Getting better at bucket management

  If you throw a bucket of water on a small campfire, youll succeed in putting it out. Pour a bucketful of sake into one of those little glasses and youll waste most of it and ruin the table setting. And try to use a bucket to refill a dried-out lake and not much will…Read moreRead more

Are you doing what you said you wanted to do?

If you want to be a poet, write poetry. Every day. Show us your work. If you want to do improv, start a troupe. Dont wait to get picked. If you want to help animals, dont wait for vet school. Volunteer at an animal shelter right now. If you want to write a screenplay, write…Read moreRead more

The whiners room

When my friend Elly taught in a middle school, he never hung out in the teacher’s room. He told me he couldn’t bear the badmouthing of students, the whining and the blaming. Of course, not all teachers are like this. In fact, most of them aren’t. And of course, trolling isn’t reserved to the teacher’s…Read moreRead more

Raising the bar or Raising the average ?

Raising the bar Thats not the same as raising the average. With the advent of the high jump, the idiom raising the bar became well understood: If you cant jump over the bar that the current leader cleared, you dont win. But most of the innovations that change our culture dont actually increase the simple…Read moreRead more

Stevie and Marvin

When Marvin Gaye joined Motown, he went with his strengths. He wanted to work only in the studio. He hated touring and was sure he lacked the charisma and other gifts that made some musicians great onstage. This didnt really fit the labels strengths, and he struggled to find his footing. In 1962, Berry Gordy…Read moreRead more

How long is forever?

And how soon is never? Most organizations are fundamentally incapable of planning ten years out. When a company promises to be carbon neutral by 2030, theyre actually saying that they may never be. Thats because almost all the pressures on them are short-term pressures. And it doesnt help that few people expect to be in…Read moreRead more

Are you arguing for inaction..?

is surprisingly easy. Weve done all this work and things havent gotten better, so, apparently, we should stop trying and go back to what we were doing. Weve done all this work and things are getting better, so that means that theres no need to keep trying and we can go back to what we…Read moreRead more

Im not that smart

Someone said that to me the other day and it was heartbreaking. The number of tasks in our culture that require someone who was born with off-the-charts talent is small indeed. Just about everything else we need people to do is the result of effort, practice and care. Its true that variations of that work…Read moreRead more

The chief hype officer…Really?

The chief marketing officer at a big company has an impossible job. The typical duration of a CMO is 18 months because once the CEO realizes that hype for money cant solve their problems, they get restless. The problem lies in what people think marketing is. Marketing isnt paying for ads, changing the logo or…Read moreRead more

Logistics vs (and) innovation…

When innovation arrives, the logistics people have to scramble to keep up, because innovation always makes it hard to do things the way we used to. Over time, an innovative company thrives if it can get its logistics in order. Ship the right stuff to the right people on time and on budget. Once this…Read moreRead more