Enlightened Conflict

shrinking in comparison

May 19th, 2017

 shrinking trump comparison

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“Most of us, shrinking from the difficulties and dangers which beset the seeker after original answers to these riddles, are contented to ignore them altogether, or to smother the investigating spirit under the featherbed of respected and respectable tradition.”

 

—-

Thomas Henry Huxley

 

===============

 

“Not fearing death, nor shrinking for distress, But always resolute in most extremes”

 

.

William Shakespeare

 

=====================

 

Well.

 

Spend enough time in a corporate career and move up in a corporation and pretty much everyone gets some sort of media training <how to communicate trump tweet business hollow empty words awkward situationwith media and effectively communicating your message>.

 

And before you think this is just about senior management folk let me tell you that all you have to do is work with any significant franchise organization and you will invest more energy and time doing media training at all levels than you really would like to do.

Why?

All you have to do is get burned once by some local TV station trying to find some ‘you would be shocked’ story and you will learn the value of media training outside the corporate headquarters and on-the-ground at the service & franchise level.

 

I have received some fabulous media training throughout my career and most likely have a couple of media training manuals and presentations on some thumb drive somewhere. Training can span from a simple one-sheet ‘do this and don’t do this’ to sitting down in front of a camera being taped and grilled by some inquisition-type corporate communications expert <who you will hate for weeks after>.

 

For most of us … all training is excruciatingly painful.

For most of us … all we seek is “an opportunity to keep our mouth shut.”

 

But, alas, corporations and senior management demand face time publicly and it is better to arm yourself than to go into the fight “winging it.”

 

Now.

 

Most relevant to my thought today is that this training pays off in spades when you are forced into a comparison situation. Think being on a panel or standing at side by side podiums. I wrote not long ago about the window of ‘stark contrast opportunities’ in which I discussed the upside in terms of building shift up or downvalue thru contrast.

 

Well.

As with anything good there is also a potential downside.

 

In a contrast situation there is a winner and a loser. And I don’t care how good a thinker you are, how good an instinctual communicator you are or how good an ‘explainer in chief’ you are … you cannot go into any comparison & contrast situation assuming you will  be the better one, the winner by default, in a contrast situation.

 

Contrast situations are fraught with peril.

 

I won’t go into all the training crap but I will point out two core aspects which are relevant to being in a public contrast situation:

 

  • The hard one: simplify without oversimplifying

 

This is hard. Really hard.

And usually takes a shitload of practice & experience … and even then you will not always get it right <except for those truly gifted communicators who make all the rest of us miserable in that because they can do it everyone believes they can also do it>. My belief is always to say just enough so people understand and assume someone will ask a question if they need more information. If you do that, your experience with questions, what questions you get, kind of hone your ‘what is too much and what is too little’.

But you need enough experience and questions in order to be able to bracket what is most efficient & effective.

 

That said.

 

Oversimplifying concludes in one of two places <1> you have no idea what you are talking about or <2> you are out of touch with details and depth of truth

 

You have to figure out a way to showcase you understand the complexity without boring the shit out of people and, ultimately, convincing them you really do know your shit. In addition … you want to give just enough nuance and depth to suggest an ‘attack’, or clarification <which is just another kiss of the comparison death> would be a waste of time.ideas communicate media training shrinking

 

I will not go into all the gory details of how to efficiently communicate complexity <which is actually the advice we should be giving everyone rather than “keep it simple”>.

 

Suffice it to say there are three effective ways to simplify without oversimplifying.

 

 

Bracket your thought with two support points.

 

Triangulate your thought by offering three reasons to believe.

 

Box your thought in with 4 simple reasons why your thought makes sense.

 

A lot of people suggest always providing your thought and one reason to believe support <simple linear support> but the best training I received made the point that this makes your thought more vulnerable to questioning and, if possible <unless you have one undeniable blockbuster reason to believe> you should figure out a simple way to show simple complexity demands nuances smartness.

