Why Service Matters

On the way to church Saturday at 4:30, I realized I had forgotten to make dinner reservations. I called Siena, one of our favorites, from the car and the hostess said they couldn’t accommodate us at 6, which I had suspected, but then she said, “Hold on,” and came back on the line to confirm the reservation. When we arrived, I expected to be seated in Siberia, but we had our usual preferred table in the wine room. The manager, …


Higher Tech, Higher Touch

I purchased the iPhone X because I enjoy having the latest Apple phone and I bought Apple originally at $17, the best investment in my history. So, I’m kind of loyal. The phone came with a minute set of suggestions for use, and an online tutorial. However, it also comes with an offer of a free, personal, interactive session with an expert. I made my reservation (I had dozens of times to choose from on various dates), clicked on the …


Go Pats

I’m heading for the Patriot Game in Foxboro today, taking a train out of Providence to beat the parking-lot traffic which develops before and after the game. They don’t allow drop-offs, so I can’t take a limo. (The limos have to go into the $120 limo lot. This is how Bob Kraft just bought two new 767s for the team.) It’s sort of like skiing, by the time you get to the top of the hill with all the equipment …


Shut the Door!

I once worked for a brilliant but erratic genius named Ben Tregoe, who founded the consulting firm I was employed by in Princeton. I eventually rose to one of the highest positions in the place, and reported to him. One day he called me and asked me to come down to his office.This was never necessarily good, and I was wondering what was going on. I arrived and he asked me to sit down and then said, “Watch this!” He …


Pleased to Meet You

The guys who set up the continental breakfast for my meetings at the Times Square W Hotel these last two days introduced themselves to me and shook my hand. They were Claudio and Cyrus. They’d ask if everything was okay and were immediately responsive if I asked for anything at all. That is a trait more valuable than a frequent guest program, or a room amenity, and is a sign of good management hiring good people. That’s why I keep …


Drugs

Over 100,000 people are employed by the pharma industry alone in Puerto Rico. What do you want to bet they will restore power and manufacture greatly needed pharmaceuticals much faster than the government gets anything going? They are currently providing more generators, securing fuel for the generators, and providing transportation for workers who are isolated and unable to overcome roadblocks and damage.


Wait, What?

We’re dining last night in a restaurant next to the venue where we’re about to see a ballet, where my wife is a long-time board member. As we’re about to leave, my wife spies two of her fellow board members across the way. She says to me, “You MUST go over and say hello, they see us here!” So, I turn the charm dial to maximum (“I can’t give you any more power, Captain, or the warp drive will surely …


How Do You Like These Apples?

If you’ve been reading about Apple, you’ll see that it has more cash than anyone else, including most governments: $250 billion, which is more than the cash reserves of Great Britain and Canada combined. It appears they might have to declare a very large dividend in the near future. For many years, my financial advisors, who do my taxes but also have a wealth management division which I don’t use, urged me bring my investments to them and to sell …


All Aboard

It’s 8 am and the Acela is pulling out of Penn Station in New York, silently and stealthily, passing hundreds of arriving commuters from local train mere feet away from the tracks. They are trudging, infantry-like, down the platform and up the escalators, heads down, backpacks swaying, resolute and without choices. They are marching into a never-ending battle that will always be a stalemate, because no matter what they accomplish or fail to accomplish today, they will be doing the same …