The risk of failure

If we don't succeed, we run the risk of failure.

quote by George W. Bush

Don't loose your head

Don't lose your head
To gain a minute
You need your head
Your brains are in it.

Burma Shave

Human resources

Human resources are human first, and resources second.

quote by J. Garbers


Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.

quote by Plato


Fix your eyes forward on what you can do,
not back on what you cannot change.

quote by Tom Clancy, Author

Effort, not ability

Effort, not ability, makes the biggest difference in achievement.

quote by Bill Clinton


Well George, we knocked the bastard off.

spoken by Sir Edmund Hilary after he and Sherpa Tenzing had conquered mount Everest.

Hiring and training

Hire character.
Train skill.

quote by Peter Schutz

Predicting the economic downturn

These economic downturns are very difficult to predict,
but sophisticated econometric modeling houses like Data Resources and Chase Econometrics have successfully predicted 14 of the last 3 recessions

Capital punishment

Capital punishment is as fundamentally wrong as a cure for crime
as charity is wrong as a cure for poverty.

quote by Henry Ford


I've never had a problem with drugs.
I've had problems with the police.

quote by Keith Richards

Getting information off the internet

Getting information off the Internet is like taking a drink from a fire hydrant.

quote by Mitch Kapor

Definition of a diplomat

Diplomat: A person who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you actually look forward to the trip.

quote by Caskie Stinett


There cannot be a crisis today; my schedule is already full

quote by Henry Kissinger

In court

You don't know anything about a woman until you meet her in court.

quote by Norman Mailer

The average

Statistics always remind me of the fellow who drowned in a river whose average depth was three feet.

quote by Woody Hayes, Ohio State football coach


Diplomacy is the art of saying, “Nice doggie,” until you can find a rock.

quote by Will Rogers


Experience is not what happens to a man;
it is what a man does with what happens to him.

quote by Aldous Huxley

The power of statistics

Birthdays are good for you. Statistics show that people who have the most birthdays live the longest.

quote by Larry Lorenzoni

Pierced ear

I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage.
They’ve experienced pain and bought jewelry.

quote by Rita Rudner


We contend that for a nation to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.

quote by Winston Churchill

A lesson in PR

Every person who leaves goes on to represent your company.
They can either bad-mouth or praise.

quote by Jack Welch

Do what other say you cannot do

Do just once what others say you cannot do
and you will never pay attention
to their limitations again.

quote by James Cook


Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities
because it is the quality which guarantees all others.

Quote by Winston Churchill


Conversation means being able to disagree
and still continue the discussion.

Quote by Dwight MacDonald

The tree and the shadow

Character is like a tree,
and reputation is like a shadow.
The shadow is what we think of it;
the tree is the real thing.

Quote by Abraham Lincoln

The road to success

The road to success is always under construction.

To beat a computer

A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.


Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils ...

Quote by Louis Hector Berlioz

Focus on the controllable

In life we have two categories of events:
those which we can control, and those which we can't control.
Success, they say, involves distinguishing between the two
and directing your energies toward the controllable
while having the discipline to not waste time and energy on that beyond your control

Quote by Ron Sirak


Chance favours the prepared mind.

Quote by Louis Pasteur

Leadership - How to

Begin with praise and honest appreciation.
Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly.
Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person.
Ask questions instead of giving direct orders…
Make the fault easy to correct.
Make the other person happy about doing what you suggest.

Quote by Dale Carnegie

If you were never paid...

Ask yourself what you would do even if you were never paid.
That’s a clue to what you should be doing and,
of course, still be finding a way to be paid for it.
You can attract more money from love.

Quote by Joe Vitale

Carreer management

Always remember:
the soundest way to progress in any organization
is to help the man ahead of you to get promoted.

L.S. Hamaker
Schelle, Belgium - November 2008

All dreams can come true

All our dreams can come true - if we have the courage to pursue them.

Quote by Walt Disney


The vast majority of our imports come from outside the country.

George W. Bush

Love thy neighbor

Love thy neighbor, tune thy piano.

Go together

If you want to go quickly, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together.

African Proverb
Belgian Coast - November 2008

Great spirits

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.

Quote by Albert Einstein


A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others.
He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the quality of his actions and the integrity of his intent.
Near Stockholm, Sweden - September 2008


The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas

Linus Pauling
(Nobel prize winner 1979)

The problem

As long as you think the problem is out there, that very thought is the problem.

Quote by Stephen Covey
Nile river near Aswan, Egypt - April 2008

Recession or depression ?

