Carpe Diem

It’s natural to fear death. It can arrive with startling swiftness, or with agonizing slowness. But isn’t that all the more reason to enjoy life and thrive every day? I meet people constantly who shrink out of fear with each challenge, each opportunity, each obstacle—each day. They will get to something “another time,” or “today isn’t the right time,” or “there’s no reason to rush this.” Really? It seems as if there’s every reason to rush your enjoyment, rush your …


Jailbreak

I’ve met a lot of people who are afraid to get up in the morning. They’re afraid of the inevitable conflict with their spouse, or of waking up alone. They’re afraid of their boss or afraid of their employees. They’re afraid of making decisions, or of not making decisions, or of making the right decisions and not being able to fulfill them. They worry about having too little business, having too much potential business they may not be able to …


To Whom Do We Listen?

I was asked today how I determined what advice I heed or ignore. Here are my criteria: 1. Unsolicited advice: I disregard all of it, positive and negative, it’s almost always for the sender, not the recipient. The exception is an immediate, verifiable issue: lettuce in my teeth. 2. Solicited advice from experts: I heed the advice of Drucker on strategy, Goldsmith on coaching, my scuba instructor when diving, just as I expect people to heed me on solo consulting. …


Discipline and Success in the Super Bowl

I thought before the game the Seahawks were going to win, and I think they have incredible athletes, well coached. I have nothing but respect for their accomplishments.   But here’s a lesson for all of us. As you watched the sidelines during the game, the Patriots were all business and the Seahawks were pretty full of themselves. The post-touchdown obligatory actions were more vulgar from the Seahawks.   The Patriots were a more mature team, more focused on business. …


N.O.N.S.E.N.S.E.

I’ve mentioned quite often that my respect for someone’s expertise is generally in inverse proportion to the amount of initials after their name, magnified by the obscureness factor. I know what an MBA means, but CRQ-FB8 leaves me seeking a drink. The worst cases of depression after losing a job I’ve encountered are those in which the individual identifies with his or her title, and not contribution. Take away the business card, you take away the identity. Take away the …


El Capitan

Have you been reading about these two guys free climbing the toughest face of El Capitan  in Yosemite Park? “Free climbing” means you use no ropes (except as an emergency in a fall) and climb only using hands and feet in crevices in the rock face. This particular climb is on a rather sheer rock face, with overhangs and some requirements to leap to the next possible indentations in the rock. They often fail in a move, and the safety …



Finding David

At the recent Million Dollar Consulting® College I told the (probably apocryphal) story of Michelangelo buying a piece of discarded marble and creating the incredible masterpiece, David. When asked how he could do this from a single piece of stone, he said, “I just carved away everything that didn’t look like David.” I told the participants that their careers should be based on what they love doing and are passionate about, and all else should be “carved away.” Michelangelo didn’t …


Staying Too Long At The Fair

I listen to Siriusly Sinatra on satellite radio frequently, and have collected hundreds of his recorded works. I think he is he best interpreter of the Great American Songbook in history, the pivotal point from “big band” to solo vocalist, and the antecedent for Elvis Presley. There is no one who can interpret lyrics as he did, and certain classics (“Without A Song,” “Don’t Worry ‘Bout Me,” Night and Day,” etc.) are really his alone. Many of the horn players …


What Do You Need, What Do You Want?

I observe in amazement people who pile-on every digital gadget that comes out, and upgrade from 4.6.541a to 4.6.541b. They have to have it first and fast. I have no issue with that. My own inclination is to wait three weeks for the new iPhone to be delivered and not wait on a long line in Manhattan. I’l also set it up when I have time, not the moment that UPS drops it in my hands. I have my own …