a respectful manner

As your leader, I encourage you from time to time
And always in a respectful manner to question my logic.
If you’re unconvinced of a particular plan of action I’ve decided is the wisest  
then tell me so.
But allow me to convince you and I promise you right here and now
No subject will ever be taboo.

Lucy Lui, Kill Bill, Queen Of The Crime Council Lyrics

focus on offering goods and services people actually want and need

“In today’s increasingly saturated product marketplace, surface appeal is not enough to elevate me-too products or services above the pack, or to yield sustained success. The harder trick is to use design to get beneath that superficial marketing level and to delve down to core business issues such as: What do people really need? And how can we best provide that?

That business should be focused on offering goods and services people actually want and need may seem obvious. Why would companies do otherwise? The reason is that they often are focused more on their own existing capabilities and objectives than on the needs of others.“

– Warren Berger, GLIMMER: How Design Can Transform Your Life, and Maybe Even The World, pg 100

don’t be so judgmental

“I always laugh when somebody says, “don’t be so judgmental.“ betty boopBeing judgmental is just what we do. Not being judgmental really would be like death. Normative behavior is normal. That original self-conscious, slightly despairing glance in the mirror (together with, “Is this it?“ or “Is that all there is?“) is a great enabler because it compels us to seek improvement.”
Andy Martin, NYT The Phenomenology of Ugly

a penchant for boldness and initiative

The Marine Corps’ style of warfare requires intelligent leaders with a penchant for boldness and initiative down to the lowest levels. Boldness is an essential moral trait in a leader for it generates combat power beyond the physical means at hand. Initiative, the willingness to act on one’s own judgment, is a prerequisite for boldness. These traits carried to excess can lead to rashness, but we must realize that errors by junior leaders stemming from overboldness are a necessary part of learning. We should deal with such errors leniently; there must be no “zero defects“ mentality. Abolishing “zero defects“ means that we do not stifle boldness or initiative through the threat of punishment. It does not mean that commanders do not counsel subordinates on mistakes; constructive criticism is an important element in learning. Nor does it give subordinates free license to act stupidly or recklessly.

Not only must we not stifle boldness or initiative, but we must continue to encourage both traits in spite of mistakes. On the other hand, we should deal severely with errors of inaction or timidity. We will not accept lack of orders as justification for inaction; it is each Marine’s duty to take initiative as the situation demands. We must not tolerate the avoidance of responsibility or necessary risk.


Relations among all leaders””from corporal to general””should be based on honesty and frankness regardless of disparity between grades. Until a commander has reached and stated a decision, subordinates should consider it their duty to provide honest, professional opinions even though these may be in disagreement with the senior’s opinions. However, once the decision has been reached, juniors then must support it as if it were their own. Seniors must encourage candor among subordinates and must not hide behind their grade insignia. Ready compliance for the purpose of personal advancement””the behavior of “yes-men“””will not be tolerated.

Warfighting Pages 57-58

The real action is at the other end

“The real action is at the other end: the main chance is becoming a free agent in an economy of free agents, looking to have the best season you can imagine in your field, looking to do your best work and chalk up a remarkable track record, and looking to establish your own micro equivalent of the Nike swoosh. Because if you do, you’ll not only reach out toward every opportunity within arm’s (or laptop’s) length, you’ll not only make a noteworthy contribution to your team’s success — you’ll also put yourself in a great bargaining position for next season’s free-agency market.”
Tom Peters, The Brand Called You

Michael Ploanyi’s theory of apprenticeship

“Michael Ploanyi’s theory of apprenticeship: “˜You follow your master because you trust his manner of doing things even when you cannot analyze and account in detail for their effectiveness.   By watching the master and emulating his efforts in the presence of his example, the apprentice unconsciously picks up the rules of the art, including those which are not explicitly known to the master himself.   These hidden rules can be assimilated only by a person who surrenders himself to that extent uncritically to the imitation of another.’“

–       Design and Truth pg. 156

the need for conformity

“I understand the need for conformity. Without a concise set of rules to follow we would probably all have to resort to common sense. Discipline is the key to conformity and it is important that we learn not to question authority at an early age.” 27b/6

The sole object is to hold attention and satisfy an audience

“Those who manipulate the shadows that dominate our lives are the agents, publicists, marketing departments, promoters, script writers, television and movie producers, advertisers, video technicians, photographers, bodyguards, wardrobe consultants, fitness trainers, pollsters, public announcers, and television news personalities who create the vast stage for illusion. They are the puppet masters. No one achieves celebrity status, no cultural illusion is swallowed as reality, without these armies of cultural enablers and intermediaries. The sole object is to hold attention and satisfy an audience.”

– Chris Hedges, Empire of Illusion, Pg 15-16

Lucia Micarelli – Genius is Bullshit

“I hate the word “genius.“ I think people misuse it. They think that if someone’s a genius, everything just happens. That’s bullshit. It’s about respecting yourself and your talent, and realizing that there are no shortcuts. Whether it’s now or later, you have to put in the effort to get from point A to point B. You can’t just take a side street.“

Lucia Micarelli, Violinist, Actor, BadAss (source, pg 55)

quick to assasinate what they do not understand

“Group Think: They who play it safe, are quick to assasinate what they do not understand.They move in packs. Ingesting more and more fear with every act of hate on one another. They feel most comfortable in groups. Less guilt to swallow. They are us. This is what we have become. Afraid to respect the individual. A single person within a circumstance can move one to change. To love herself. To evolve.”

Erykah Badu, Window Seat

Set him before me; let me see his face.

Soothsayer. Caesar! red dragon

Caesar. Ha! who calls?

Casca. Bid every noise be still: peace yet again!

Caesar. Who is it in the press that calls on me? 100
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music,
Cry ‘Caesar!’ Speak; Caesar is turn’d to hear.

Soothsayer. Beware the ides of March.

Caesar. What man is that?

Brutus. A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of March. 105

Caesar. Set him before me; let me see his face.

Cassius. Fellow, come from the throng; look upon Caesar.

Caesar. What say’st thou to me now? speak once again.

Soothsayer. Beware the ides of March.

Caesar. He is a dreamer; let us leave him: pass.

(source)

The Wind Shifts – Wallace Steven

This is how the wind shifts:
Like the thoughts of an old human,
Who still thinks eagerly
And despairingly.
The wind shifts like this:
Like a human without illusions,
Who still feels irrational things within her.
The wind shifts like this:
Like humans approaching proudly,
Like humans approaching angrily.
This is how the wind shifts:
Like a human, heavy and heavy,
Who does not care.

– Wallace Steven (source)

Limits, like fears, are often just an illusion

“Although I am recognized with this tremendous honor of being in the basketball hall of fame, I don’t look at this moment as a defining end to my relationship with the game of basketball. It is simply a continuation of something I started a long time ago. One day you might look up and see me playing the game at 50″¦. Oh don’t laugh”¦ never say never. Because limits, like fears, are often just an illusion.“

– Michael Jordan’s NBA Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech 9/11/2009