about how quality pursuit is wrong, I said quality doesn’t create anything and that being lean isn’t necessarily good. “The …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 08/21/17

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

Some people are “looking for ‘like’ in all the wrong places.” If you want to be loved, get a dog. If you want to be liked, go on social media. But the search for affection in place of respect is not a mature pursuit. I want to be “liked” when I go to dinner with new acquaintances, I suppose, and I’d prefer people not to “dislike” me when they’re working with me. But those are not huge goals of mine. …


I’m Terrified that this Won’t Be Terrific

I just wrote an article and mistakenly typed “terrify” instead of terrific. Then I began to wonder about the relationship of these two words given the fortuitous result of my error. “Terrific” once meant “of terror.” We tend to use words such as “terrify” or “terrorize” now. One who does this is a “terrorizer.” Somewhere along the last 800 years or so the meaning of “terrific” was transmogrified from it’s Indo-European roots to today’s usage of “great” or “wonderful.” We …


Personal Strategy

Here is a sequence I find highly effective in coaching top performers: Who do you want to be in a year? (Example: Known as a philanthropist or patron; seen as a thought leader; quoted and cited as an expert.) What do you want to be doing in support of who you want to be? (Writing a book for a commercial publisher; having a board seat on the local Red Cross chapter; teaching as an adjunct professor at the university.) What …


The Scent of A Buyer

Olfactory sense is important in order to appreciate taste. (An onion and apple crunch the exact same way if there’s no sense of smell and you can’t see the food. I watch the color of the coffee as I add cream to determine the right amount, I don’t taste the coffee as I add cream to test the flavor. We use touch to tell us if things are too hot (soup on our lips) or too cold (undercooked steak). We …


Piggish Behavior

A woman walked down the beach with a huge pig yesterday, complete with a string of pearls. When people approached her with questions, she was a real pill, apparently recovering from a personality removal procedure. When you walk with a pig, expect to be approached. Otherwise, stay home with your pig.



Careful, This is the Acme Company, Not America

It’s always seemed more than ironic to me that America has thrived on believing in and supporting free speech, even if obnoxious, because to shut it down is counter to everything that has made us strong, yet in business we often fire people for engaging in it. Are we saying that encouraging free speech is good for the country but bad for business? Perhaps free speech would have avoided the Wells Fargo mess and created more sensitivity at United.