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Telling Business in Stories

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Telling Business in Stories

  1. 1. Ali Anani, PhD
  2. 2. 2 Managing Partner Phenomena Communications
  3. 3. 3 Dr. Ali Anani - Managing Partner Dr. Ali Anani : As General Manager, Dr. Ali Anani heads and supervises a team of talented young professionals, and manages the overall brand strategy - ensuring the cohesiveness and creative parts of each campaign for all Agency clients. Dr. Ali Anani holds a PhD from the UK (1972). He has a wide experience in many fields. His accomplishments include the writing of more than eighty publications in international journals, the writer of three printed books in Arabic and one E-book in English. He has written widely for the media and presented a TV program and many radio programs. Dr. Anani main credit is his creativity thinking where he scored among the top %5 creative people worldwide. Dr. Anani is an invited lecturer for more than fi y international conferences and an author of many business slogans. Moreover, he has travelled to more than fi y countries as an invited speaker and consultant and has consulted for many international agencies including UNIDO, Atomic Energy Agency, UNDP, ESCWA, private businesses and governmental agencies.
  4. 4. 4 Why Do I Write for LinkedIn? 6 Desert Plants-Derived Business Strategies 8 The Phenomenon of Crowd Blindness 11 Thickening and Swelling of Ideas… on Management 13 A Telling Story 16 Success Edges 19 Shocking Events… that changed habits and values 22 Sisterhood and the Greece Crisis 25 The Death of My Brother, but not his great lesson 27 Great Managers Manage Thoughts 30 Pausing and Regularity Can Kill 33 index
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  6. 6. 6 Why Do I Write for LinkedIn? A question hovered over my mind- why do I write for LinkedIn? Is it for money? Money is a strong motivator, but I am not paid. In fact, I have been approached to write paid posts for some blogs and I turned them down. For fame- Well I get thousands more views on SlideShare than I get on LinkedIn For recognition_ it is too late to try to get recognition because of my age For learning- they say if you want to understand something teach it. I say if you want to understand something write it. Yes, I want to learn and writing helps me do that. Forventingoffmyideas-thiscouldbeapowerfulmotive.Ifyouleaveanidea without ventilation it might get rotten. Fungus grows on rotten bread and it would most likely grow on my“idea bread”and rotten it. Yes, there is a huge
  7. 7. 7 difference between setting on an idea to ferment it and not ventilating it and setting on same idea and exposing it to air change. One way to ventilate ideas is by writing them and exposing them to verification by readers. I view feedback from readers as a way of ventilation of my head and stored ideas in it. At least, I know my head will not rotten this way. For generating creative ideas? Writing is a challenge in finding ways to hook readers. Finding the hooks is a creative process.To find the hook I need to open up the flower of imagination, to stir the dormant idea seeds in my mind and to link distant fields that seem to be way apart. It is the birth of new ideas that fulfills me like a first time mother who feels she is bringing a newly-born baby to the world. For feedback comments? I wrote once that I don’t like voices without echoes. I like comments because they echo interest; more importantly they enrich me if critical and suggestive. A plant dies if it doesn’t grow. I feel the same way if I don’t grow. I wouldn’t without comments that act as a fertilizer to my mind. I don’t want to live with a dead mind and live body. For purpose? Life has no meaning without a purpose. Writing helps me polish, rethink and grow my purpose. Shallow purposes lead only to shallow lives and I don’t entertain this idea. Why do you post to LinkedIn? Would love to hear from you
  8. 8. 8 Desert Plants-Derived Business Strategies Businesses today suffer from heated competition, falling customer loyalties, shortening life spans of products and employed technologies, falling employees› engagement, emergence of disruptive technologies and other challenges. The prevailing climate of business reminds me of plants living in deserts. These plants face many similar challenges. They live in ocean of sands with intense heat, lack of rain and being victimized by animals who might eat them. It is the survival of plants in deserts and the survival of businesses who suffer from customers deserting them. What can businesses learn from these plants. Desert plants follow myriad of strategies to survive. The plants developed distinctivefunctionalshapestoadapttotheirenvironments.Businessesneed to shape up in different forms to differentiate themselves from competition and survive. It is the stress of environment that leads to unique shapes. Will
