Category: Blogging

"Guru" This!

I just finished an hour+ walk on the streets of Miami. I imagine I saw, say, 500 "workers." In bank branch lobbies. Hotels. Restaurants. Other miscellaneous shops. Heading into law firms and PR firms. And so on. And on.

I bet 98% (literally) have pretty standard bosses who, in turn, are embedded in pretty standard hierarchies. And I further bet that the reach of most of their markets is about five blocks, and no more than the Miami border.

And so on.

(Oh dear, and 98%++ don't even read my blog ... or Tweet.)

That is, about 98% of the people I saw are pretty much unaffected by all of the "cool" stuff and "weird" stuff and "world-upside-down" stuff that about 98% of the "gurus" (me included!!) write about 98% of the time.

That is, I sometimes (right now) wonder what we "gurus" are doing to help/be of service to 98% of the working people of the world, from Miami to Chicago to, yes, beloved San Francisco and Amsterdam and Dubai?

Just a thought.

About Time?
Learning Curve!

Liberation Management ran 834 pages. It more or less includes "everything" as I saw it in 1992. I'd not change a word. I was trying to figure out what was up in a brave new world, and needed to wander around a large set of ideas and examples, from IDEO to Germany's Mittelstand marvels.

On the other hand, and at the other end of the spectrum, there's the 140-character world of Twitter. And I am enjoying the hell out of it. Most days I do 4 or 5 Tweets—except when I don't.

It makes me feel lazy—I should be posting here more.
On the other hand, at age 67 I am learning how to write. Finally. It's absolutely amazing how much you can say in 140 characters.

834 pages?
140 characters?

[Ed. You can follow Tom on Twitter here.]

Inc 500/Inc 5000 Conference

Debbie Weil, a social media consultant and author of The Corporate Blogging Book, catches up with Tom at the Inc 500/Inc 5000 Conference this past Friday, and asks him why blogging has changed his life. See her blog post and video.

Summer with the Red Sox and at

I am a special fan of pitchers' duels. Zero-zero with 2 down in the ninth—then Boog Powell (old Baltimore Oriole) hits a walkoff home run and Dave McNally racks up a one hitter. That'd have been my idea of heaven. On the other hand, I enjoyed the heck out of the Red Sox game I attended last Wednesday. Sox won. Fine. (I'm an A's fan—still. Mostly.) Sox won big. 18-5. But what was a kick, to this fan of pitchers' duels, was a game with 37 hits! Twenty-three for the Sox, 14 for the Twins!

But neither the Red Sox nor the Twins nor Boog Powell is the topic of this Post.

Susan and I and my stepson Ben were in the sun behind home plate on Wednesday in Fenway for the Hit Parade. The temperature in the shade was well over ninety—edging toward triple digits. And the humidity was as you'd expect from a waterfront city in July. That is, it was hotter 'n stickier than hell—with room to spare.

I have decided that such hot weather—and accompanying high humidity—must be the norm this summer. How did I reach this conclusion? Simple. By reading recent sets of Comments. I love them one and all, and that's the truth—but I must say that there must be a lot of folks, certainly not all, or even most, suffering from the blistering summer heat and accompanying Houstonian humidity. That is, there are those who are cross. And those who are angry. Those who are sarcastic. And those who favor ad hominem attacks. Those who border on (border on?) rude—woulda merited a face slap from my Mom. And those who can't resist another gotcha, call it a "gotcha gotcha," added to their string of prior gotchas.

That's all.

Damn heat.
Damn humidity.

(Our rules of open discourse will not be suspended by invoking any special Heat Index Clause in the Patriot Act—hey, fall is coming, the temperatures will fall, and doubtless civility will rear its ever so dull head once again.)


Last week included a round tripper to Korea. Tomorrow at 4 a.m. I'm off for a month. The weekend in Vermont was perfect—such will not be the case when I return. So, I recovered from jet lag by hitting the fields—and continuing my landscaping from dawn to dusk. (More or less.) In any event, that dented the Blogging time. Sorry.

Steve! You Da Man!

I love STEVE FARBER's Blog, on our Blogroll. It's called Extreme Leadership—and nobody does this better. "GTY" is a terrific—no, wonderful—idea. (No translation from me, you'll have to go there.)

FYI1: Steve is a terrific writer, an original thinker-writer, a masterful trainer—and a boffo public speechifier for groups of 6 or 6,000.

FYI2: Steve is a longtime colleague—but sometimes I forget how much I think of him and his work.


Check out the comments to "Packing Light(?)." There are superb links, worth a chunk of time, far better than I'd have offered ... I guess that's the whole point of Blogging, eh?


"Mr Thank You Note" (me) is indeed remiss in thanking all of my colleagues who Posted while I was away. From the number of comments and quality of comments, let alone the content, it seems to have been a smashing success!

Thank you!

(Rick Semler, management guru and Semco [Brazil] founder, once offered a revision of MBWA/Managing By Walking Around. His MBWA was Managing By Walking Away. He almost religiously took a 6-week vacation in a place where he couldn't be reached (ever more difficult). His logic: Only by being truly out of touch could he truly delegate. I like that. And that's what seems to have occurred here. My colleagues, in the absence of Old Motormouth, outdid themselves!!! Well, New Zealand is on the planning boards already for January 2008.)

(A little more New Zealand below.)

New Zealand sky

A Need to Be Heard

There seem to be two blogging camps—bloggers who allow comments at their sites and bloggers who don't. Tom has always welcomed the opportunity to participate in conversation with his readers. For some bloggers, the drawbacks to maintaining the conversation outweigh the benefits, and they decide against using that feature. Jason Kottke is one of them. His audience, however, decided that what they had to say was too important to keep to themselves. Biz Stone, author of Who Let the Blogs Out (a great beginner's guide to blogging), pointed out the Kottke readers' site: Kottke Komments. They republish Kottke's posts and enable comments. This is a fascinating development in that we've been hearing so much about people creating websites to discuss their favorite products or brands, and now it seems a bit like the camera is being aimed at the photographer. How will this affect Kottke's blog? Will readership decline? What if a decline in readership of the original blog impacts ad revenue? If this new site is successful, would it inspire Kottke to try to take control of the situation by opening comments at his blog? Here at, we're familiar with the challenges of maintaining a comment feature, and so respect a blogger's choice on the matter. That said, what do you think?

Countdown …

Foot of Market Street, San Francisco

I can already feel the withdrawal symptoms making their way toward my consciousness. In two hours I pack off my computers ... speak to the Inc. 500 25th anniversary gathering here in San Francisco at the Fairmont ... and then head to New Zealand. And 3 weeks later (12 February) I surface again.

No computer.
No computer.
No %^&#$)@ computer!

Ye gads!

I've been wondering when I was last computer-free for this long. Surely in an earlier millennium. As I mentioned before, Susan will conduct an inspection that will put the TSA to shame. Only my camera—and her iPod—is/are allowed under the category labeled "electronics." Even the ratio of non-fiction to fiction books will be assessed. No sport coat. No ties. ("But what if we go to dinner in a nice place?" "Tough.") I am considering an audio Blogpost or two—assuming I don't get caught—maybe while Sergeant Sargent (as in Susan Sargent, spouse) is in the shower.

Well, I will truly miss our communal gathering—hold the fort until I return. And a heartfelt thanks for making this a useful and exciting community!

(I had planned some pithy observation about business & management & life as we know it as sendoff Post. In the end ... I had too damn much packing to do.)

Cheers ...

(The photo is of the fabled San Francisco Ferry Building, once home base for the Port of San Francisco—it's at the foot of Market Street.)