 

I imagine what I am saying in this aspect is you want to protect your words, thoughts and ideas from shrinking. And the way to do so is to effectively build a wall around them. Without the wall, the protection, the thought can get squeezed until it no longer exists … and you shrink a little every time that happens.

 

 

  • The easy one: avoid hyperbole like it is the plague

 

Hyperbole creates a gap, an empty space, in between reality and some quasi-imagined reality.

 

Uhm.

 

fill-emptiness-empty-with-various-thingsEmpty space to a listener/questioner/debater is like sugar for ants. Our tendency is almost always to make problems look bigger and successes more successful … it makes us look more heroic. But in our tendency to do so it actually … well … shrinks us. The truth is many of us think our jobs are fairly mundane and when discussing what we do, and have done, publicly we think “who the hell wants to hear this?” and then head down the path to make what we do, or did, look less mundane and more challenging or exciting.

 

Media training helps you see this.

And what you do is not worry about what you do but rather show how much you love what you do, or did, which breathes some helium into it and makes it look bigger. Suffice it to say it is incredibly difficult for someone to shrink what you like and what you are passionate about than it is to poke a hole in the empty space created by hyperbole and shrink the entire thought to a shriveled balloon status.

 

 

Ok.

 

Why did I bring this up today?

 

Well.

 

Sigh.

 

It becomes more obvious everyday … the shrinking of America right before our eyes.

 

Yesterday I watched President Donald J Trump stand at one podium and the president of Columbia, Juan Manuel Santos, at another podium. As they each trump santos colombiaspoke I watched Trump shrink before our eyes and America along with him.

 

The adult at the front of the room was a president … just of Columbia.

 

No offense to Columbia or the Columbian president but I don’t expect a country whose economy is 42 times smaller than the US Economy to have a president who sounds smarter, speaks smarter, shares smarter information and handles himself more smartly than the president of the USA. Let alone watching the poor Columbian President trying to be diplomatic when he clearly wanted to look at Trump and say “are you a complete fucking idiot?”

 

It bothered me a little less as we watched Angela Merkel of Germany a month ago stand side by side with Donald J Trump and his words and speech made him shrink before our eyes <and earned Merkel the title of ‘leader of the free world’>.

Yeah.

That’s tough competition for any president so while I cringed at the shrinkage I figured it may be one of Donald J’s most difficult contrast & comparison situations.

 

But in between yesterday’s unfortunate public display and Merkel’s hint of what was to come we see time and time again he is placed side by side with the leader of another country and he shrinks in comparison as soon as they both start talking.

 

By the way … this is a problem.

Not just for Donald J Trump but also for America.

 

When he shrinks in comparison America shrinks globally. This doesn’t mean we will not retain the world’s largest economy which demands that people have to deal with America regardless … but … it effectively shrinks our leadership role globally.

 

Sigh.

 

I honestly don’t know what I would do with Donald J Trump if I was his communications director. I know I would be honest with the Trumpster and say “stop giving interviews because you don’t know when to stop talking” … “don’t answer in paragraphs but rather in sentences because you cannot assemble a coherent paragraph thought” … “never talk about yourself when standing side by side with a peer”“lets schedule some more of those fake campaign speeches  in front of your few rabid followers so you can feel free and complain about everyone & everything and explain how great you are because they will love it.”

 

I also know my honesty would get my ass fired so quickly don’t blink because you would miss my time in the White House.

 

Media training is a pain in the ass but in its pain it grinds you down to reality about yourself. You learn to duck the bad comparisons a little better and seek the opportunities to contrast positively a little better.

 

stop this train add up

 

I don’t believe we need a member of the Mensa society to be the president or even to be effective in positively contrasting themselves in a tough situation in which the other is smart, thoughtful & articulate. But you do need someone who is self-aware in the moment & environment. Media training almost above any other training you may receive in business harshly introduces you to self-awareness.

 

What I do know is that without some very harsh media and communications training President Trump will continue to shrink in comparison time and time again.

windows of opportunity

May 15th, 2017

 dream big opportunities

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“Oh, How insanely outside the window

О,   как   безумно   за       окном

 

Howls and rages the evil storm,

Ревёт, бушует  буря злая”

 

Alexander Blok

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“Every advantage is temporary.”

