People believe what they’re paid to believe

Upton Sinclair once said, “Getting a man to believe X when his salary depends on him believing Y, is very difficult.” This observation explains 99% of all irrational corporate behaviour. Salaries erode common sense. Remember that when asking someone their opinion. They will tell you a story that affirms their salary, not necessarily reality. People…

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Pick up the phone and make the call

It’s too easy to rather add the phonemail, or email, to tomorrow’s to-do list. Why delay? Why not just make the phone call right now? Every delay has a ripple effect on all events from that moment on. More delays. More chance you may fail simply because the other guy moved faster. Don’t delay. Pick…

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Keep your doubts to yourself

Everyone has doubts. It’s human. If you had no doubts there’s something wrong with you. The trick is to keep them to yourself. Not everyone has all the information you have, and so cannot allay their doubts with counter-arguments. You showing doubt sows the seeds of panic in your staff/partners/shareholders. That is a guaranteed way…

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Communicate communicate communicate

No matter whether you have three staff or three thousand staff, you simply can never communicate too much. Everyone wants to know what’s going on, no one has the same access to info as you do. Tell them what’s going on. Regularly. Repeat yourself. Bore yourself. Bore the audience. You simply can’t communicate enough. Communicate…

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Listen

Want to know what your customer wants? Listen. Want to know how much an investor is happy too invest? Listen. Want to know how to motivate your staff? Listen. Most of the time you’re so convinced you have the answer, you don’t listen to the other guy. And then you’re surprised when your customer is…

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Play your cards one at a time

Everything in business is unpredictable. You cannot predict whether you’ll win or lose until the end. So don’t play your cards before you have to. Save you best cards for when you need them, rather than fritter them away assuming you’ll already won. Everything is a long game. Don’t rush. Play your cards one at…

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Are you a leader or a boss?

A leader is someone that people follow because they want to. A boss is someone that people follow because they have to. A leader asks the opinions of her team before making a decision. A boss doesn’t care for the opinions of her team. A leader never leaves a man behind. A boss thinks of…

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You can’t fight the market

Back in the 80’s, Nintendo had 90% share of the video games market. They completely dominated, with  Sony bringing up the rear by a long shot. But then CD’s came along. All the game developers preferred making games on CD’s. But, instead of adopting CD’s for their game consoles, Nintendo insisted on persisting with cartridges-only….

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How to prioritise what matters

* From Farnam Street There are two types of decision: Irreversible and inconsequential The latter are a great training ground for decision-making. Mistakes don’t hurt, so you can delegate and give your team opportunities to make their own decisions. The former require time, effort and focus. Before making irreversible decisions, spend time gather evidence and information….

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Don’t judge your future by your past

Just because you’ve always had 5% bad debt, doesn’t mean you’ll have 5% bad debt going forward. Just because you’ve always had 50% sales growth, doesn’t mean you’ll have 50% sales growth going forward. Just because you’re always been a winner, doesn’t mean you’ll be a winner going forward. Extrapolating future results based on history…

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Don’t create false hope

Don’t lend money to people who can’t pay you back. Don’t give a job to someone who can’t do the job. Don’t give a training certificate to someone who hasn’t learnt the skills. All you’re doing is creating false hope, and false expectations. At the very least you’re going to hurt the other person, at…

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Do you have velocity or speed?

Velocity and speed are different things. Speed is the distance traveled over time. You can run around in circles with a lot of speed and cover several miles that way, but you’re not getting anywhere. Velocity measures displacement. Velocity is direction-aware. You need to be focusing on velocity, not speed. Think about the direction you…

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