By now, you've probably caught up to the rot of the core that is Facebook.

Frankly, Facebook's relationship with your personal data is in a word "troubling."

For starters, your data has been repeatedly exploited in a bold attempt to monetize Facebook's model and to line their pockets.

By extension, you've exposed your friends and neighbors too. And, what to make of the omnipotent Facebook Pixel?

Let's face it, depending on what you have shared over the years, Facebook knows an awful lot about all of us. And, if it is out there, it is difficult to scrub.

Recent events leave us all a bit shaken. If you haven't left Facebook already, you may consider it.

In a nutshell, for years, Facebook has shared a treasure trove of personal information with developers and data miners of varying stripes. The most recent example of this is Cambridge Analytics and their overt ties to the Trump election effort. 

Facebook continues to self-monitor and self-police. In my view, who is guarding the henhouse here? The company has repeatedly failed in its efforts to date to police itself. What are they gonna do, hire hundreds of thousands of people to monitor daily threads? 

The WSJs Christopher Mims says, "Personalization in advertising is sometimes nearly indistinguishable from surveillance, and personalization is how Facebook makes money and in turn captures so much of the online advertising pie." Sheesh!

In my view, we're one brick short of antitrust litigation. You just know that that'll wind around the courts for a most certain extended period of time with adjudications, appeals; you get the drill (sigh).





Chances are, it’s already been said

I was thinking about something the other day and wondered your take on it.

I'm wondering if the remaining unique idea(s) out there is a zero sum game. 

Think about it.

In other words, what are the chances that it has already been said? Or, the idea is already out there in the public domain created by an individual or group of folks far smarter than I am just waiting to be discovered?

Probably sounds pretty cynical I know this idea of unique ideas and a zero sum game.

Think about it.

How many unique ideas did you come up with over the last week, month, year(s)? Oh sure, there is a unique idea every now and then that a profound thinker comes up with. It doesn't take long to come to light in a fervent attempt to monetize. Then, folks do a riff on it, "knock it off" and call it their own. Cynical.

For me, I've always been best at filtering other peoples ideas. "R&D" as my good friend DBP likes to say. Replicate and duplicate. Don't get me wrong— I have a pretty strong "filter" for extraneous stimuli. Annotation or transcription skills if you will. 






IQ, EQ and AQ

We've known for years the value in super intelligent people. IQ. Critical thinking. Cognitive thinking. Knowledge base. When applied appropriately–powerful.

Then, along came EQ. Self-awareness. Self-regulation. Motivation. Empathy. Recent studies have shown leaders with high EQ outperform those with low EQ. Simple. 

Now, AQ which stands for "adversity quotient." A/K/A resilience. Show me someone that excels in AQ and you probably have a winner. According to Inc., "your resilience is the key common denominator in terms of growth and successful outcomes."

You can take a deep dive here.  

"People absorb eloquent action" (HT to Langone). Take it. 


Think and Grow Rich

Napoleon Hill, in his venerable book "Think and Grow Rich" said that "Champions do what has to be done, when it has to be done, whether they feel like it or not."

What if you exerted just one ounce of extra energy today whatever your chosen endeavor?

Make a difference in someone else today. Think about it.

You won’t die until your purpose is fulfilled

From author Michael Hyatt, words to think on today:

  1. God has a purpose for every single person.
  2. You won’t die until that purpose is fulfilled.
  3. If you are still alive, then you haven’t completed what you were put on earth to do.
  4. If you haven’t completed what you were put on earth to do, then your very purpose hasn’t been fulfilled.
  5. If your purpose hasn’t been fulfilled, then the most important part of your life is still ahead.
  6. You have yet to make your most important contribution.

Breaking the Time Barrier

If you are in the managed services business (for that matter, even if you sell a product), be it a consultant, GC, EC, security system salesperson, attorney, engineering firm, architect or physician you might want to get a look at this parable penned by Mike McDerment, CEO of Freshbooks.


The view from here? A fascinating perspective on how to price and position in an increasingly commodity world. Breaking the time barrier (cost-plus), the art of value-pricing and the gradual ascent upmarket.

Plan to set aside an hour of quiet time. 

For instance, look for this "nugget":

"The best thing I can do for the client is to help them explore what they want. And it turns out, this initial conversation about their problem is the foundation of my approach to pricing.”


When you’re a leader, you’re overhead

Let's face it, when you're a leader, you're overhead.

According to recent research conducted by HBR, power can cause leaders to be come overly obsessed with outcomes and control and as a result often times treat their people as a means to an end.

This can start a deadly chain reaction.

By default, outcomes and control ramp up the natural fear instinct in people. Fear of not hitting the numbers, quota, losing bonuses. You get the drill. This can have the undesired byproduct of reducing people's problem solving inertia and desire.

The key, then, is to help people feel purposeful, motivated, and energized so they can bring their best selves to work.

HBR naturally advocated servant leadership that we have talked about numerous times before in this blog. Indeed, a learned behavior.

Servant-leaders have the humility, courage, and insight to admit that they can benefit from the expertise of others who have less power than them. They actively seek the ideas and unique contributions of the employees that they serve. This is how servant leaders create a culture of learning, and an atmosphere that encourages followers to become the very best they can. The responsibility of a leader is to increase the ownership, autonomy, and responsibility of followers — to encourage them to think for themselves and try out their own ideas.

So, in closing, assuming you're buying into this thesis, how to get started.

Ask how you can help employees do their own jobs better — then listen (a/k/a "be appropriately humble and respectful"). In time and iteration, trust will improve between line and staff and this will get better. Be patient.

I Love Capitalism!

Presently reading a book authored by Kenneth Langone called "I Love Capitalism." You may remember Langone as a co-founder of The Home Depot and philanthropist.

BTW, the book was additionally profiled in Peggy Noonan's Saturday column in the WSJ.

I'm reminded that we can learn things from one another.

There were some of emotional triggers (so called "rules for living" or takeaways) for me so far:

  1. Take your religious faith seriously. Doing so provided him safe harbor from the looming storm clouds and kept him grounded in the needs of others.
  2. Marry for the long-run. When things were good she cheered him on; when things were bad she would always be there for him—win, lose or draw. (We all need our support systems.)
  3. You teach values by living them. (EDITORS NOTE: WOW!) Don't say—do. "People absorb eloquent action."
  4. Pray at the feet of hard work. Be ravenous about reading about your field or chosen endeavor. 
  5. Money solves the problems money can solve. Don't ask more of it, and don't be ashamed of wanting it. "Well kid, I was poor, and I can tell you right now poverty doesn't do a very good job either."
  6. Stay excited. Don't be sated.
  7. Admit the reality around you, then change it.
  8. When you're successful you'll put noses out of joint, even among colleagues who benefit from your work. Be careful about jealousy and in the end, roll with it, it is human nature. When you piss off the old guard, become the old guard—and help the clever rise. (EDITORS NOTE: BEAUTY (HT to Tim, my son-in-law) right there.
  9. There is no defeat except in giving up. You're going to fail. So what? Keep going, something will work. God doesn't close one door without opening another.

I plan to print that up and stick it in front of me to review daily. Thanks Kenneth.

Adapting, anticipation and developing workarounds

I don't really know what will happen in life or business, but I trust myself because I've researched every possible angle and thought about every possible scenario. I've done my homework. I know when things get hard, I'll have an answer to the problem because I know which problems might be coming, and I've figured out how to find a workaround.

SOURCE: adapted for a broader audience originally attributed to LeBron James