 

Katerina Stoykova Klemer

 

==========================

 

“The weather-cock on the church spire, though made of iron, would soon be broken by the storm-wind if it did not understand the noble art of turning to every wind.”

 

Heinrich Heine

 

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In business we talk incessantly about visions and missions and purpose and strategic objectives and important long term type thinking to insure everyone get out of the way window wallknows where they are going and how they will go about doing it.

 

We worry about how to smartly effectively compete.

 

We worry through some fairly random details, talk about being the best and then … uhm … proceed to be anything but the best.

 

So … you know what?

If you are better and have a better offering and are truly worth a shit and want people to know you are worth a shit … well then … there is no real intellectual challenge.

 

You get on with getting on.

 

I am not suggesting being stupid about competing.

Nor am I suggesting bludgeoning the industry and competitors with some dull edged hammer.

 

I mean … for god’s sake we can talk forever on all the topics I just listed and Walls To Windows of opportunity businessstew over all the long term type shit … but … we all know the holy grail of business success actually resides in ‘windows of opportunity.’

 

Now.

 

Windows of opportunity arise all the time if you are paying attention.

 

As I have noted before ‘white space’ analysis in positioning is archaic thinking mostly because it explores a stagnant 2 dimensional industry when in reality any business in today’s world is 4 dimensional, at its most simplistic, and constantly moving & a swirl of constant activity in which no one competitor is ever truly standing still.

 

What that means is, basically, in today’s business world you set out down a road you want to go down and seek small windows in the chaos of normal business activity to “hit the hole.” Just like as a running back there is a huge mass of men & pads in front of you and you ‘just get going’ assuming a hole will open and you get through it.

Ah.

And then … of course … there are the windows that get placed in front of you. you don’t need to go looking for them … they are just there.

 

Windows of opportunities come in all shapes and sizes but the one you kill for is the opportunity for a stark contrast.

 

Stark contrast is the holy trinity of windows because it is the opportunity to create distinction, separation and build value. Uhm. That is if you actually use this window of opportunity correctly.

 

We assess this type of window two ways <because stark contrast also represents potential issues>.

 

  • A stark contrast shouldn’t really come at the obvious detriment of a competitor. While a stark contrast certainly represents an opportunity to laugh at a competitor or possibly make them look foolish to do so is to miss the larger opportunity. The larger opportunity isn’t to diminish their value to make yours look bigger but rather use a stark contrast to leverage more value for you.

 

  • A stark contrast really shouldn’t come at the obvious detriment of the category/industry. This one is a little tricky but is a corollary to my first point. You don’t want to make the category look stupid or ‘less than.’ A part of how you conduct your business is protecting the larger institution. In other words … you never sacrifice the greater institution simply to try and gain a temporary advantage for yourself. .

navle gazing The Grass Is Greener On The other side

<note: both of these are incredibly hard lessons to maintain in a highly competitive, selfish thinking, short term view business world>

 

And then, of course, even if we do think those two things through well and then take that temporary advantage offered us I will note that we, in business, are incredibly poor at knowing when to quit the contrast so we keep pounding the nail into the board even though it is already all the way in.

 

That said.

 

The true value of this stark contrast opportunity is distinction. Why do I put such a high value n distinction?

 

Distinction is one of those fabulous things that the more you try to be distinct the less likely you will actually be so <at least in a meaningful way>.

 

And if I could convince more companies to think about this with clear heads I am not sure I would make any more money but I am sure they would.

i know, I know … easy for me to say.

 

But the pursuit of the elusive distinction can sometimes drive businesses to some fairly irrelevant, if not absurd, and absolutely meaningless places. I know it sounds crazy but, if they ignored it, I bet it would happen. Well. It would happen if they were smart about focusing on themselves … who they were and who they wanted to be … uhm … and took the temporary advantage offered them in stark contrast windows of opportunity.