It's a recession when your neighbor loses his job
it's a depression when you lose yours.

quote by Harry Truman

Nixon on Crisis

The easiest period in a crisis situation is actually the battle itself.
The most difficult is the period of indecision -- whether to fight or run away.
And the most dangerous period is the aftermath.
It is then, with all his resources spent and his guard down, that an individual must watch out for dulled reactions and faulty judgment.

Richard Nixon


When written in Chinese, the word "crisis" is composed of two characters
one represents danger, and the other represents opportunity.

Light at the end of the tunnel

Don’t wait for a light to appear at the end of the tunnel,
stride down there…
and light the bloody thing yourself.

Dara Henderson


Contentment comes not so much from great wealth
as from few wants.


Lincoln on ennemies

The best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend.

quote by Abraham Lincoln

Clear goals

In absence of clearly defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily acts of trivia

Bush on budget

It's clearly a budget. It's got a lot of numbers in it.

George W Bush


Enthusiasm is a vital element toward the individual success of every man or woman…

Conrad Hilton, hotelier and grandfather


It is not the intellect that survives but the one who is able to adapt best to the changing environment.

Charles Darwin

Reward for work

The reward for work well done is the opportunity to do more.

Jonas Salk

Marriage and carreer

I have yet to hear a man ask for advice on how to combine marriage and a career.

Gloria Steinem


A lawyer with his briefcase can steal more than a hundred men with guns.

Don Corleone, in The Godfather
Desert near Cairo, Egypt - April 2008

Bush on leadership

I have a different vision of leadership. A leadership is someone who brings people together.

George W Bush


Leadership: the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.

Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Manual on military leadership

Paris' insights

“What’s Walmart, do they sell like wall stuff?”

Paris Hilton

The roots of violence

The Roots of Violence:

Wealth without work,
Pleasure without conscience,
Knowledge without character,
Commerce without morality,
Science without humanity,
Worship without sacrifice,
Politics without principles.

Mahatma Ghandi

The right attitude

Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.

Thomas Jefferson


There are many things that we would throw away if we were not afraid that others might pick them up.

Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891


In the Bank’s balance sheet, there are two sides:
The left one and the right one.
On the left side, there is nothing right;
On the right side, there is nothing left…


We didn't actually overspend our budget. The allocation simply fell short of our expenditure.

Keith Davis

Growing people

Treat people as if they were what they ougth to be and you help them become what they are capable of being


Big shot - little shot

The major difference between the big shot and the little shot is the big shot is just a little shot who kept on shooting.

Zig Ziglar

Capitalism vs communism

Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.

J. K. Galbraith

Inspiring meeting rooms: Lidingö - Sweden

Two rules for success

There are two rules for success:
1) Never tell everything you know.

Roger H. Lincoln

Opportunities and pitfalls

Summing up, it is clear the future holds great opportunities. It also holds pitfalls. The trick will be to avoid the pitfalls, seize the opportunities, and get back home by six o'clock.

Woody Allen, "My Speech to the Graduates"

Banking problems

If you owe your bank a hundred pounds, you have a problem. But if you owe a million, it has.

JM Keynes

Advertising budget

I know that half of my advertising dollars are wasted ... I just don't know which half.

John Wanamaker


Faith is taking the first step even if you don't see the whole staircase

Martin Luther King


You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.

quote by Abraham Lincoln

The dictionary

The dictionary is the only place that success comes before work.
Hard work is the price we must pay for success.
I think you can accomplish anything if you're willing to pay the price.

Vince Lombardi

(Thanks Leen !)

The truth

The truth is rarely pure and never simple.

Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest, 1895


We are what we repeatedly do



A bank is a place that will lend you money if you can prove that you don't need it.

Bob Hope

Just do it

It's not knowing what to do, it's doing what you know…

Anthony Robbins

Confuse them

If you cannot convince them, confuse them.

Harry Truman

Poor man

I'd like to live as a poor man with lots of money.

Pablo Picasso

Supply & demand

Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime. Teach a man to create an artificial shortage of fish and he will eat steak.

Jay Leno


Judge a man by his questions, not by his answers.


Money and wealth

The real measure of your wealth is how much you'd be worth if you lost all your money.

If you know the author of this quote, please react

Advertising job

Don't tell my mother I work in an advertising agency - she thinks I play piano in a whorehouse.

Jacques Seguela

Banking problems

If you owe the bank $100 that's your problem. If you owe the bank $100 million, that's the bank's problem.

