The Monday Morning Quote #465

“Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.”

Haruki Murakami

 

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Interaction Vs Transaction – from The Story of Telling

The Story of Telling is one of my top 10 business blogs, it always gives me something to consider either for myself or to pass on to my clients – and usually both.

Today’s posting, Interaction v Transaction features The Big Issue magazine sellers

….But just because it works doesn’t mean it’s the best strategy for generating the most sales or building the magazine seller’s business….

…..In our hurry to succeed we sometimes overlook the opportunity to engage first and sell later. Marketing works best when it’s anticipated, and the person on the other side of the interaction feels like they have had a hand in the result…. 

Take a minute and read the entry.

We are NOT Goldfish

The Year End clear out – this from 2014! Has anything changed?

I don’t know why I’m still surprised by people who use ad blockers but still spend money on advertising…

Advertising is a huge source of the “data pollution” Fred Wilson talked about at LeWeb a few weeks ago. (See here, starting at about 23 minutes in.)

What’s wrong with this view, and this approach, is the architectural assumption that:

  1. We are consumers and nothing more. Fish in a bowl.
  2. The Net — and the Web especially — is a container.
  3. Advertisers have a right to target us in that container. And to track us so we can be targeted.
  4. Negative externalities, such as data pollution, don’t matter.
  5. This can all be rationalized as an economic necessity.

Yet here is what remains true, regardless of the prevailing assumptions of the marketing world:

  1. We are not fish. Rather, as Cluetrain put it (in 1999!), we are not seats or eyeballs or end users or consumers. we are human beings and our reach exceeds your grasp. deal with it.
  2. The Net was designed as a wide open space where all the intelligence that matters is at its ends, and each of us sits (stands, walks, drives) at one.
  3. Even if advertisers have a legal right to target us, their manners are terrible and doomed for correction.
  4. Negative externalities matter. A lot. As Fred said in his talk, we eventually dealt with the pollution caused by industry, and we’ll deal with it in the virtual world as well.
  5. The larger economic necessity is for a well-functioning marketplace. We’ll get that online once free customers prove more valuable than captive ones.

The key is to replicate online the experience of operating as a free and independent customer in the physical world.

For example, when you go into a store, your default state is anonymity. Unless you are already known by name to the people at the store,  you are nameless by default. This is a civic grace. There is no need to know everybody by name, and to do so might actually slow things down and make the world strange and creepy. (Ask anybody who has lived in a surveillance state, such as East Germany before it fell, what it is like to be followed, or to know you might be followed, all the time.) We haven’t yet invented ways to be anonymous online, or to control one’s anonymity. But that’s a challenge, isn’t it? Meaning it is also a market opportunity.

We’ve lived in a fishbowl long enough. Time to get human. I guarantee there’s a lot more money coming from human beings than from fish whose only utterances are clicks.

The Monday Morning Quote #464

“All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”

Blaise Pascal

 

The Weekend Read. Silence by Erling Kagge.

I thought I would start the New Year with a mention for this absolute gem of a book. It follows on beautifully from Deep Work and Solitude which I have mentioned before. I am grateful to my neighbours Walt and Ann from the other side of the hill here at ReesAcres for their recommendation. They are both mountaineers as is Erling Kagge the book’s author.

We live in a world that is full of noise. Traffic, mobile phones, radio, TV and the other machinery of modern man all conspire to disturb, interrupt and distract us. From what do they distract us? The purity of silence.

Kagge has had a career as a lawyer, publisher and politician but it as an explorer that he has wider acclaim. He was the first person to walk to the South Pole and he describes how he removed the batteries from his radio before exiting the ‘plane at the drop off point. In 1994 he became the first to complete the “Three Poles challenge” – reaching the North & South Poles and the summit of Everest.

These 33 short essays are as much about finding solitude and inner silence and I particularly liked his addressing the need for a control of the chaos in our minds, where we all too often submit to the “noise” of constant sensory input. The quotation of Blaise Pascal’s words of wisdom from the 1600s, “All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone”, struck home. (Are you listening in The White House?)

A lovely little book, that I hope will help you want to experience more silence from this age of noise.

 

Why do people get frustrated? Ask Sony..

I bought a new dictaphone and Sony wanted me to register it.

 

 

 

 

 

So I went on line and put in my email address..

 

 

 

But it was ages since I had used the site and had forgotten my password.

 

 

 

 

 

 

No problem those lovely people at Sony can point me in the right direction –

but I had better hurry up, only 24 hours…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That’s another 10 minutes of my life I won’t get back…..

Health Factory

I am fortunate, and grateful, to have a brother whose inclination and job means that he has an interest in many fields of medicine. Education, research, clinical and academia all provide him with stimulation. We are able to learn from each other (although I believe the balance favours and benefits me).

A part of his New Year clear out the 2010 film “Health Factory” arrived via a pretty large download yesterday and I would urge anyone who is involved in health care to watch it and then to ask themselves some very simple questions. Start with “Why?” as in “Why am I doing what I’m doing? and “Why am I doing it this way?”.

The film questions the way health services are provided and if the current obsession with the imposition of “business” processes benefits anyone, patients or (that awful word) providers.

As you can imagine for someone who describes himself as “The Dental Business Coach” I am capable of vigorously justifying the arguments for dealing with dentistry as a “business”. However this film has made me examine what I am doing for and with my clients.

It helped me to understand why gut feeling led me to turn down more clients than I accepted last year. Finally it reinforced the beliefs and convictions that led me into dentistry in the first place and made me realise that what I am doing these days is right.

Watching what happened when Norway imposed a new system and how hospitals were rewarded for “gaming” or “creative coding” took me back to my early days of NHS associateship. The culture  at that time, encouraged speed of work and high output leading to a “pile high sell cheap” approach where the work was made to match the narrative of the NHS scale of fees. As the fees evolved so did clinical practice to maximise income. It was only when I took control back by working privately on a one to one basis with patients that I felt in control and capable of giving my best without compromise.

One can argue, and I do, that dentistry easily adapts to “business” models and even fashion. There is much that can be measured easily and should be, a lot more that could be but isn’t because the “need “ is not appreciated. However the imposition and measurement of many Key Performance Indicators is frequently a waste of time and energy providing results that signify little.

You can’t measure trust, patience, co-operation or happiness (in spite of what some gurus would have you believe).

As one of the featured clinicians said, “You end up measuring what can be measured, which will always be marginal to what the core of the job is.”

So for me, it’s a return to examining the abstract, difficult to quantify elements of dentistry. Anyone can measure things. It takes experience, and dare I say it, a certain amount of gravitas, to feel, to empathise, to understand and analyse what health means, to both patients and clinicians.

Worth a look, you can rent it and see the preview HERE.

And there are more clips on YouTube

 

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