- "We must do X."
- "I know everyone agrees with me."
The false consensus effect: Our minds falsely believe that everyone around us overwhelmingly agree with our opinions.
Manager Shishka decides on a strategy; he starts thinking everyone agrees with him because no one challenges his opinion.
He gets his strategy wrong, and comes up with another failed strategy that he again believes everyone around him wants -- but, doesn't realize that they're talking about his lousy ideas behind his back.
We human peeps suck at understanding the opinions of others; it's a reason why bosses suck because they falsely believe that Jen, Bob, Susie, Chuck, Fro, Meg, and Dikembe really do agree with everything they say.
- "When I was younger, my bosses SUCKED!" they'll tell themselves.
- "But now, my peeps are lucky because they're getting a great boss in ME, who does everything right, and does everything everyone wants!" they'll scream, not realizing that they too suck and their own peeps also are criticizing their lousy ideas.
If you're a boss, how do you combat your human mind that subconsciously tries to protect you from believing opposing opinions exist?
Managers who actively try to find 10000000000000 holes in their ideas win.
You have an idea; you think it's the greatest idea in the world.
Ever listen to someone else's idea that s/he thought was the greatest in the world, and you found 100000000000000 holes in it?
Now, do the same thing to yourself: find the same 100000000000000 holes in your super idea, and start embracing constant critique to discover the truly great idea hidden beneath the surface.
You'll build greater strategies, greater teams, greater foundations to build your ridiculously good business by constantly challenging/questioning/beating-the-mother-Fster out of everything you do for your-customers/the-world.
Great societies come from great debate.
Debate helps you gradually wither elementary stuff down to the truly awesome stuff.
DANCE MACHINE WIN
Posted on January 28
- Someone messes up.
- People play the blame game.
- Nothing improves.
Morale drainage. Customer drainage. Profit drainage. Everyone TEH SUCK.
The Henry Ford
What did Henry Ford do when one of his team members messed up? Instead of playing the blame game, he instead looked for remedies that would eliminate the mistakes from ever happening again.
For instance, take a dood who misses his numbers for the quarter.
A SUCK manager would play the blame game:
- YOU SUCK CUZ U LAZY
But the dood doesn't suck; he's a good dood who probably doesn't have the right resources or learned the right techniques to blast away his numbers.
What would a good manager do?
A good manager might go in, find out his daily approach to finding customers, then automate the MOTHER FREAK out of the process -- maybe starting with a handy little FAQ kit that he can keep on his desk:
- Q: "I need leads! How do I get them?"
- A: Double your number of pitches. See the correlation! YAY HI FIVE 2 U
...and he starts filling the FAQ sheet until it gives the dood everyhthing he needs to shine like a cheetah eating Buffalo Wings from KFC.
Whenever you feel like finding fault with somebody, SAY NO:
- Instead, try finding -- then automating -- remedies to the situation.
WIN LIKE HENRY FORD
Find remedies. Automate remedies.
Posted on January 27
Think back 10 years ago.
- How happy were you?
- How sad were you?
Chances are, this: I WAS SO HAPPY BACK THEN OH YAH.
Nostalgia happens because our human minds freakishly emphasize our positive past experiences over the negative ones.
- Back in the day, we struggled, struggled, and struggled; but when we look back now, we see those periods in our lives as fun/great/amazing.
A winning Super Bowl team, for instance, wouldn't remember the heartaches, the grueling practices, the turmoils; but, they would remember the comraderie, the victory, the accomplishments.
The Current Now
Ten years from now, you'll see this period in your life as fun/great/amazing.
- The mind sheds the bad experiences, and preserves the positive ones.
Researchers Leigh Thompson and Terence Mitchell call it the rosy retrospection effect -- we tend to see our past as more positive than we did when it actually occurred.
How Can You Be Happy?
Say NO! to freakish nostalgia; because your mind selectively filters out bad memories to keep the good memories, you'll always see your past as better than your current FAB LIFE if you keep feeling nostalgic.
Instead, embrace the challenging experiences in front of you; you'll see this time in your life as SUPER FAB years from now, as your mind starts discarding the bad stuff to keep only the fun/great/amazing memories.
Embrace The Now
Posted on January 26
- Bob: My idea will be a million-dollar idea.
- Ted: My idea will be a million-dollar idea.
- Sue: My idea will be a million-dollar idea.
The valence effect:
- We overestimate positive things happening to us.
Ask classroom of kids how rich they'll be. An overwhelming majority would say they will be richer than the average student in the room.
Translate that to grownups
- Go to a conference filled with aspiring entrepreneurs.
- Most folks will probably tell you/others/etc. that their ideas are the next big things. OH THIS THING WILL BE BIG I CANT TELL YOU BECAUSE IT'S IN STEEEEAAALLLLLTTTHH MODE
Overconfidence has wrecked everything from elite football teams to powerful societies, and will continue to do so because we psychologically have an inherent mechanism to keep us safe from threat.
Our ancestors needed that mindset to keep hope alive to survive.
Because our human minds delude ourselves into predicting positive outcomes, we go about building our businesses in a complacent/lazy/SUCK fashion.
Instead of busting our butts, the valence effect makes us think:
- HEY! I'm going to be successful!