  9. 9. 9 businesses shape up to match the aid environments in which they find themselves in or sink in the ocean of sands? A limiting factor for plants is scarcity of water. For businesses scarcity is problematic as well such as the scarcity of talents and gem ideas.The plants have developed strategies to collect as much water as possible, how to skillfully use this water and how to adapt to scarcity of water. Not only that, but also plants may use «same tools» to spare the use of water with the simultaneity of defending itself from animals chewing them.Why do you post to LinkedIn? Would love to hear from you Water-Collecting and Customers Collecting Desert plants such as have the ability to store water in the body or root of the plant. Desert plants don›t rely on one place to store water. Do businesses need to collect customers and store them with bindinginterestindifferentwaystokeepthem? I believe so. Some people who grow cacti in pots keep watering them only to kill them because excess water tends to spoil the plants short roots. Some businesses are doing the same by excessive «watering» their customers with offers, ads, e-mails without consideration of the nature of those customers only to lose them. Babying your customers with whom you have short roots (such as knowing them only recently) might have an adverse effect. Give water to customers only if they need it; else you shall lose them. Not all desert plants are the same. Some plants that have adapted to arid environments by growing extremely long roots, allowing them to acquire moisture at or near the water table. Water Preserving and Customer Preserving Itisamazinghowdesertplantsconservewaterwhileprotectingthemselves.. Spines protect the plant from animals, shade it from the sun and also collect moisture. The shallow root systems are usually radial, allowing for the quick uptake of large quantities of water when it rains. It is survival that leads to
  10. 10. 10 the optimization of using scarce resources. SO as to reduce water loss cacti have spines or thorns instead of leaves so as to minimize water loss to the hot environment. It is not the survival of the strongest; it is the survival of the most creative adaptations and multi collection of resources and using them for defined goals. Plants Behavior Strategy and Analogous Business Strategies Plants behave to serve their survival. Some lily plants hide well under soil and onlygerminatewhentheysenserainhascome.Intimesofscarcitybusinesses may consider dormancy as a way of survival. This is just an example of many more to explain the need to adopt survival strategies. Businesses that pass through «arid days» may learn a lot from plants to develop their survival strategies.
  11. 11. 11 The Phenomenon of Crowd BlindnessI wish to share a story that is quite telling on crowd actions and its derived lessons.Inahighschoolgraduationceremonyagroupoffriendswerewaiting for a late arriving friend, Issa, to join. One of his friends glanced him from a distance and started to call loudly Issa… Issa. In few seconds the whole stadium started shouting Issa…Issa. Poor Issa started looking everywhere trying to identify the source of shouting only to get perplexed and unable to locate his friends because of the chaotic voices. I call this» crowd blindness» because the crowd may lead you astray or send you in the wrong directions. This phenomena is widespread and may inflate even further. On social media some people have hundreds of thousands of viewers. If they start shouting simultaneously to influence the readership of a post, to give one example, they reach what again what I call «critical voices» to get the snowball effect and send readers to the wrong posts. Pondering on the stadium experience we find that social support and fun
  12. 12. 12 make people share in activities without thinking. People don›t like to be left out and it is an important need to socialize. It is a prime need on the Maslow Pyramid. With fun added, the tendency to participate multiplies. This could lead to adverse effect. Imaginealostchildonastreetcryingforhismother.Hestartedcallingmammy and everyone on the street did the same to reinforce the child appeal. The voice shall echo more, but it shall create confusion and the mother shall not know the source of her son›s appeal. Are some marketers doing that.The lost son is their product and the followers are the crowd getting the product lost for the consumer is perplexed and doesn›t know which direction to follow. It was very interesting to read a post by Kerry Butters on A Beginner’s Guide to Influencer Marketing in which she discusses the value of influencers and howtheymovethecrowd.ThepostalsoreferstoanequationbyForbeswriter Kyle Wong who quantifies an influencer worthiness by using the following equation» Influence = Audience Reach (# of followers) x Brand Affinity (expertise and credibility) x Strength of Relationship with Followers. I tackled this issue in a presentation on Influencers Reaching Ideas. Truly, one area of the strength of influencers is the strength of their followers. This could be a determining factor in crowds in which the rippling effect initiates instantly.
