Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 5/23/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

Why do people count typos and pronouns? (You used “he” twice as much as “she”!) Why is it they feel compelled to tell you? And why do they tell you not in conjunction with commenting on your subject matter, but as a sole piece of feedback, as if the content had no meaning and no purpose? (One person told me he couldn’t focus on content if there was a typo. I told him I hoped he or she was receiving …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 5/16/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

I‘m in Budapest at the conclusion of our Danube cruise, ensconsed in the Four Seasons confronting the river. The people here tell me their national anthem is a dirge which they hate, because it pleads with God to give them relief from endless sufferings and defeats. A woman in the spa mentioned that before a football game it’s depressing to hear, and when a Hungarian athlete wins an Olympic gold medal, they all start crying, and not from happiness! (The …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 5/9/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

I‘m in Nuremberg, awaiting our Danube cruise. (You can see photos on contrarianconsulting.com or Facebook.) This is a thousand-year-old city almost completely destroyed during Word War Two. We can see the remains of the walls and towers of the “old city” while life vibrates in the contemporary city. Remembering our past and learning from it is vital, but not to the extent of being trapped within it. Looking to the future can be thrilling, so long as we’re not distracted …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 5/2/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

Ross Douthat closed his colum in the Times on Sunday with the lines from King George III in Hamilton: “You’ll be back, time will tell, remember that I served you well.” I recall in my political science studies a professor challenging us to prove that a benevolent dictator wasn’t actually the best form of government. “Benevolent,” of course, is in the eye of the beholder (or on the back of the oppressed). I’ve found that there is no perfect leadership …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/25/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

I returned from Venice a day ago. While it remains for me an historic, mystical, romantic place, the times don’t auger well for it. And it’s not a matter of the sea rising, which they’ve handled well since the 14th Century, it’s a matter of the people disappearing, which is far more recent. Once off the beaten path, the residential neighborhood piazzas, where scores of children once played soccer and filled the square with shouting and laughter, are empty. The …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/18/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

We arrived at Milan yesterday and the very nice immigration agents were dressed like rear admirals: epaulettes and chevrons, medals and gold braid. The conductor on the train to Venice was attired like a veteran airplane pilot. I recalled my consulting work with the military over my career. From an officer’s uniform you could tell rank and status (you’re saluting the rank, not the person, I used to hear), the specialty, the combat history, years in service, honors, and so …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 4/11/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

There was this funny thing about school and me—I wanted to be there. I enjoyed learning. I read all the books. I thought that’s why I was there. I didn’t cut class. What was the point? I still had plenty of free time. Some of my colleagues’ books and papers were a congeries in their room. Mine were organized and neat. Last week I ran a program in Boston on how to change your life. We had a full house, …


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

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

“House of Cards,” about an unethical president and his wife (Kevin Spacey and Robin Wright in amazing performances), has created “binge watching,” where people are glued to Netflix for 13 consecutive episodes once or twice a year. Every time Donald Trump opens his mouth, it’s front-page news—the more controversial, the better. We still wonder what happened to D.B. Cooper in 1971, when he hijacked an airplane and parachuted out of it with a large ransom. Bonnie and Clyde are the …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 3/28/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

I‘ve become a student of dogs, creatures smart enough to inveigle themselves into our camps 10,000 years ago and which we’ve never been able to get rid of since! Ailurophiles have their own world, it’s not of interest to me. There are species-specific traits of dogs: males mark their territory, they have keener hearing and scent abilities than humans. Then there are breed-specific traits: My German Shepherds need to have work or games to do, are great with kids, will …


Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 3/21/16

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

We spent last week in LA where I hosted the enormously successful Million Dollar Consulting® Convention. I chose to stay in my favorite hotel in Beverly Hills and commute to the meeting venue near the airport. With no traffic the trip is 13 minutes. With traffic, it’s almost an hour, and LA is usually “with traffic” at any given moment! The key is not to get upset about it. Every ounce of complaint, invective, and agita created by things we …