 

So let’s call it a crazy smart idea.

 

But tough to do <as most crazy smart ideas are>. Tough because it doesn’t everything can be figured outexactly match up with the standard “this is how you are supposed to do it” management guides. Waiting for opportunities isn’t something that they teach you in ‘how to aggressively beat the crap out of your competition in the industry” school.

 

Anyway.

 

Maybe that is the most important point.

 

There are a lot, a shitload, of crazy smart business people out there.

But there are not a lot of crazy smart business people who seem to be willing to do something crazy like ignore the business books “plan to success” blueprints.

 

Here is where I put my money.

The few. Those crazy enough to not plan for distinction but rather let distinction and originality simply evolve from who they are, what they think and their vision of what they think they should be and the ones who ‘get going’ smartly to starkly contrast themselves when a window opens.

 

Crazy?

Probably.

 

But in a world where the majority of businesses, and new ideas, fail … maybe this isn’t a crazy a thought as it sounds.

 

And, at its core, the concept of what I just outlined isn’t that crazy because businesses are always seeking an advantage.

And they should.

 

I imagine the point I am going to make is that most businesses don’t consider ‘advantage’ as temporary. When it actually happens … they treat it as sustainable.

And ultimately that becomes their downfall.

Windows of opportunity close. And 90% of the time they close quickly. And maybe that is where the ‘sustainable ‘ belief really screws most businesses. They jump through the window of opportunity, and let’s say they even treat the stark contrast opportunity correctly and do all the right things, they then act like they are going to stay on that side of the window <acting as if the advantage and opportunity is sustainable>.

be wrong stand in your wrongness divide

Wrong.

Bad decision.

 

Windows of opportunity are meant to be jumped through … opportunity maximized … and then you jump back before it closes again.

 

Why?

 

Stark contrasts are most typically contextual to a certain situation. Most businesses are smart enough if they give you a stark contrast opportunity to actually change the context to insure the contrast opportunity ceases.

In addition … knowledge never stops. Knowledge, in and of itself, changes environment … it is never stagnant.

 

Sustainable advantage is really rare.

Extremely rare.

 

And, frankly, many businesses are actually too slow to take advantage of their … well … advantage. The window of advantage does not stay open long.

 

Businesses work to gain it. They get it. They build plans to take advantage of the advantage. They go and do … and … well … their advantage is not only as advantageous as it used to look but in many cases it is no longer even the advantage that you thought it was. The window is closed. Oh. Maybe worse? To dirty windowyour dismay you look around the room and another frickin’ window is open.

Damn.

Wrong window at the wrong time.

 

Ok.

 

My last point on a stark contrast window of opportunity.

 

While everything I just discussed is about opportunity to build value and distinction a stark contrast opportunity offers you the one thing which is the one thing you dream about as a business – an interested person.

In general, in a sea of business sameness and a cluttered world of meaningless communication, whether you are trying to sell something or showcase value you will be faced with a great barrier of lack of interest.

 

People, in general, don’t care until they have to care.

I would like to point out that while we all say “the greatest thing since sliced bread” that sliced bread was not that great to people in the beginning … people just didn’t care about sliced bread … they liked what they had <unsliced>.

 

Anyway.

 

The corollary to that thought?

 

Everything is interesting at some point.

Yup.

Everything.

 

obsessed uninterested switchIt’s all about uncovering the most relevant time to be relevant <and interesting>. Pick the wrong time and you waste $’s because the consumer just doesn’t care. Be interesting at the right time and the brand becomes relevant <and sales increase>.

Whenever I bring this topic up oddly <in general> I find everyone gravitating to the ends of the spectrum … half believe whatever their widget is that everyone is interested in it … and the other half suggest the world has gone to hell in a hand basket and people don’t care about anything.

 

Regardless.

 

Assume people don’t care about what it is you want to tell them. And assume they don’t care about your product <until you do something wrong>.

 

But the one time you may actually have a chance to generate some interest in a stark contrast. Most times your advantage or difference or distinctness is almost indiscernible to the human eye <despite how proud you may be of it>. and that is where a stark contrast offers you the greatest part of the opportunity – it is discernible.

 

All businesses need to remember that people just don’t care until they have to care … but people always care about vivid comparisons and take note of hem in a grayish world — that is why you take advantage of stark contrasts windows of opportunity.

 

That’s it for businesses and stark contrast windows of opportunity.

 

In general … stark contrast opportunity or not, personally, I believe many businesses mismanage any ‘advantage’ opportunities.

In attitude and in behavior.

They think incorrectly, or have a flawed view when they think, and implement too slowly. They overthink the wrong things and under think the right things.  They think long term sustainable within what are really short term opportunities. They think of ROI in terms of “time I have maintained active or the advantage” rather than viewing time in a “37 seconds used wisely is a lifetime.”

 

I tend to believe it is because businesses try to simplify as much a possible with the intent to replicate as much as possible. Neither of those thoughts in that last sentence are particularly effective with regard to a stark contrast window of opportunity. Oddly, the pursuit of simplicity increases cumbersome less-than-effective responses.

 

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“The world is not as simple as we like to make it out to be. The outlines are often vague and it’s the details that count.

Nothing is really truly black or white and bad can be a disguise for good or beauty … and vice versa without one necessarily excluding global window of opportunitythe other.

Someone can both love and betray the object of its love … without diminishing the reality of the true feelings and value.

Life and business <whether we like to admit it or not> is an uncertain adventure in a diffuse landscape whose borders are constantly shifting where all frontiers are artificial <therefore unique is basically artificial in its inevitable obseletion> where at any moment everything can either end only to begin again … or finish suddenly forever … like an unexpected blow from an axe.

Where the only absolute, coherent, indisputable and definitive reality … is death. We have such little time when you look at Life … a tiny lightning flash between two eternal nights.

 

Everything has to do with everything else.

Life is a succession of events that link with each other whether we want them to or not.”

 

Arturo Perez Revarte

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Whether you want to simplify or not … one of the wisest things you can always keep in mind is … Everything has to do with everything else. Life is a succession of events that link with each other whether we want them to or not.

 

Another wise thing to keep in mind is windows of opportunity always arise but the ones that offer stark contrast may be one of the most valuable opportunities you can ever encounter in business.

first impressions, first words and character assessment

July 31st, 2016

pooh paws truth seek

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“Pooh looked at his two paws.

He knew that one of them was right, and he knew that when you had decided which one of them was right, then the other one was the left, but he never could remember how to begin.”

 

House at Pooh Corner

 

==========

 

 

So.

 

I opened with this Pooh quote to talk about first words.

first impression trust last

Not first impressions but first words.

 

Sure.

They can be directly related but I firmly believe first impressions are significantly less important than last impressions. What I mean is that 99% of the time I can redirect a first impression more toward the desired last impression.

 

First words are trickier.

 

And, as with most things in Life, not all first words are created equal.

 

There are first words which are just not articulated well. These you can recover from. These are the ones that we all think about afterwards and say “shit, I wish I had said ‘this’ rather than what I said.”

 

And you know what? you can.

 

Ah.

 

But then there are the first words which everyone knows are your true feelings. The ones which put an indelible stamp upon your character. These are … well … almost impossible to recover from.

And, truthfully, you cannot recover from something which is a true reflection of who and what you are. You can stumble, mumble or offer a variety of jumbled words but you is what you is and your first words reflect who you is.

 

And that is why I thought of Pooh on this topic.

 

You receive a question.

You think.

 

And the other person, or people, can actually see you think.

 

 You know that there is a right answer and a … well … left answer. You look at both paws and just aren’t sure which is which.

 

Therefore, you answer from your truest self.

 

It is a character answer.  fixing america define yourself how

 

Simplistically , when I view another person’s first words when trapped in a ‘which paw is which” situation I attempt to bucket it into one of two buckets. Are the words a reflection from an “I” perspective <which tend to defend the “I”> or are the words a reflection from a more global view <which tend to defend what other’s may think>.