  13. 13. 13 Thickening and Swelling of Ideas… on Management Getting involved in LinkedIn discussions is a great source for new ideas. This week I have engaged heavily on a discussion pertinent to groupthink as a source of new ideas. Some commenters have fairly fixed ideas whereas others have divergent ideas. Fixed ideas have their predictability, but they allow less room for converging. Somehow the metaphor of fixed air composition and varying starch-water compositions jumped to my mind. Air has an almost fixed composition and little changes may have drastic environmental effects such as the greenhouse effect. Fixed compositions can be very costly if slightly changed. Are fixed teams the same?Pondering on the stadium experience we find that social support and fun
  14. 14. 14 In contrast is the flour-water paste or starch-water composition. The source of starch can influence greatly the applicability of the mix. However; this variability opens doors for creative ideas to generate new pastes for different applications. Can we follow similar routes to develop ideas that swell, gel and thicken? Is groupthink the way to do that? Somanyideascometomymind.Isitbettertohavesoftskills?Hardskills?Both skills? Like we mix corn starch with little water we end up with a composition that has enough liquidity. However; on stressing the material it hardens. Pressing brings the starch particles close to each other thus preventing the flow of water. This prevention of water flow while bringing the solid particles closer to each other make the stressed paste look like a solid until pressure is relieved. Great leaders may learn from this behavior.They consider the starch particles as individual staff and they first «wet» the particles (staff) with (creativity here is to suggest ideas to replace water and I dare to in a later paragraph). Staff don›t work in isolation as they group in shadow groups or apparent groups. Instead of trying to disintegrate groups they find a solution by immersing the staff in a topic or culture that appeals to them.The starch- water mix shall not work unless the mix is heated to so that the water molecules would move freely and energetically to bombard the starch granules and break them
  15. 15. 15 apart. We need also to warm up the staff in a subject or culture that appeals to them so that we may purposefully break their «granular grouping» into a desired state. When they breakup individuals will have something to cater for them like water catering for the broken starch granules. The disruption of moving water molecules to the gel structure of the paste will stop as soon as the gel is cooled down. Water molecules will be trapped in their position. This fixation is reversed as soon as the gel is heated again. Fixing molecules and then liberating them will reinforce each other. It is not fixed or variable? It is both in a reinforcing cycle. Among the most commonly used starches for thickening pan sauces, puddings, and pie fillings are flour, cornstarch, and tapioca. They don’t all behave in quite the same way. You need to know before you substitute one for the other about starches in general and also about each one in specific. Likewise; don›t assume all employees are the same. Before substituting an employee with another it is important to realize how they would behave in the new environment. How many times we heard of an outstanding football player who moved to a different team and failed. Or, substituting a player by another one in a game that led to losing the game. It is not only the individual; more it is the behavior of the team in the atmosphere it is immersed into. Is it the culture of organization? It could well be. Immerse your employees in a healthy and engaging and heated culture that would warm up to bombard employees so that they may disrupt their granular grouping, but still sticking together purposefully so that the emerging structure is like gel that is amenable to new applications. Like starch molecules swell in heated water, absorb the water and then burst emptying more starch molecules in the process. So many molecules become jammed in a small amount of water enough to thicken and keep it on The Edge of Change. This is a process for managers to think about. There is a need to immerse employees in a culture that all employees swell in it to burst and «free» other employees. They might jam each other, but for a purpose. Starches with structure based on linear molecular attachment give opaque structures. ideas that are linearly bound will do the same. Starch with cross- linked molecular structure yield clear gels. Employ staff who have the culture of linking to others so that clear ideas may emerge. Keep your employees on the Edge of Change.
