Monday Muse

The Jubilee break is over. I am reminded by the scene of 1.5million happy,loyal,faces marching up the Mall of the comment of our Internet politico hero, William Hague, who was heard to mention to the visiting heads of state being entertained by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office: ‘Look, 1,000,000 people marching on the Palace – and all with peaceful intent, smiling happy and cheering their ruler”. So, we leave Gloriana to return to shells and bodies in Syria while the world looks on. And, it does look on because of the Internet. How many social networks have that sort of instant ‘hit’ power?
The population of the Internet is now over a third of the planet, and we have only reached the foothills. I was asked by a friend recently; ‘where is all this Facebook, Twitter and email going? He proceeded to add all the usual and ‘only human’ concerns. My reply, in the vein of Savannah Man to Zettabyte Man ( see previous), was to take him back to Dulverton,Exmoor in the 15th century. There was a thriving village culture; families, business, law and order but also ‘only human’ culture. Charlatans were readily identified, gossips ‘ducked’ and all enjoyed the pleasures and discomforts of Shakespearean England! Twitter is no different – you don’t have to follow people you are not interested in, but you can follow the ones you are. You may feel a small fish in a big pond but you are important and have your rights . Martin Ivens (Sunday Times 10/6/12) “Long to reign Over Us :the super-rich” quotes Tyler Cowen on the uber rich : “ Yet we don’t really resent the super-rich because we don’t want to work as hard as them ….Envy is directed at the guy down the hall who has got a bigger raise…it’s directed at the husband of your wife’s sister, because the brand of beer he stocks costs $3 a case more than yours” He goes on to quote Gore Vidal: ‘Whenever a friend succeeds, a little something in me dies’. Only Human!
The internet is our internet, our input is our internet.

Facebook and others of that ilk should re think their core values. Truth and integrity are timeless values and you mess with them at your peril. The bungled flotation of Facebook is a lesson as is their attitude to our data -see recent twitter/posts. We the people own the content. We grant you rights to use it when in our
interest. Break the trust and integrity barrier and we will simply withdraw. Googles ‘Do no evil’ is a tough call so, good luck guys! Must hide there’s a drone overhead!
You will wake up one morning and we’ve gone, we vote with our clicks – so don’t be a social nitwit!

The Anglo-sphere (See Dan Hannan review @DanHannanMEP : Winston Churchill: the father of the Anglosphere). “The Anglosphere peoples believed, because their institutions had taught them to believe, that individual liberty, limited government and the rule of law were worth preserving – with force of arms if necessary”

Rule one of the Internet – if you tell lies you will be found out. So to my friend I would say; you have choices; Ignore it and enjoy the peace and beauty of Exmoor (www.marinerslodge.info !), join in and enjoy it – but, above all make sure its true and has integrity or you will be found out. If you care about you or your tribes (companies, groups) identities promote yourself! But don’t bullshit.
“The internet gives politics the opportunity to return to the village hustings” W Hague. Watch the extraordinary progress of the Pirate Party in Germany. We don’t cheer or throw rotten cabbages today; we blog, tweet or email. Following twitter over Levison reached a new height that encapsulates all the above. Who told the truth? Murdoch or Brown? This will run and run,- or run out because the suns come out at last!

Warren Buffet is bucking the trend again by buying up regional Newspapers…does this recognise the very same ‘village gossip’ above?

Its all back to RELEVANT (see Taxi – are you relevant? previous). We must be getting near the ‘silly season’ as Martin Amis talking from the Hay festival was musing on age; when you get to your late fifties the only certain thing is death so you better not waste these years as you may have your youth’ Ah Ha!

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Taxi! Are you RELEVANT?

If you are walking down the street and you need a Taxi your senses are finely tuned to spot that little light in the midst of all the traffic, noise and other people. It’s a bit like trying to attract attention on the Internet. Understanding what the brain is doing in this situation gives us clear guidance as to the answer. The brain is receiving masses of signals up your spinal column all the time – try stroking the hairs on your arm. See! You feel them immediately….but, why haven’t you been feeling them since you woke up this morning? The answer is in your ‘Headware’ . Your brain filters out ALL that is not RELEVANT. Years of evolution have fine tuned us to spot danger and opportunity to survive. It’s a very strong effective  ‘headware package’ that’s running  –  it’s very effective at getting your taxi – but it excludes everything else!