 

Why?

 

Because, to me, great character is most often driven by an ability, or desire, to view the world in someone else’s shoes. This doesn’t mean character shouldn’t be a reflection of self and what is important from your own ethical & moral compass but rather it means you are always challenging your sense of self against what matters to other people.

 

I will admit.

 

I am sure a part of me wrote about this today because of another Trump ‘first words’ response which made me not only think he was hollow empathetically but also incredibly incapable of viewing the world through anyone’s eyes, and Life criteria filter, other than his own.

 

His response to Mr. Khan’s emotional but articulate stance on the patriotism of Muslim Americans was so unenlightened, portrayed an absurd lack of empathy let alone showing a depth of obliviousness to the real issue at hand and so defensive … well … suffice it to say that first words matter.

 

I imagine he will send out a variety of tweets trying to explain how his first words were misconstrued.

and, to be clear, lest we get confused here on the issues for Trump’s comments about the Khan’s:

 

  • he assumed a Muslim American <American> woman couldn’t speak because of Islam faith. This is either blatant racism or idiotic ignorance. Pick your poison.

 

  • he made “thousands of jobs” equivalent to “losing a child” <let alone an American soldier in combat child>. In his mind somehow this sacrifice is equivalent. Drink that poison.

 

 

Yeah. First words are first words. And first words matter.

 

First words are a true reflection of character maybe 99% of the time.

 

Look.

 

We have all been asked a question and sat there looking at each paw wondering where to begin.

 

99% of the time … even if we do not get the words exactly right … the words will be in some form or fashion a reflection of how we truly feel.

 

99% of the time … even if we do not get the words exactly right … the words will be in some form or fashion a reflection of our character.

 

paw pooh truth selfI do not sit here today writing to suggest anyone should be more careful with regard to what they say first. I do not because I believe most of us are pretty careful with our first words.

 

I will, however, suggest that everyone should pay attention and think about the first words that they hear. Not to say that someone cannot revise something said at first but rather because … well … not all first words are created equal.

 

And the first words said by someone who cannot remember which paw is right and which is left and isn’t sure where to begin?

Well. Most likely those first words will be a reflection of who and what they truly are.

 

 

first, last, all impressions

February 18th, 2015

————-

impression last

“Almost everyone will make a good first impression, but only a few will make a good lasting impression.”

=

Sonya Parker

————

 

 

Well.

 

 

First impressions don’t matter.

 

 

Ok.
Maybe that was a little harsh.

 

last impression dessert

Let me suggest that final impressions are arguably more important than first impressions.

 

No. let me try that again.

 

 

Let me say I believe that final impressions are more important than first impressions.

 

I am fairly sure that I have always thought this and have continuously balked at the ‘make a good first impression’ emphasis throughout my career <and Life>.

 

But I would say this thought has become more tangible as I have gained more & more experience.

 

 

Now.

 

 

I will also say that all impressions matter.

 

First, middle & last.

 

 

However … most typically we judge our experiences based on what we experience last and not what happened at the beginning.

 

We most often judge based on the last impression imprinted upon our perceptions & beliefs.

 

 

 

The last impression puts a period <question mark, exclamation point, comma, etc.> on the totality.

 

Or.

 

The last impression can be the pin that pops the balloon of value you created throughout the experience.

 

Or.

 

The last impression can provide the ellipsis … <pun intended> … the suspension point offering hope for more.

 

 

And while I am focused on last impressions I don’t want to totally diminish a first impression nor ignore the fact that it is really, and truly, more about a compilation/summary of impressions.

 

 

Sure.

 

First impressions do matter us a lot in our lives <to us and for us>.

 

 

But.

 

We all know this <but I will remind you anyway> … we are evaluating things all the time.

 

 

Look.

 

 

Think about it.

 

 

If you start off on the wrong foot … is there really no chance of recovery?

 

<of course there is>

 

 

 

If you start poorly … are you doomed to fail?