  16. 16. 16 A Telling Story The mother looked at her daughter who was carrying one apple in each hand. The mother asked her daughter «would you give me an apple»?The daughter glanced at her mother and then she started looking at the two apples while moving her eyes right and left. She didn›t respond to her mother›s request. The mother had hardly started walking away angrily when her daughter started calling her «mother- take this apple. I was trying to figure out which apple is sweeter to give it to you. I think it is this one». This story isn›t uncommon in our lives because we assume immediate feedback and positive responses. I had a similar experience myself last week. A great post writer to whom I have deep respect for sent me the link to his most recent post. In fact I was aware of it. I liked it so much and decided to check one or two references before commenting. Having checked the references I wrote my comment and shared the post because it was worthy. As I was posting I received a message from the author of the post. It was an angry message. It accused me of being selfish because I only care about my own posts. The author later found out that with the simultaneity of him writing the angry message I wrote a strongly favorable comment on his post.
  17. 17. 17 It has been said that people don›t hate change; they hate being forced to change. I may tweak this by saying people don›t hate taking actions; they hate being forced to take action. I don›t like voices without echo. I love to read comments as they feed by brain and enrich my mind and heart. Because I love the doesn›t mean that I exercise all possible means to force readers to comment. Worse, if I assume mistakenly that readers don›t comment because they don›t want to. Negative assumptions are extremely toxic to relationships. Commenting on posts is a responsibility. It is a feedback to the author and an informal way of advertising a post to encourage its readership. Commenting is sharing of ideas and convergence of possibilities. It is a stand on a topic. Taking enough time to write a responsible comment doesn›t mean that the post is poor. I wonder what is the lifetime of a post. But I know for sure that if you write a post of value somebody will eventually notice it and promote it. I dare say this because I experience this fact all the time. My last post here was shared by people with whom I had never had any contact. A good seed shall always come to fruition one day. Even serious readers do more. I wrote a statement which HPO Global Alliance developed into a post. This is an example of genuine engagement that #HPOGlobal did voluntarily.
  18. 18. 18 Let us pause before we jump into assumptions. Developing a habit of assuming before verifying could be very costly. Added post to publishing Aarti @patole_aarti tweeted this post and produced the background image above in her tweet. I am moved by the kindness of dear Aarti.
  19. 19. 19 Success Edges Amazingly and remotely-looking concepts is how they may relate. One example is the electron that will not jump to a new energy level unless a quantified amount of energy is given to it. Human efforts are indifferent. They need energy to move forward, but sometimes only definite amount of energy shall take us to the next level. This thought came to my mind as I was studying the Fogg Behavior Model. You shall not cross the borderline to doing different behaviors unless the trigger, the motivation and the ability together produce enough change energy to cause a new behavior to last. Triggers vary as they could be any pair of (pain and pleasure, hope and fear and, acceptance and rejection). The more ability a person has, the more intrinsic the trigger is, the moremotivatedhe/sheis.Assuming enoughenergyisproducedcrossing the change edge is possible.
  20. 20. 20 It might be a sad realization that we may do work only to stay in the level whereweare. Itisnotenoughto do work; it is equally important that the work we do will take us into new lands. Moving from failure to success might be amenable to the same analysis. Crossing the success edge separating failure from success might only be achievable if triggers for success, our ability and motivation work in harmony to create the desired outcome; else we stay where we are. But that isn’t all. What would happen if the energy produced is only enough to keep us on the success edge or whatever change we seek for? Tension is high as a small step or change would drive us to either success zone or failure zone. Will the rate of increasing tension be enough to cause bifurcation on the success edge? And bifurcate to what? Will one bifurcation lead to another double bifurcation? And then to fast bifurcation that throws us into chaos? May be the threshold line of the Fogg Behavior Model isn’t a curve as it could bifurcate to different directions and paths! Let us assume that the curve becomes a complex one as follows: Thechangeofbehaviorcouldbefastanddisruptiveorslowandevolutionary. Inbetweenwemaydisturbthesystemandthatcouldleadtotheemergence of unpredictable results. If we want to affect changes in behavior we may play around with.
  21. 21. 21 Controllingfactorsthataccelerateorslowchangemaydropusontheseparation linethatwouldbranchouttonewpathsandpossibilities. Between the extremes of doing joyful easy tasks and painful hard tasks and including the task of changing behavior lays a possibility of staying at the edge and ending in unexpected results.
  22. 22. 22 Shocking Events… that changed habits and values Habits don›t change easily. The longer we own a habit, the more difficult it is to change them. However; disruptive events may lead to changing habits willingly and forcefully. Not only habits, but even disruptive emotional shocks may change over long-standing emotions. Close friend who made it a habit seeing each other daily and then broke this habit to become enemies and then a big cause reunited them. A recent example is the two Mexicans who are the last to speak their native language. They decided to become friends again to speak in their language in an attempt to keep it alive. A language with no tomorrow overcame the hatred and enmity and brought together for long times two enemies.
  23. 23. 23 My father was a heavy smoker. He even burnt our house falling asleep while holding a cigarette in his hand. That severe incident with its dire consequences didn›t force him to quit smoking. Being very religious and faithful to God suddenly filled him with doubts that he wasn›t obeying God being a smoker. This new belief prompted him to quit smoking abruptly. He did, but at a cost. He substituted the smoking habit with the habit of peeling sunflower seeds and in huge amounts. Later, he suffered from high cholesterol.
  24. 24. 24 Effective communications and in particular visual ones may disrupt habits and cause turbulences in the waters of rooted habits. A recent video on unhealthy eating has led to strong reactions. The video shows a -32year old man while doctors inspecting him as he lies on the hospital bed, struggling to breathe, weighing 300lb as a result of habit of eating unhealthy food.The video strong reactions towards bad eating habits and the need to change them.Again,disruptionmightserveacauseandonlylivingtheexperienceof bad habits may force us to change those habits. This is particularly effective in changing habits of today before we suffer their future consequences. Living the pain of the sufferers may prompt us to change bad habits. There are people who spent their lives collecting money and all of a sudden lost interest in it. They donated most of their money to charities. They realized that the real value of money is alleviating the sufferings of these people who don›t have. The pleasure of helping others superseded their love for money. Those great abrupt changes in their lives must have been caused by big realizations. It shall be interesting to find how finding new meanings of life affected people›s habits and values. I wish you would contribute examples and analysis. I dedicate this post to Chris Cason for being a real man who is promoting helping others.
  25. 25. 25 Sisterhood and the Greece Crisis There were two sisters of a poor family that strived to make living. Misery unites people sometimes and makes them share their worries and sufferings. The sisters became so united and shared their future aspirations. As much as the two sisters were beautiful; in contrast was their miserable life. Averyrichmanaccidentlymetwithoneofthetwosisters.Hewassoattracted to her than soon they were married. She moved to a grand house. She lived in luxury thereafter. Her sister wasn’t that lucky and married a man who could afford a modest house and average standard of living. Sooner than later, the gap between the two sisters widened. The gap in the standard of living widened and started to entail other forms of life. The real conflict started when the kids of the rich sister started to mock the clothing and residence of the poor sisters’kids. The lack of sisterhood turned the two sisters into enemies. Is misery a stronger binder than brotherhood or sisterhood? Apparently, it is. The complexity of modern life is disrupting values and long-established norms. Having great disparities between two parties is a sure way of weakening the two.
