Tidbits & Quotes: Magazines & Sites
We see people being good at stuff -- we don't see them becoming good.
Our brains form a million new connections for every second of our lives.
As a venture investor, the first thing you consider when looking at a startup based in France is how you are going to move it out of France.
In a sense, language is the last word in biological evolution. That's because this particular evolutionary innovation allows those who possess it to move beyond the realms of the purely biological. With language, our ancestors were able to create their own environment - we now call it culture - and adapt to it without the need for genetic changes.
It never occurred to them that, if everyone had to think outside the box, maybe it was the box that needed fixing.
The genetic differences between the sexes are hundreds of times more significant than the differences between the races. You can't look an fMRI of someone and say, "That's an African-American brain, or a Caucasian brain." But you can differentiate between a male and female brain.
I realize that it's quite possible I'm losing my mind. I'm glad that for the most part I'm not aware it's happening.
From Fortune magazine, Nov 29, 2004, p. 86
Article "20 things I'm thankful for"
As a leader, you have the power to influence people and therefore their performance. If you believe in creating an environment where trust, optimism, enjoyment and personal growth are encouraged, then you will build a sustainable, high-performing teamóand, in the process, create many new leaders.
Today, private-equity firms often seem to provide better corporate governance than is generally found at many public firms, whose shareholders usually own too small a stake to keep management in line. ... Despite their early reputation as asset-strippers, private-equity firms increasingly help companies to maximise their long-term value by protecting them from stockmarket pressure.
A recent survey from McKinsey is fairly chilling: Keeping poor performers [in management positions] means that development opportunities for promising employees get blocked, so those subordinates don't get developed, productivity and morale fall, good performers leave the company, the company attracts fewer A players, and the whole miserable cycle keeps turning. McKinsey asked people who had worked for subpar managers what it was like, and they agreed strongly that the experience "prevented me from learning," "hurt my career development," "prevented me from making a larger contribution to the bottom line," and, ultimately, "made me want to leave the company."
That's the biggest obstacle for so many people, in the business world or the athletic world. There are too many people out there who don't take chances and make things happen because they fear failure. Certain guys can find a way to get to the winner's circle, while other greats fall just short despite individual stardom. I often discuss this topic when I give my motivational talks via the Washington Speakers Bureau. Speaking to marketing groups and sales people, we discuss closing the deal, the ability to finish it off. So many people can initiate a deal, but then they can't find a way to close it. It's the same way in sports. Some can get their teams the lead until the four-minute mark, but then in crunch time -- what I often call "winning time" -- they can't get it done. Guys like Jordan, Derek Jeter and Bryant find a way to get the job done in winning time, in memorable fashion.
Profits Are Nature's Way Of Saying You Are A Useful Part Of The Ecosystem.
Let's face it: VC investing is gambling. Very sophisticated gambling, with players that can stare down other players with a vengeance that no Texas two card gambler can match. And it is survival of the fittest. The folks left standing are very good at this game.
If the definition of complexity is that which is beyond an individual's understanding, how will that individual know when it happens?
Somebody once said that in looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if they don't have the first, the other two will kill you. You think about it; it's true. If you hire somebody without the first you really want them to be dumb and lazy.
Sure, there are a zillion things I wish I'd done differently. But I think the things you most regret in life are things you didn't do. What you really regret was never asking that girl to dance.
It's good to win. Only one team can win. Everybody can compete, give up his all. Everybody can grow from the experience, no matter the final score. Everybody can be recognized. And respected. It hurts to lose, but it hurts worse to be disrespected.
ESPN column "Once they were almost Kings", June 6, 2002.
Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened.
ďA Time for Moral CourageĒ Readerís Digest, July 1964 (source).
So, given the challenges of application development, we made a very simple business decision: we chose to target the platform with 95% of the market. If, in some infinitesimal way, this choice bolsters Microsoftís browser monopoly, thatís unfortunate, but Oddpost is a for-profit business, not a monument to justice. We donít hate Macs, Opera, or standards, and most of us donít even worship Satan. But market forces dictate our behavior. It makes no sense to exhaust half our development resources catering to 5% of the market.
You will find more entries in the archives.