Thursday, October 27, 2016

Leadership and love

I've never been much of a horse person - never really been around them - but I like animals. And when I just hear the photographer talk about it I had to check it out.

Tommy Woodcock with Reckless - winner of the 1977? Melbourne Cup.

As a leader, if you can get [people] to walk through walls for you then that is where you are really doing your job.

The silliest thing I've ever said is that "I'd rather be feared than loved". I'd take fear any day - if it got the job done, but it doesn't. And the fringe benefit is that it feels nicer to be loved than feared.

Love outwards, love inwards, performance. That's when I see it work best.

Beware of the desperate ones

By far the majority of people problems I've had in my working life come from those who say "I am passionate about X -  I don't know what I would do if I didn't have X".

Variously, X can be skydiving/research/my family/dope/this particular job/my significant other etc.

True, people may not say the words but they live the reality.

In The Art of War Sun Tzu says that formlessness is strength. In "IF" Rudyard Kipling says

"If you can make one heap of all your winnings and risk it on one turn of pitch and toss,
- and lose, and start at your beginnings and never breathe a word about your loss" [you'll be a success].

Beware the "passionate" ones - they're afraid. They on;y have one thing that they think they're good at and they want to eliminate anyone else who wants to play in the same space they want to eliminate their risk - which is impossible. And that makes them desperate.

Beware the passionate / desperate ones.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Subway's initiative to mitigate the "Inseparability", "Variability" and "Perishability" challenge of services

There are four problems when you sell a high service product: variability, perishability, inseparability and intangibility. Subway is fairly high along the service spectrum.

I use Subway a fair bit these days and I don't particularly like the way that I have to talk the artist through the process of making my sandwich, it's a real pain in the butt when there's more than one person wanting a sandwich, and (for them) the quiet times are a lost production opportunity. That is inseparability, variability and perishability.

Catering is a product that solves all that for Subway. It makes sense they would be developing that product.


Thursday, October 20, 2016

Woolies just checking to see if their mailing list is alive

250 points (whatever that is) just for Woolies to see if I'm still getting their emails. Sounds fine to me.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Yes, life really is a game

I love the way that skydiving reminds me of the way that life is a game. Over 13 years ago when I was learning to fly camera on Tandems, on of my mentors told me that it's dangerous to get to close to a tandem around the time they deploy. But it is the way you get the best shot. "And it's all a game anyway".

And then, with the same guy ten years later we were joking about how sometimes a student will punch you in the face when they deploy their own parachute. A week later I watched exactly that happen to him.


It's all just a game. And it makes the game I play in my non skydiving life seem so darn boring that it's hard to imagine why some people take it so seriously.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Does my preference for low noise shopping make me racist?

I have come to think that it may be a sign of my life that I like low nose environments. I make a buck by interacting and communicating ( essentially matching wits) with some very intelligent highly educated people. It's a great way to earn a buck.

But in my down time I really prefer low noise environments. Some clever retailers are coming to think of that.

Skip to yesterday afternoon in my local supermarket. It was reasonably busy but what made it worse was a gentleman who had his phone in his hand on hands-free having a particularily loud conversation. I could hear both sides of the conversation very clearly and no matter where I was in the supermarket the guy seemed to follow me. It was driving me crazy.

I kept my thoughts to myself and continue to try to avoid him.

The man also happened to be East Indian.

And there is one of my other problems. At times I will be irritated by certain behaviours. Sometimes those behaviours come from people who are ethically different to me. But I dare not make mention of my irritation because many people rush to the lowest common denominator and shout:

"You're a racist!"

The poor simple fools.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Low noise shopping: Like the slow food movement

I'm pretty unsociable in a morning, especially when I have six hours ahead of me with MBA students in a classroom. Coles have a set of self serve aisles but they shut them in the morning. I don't think they realise that the servicescape is more than simply efficiency.

Servicescape as is made up of design factors Ambien factors and social factors. There is a nascent movement to low noise shopping experiences which I fully appreciate. Originally designed for people with special needs such as autistic people I am quite warm to the idea as well.

