Insights can be really helpful, especially when we face challenges. When I seek advice from those I respect, I often have that forehead-slapping moment where I think, "I knew that!" or "Duh!". When that happens I write down what I just learned. Here's some of what I've come up with.
- Good enough usually is.
- When I want to feel good, I ask myself what I want. I'm the world's expert on Me.
- There's good news and there's bad news. Sometimes the hard part is figuring out which is which. Sometimes the same news is both.
- People tend to believe they know what other people are thinking.
- I can't possibly know what you're thinking. Mastering ESP is still on my To Do list.
- Whenever I make a mistake, I remind myself that I probably didn't invent that particular way to goof up.
- Nodding understandingly goes a long way, but only if you actually do understand.
- The nastiest thing about nasty problems is not that they don't go away when you refuse to deal with them. It's that they get worse.
- If you don't have a plan you can't follow it.
- Plan for today first. Planning for the distant future is worth less the more distant the future is.
- Kids know way more
than they get credit
for. Way more.Most people do their best. When it seems otherwise, maybe you just don't get it.
- Kids know way more than they get credit for. Way more.
- Deceiving others is difficult, especially if they're your kids.
- Dogs never ask you how you're doing because they already know.
- What fits for me might not fit for you. What fits for you might not fit for me.
- When someone speaks from the heart, listen to the beat.
- Experience eventually leads to wisdom. Some people require more experiences than others.
- That voice in your head that tells you you're messed up is usually coming from the part that's the most messed up.
- Feeling embarrassed is a waste. Most people are too busy worrying about themselves to notice.
- Speaking your own No is more powerful than repeating anybody else's Yes.
- If you don't like your choices, choose to look for more choices.
- Even though you know your favorite flavor of ice cream, try one of the others now and then.
- It's a lot easier to stay out of trouble than it is to get out of trouble.
- Attributing significance or intention to other people's mistakes is often a mistake.
- Lots of people have been through really terrible things that they don't talk about. It's safest to assume that everyone deserves your respect and admiration.
- You don't always get back what you give. But since we can't really measure that, feeling slighted might be unwise.
- A human being is a wonder. You are a human being.
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More articles on Ethics at Work:
- When You're Scared to Tell the Truth
- In the project context, we need to know that whatever we're hearing from colleagues is the truth as
they see it. Yet, sometimes we shade the truth, or omit important details. Here's a list of some of
the advantages of telling the truth.
- Your Wisdom Box
- When we make a difficult decision, we sometimes know we've made the wrong choice, even before the consequences
become obvious. At other times, we can be absolutely certain that we've done right, even in the face
of inadequate information. When we have these feelings, we're in touch with our inner wisdom. It's a
- Budget Shenanigans: Swaps
- When projects run over budget, managers face a temptation to use creative accounting to address the
problem. The budget swap is one technique for making ends meet. It distorts organizational data, and
it's just plain unethical.
- Dubious Dealings
- Negotiating contracts with outsourcing suppliers can present ethical dilemmas, even when we try to be
as fair as possible. The negotiation itself can present conflicts of interest. What are those conflicts?
- The Attributes of Political Opportunity: The Basics
- Opportunities come along even in tough times. But in tough times, it's especially important to distinguish
between true opportunities and high-risk adventures. Here are some of the attributes of desirable political
See also Ethics at Work for more related articles.
Forthcoming issues of Point Lookout
- Coming July 25: Exploiting Functional Fixedness: II
- A cognitive bias called functional fixedness causes difficulty in recognizing new uses for familiar things. It also makes for difficulty in recognizing devious uses of everyday behaviors. Here's Part II of a catalog of deviousness based on functional fixedness. Available here and by RSS on July 25.
- And on August 1: Strategies of Verbal Abusers
- Verbal abuse at work has special properties, because it takes place in an environment in which verbal abuse is supposedly proscribed. Yet verbal abuse does happen at work. Here are three strategies abusers rely on to avoid disciplinary action. Available here and by RSS on August 1.
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- The Power Affect: How We Express Our Personal Power
- Many people who possess real organizational power have a characteristic demeanor. It's the way they project their presence. I call this the power affect. Some people — call them power pretenders — adopt the power affect well before they attain significant organizational power. Unfortunately for their colleagues, and for their organizations, power pretenders can attain organizational power out of proportion to their merit or abilities. Understanding the power affect is therefore important for anyone who aims to attain power, or anyone who works with power pretenders. Read more about this program.