- So, I will put in the amount of work that I THINK will make me successful!
Because you overestimate the probabilities that you will be successful, you put in less work than you would need to reach your goals.
So what do you do?
Compensate for your biases.
- I believe doing X will make me successful.
- Now, because my human mind tricks me into believing overly positive outcomes, I must compensate for my mind.
- Therefore, I will put in twice the amount of work/marketing/publicity/networking/iterating/etc./etc. that I believe it takes to reach my goals.
Beat your positive biases into submission.
Posted on January 25
Imagine a football team losing every one of their games until their last one.
- They feel horrrrrrible throughout the season.
- they feel like giving up after every loss.
- But, just by winning their last game, they start feeling excited about playing football again.
You'll hit roadblocks that destroy your morale and make you feel like giving up; but, simply by persisting, small wins will happen -- encouraging you to keep fighting.
You'll be happy and excited again.
Keep hope alive.
Posted on January 24
- You start with a task list.
- You put 3 items on it.
- BAM: then 100 items.
Your todo list becomes bloated, with you mixing things you really have to do with things you might want to do.
Your todo list becomes ineffective, as your list grows bigger and bigger by the day -- saturating your list with JUNK.
Create a Maybe Folder, where you can dump your non-essential things and start focusing on your most essential things.
BAM BAM OMG OMG OMG
A Maybe Folder lets you dump your endless supply of ideas and thoughts into a folder faaaaarrrrrrr away from the things that really matter.
A Maybe Folder, using Pareto's Rule, trims your todo list by 80% (the FAT), letting you focus on the core -- motherfreakishly important -- tasks (the top 20%).
- You start sticking to your todo list more-and-more-and-more as you fill it with core things -- away from the non-essential things.
You start soaring.
Like a hawk just did The Nasty with a cow.
The Maybe List
Posted on January 22
- You just lost.
- You cry.
"WHAT O WHAT DO I DO?"
People who suffer alone stress freakishly more than those who surround themseleves with an encouraging group of supporting friends/family/ostriches.
Why is that?
When you're around others after a defeat, your ridiculously adaptive body/mind/soul protects against the freakish neuroendocrine chemicals from releasing into YOU.
Those stress chemicals become shy and don't want to come out because they get scurrreed of the other people around you.
"I TOO SCARED I TOO SCARED"
...the neuroendocrine chumps scream in unison when you have encouraging folks around you to pick you up after a defeat.
Surround yourself with good peeps, and fight away the stressors like they just stole your momma's kitty cat.
WIN LIKE ALWAYS
Posted on January 21
- $10 off.
- No deadline.
Shishkabob: Wut wut wut. I can get that later.
- $10 off.
- Deal ends Friday.
Shishkabob: BAMMMMMMM! I WANT! I WANT! I WANT! OMG OMG OMG
We prefer to avoid loss over achieving gain.
- It's why we scour the web endlessly for a $5 Amazon coupon.
- It's why we drive ridiculously far to "save" $2 in gas.
- It's why we stand in crazy lines to get cheap deals.
A coupon with a short deadline tells us:
- HEY! I have to get this now or I'll lose it forever! OH NO
Coupons that win emphasize their deadlines, and higlight the benefits the prospect will lose if s/he doesn't act before some date.
Posted on January 20
The pseudocertainty effect.
- We take less risks if we expect a positive outcome.
- We take WAY more risks if we think we have to avoid a negative outcome.
If a business is headed toward the dumps (or even experiences a hint of failure), and the managers are running around like MAAADDDDD, they'll take more risks to try to 'save' the business.
That could mean:
- Launching random new products.
- Redoing X, which already took months/years.
- Firing people randomly.
- Throwing everything into one basket.
It's like a gambler betting conservatively when he wins something, but then BAM SON: when he starts losing, he bets larger and larger to avoid loss.
When you're down and out and see yourself making larger risks, SLAP YOSELF -- and tell yourself:
- "HEY! I'm experiencing a psychological condition that makes me want to take more risks because I'm afraid of loss; I should stop right here and make decisions more rationally."
Stop. Slap. Think. Decide.
Posted on January 19
The perception of your relationship with Person X is defined by your last contact with Person X.
If you and Billy have a great relationship for 99 days, and something ugly happens on Day 100, you'll see Billy as TEH SUCK.
Likewise, if you have a horribly-ugly relationship with Billy but then BAM: Billy does something nice for you, you start seeing Billy as one.of.the.greatest.people.ever.
How do you win back customers?
You and Ted have SUCK relationship, but you make your last contact go freakishly/abnormally well for him; Ted starts thinking:
HEY I HAVE A WONDERFUL RELATIONSHIP WITH YOU HI FIVE
- The last contact overwhelms what happened in the past.
Win customers back, regardless of how much you've messed-up/missed-deadlines/etc. with the simple 2-stepper:
- Reach out.
- Do something nice for them. (e.g. a free X, advice on X, a gift, etc.)
You start winning back your customers with great last-contacts.
Likewise, know that if a last encounter goes stale even if you have a great relationship with them up to that point, they'll judge the relationship from the last horrible meeting.
DON'T LET THAT HAPPEN O NO
Win the last contact.
Posted on January 18