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 …


Alan’s Monday Morning Memo – 3/2/15

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

This week’s focus point: Why is it so few people are comfortable in their own skins these days? On Facebook, there is a bizarre request made by many to “prove” their posts are read by forcing people to make a response. Klout scores purportedly show social media popularity. Conformity in dress, language, icons, and experiences is like the gravitational pull of Jupiter. We are being pulled toward a lowest common denominator of mediocrity, a tropism toward the banal. The people …


CVS East Greenwich, RI: Dumb-Ass Stupid Management

CVS pharmacy, 507 Main St., East Greenwich, RI: Rudest clerks I’ve ever encountered. After I commented that she hadn’t said “please” or “thank you” after barking six orders at me (birth date? slide card, sign, hit button, then “here you go” after transaction, pushing bag at me), she said, “Why would I say ‘thank you?’” I said, “For my business.” She screamed, sarcastically, “Oh, thank you!” Who hires these people with zero personality? Who manages them? What makes them so …


A Shield of Bombast on A Field of Pomposity

I was in a meeting with some of my top clients in Miami and received an email from someone who had put through an order for a $50 book, hadn’t received a download in 24 hours, and wanted to know where it was. I responded during a break that it would be sent within the day. Then I noticed I also had a voice mail from the same person with the same request. I returned that call and explained the …




At the Mandarin Oriental Miami

Aside from the fact that this hotel has one of the best suites in Miami with a huge, sweeping balcony, here’s why I come here: • The maid realized that I read a booklet during Lent that’s next to my computer, so she placed a bookmark in it so that I would be on the right page each day. • She also realized I had smoked a cigar outside, so she provided ash trays. • The staff greets you in …


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 …


Alan’s Monday Morning Memo – 2/23/15

Alan's Monday Morning Memo

This week’s focus point: In the police procedurals I read or watch on TV, the prosecutors are always looking for motive, means, and opportunity. Did the suspects have a cause which prompted the crime, did they have a weapon or means to accomplish the crime, and was there an opportunity for the commission of the crime? That’s why alibis, access, and witnesses are so vital. This rigor makes me wonder if we try sufficiently to create the same dynamics in …