  26. 26. 26 A system is as strong as its weakest point. A region is as strong as its least stable state. A material is as strong as its weakest voids. The more disparities between the size of voids, the less and weaker the material is. Look for cement as an example. Fresh cement has big and small voids. Fresh cement is weak accordingly. Wait for cement to cure and the disparity among voids decreases and cement becomes stronger. You want examples? The Middle East is one example. The greater the differences in sizes of voids, the more cement cracks. Nations are not different. Disparities are repelling forces and they might turn friends into enemies. Strengthening the rich and weakening the weak is a sure formula for failure. This is working in the opposite direction and leads to greater disparities. What shall emerge? Jealousy, hatred and all evil feelings shall emerge and in turn these negative feelings shall rupture good relations and turn them sour. Those ideas popped up in my mind as I was reading the Greece Euro crisis. Is there a way other than reducing disparities to strengthen the Euro-Zone?
  27. 27. 27 The Death of My Brother, but not his great lesson My brother Eng. Azzam passed away fifteen years ago at the age of 47 suffering from brain cancer. I still remember him walking in my office shortly before his death walking in my office with a big smile on his face. He won a lucrative contract and he came to invite me to a celebrating dinner. My telephone rang and suddenly my brother started making noises and hitting the desk nervously. I could hardly hear the phone conversation. Suddenly, my brother fell down and while falling making a big scream. Later, he was diagnosed with brain cancer. It is amazing how happy moments of success may turn into a huge drama. The success of my brother turned into a family misery. Abrupt changes can be very disruptive. This experience proved to be a heavy emotional stress on all of his family members. Living an emotional stress and experiencing its aftermath is beyond description. What prompted me to write this post is that 5th of July is nearing. That is the day when my brother passed away. What pushed me to write this post is a LinkedIn post shared by my dear friend Brad Fergusson. The post was originally shared by Roneo Chithran 罗尼欧.驰 .This post moved me as it says «Nobody cries without a reason. Just figure it out for nobody cries without a reason».
  28. 28. 28 I commented on this post by saying «And deeper they go in despair. Help others and one day some body shall help you». Brad Fergusson replied by saying: Well said Ali Anani, PhD - a depth and lifetime of experience inside of you my friend!! I replied again saying «My late brother experienced this. It is a moving REAL story.Hehelpedothersandyearslatertheyhelpedhimback.OnedayIshould write this as a post. My brother passed away on July 5, which is nearing. May be I write his story. I don›t promise, but I shall try. I decided to write for his story is real and it shows helping others will eventually help you. My brother was a fresh graduate as civil engineer. He did an excellent job and his company awarded him with a bonus. One day he was driving in the heat and decided to stop by a street shop to have a soft drink. As he was leaving the shop he noticed a man in his forties crying. hesitant he was to talk to the stranger, but finally did. The man was in trouble. He was a sub-contractor and had no money to pay the wages of workers. As the feast was narrowing the workers started to grumble asking for their wages. To cut the story short, my brother ended in giving the stranger a cheque with the value of almost all the bonus he got. The stranger promised to pay him back in ten days.
  29. 29. 29 Ten years passed and the stranger never paid back the dues. During that period my late brother moved to another country and won a contract to pave a main road. The aggregate for the project came from a nearby source. All of a sudden the source closed shop, which meant that my brother had to buy the aggregate from a distant source. The cost of transporting the aggregate exceeded the profit my brother was making and opted to pay a fine to get out of the project. The feast was nearing and my brother had little money on his hands having paid the fine. He was desperate as the workers were pressing him for their wages. Trying to calm himself down he opened congratulatory cards. One envelop attracted his eyes because it had stamps from a country that he had no contacts with.Wow!!!!Achequecarryingmybrothers›fullnamewithasubstantialamount of money. He didn›t recognize the sender and wasn›t even sure the money was his. Next day he cashed the money and paid the workers their wages. Only six months later my brother was walking downtime when a stranger stopped him and hugged him warmly. «But who are you», my brother asked astonishingly. I am the man whom you gave money ten years ago while crying on the street. I moved to another country and invested your money as a partner. I sent you a… Oh- now I know the source of the money I received, replied my brother. Help others and doors shall open for you without even expecting them to ever open.