 

<of course not>

 

 

 

First impressions maybe get you in the game <I say maybe> … but last impressions are … well … the last.

 

Oh.

 

In addition.

 

Let’s be clear <continuing to make my point>.

 

Regardless of ‘good first impression’ or ‘bad first impression’ … there is always the last impression.

 

 

Shit.

last impression sailboat

 

There are first impressions, middle impressions and last impressions.

 

 

There is even some guy who argues that when creating a message, in totality, you can leave the best impression if you have a slow start and conclude great <he calls it his ‘sailboat chart’>.

 

<while I agree conceptually I would argue this is not a particularly healthy strategy>

 

 

 

I have written about the importance of last impressions using marketing as an example as well Life.

 

 

==

past posts on the importance of last impressions:

Marketing:

http://brucemctague.com/clorox-storytelling

Life:

http://brucemctague.com/tom-clancy-and-tony-romo-and-last-impressions

impression deep

==

 

 

But lets talk a little bit about how to make impressions.

 

 

Like it or not … pretty much all the time we are being evaluated through this wacky thing called heuristics.

 

Lets call them ‘personal value cues.’

 

 

And we give these cues all the time … and they scream at the top of their lungs even if you aren’t looking at them.

 

 

Even worse?

 

 

You can even be silent and be giving a ‘value in self’ <character> cue.

 

 

For example.

 

 

Bach was a master of ‘negative space’ … building masterful musical combinations … he also used silences that are as eloquent and thought provoking as notes, tempo and syncopation.

 

<I used Bach because creating impressions is like composing a symphony>

 

 

 

Well.
If you think really hard about that … well … it sucks.

 

 

 

This means pretty much everything you do, you don’t do, you say, you don’t say … matters.

 

 

This means pretty much everything you do, you don’t do, you say, you don’t say … creates some impression.

 

 

 

This means pretty much everything you do, you don’t do, you say, you don’t say … creates ‘perceived value of you’ in others eyes.

 

<i am fairly sure that offers up every action, and non action, to say that pretty much just showing up, whatever you do, matters>

 

 

 

 

In fact … it reminds me of something I read:

 

 

 

———-

“The world is not as simple as we like to make it out to be.

The outlines are often vague and it’s the details that count.

Nothing is really truly black or white and bad can be a disguise for good or beauty … and vice versa without one necessarily excluding the other.

impress live life

Someone can both love and betray the object of its love … without diminishing the reality of the true feelings and value.

Life and business <whether we like to admit it or not> is an uncertain adventure in a diffuse landscape whose borders are constantly shifting where all frontiers are artificial <therefore unique is basically artificial in its inevitable obseletion> where at any moment everything can either end only to begin again … or finish suddenly forever … like an unexpected blow from an axe.

Where the only absolute, coherent, indisputable and definitive reality … is death.

We have such little time when you look at Life … a tiny lightning flash between two eternal nights.

Everything has to do with everything else.

Life is a succession of events that link with each other whether we want them to or not.”

=

Arturo Perez Revarte

————

 

 

That all maybe too poetic in discussing something like creating impressions and creating value but simply put … “everything has to do with everything else.”

 

 

Suffice it to say … the first impression impacts the last impression … or at least how the last is viewed. And this means people view in totality <not just first impression> and the last has higher value than the first.

 

 

 

In addition … the outlines are often vague and it’s the details that count.

 

impress other screwed up people

That is why I shiver when I hear ‘its all about making a great first impression.

 

 

The outlines of how to create an impressions are often vague … but … suffice it to say the details count.

 

 

 

Shit.

 

Everything counts.

 

 

Sure … a carefully crafted first impression that makes you stand out or make you distinct is clearly a good thing and … well … insure you get listened to.

 

 

But, remember, this whole ‘impression discussion’ is really about that wacky thing called ‘value.’

 

 

I hesitate to call anything to do with self and how people look at you as ‘value’ but if you strip away all the politically correct ‘feel good’ bullshit … people assess you for what value you will provide them <friendship, commonalities, smarts, experience, etc.>.

