C/me ™ Posts


The Moving Line
Published: 2012-06-18
In the winter 1993 edition of American Scholar Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1927-2003) discussed his theory of defining down deviancy. In a grossly over generalized summation, his contention is that we define as deviant behavior tha...
Mr. Smith Goes to Wall Street
Published: 2012-04-02
On March 14th Greg Smith, a junior executive at Goldman Sachs resigned in bold fashion from the company after 12 years. Most of you read his op-ed in the New York Times which was either much ado about nothing, or much ado about somet...
No, Thank You
Published: 2012-03-01
We were taught as little kids that the most powerful words in the English language are "please" and "thank you." When used with regularity all those years ago, these simple words seemed to help me stay in the good graces of those around me today...
What's Wrong With Being Wrong?
Published: 2012-02-06
As many of the readers of this column appear to be Americans based on the comments that get logged periodically, American managers I address you: Why are you so afraid of being wrong? The posturing in our companies to be right, or at least not i...
Stop To Think. Rush To Execute.
Published: 2012-01-09
About six months ago I found a page from a tear off "Life’s Little Instruction" calendar on my desk. My wife put it there with the note, "this is you!". The phrase on the calendar page is "Stop to think. Rush to execute." I took i...
Recently I was interviewed about what I considered the primary criteria for a senior executive of HR. Here are my summarized answers: As a CEO, what are the three most important expectations you have of yo...
Fish Rots at the Head
Published: 2011-10-12
I often explain to people that I was raised by clichê. My dad, Ron, had a saying for every situation in life. Recently, at his 75th birthday party I had the room festooned with banners featuring many tidbits of his wisdom. It was fun...
It's Just the Normal Noise in Here
Published: 2011-09-01
Clang, bang, crash, click, click, click, buzz, whirr, ring, ring, hum…Busy, busy, busy. Working, working, working. Meeting after meeting. So many emails to respond to and send. Reports to read and write; and budgets to complete, lobby for a...
Can You Find Love Again?
Published: 2011-07-26
Nearly everyone we encounter has a love story to share. Once in a while, they are living in the moment; the romance, the excitement, and the mystery that keeps their attention is palpable. When we are near them, we get the same tingly feeling we...
Get Out Of Here
Published: 2011-06-27
According to my dad, "tired brains make tired decisions." As I write this I am 30,000 plus feet above the Rockies returning from a week away. Really away, not "check the Blackberry, iPad, talk to the team every hour" away. Away to...
The Truth Shall Set You Free
Published: 2011-05-27
"Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth," Henry David Thoreau wrote. Amen, brother. At every level of our society in our generation, the concept of the "truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth" has taken a bac...
The Elephant in the Room
Published: 2011-04-18
You’ve done it. I’ve done it. Every manager has done it. Unfortunately, most of us will keep doing it. We make bad hires. Sometimes we know we are making a bad hire while it is happening. It’s almost like we are watching oursel...
Man, Not Machine
Published: 2011-03-28
@ this, online that, dot-com everywhere. Most of us don’t go through a waking hour of the day without benefiting from or relying upon the internet and the unlimited number of resources and solutions that are at our fingertips. So many thin...
Let Me Be Clear...
Published: 2011-02-22
Whether by a current sensitivity on my part or proximity to consistently similar circumstances, I have become more and more attuned to the sound of obtuse communication. In business setting after business setting there is an apparent absence of...
Adult Behavior
Published: 2010-07-02
We live in an age and society that seemingly holds mature adult behavior in disdain. The media focuses on the histrionics and juvenile behavior of celebrities, sports stars, politicians and average "Joe’s." Self-centered and obnoxious beha...
Tell Me a Story
Published: 2010-06-14
Once upon a time, in a land not so far away, my next door neighbor Don sat down at my table while I was having lunch at a club we both belong to…this was last week. Don is 76, nearly 30 years my senior. He just sat down to chat. Told me a...
There are times when the weight of a workplace situation can seem overwhelming. Questions roll through your head over and over again with no readily available answers. How did I get to where I am? What, if anything, could I have do...
For probably the last 20 years or so I have had two framed signs hanging on my office walls. When I moved offices they were usually the first things I find a spot for. I make sure that they are both clearly visible to all who enter.
What's Clear to Me is Clear to Me
Published: 2010-01-26
In your first college philosophy class you inevitably debated the question, "if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?" Obviously the intellectual candy of this question is that the answer is supposedly un...
So Decide and Commit Anyhow...
Published: 2009-11-20
We are frequently caught in an illusion in our current business culture. We have come to believe that we can mitigate all risk, know how all things are going to play out, model the future and assure success. We have come to believe that complex sp...
Most people are marking the fall of 2009 as the one year anniversary of the beginning of our economic woes. In reality the signals were sounding much earlier in 2008 and late 2007. The market slide actually started in October of 2007. From that point...
As executives we are acutely aware that the majority of our success comes from mastering and modifying behaviors and skills that are persistently associated with exceptional results. What distinguishes us from our peers over time is the ability to id...
Contrary to Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens’ Shakespeare conspiracy theory—see the news story a few weeks ago—the Bard did wri...
Typically I use this column to write about the management skills and experiences necessary to successfully execute a C-level job. On any given day in business, being a C-level executive is about leadership, vision and an astute ability to execut...
As executives we learn very quickly that one of the most important contributions we make is frequently not offering the right solution, but rather asking the right question. There have been hundreds of articles written over the past 25 years or more...

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