When I'm thinking about how to match wits with 23 highly intelligent well educated people I don't wish to be making small talk about my V8 vegetable juice.

Like the slow food movement bring on the low noise shopping movement!

Friday, October 14, 2016

I am reminded: How life is a game

I am reminded that life is a game and that the only way to lose is to give up. So as the pieces move around a chessboard one will have their wins and their losses. If one throws the board over shedding the pieces asunder then the game is lost.

I suppose that's what annoys my adversaries so much. I just keep hanging on. They don't know how I survive but I do.

There are a few tricks left in the old guy still.

I am reminded: About the constraints of honour

I am reminded that good people can only be as honourable as the system they work within allows them to be.

I am no different but these days I feel as if I can be truer to myself.

But it costs me.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

AFL coaches remind us to love the ones you lead

Love the ones you lead.

I first wrote this about six years ago while I was watching managers who certainly didn't feel this way about their underlings. And this just moment after the Grand Final reminds me how important it is.

I have managers that I would run into flames for. In AFL I see it too. This coach has over 40 one-on-one relationships in this team. The intellectual and emotional energy this takes is breathtaking. But it's what one must have to run a successful team. I've been a part of a 119 person team that worked the same way.

And a note about certain types of people. Some of us - often men - aren't comfortable to expose this "feeling side", this love, without some extra help. That help often comes as physical exhaustion, bloody minded goal directedness, andrelanine, unconditional trust, getting drunk together.

Please don't judge us too harshly.

The AMSRS regulatory update

A great list of ethical guidelines. I had to watch this as a review for my QPMR (Qualified Practising Market Researcher) revalidation and it was worth the time.

Treachery disappoints me

I woke up with a stinking headache this morning. Sure it is day 8 of a sobriety drive but I think there's something more.

For about 3 years now I have been the sole supplier of MBA marketing management courses to my current major torrent. I have also begun to do other things for them but this is a great little gig that worked. They are happy with me and so other students.

My line manager refers to my courses as a black hole; student go in and he never hears any complaints after that. Only compliments.

Trying to organise next year (it is October of course) I contacted them confirming my availabilities for next year. Basically I received no reply.

But an insider friend told me that the very next day they were sending around internal emails making those courses of mine available to staff in the school.

So that's what loyalty and forthrightness brings you when you're dealing with some people. Sure things will work out fine for me because they always do, but dealing with people like this just saps my energy.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Nerd dad conversations

Perhaps Jonah might remember these conversations we have. I hope so, I hate to think I spent all my life learning this stuff for nobody to give a shit about it.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Cullen's law of threes

  • If you plan to disrupt a persons day contact them at least 3 hours ahead.
  • To disrupt their week contact them at least 3 days ahead
  • If you will be disrupting somebody's months then contact them at least 3 months ahead

It just sounds like good manners

I don't always succeed at following my own rules but at least I know they exist.

Monday, October 3, 2016

The wishbone answered

On a whim I snapped a wishbone just then. One has to have some decision come out of a wishbone snapping incident.

I joked with myself that if the large part of the wishbone came out in my right hand then that would be a sign that I should continue skydiving for the next 10 years.

The wishbone answered.

And perhaps that's a sign of confirmation bias. Because it's a large part was in my other hand you probably would not see a post.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Blackout SA: Post hoc ergo propter hoc

I had a research methods class today and was speaking about logical fallacies. Exciting I know.

The "post hoc ergo propter hoc" fallacy translates to "it follows therefore it was caused by".

Kate came up with a delicious example.

"So the state wide blackout came after the state increased it's reliance upon renewable power. And the fallacy of 'it came after therefore it was caused by' applies here?"

To my logic yes that fallacy is exactly what applies here. There are plenty of arguments to be had around renewables in South Australia but this is a false one.

Lecturer whiteboard: my musing about personality and Internet abuse

This was just a musing I had in class off of a paper that I was looking at. Addictive personality might be positively related to Internet abuse with a negative moderator being other people in the house.

Lecturer whiteboard: rifle shots what is this a picture of

What are the r and v that I talk about?

Reliability. Validity.