 

 

And if you are not careful … how you present yourself can send a different value, or price, cue than who you really are.

 

 

That is misaligned messaging <including non verbal cues into the messaging header>.

 

 

And misaligned is bad <that is a Bruce-ism>.

 

 

Particularly if the kind of impression you want to create is important to you.

 

 

Anyway.

 

Here is the thing about impressions … damned if you do … damned if you don’t.

 

 

What I mean is that you gotta ‘play’ if you want to make an impression because even if you don’t … you make an impression.

 

 

You gotta let the chips fall as they may … “my last impression may suck … it may just not be as good as my first impression but ‘give me the ball coach and let me play’” has to be your attitude.

 

 

Ok.

 

 

One last thought on last impressions.

 

 

 

In today’s world … I included <because I am writing this damn post> … we are often quick to judge off of outcome.

 

 

Our last impression is often the tangible. The output and the outcome.

 

 

Should it be? Sure.

 

<I guess>

 

 

 

But it is quite possible that the last impression judged should be ‘the measure of the person.’

 

 

And it is with that thought where the whole concept of ‘the first impression is most important’ falls apart … while our first impressions are frequently based upon instincts, impulse, intuitions and emotions; they are also built on our doubtful beliefs, not all are rational thought or fact-based evidence.

 

 

First impressions inherently suck at assessing & providing the ‘full measure’ of a person.

 

It is the last impression permits you to assess the ‘full measure of the person.’

 

 

The full measure assesses those who chose to play the full game.
Win, lose or draw.

 

 

Whether the game was thrust upon them or they thrust themselves upon the game … the ones who step up every day and every moment.

 

===

“They call me observant.

That’s not particularly true.

People are so easy to read – we bleed emotions even in the way we drink our coffee.

No one seems to notice though.

They’re all too busy drinking their own damn coffee. “impression responsible

onlyjustabrokensmile

===

 

 

Giving the ‘full measure’ of someone demands that we not only bleed emotions as we bleed impressions but that we force people to stop drinking their own coffee to watch us bleed.

 

 

Inevitably that means the last impression is an impression of someone’s character.

 

 

 

That’s why last impressions count the most.

 

 

 

Because it ain’t the first impression that matters … it is the last.

the i love coffee cheatsheet

April 21st, 2010

enjoy your coffee

===

 

“As long as there was coffee in the world, how bad could things be?”

 

Cassandra Clare

 

====

 

I love coffee.

And I really loved coffee back when it was easy to figure out what to drink.

Strong. Thick enough to stand a spoon up in it. Some cream. Some sugar (or sweetener). And I am good.

 

Drinking coffee in the good old days was … well … simple.

 

Then Starbucks came along. Yeah. I am a Starbucks addict but it still scares me (ok. the ‘baristas’ scare me when its time to order. The ‘uccinos’ the ‘half this and half that’ all makes me do what I do when I am in a restaurant in a country I don’t speak the language. I take the menu and I point at something and just say “yes.”

 

Anyway.

 

Thank god for this guy Lokesh Dhakar (who i don’t know but found his coffee cheatsheet) who has combined his enthusiasm for coffee and design to create this straightforward guide to coffee brewing (and choices) below.

 

 

Maybe now I can actually order something other than “coffee with an add shot.” (which also has a variety of special nicknames – red eye –  depending on where you are in the country)

Here you go … the cheat sheet:

coffeediagrams

 

 

The Americano, a popular favorite, is included alongside the Cappuccino, Caffé Latte, and a host of amazing lesser-known concoctions.

 

The images offer a beautifully simple and accessible guide that can be consulted at a glance to ensure all the ingredients are in perfect proportion.

 

 

Now.

 

I admit I love espresso. But, in general, strong coffee is first thing I think about in the morning, as my feet stumble out from beneath the sheets. speak and coffee

 

Unlike other people I have no ritual with my coffee other than how fast can I start drinking it.

 

So.

 

Enjoy your coffee. I know I cannot enjoy life, let alone a day, without coffee.

Enlightened Conflict