Friday, July 22, 2005

Good reads from Seth's blog

An interesting story about Seth’s experience at a Starbuck’s.  Think about this quote from Tom Peters: “The Customer Comes Second.  That is — and this, dear Watson, is elementary — if you genuinely want to put customers first, you must put employees more first.”

A quick story about car seats.  If you think that car seats are as effective as seatbelts for children over 2, you should probably read this article on Freakonomics (actually, you should probably read the whole book, but this is a good start).  From Seth’s post:

It goes to stories. It feels like you're doing something smart and thoughtful and caring for your child. The effort gives the parent peace of mind and joy. The government gets to pass a law that seems cheap and caring. Everyone conspires to do the wasteful thing because of the story it allows us to tell ourselves.

Is good enough really good enough?  Seth doesn’t necessarily think so and neither does the Tom Peters Company in the UK.  From Seth’s post:

  1. Humans tend to work on a problem until they get a good enough solution, instead of a solution that's right.
  2. The marketplace often rewards solutions that are cheaper and good enough, instead of investing in the solution that promises to lead to the right answer.

The Power of 4.  From the post:

"...If merely four people of out of a hundred can make gridlock go away by choosing not to use their car, imagine the other changes that can be wrought just by four of us out of a hundred. Take a hundred musicians in a  depressed port city in Northern England, choose John, Paul, George and Ringo and you have "Hey Jude."

Seth wonders why we can’t treat people like they’re smart.  The common seduction seems to be to reduce everything to the dumbest denominator to ensure that “everyone” can understand.  Hey, I’m smart; stop treating me like I’m dumb (or asleep, depending on the semantics you choose).

The new big is really small.  This post describes exactly why small is the new big:

  •  Small is the new big because small gives you the flexibility to change the business model when your competition changes theirs.
  • Small means you can tell the truth on your blog.
  • Small means that you can answer email from your customers.

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