JP Getty


An incompetent lawyer can delay a trial for months or years. A competent lawyer can delay one even longer.

Evelle Younger

Vision / action

Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without vision just passes time. Vision with action can change the world.

Joel Barker

Going to Hong Kong

The difficulty in going from Vilvorde* to Hong Kong is not going to Hong Kong, but leaving Vilvorde.

Jacques Brel

Translated from French: "La difficulté d’aller de Vilvorde à Hong Kong, ce n’est pas d’aller à Hong Kong, c’est de quitter Vilvorde"

* Vilvorde: small city near Brussels, Belgium


Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars

Les Brown


"Beatings will continue until morale improves"

Famous quote in some parts of Sweden


Experience is that marvelous thing that enables you recognize a mistake when you make it again.

F. Jones

The main thing - Stephen Covey

The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.

quote by Stephen Covey


99.97 percent of lawyers give the rest a bad name.


Firings used to be done with surgical cleanliness.
Today they call them 'downsizings' and they use a meat cleaver.

Harvey Mackay


Don't tell me where your priorities are.
Show me where you spend your money and I'll tell you what they are.

James Frick


We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves

quote by Galileo Galilei


When you're finished changing, you're finished.

Benjamin Franklin

Scheduling priorities - Stephen Covey

The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.

Stephen Covey


If there were no bad people, there would be no good lawyers.

Charles Dickens


Mistakes are the portals of discovery.

James Joyce

Dividing an elephant

Dividing an elephant in half does not produce two small elephants, it produces a mess.

Peter Senge

Brilliant idea

Don't trust a brilliant idea unless it survives the hangover

Jimmy Breslin

Creative genius

First, make yourself a reputation for being a creative genius.
Second, surround yourself with partners who are better than you are.
Third, leave them to go get on with it.

David Ogilvy

Old masters

Buy old masters. They fetch a better price than old mistresses

Lord Beaverbrook

Lending 20 $

If you lend someone $20, and never see that person again, it was probably worth it.

If you know the author of this quote, please react

Computers: female or male ?

Computers must be female. No one but the creator understands their internal logic. The native language they use to communicate with other computers is incomprehensible to everyone else. The message "Bad command or file name" is about as informative as, "If you don't know why I'm mad at you, then I'm certainly not going to tell you." Even the smallest mistakes are stored in long term memory for later retrieval. As soon as you make a commitment to one, you find yourself spending half your paycheck on accessories for it.

Computers must be male. As soon as you commit to one you realize that if you had waited a little longer, you could have obtained a better model. In order to get their attention, you have to turn them on. Big power surges knock them out for the rest of the day.

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If you don't find it in the index, look very carefully through the entire catalogue.

Sears, Roebuck, and Co. Consumer's Guide, 1897

Copyright law

Only one thing is impossible for God:
to find any sense in any copyright law around the world.

Mark Twain

Time flies...

Time's fun when you're having flies.

Kermit the Frog

Design - Steve Jobs

It's really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don't know what they want until you show it to them.

Steve Jobs


Work is the curse of the drinking classes.

Oscar Wilde


Life is the sum of our choices

Albert Camus

The causes of action - Cruyff

Sometimes something has to happen before something will happen.

Translated from Dutch: "Soms moet er iets gebeuren voordat er iets gebeurt"

Johan Cruyff

Useless efficiency - Peter Drucker

There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.

Peter Drucker

Know yourself and your enemy - Sun Tzu

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.
If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat.
If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.

Sun Tzu

Working times

I always arrive late at the office, but I make up for it by leaving early

Charles Lamb


Money does not have ideas

Jean-Paul Sartre, French philosopher


Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought.

Albert Szent-Gyorgyi


Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

Steve Jobs

Own business

When you own your own business, you only have to work half a day. You can do anything you want with the other twelve hours.

If you know the author of this quote, please react.


Bart, with $10,000 we’d be millionaires! We could buy all kinds of useful things like…love!

Homer Simpson

The right direction

Speed is useful only if you are running in the right direction.

Joel Barker

Survival in Africa

Reminds me of my safari in Africa. Somebody forgot the corkscrew and for several days we had to live on nothing but food and water.

W. C. Fields


When your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt.

Henry Kaiser

Bad for business

Things that are bad for business are bad for the people who work for the business.

Thomas Dewey


Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.

quote by Anais Nin

First law in advertising

The very first law in advertising is to avoid the concrete promise and cultivate the delightfully vague.

Bill Cosby


Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing, but nobody else does.

Stuart Henderson

What counts

Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.

Albert Einstein


62.15% of all statistics are meaningless


Failures are divided into two classes – those who thought and never did, and those who did and never thought.

John Charles Salak

The illusion of communication

The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.

quote by George Bernard Shaw

Prosperous friend

It is in the character of very few men to honour without envy a friend who has prospered.


The power of statistics

The average human being is the proud owner of 0.98765 testicles

Distrust quantitative data

You can use all the quantitative data you can get, but you still have to distrust it and use your own intelligence and judgment.

Alvin Toffler

Learning technologies

The best technologies for learning are conversations and beer.

Jay Cross at Online Educa 2006, Berlin


Electricity is actually made up of extremely tiny particles called electrons, that you cannot see with the naked eye unless you have been drinking.

Dave Barry

Home computers

There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.

Ken Olsen , President, Digital Equipment, 1977

Talent and courage

Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark place where it leads.

Erica Jong

Native American wisdom

Never criticize a man until you've walked a mile in his moccasins.

Native American Proverb

The average

Not doing more than the average is what keeps the average down.

William Phelps

Finishing things

One worthwhile task carried to a successful conclusion is worth half-a-hundred half-finished tasks.

Malcolm Forbes

Empowered organization - Stephen Covey

An empowered organization is one in which individuals have the knowledge, skill, desire, and opportunity to personally succeed in a way that leads to collective organizational success.

Stephen Covey

Courageous decision

Whenever you see a successful business, someone once made a courageous decision.

Peter F. Drucker


The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.

Theodore Roosevelt


A pessimist is one who sees a difficulty in every opportunity. An optimist is one who sees an opportunity in every difficulty.

If you know the author of this quote, please react.


The trouble with law is lawyers.

Clarence Darrow

Ignorance and knowledge

The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance - it is the illusion of knowledge.

Daniel Boorstin

Do it now

The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is now.

If you know the author of this quote, please react


Honesty pays dividends both in dollars and in peace of mind.

B.C. Forbes

Empowerment - Bill Gates

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.

Bill Gates


Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

Steve Jobs

Bicycle - Einstein

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving

Albert Einstein


A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation.

Howard Scott


The world is changing very fast. Big will not beat small anymore. It will be the fast beating the slow.

Rupert Murdoch


An entrepreneur tends to bite off a little more than he can chew hoping he’ll quickly learn how to chew it.

Roy Ash


If you don’t have enemies, you don’t have character.

Paul Newman


The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.

Albert Einstein

Just do it

A good plan, violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week.

George Patton

Be prepared

If I had nine hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend the first six sharpening my ax.

Abraham Lincoln

Can - cannot

Those who say it cannot be done should get out of the way of those who are doing it.

If you know the author of this quote, please react

Follow the leader

A leader is a person you will follow to a place you wouldn’t go by yourself.

Joel Barker


When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than any talent for abstract, positive thinking

Albert Einstein

Taking risks

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

Anais Nin

Winning - Sun Tzu

He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight. He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces. He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks. He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared. He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.

Sun Tzu, The Art of War


Trust comes on foot, but leaves on horseback.

Johan Thorbecke
(heard at the Fortis information session August 18, 2008)


Meetings are events in which minutes are kept and hours are lost.

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Designing your product for monetization first, and people second will probably leave you with neither.

Tara Hunt

Predicting the future

The best way to predict the future is to invent it.

quote by Alan Kay

Successful teams

Successful teams know who they are, what they want and take ownership and responsibility to achieve it.

Sean Chapple

Tax avoidance

The avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that carries any reward.

John Maynard Keynes

Good and bad

It seemed the world was divided into good and bad people.
The good ones slept better... while the bad ones seemed to enjoy the waking hours much more.

Woody Allen

Price and value

What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.

Oscar Wilde


If you are not criticized, you may not be doing much.

Donald Rumsfeld

Real success

Real success is finding your lifework in the work that you love.

David McCullough

Dead horse strategies

The tribal wisdom of the Dakota Indians, passed on from generation to generation , says that, "When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount."

Updated for the 21st century this could mean:
  • Appointing a top advertising agency to promote the benefits of the reduced carbon hoofprint of a dead horse compared to the ridiculously out-dated and unsustainable notion of a living horse.
  • Off-shoring the stabling and veterinary support of the dead horse to somewhere in the Indian sub-continent.
  • Sending the dead horse on an outward bound weekend with other dead horses.


Smoking is one of the leading causes of statistics.