So, before you post your message you must know what’s relevant in any given set of circumstances. All sites, Google, wordpress, are looking automatically, like you for KEY WORDS. Look to your right…. The system has picked out key words that it thinks are RELEVANT.

Let’s look at Your Company and see what’s relevant to you and your customers.

How relevant is the finance function of the business to your job? How relevant is their knowledge about the importance of the efficient monitoring and recording of all financial aspect to your job Is  it as RELEVANT to each of the people you are responsible for as you?

How relevant is your effectiveness to your business plan and your financial health? Ask yourself the questions. Is what you are doing, and see as relevant, as relevant to the people you are employing?

Start noting key words not sentences.

How relevant is everything you do to your clients? If they were to be asked the same question, would the answers match? Look at what you present to the world, whether it is written, an email, or on your website. Is it RELEVANT Are you relevant or are you irrelevant? When you and your actions become relevant to your client they will ask you to provide goods and services. It is relevant to them…..what is irrelevant to them?

Ask yourself the question: how relevant is what you are currently offering to all of your clients? How relevant is what you think (as the manager) you are offering to your clients, to each of the people you employ? Is it ‘just making the grade’ or is it the most relevant thing they have during their working time?

How relevant is the administration of your business to the overall effectiveness of your team plan? Where does it become irrelevant? What are the consequences of it being irrelevant? How relevant are the goals of your team to the goals of the administration team? Are you just the ‘ bloody nuisance down the corridor’ or do they see it as a most important part of their job to keep you being as effective as possible? How relevant are all the people who interact with you and your department to them and their department?

Note the key words

The Management function

Whether it’s a board of directors, or the managers the shareholders expect them to produce the best. The level of performance poses a question -what level of performance is relevant? – you know perfectly well what happens if it becomes irrelevant because – You are not fulfilling your targets, you are not up to the grade. Then it becomes very relevant to you personally. It used to be ‘ if at first you don’t succeed try, try, again……’- It isn’t in today’s world, it’s ‘if at first you don’t succeed – fix the blame fast! Well, ‘fixing the blame fast’ is one way of doing things but it does tend to focus the minds of the people on the relevance of ‘how to avoid a crisis” as opposed to anticipating events before they become a crisis.

So, in conclusion, look at your work, look at your family, look at yourself – you know who all the relevant people in your tribe Work out your RELEVANT key words.

What’s is their relevance? If you are not getting 100% relevance in all the areas that count, with all the people that count, then you will become an outcast in the ‘village’. You won’t see it to begin with, but people just stop asking you around, they stop asking your opinion, they don’t return calls or emails, and that fantastic brain of theirs starts to use ‘creative avoidance’ in order to minimise your irrelevance.

Now TAXI! -Or call us…

Aristotle Epicurus and the Internet debate Join in!

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In ancient Greece you would have found yourself without wi-fi – and a lot else, but you would have been able to sit at the feet of two great and influential figures, Aristotle and Epicurus.
Aristotle believed we, living beings, special function was to reason. Used properly leisure enabled people to realise human nature at its best. The exercise of reason for its own sake – intellectual reflection practised by excellent people (like us today, of course!)

Epicurus, had a different view: we are a random collection of atoms, which desire pleasure. Leisure is a means to find pleasure- a sanctuary from the hassles of public life.Simple pleasures produce a healthy body and a tranquil mind best appreciated by his followers, children and animals.(like? fill in the blank……)
What would the two have made of the Internet? Aristotle would have surely eulogised about the potential for all to use the universally available knowledge to realise human nature at its best. But, what would Epicurus have said? ‘stick to Facebook, Twitter and angry birds for innocent amusement only?’ Discuss.

Any similarities to present day circumstances are purely coincidental.
Or, nothing really ever changes….what do you think?
Post your thoughts below: