Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Blogger Guilt

Bloggers feel guilt when they do not blog. Guilt is good if it prompts positive action. Bad if it causes unneccessary stress. So I let it go and just blog fast tonight.

Kaitlin is doing much better. Will be a long recovery though.

Great quote in the Globe in an article on marathoning:

"Dedication and committment are what transfer dreams into reality."


"Only those who risk going too farcan possibly find out how far they can go."

The same page had a piece that fit people sweat more and sooner than unfit people. This muggy hot weather is sure bad for that. Perhaps I sweat the little things (like not blogging) too much.

All for now.

Friday, September 07, 2007

More on Kaitlin

Thanks to all for your kind emails and calls on Kaitlin. I never knew I had that many people who read this blog (well I can see the statisitcs but it does not tell me actually who people are).

Kaitlin has spoken which is a good sign. She told the nurses to get out of her room which is typical of Kaitlin and tells me she is OK. She told the nurses she only wants to have 5 children. She does not yet recognize anyone including her family. Still - progress but a long way to go.

This incident will set a lot of who Kaitlin will choose to become. Overcoming great obstacle can create great people.

Jessalyn (Kaitlin's sister) has set up a web site with a guest book.

I cried when I read all the caring comments people made.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

My blog formula is 90% business with a focus on efficiency and 10% personal.

Tonight, I violate this formula and only blog personal.

Last night my beautiful 16 year old niece Kaitlin Estill was involved in a very serious car accident. This quickly changes thought and focus. She has a broken pelvis, collar bone, collapsed lung, ripped aorta, lacerated liver and fractured skull. Heart surgery allegedly went well tonight although she has a brain hemorrhage while in surgery or while coming out. No other update.

It has dominated my thoughts since it happened. It dwarfs business challenge.

I feel so helpless and powerless. I guess this is where thoughts and prayers come in. It make one feel like they are doing something.

My brother Lyle (the Bio -Diesel mogul) is an active blogger. He is an excellent writer and has posts on how she is doing.

Monday, September 03, 2007

The Halo Effect

Phil Rosenzweig wrote an interesting book called, "The Halo Effect and Eight Other Business Delusions That Deceive Managers."

I have often said that when I am not performing well, that I am better than what people think I am and when I am performing well, I am not as good as what people think I am. The Halo Effect can have a great impact. I noticed that if a company is on a roll and successful then more people want to work there and more people want to buy from there, etc. The opposite can also be true if a company gets the reputation of not being a good place to work, etc.

The gist of The Halo Effect is it tends to accentuate either the positive or the negative and gives attributes to someone that the person does not have because of their expertise in another area. For example, business people are often asked (and listened to) for their advice on politics or sports but they may have no expertise at all in that area.

I often find because of my success in business that people ask me for advice about things that I would have little knowledge of and they tend to weigh my advice more heavily then they should. One of the reason I seek success as much as I do is because it actually means that people do tend to listen and we all like people to listen to us.

Some take-aways from the book…

-The "Halo Effect" occurs when people ascribe positive attributes to a person or company, even without evidence that the positive traits, in fact, really exist.

-The halo effect is rooted in cognitive dissonance theory: people want a cohesive picture of the world, and so they disregard facts that don’t fit that framework.

- Some famous business books were based on delusions about company performance. The authors were victims of the halo effect, snowed by fleeting success and shallow data.

- Most business studies try to extrapolate upbeat results from meager correlations.

- Real performance emanates from inside a company and its market.

- Tom Peters, co-author of In Search of Excellence, said its data was "faked." The stock prices of more than half the top companies in Built to Last did not beat the S&P 500 in five years after the book was published.

- Company performance is relative to assess it, see it in a competitive context.

- Long-term success is comprised of a series of short-term successes. Companies that adapt have a greater chance of sustained success.

- Beware of "storytelling that masquerades as science."