  30. 30. 30 Great Managers Manage Thoughts The graph below shows the interactions among thoughts actions and output (could become a habit and then behavior, if repeated frequently). Positive thoughts may lead to positive actions and behavior; in contrast are negative thoughts. The book Delivering Results by David Ulrich has an interesting quote concerning how our thoughts and actions relate: “People are much more likely to act their way into a new way of thinking, than think their way into a new way of acting.” It seems that there exists an acceptancethatthoughtsprecedeactions.However;thereismoreagreement that the two feedback to each other.
  31. 31. 31 Not all thoughts are similar as they vary in their intensity from very positive to very negative. It occurred to me to classify thoughts on a risk map. Disruptive thoughtsmaycauseharmfulactionswithextremeimpactsthanmildthought. It is also the frequency of repeating a thought. High frequencies mean more impactful consequences on a larger scale than rarely-repeating thoughts. Thepreviousdiscussionhighlightstheriskthatthoughtsthatareveryunlikely today might develop into very likely and even become a habit. If the impact of those thoughts are very high then they may lead us to the I postulate that as we make habits of doing something without thinking like finger-biting, we tend also to make habitual thoughts Should these thoughts be negative ones they might become a habit leading to autopilot actions. Without changing the thoughts it might be extremely difficult to control the following actions. We have limited capacities to store thoughts. We may our out the positive one s to allow room for the negative ones. I find best to visualize the factors confining our thoughts is by the use of a Liebig›s Barrel. The shortest stove will determine the capacity of the barrel. Habits are among the factors that determine the capacity of the barrel.
  32. 32. 32 I dare say that real managers manage thoughts before they manage people or their actions. What are the current thoughts of an employee? How risky they are? Have they entered the disruptive zone? Do we manage people or their thoughts that lead to their actions?
  33. 33. 33 Pausing and Regularity Can Kill I offer new perspectives on different facets of life and businesses. I want to disrupt some conventional thinking. Mostly you are aware of the Maslow Pyramid of needs. One issue that makes me uncomfortable with it is the lack of the time dimension. Needs vary and theirintensityvariesaswell.Forexample,weneedfreshairtobreathe.Human beings can survive in average three minutes without inhaling Oxygen. Next is water and humans may survive in average three days without drinking. Food is different and humans may go for weeks without food and yet survive. Itisthistimedimensionthatweneglectedwhendiscussingneeds.Weneedto breathe fresh ideas and business survivability depends on this factor, among other ones. Like we can’t pause breathing air more than few minutes; yet we have given due attention for how long a business may survive without locking itself in old business ideas that lack Oxygen. This is a form of business suicide because businesses need oxygenated ideas to survive.
  34. 34. 34 The problem isn’t only about breathing; it is also about the regularity of breathing. We now realize that the problem isn’t only about breathing; it is alsoabouttheregularityofbreathing.Wenowknowthathealthyheartbeats are chaotic and not regular. This is evidenced from plots of heart rates over several time scales exhibiting self-similar scaling. Just combining the two findings we need to breathe in a fractal manner sheds new insights into how we may run business and our own lives and without neglecting the urgency of abiding by the conditions. Businesses flourish on coming up with novel and disruptive ideas.Where do ideas come from? I recall my attending a course on The Flow of Information at MIT in 1981. In that course studies showed that %75 of ideas come from not journals, pears, brainstorming or groupthink, but rather from customers. Customers who suffer from paying or heightened by delight will have new perspectives than the business. They find new solution, new applications, new possibilities, new problems and new insights. Yet; businesses wait for the product to be thrown in the market and only to fall victims to emerging problems. Those businesses deprive themselves from Oxygen- ideas originated from customers and still hope to survive. They are like a diver diving in water without an Oxygen cylinder and still hope to survive.
  35. 35. 35 Same businesses have also forgotten to keep a“testingbeat”. This is in emulation of heartbeats that should be continuous and self-scaling. Feedback from customers should be frequent and involve customers so as not to distant them away. Customers are your Oxygen cylinder- no business shall survive without it
  36. 36. 36

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