Fletcher Knebel

Leadership vs management - Stephen Covey

Effective leadership is putting first things first. Effective management is discipline, carrying it out.

Stephen Covey

Statistics as a science

Statistics: The only science that enables different experts using the same figures to draw different conclusions.

Evan Esar

The use of computers

Computers make it easier to do a lot of things, but most of the things they make it easier to do don't need to be done.

Andy Rooney


Information is always trying to be free

Marshall McLuhan


There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.

Nelson Mandela


Good design can't fix broken business models.

Jeffrey Veen

Money can't buy happiness ?

Whoever said money can't buy happiness simply didn't know where to go shopping.

Bo Derek

Home computers

There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.

Ken Olsen , President, Digital Equipment, 1977

Creativity and salesmanship

In the modern world of business, it is useless to be a creative original thinker unless you can also sell what you create. Management cannot be expected to recognize a good idea unless it is presented to them by a good salesman.

David Ogilvy

Crime in Germany

The reason there is so little crime in Germany is that it's against the law.

Alex Levin


Fine - a tax for doing wrong. Tax - a fine for doing fine

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(also published on

The power of statistics

USA Today has come out with a new survey - apparently, three out of every four people make up 75% of the population.

David Letterman

Technorati Profile

Doing nothing

Doing nothing is very hard to do. You never know when you're finished.

Leslie Nielsen

Other people's money

Business, that's easily defined; it's other people's money

Alexandre Dumas

Taking risks

If you don't risk anything you risk even more.

Erica Jong

Learning and being taught

Personally I'm always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.



There are worse things in life than death.
Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman?

Woody Allen


There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.

Benjamin Disraeli

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Courage is doing what you're afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you're scared.

Eddie Rickenbacker


Let us make a special effort to stop communicating with each other, so we can have some conversation.

Judith Martin


A banker is a fellow who lends you his umbrella when the sun is shining, but wants it back the minute it begins to rain.

Mark Twain

Income tax

The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax.

Albert Einstein

(also published on


However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.


Making plans

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.

John Lennon

Quality management

Management of quality requires quality of management



When China will wake up, the world will shake.


(Translated from French: "Quand la Chine s'éveillera, le monde tremblera ")

Choices and decisions

We can try to avoid making choices by doing nothing, but even that is a decision.

Gary Collins


If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

Tom Peters


Confusion is a word we have invented for an order which is not yet understood

Henry Miller

Football wisdom

If we have the ball, they can't score.

Johan Cruyff

(translated from Dutch: "Als wij de bal hebben kunnen zij niet scoren")

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Management vs. leadership

Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.

Stephen Covey

Price vs. value

Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.

Warren Buffet

Gerstner on culture

Until I came to IBM, I probably would have told you that culture was just one among several important elements in any organization’s makeup and success—along with vision, strategy, marketing, financials, and the like…
I came to see, in my time at IBM, that culture isn't just one aspect of the game, it is the game. In the end, an organization is nothing more than the collective capacity of its people to create value.

Lou Gerstner


Confidence is what you feel before you comprehend the situation



You can't do today's job with yesterday's methods and be in business tomorrow

If you know the author of this author, please let us know

Dead horse strategies

The tribal wisdom of the Dakota Indians, passed on from generation to generation , says that, "When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount."

Updated for the 21st century this could mean:
  • Buying a computer program to enhance dead horse performance
  • Declaring a dead horse less costly than a live one
  • Forming a workgroup to find uses for dead horses
  • Changing performance requirements for the horse
  • Promoting the dead horse to a supervisory position

Dead horse strategies

The tribal wisdom of the Dakota Indians, passed on from generation to generation , says that, "When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount."

Updated for the 21st century this could mean:

  • Bringing in a team of external consultants to focus on dead horse optimisation.
  • Re-branding the dead horse a 'Fair Trade Horse', and affixing prominent Fair Trade insignia to its hind-quarters.
  • Asking Richard Branson if he'd be interested in running a Virgin Dead Horse joint venture.
  • Setting up an inquiry into the dead horse, preferably headed by a dead horse and answerable to other dead horses.
  • Forming a task force to investigate the dead horse's positive benefits on social enterprise.
  • Blaming the dead horse on the sub-prime credit crunch, thereby absolving (and enabling the obscenely generous rewarding of) those responsible for the decision to recruit an emaciated horse, starve it, and keep it in a frozen field (because the stables were sold to property developers years ago).
  • Unmasking the dead horse to be in illegal immigrant, therefore author of its own misfortune, and to blame for a lot more than simply being dead on the job.

Technology in business

The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency.
The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency

Bill Gates

Knowledge and wisdom

Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens

Jimi Hendrix


Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former


Learning from history

Those that fail to learn from history, are doomed to repeat it.


Dead horse strategies

The tribal wisdom of the Dakota Indians, passed on from generation to generation , says that, "When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount."

updated for the 21st century this could mean:
  • Nationalising the dead horse
  • Re-aligning the organizational aims to better fit the needs of the dead horse. Giving dead horse and rider a good bollocking (a favourite in previous centuries too).
  • Re-structuring the dead horse's reward scale to contain a performance-related element (obviously..)
  • Suspending the horse's access to the executive grassy meadow until it improves its attitude and makes good all productivity shortfalls.
  • Finding a mentor or buddy for the dead horse.
  • Examining the cost-savings accruing from de-skilling the dead horse function.
  • Outsourcing the management and/or the riding of the dead horse to a specialist dead horse management company


"640K ought to be enough for anybody."

Misattributed to Bill Gates of Microsoft, 1981 :
"I've said some stupid things and some wrong things, but not that. No one involved in computers would ever say that a certain amount of memory is enough for all time... I keep bumping into that silly quotation attributed to me that says 640K of memory is enough. There's never a citation; the quotation just floats like a rumor, repeated again and again. "
Bloomberg Business News (19 January 1996); also WIRED (16 January 1997)

(Thanks for the correction, Paul Cobbaut)


"I think there's a world market for maybe five computers."

Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943


When the rate of change outside exceeds the rate of change inside, the end is in sight.

Jack Welch

Making mistakes

The only man who never makes mistakes is the man that never does anything

Theodore Roosevelt


We have to hang together, or we will hang seperately


Money and poverty

Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons

Woody Allen

Training people

What if you train your people and they leave ?
What if you don't train them and they stay ?

Peter Russian

What is reality

We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are

quote by Anaïs Nin


Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.



Failing to plan is planning to fail

If you know the author of this quote, please react

Problems and solutions

If you are not part of the solution, you're part of the problem

Joe Henderson


We do not stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.

If you know the author of this quote, please react

You can't have everything

You can't have everything; where would you put it ?

Steven Wright

Decision making

Make every decision as if you owned the whole company.

quote by Robert Townsend

Unemployed ?

Among the worries of today's business executives is the large number of unemployed still on the payroll.

If you know the author of this quote, please react

Your own business

A hard thing about business is minding your own

If you know the author of this quote, please react

Who pays the wages ?

It is not the employer who pays wages -- he only handles the money. It is the product who pays the wages

Henry Ford


If each of us hires people smaller than we are, we shall become a company of dwarfs

David Ogilvy

Problem solving

By labeling a bundle of problems with a single conceptual label, we make dealing with that problem easier - provided we're not interested in solving it.

Phrases like "urgently needed measures for combating unemployment" roll easily off the tongue if we don't have to do anything about unemployment. A simple label can't make the complex nature of a problem go away, but it can so obscure complexity that we lose sight of it. And that, of course, we find a great relief.

Dietrich Dörner, The logic of failure

Theory and practice

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

Jan van de Snepscheut

Action and theory

An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory

Friedrich Engels


Experience without theory is blind, but theory without experience is mere intellectual play

Immanuel Kant


What if everything is an illusion and nothing exists? In that case, I definitely overpaid for my carpet

Woody Allen

New knowledge

New knowledge is the most valuable commodity on earth. The more truth we have to work with, the richer we become

Kurt Vonnegut

Know everything

I am not young enough to know everything

Oscar Wilde


Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work.

Peter Drucker

Key to success

I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is to try to please everyone

Bill Cosby

On downsizing

You cannot shrink your way to greatness

Tom Peters

Right and wrong

It is very wrong to be very right before everybody else



The bottleneck is always at the top of the bottle

If you know the author of this quote, please react !

Old and new ideas

The real difficulty lies not in developing new ideas, but in escaping from the old ones

JM Keynes


Make things as simple as possible, but not simpler

quote by Einstein


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.

A. Milne


You can achieve anything in life, providing that you do not mind who gets the credits.

quote by Harry Truman

Law and regulations

If you have ten thousand regulations, you destroy all respect for the law.

quote by Winston Churchill

Making a living

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.

Quote by Winston Churchill

Sign of insanity

There is nothing that is more certain a sign of insanity than to do the same thing over and over again and expecting the result to be different

quote by Albert Einstein