Archive | Small Business Success

Run of the House

I booked a hotel room recently and, while navigating the rates, I came across one that said “run of house.” I know this means “you get what we’ve got left.” It is doubtful that this would ever be an exciting upgrade, but maybe. In my experience, upgrades rarely happen even when I’m paying higher rates. […]

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The expression, “run of the house” does not have a positive connotation for me.  I prefer to know what I am getting and even more than that, I prefer to know I am getting the best I can possibly get.  I dislike most surprises because many people are not as discerning as me, therefore, what […]

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Modern Communications

Writing this post in mid 2022, I want to comment on modern communications technologies. Especially due to the pandemic, the “modern” technologies of cellular telephones and virtual meetings (Zoom, etc.) have become more common in the world of business. This is for better or worse, depending on point of view. These technologies are great because […]

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David spends significantly more time talking on the telephone than I do, but I share his frustrations.  The poor quality of some people’s internet connections make it difficult to have a meaningful telephone conversation.  This is compounded when the conversation is via a platform, such as Zoom, that includes both audio and video components.  Constant reminders […]

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Zenobia

Recently, a long time friend of my family’s, Woody Hanson, posted an old photo on a social media site that brought back fond memories. The photo was of Zenobia King Hill, the owner of a modeling school in my hometown of Fort Myers, Florida. Zenobia was from Alabama; she attended the famous John Robert Powers […]

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I’ve heard many stories about Zenobia over the years, but it was not until I saw the photo Melissa referenced, with the description, that I actually knew how her name was spelled.   Melissa, as well as some of her friends, have spoken fondly of Zenobia over the years.  I’ve heard about the life skills learned, […]

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Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

“Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff” is a phrase used to suggest one should relax, chill out, and not worry about the little things, things which sometime seem out of one’s control. Well, that’s great. But, our “day job” as trial consultants doesn’t allow it. Neither does my prior advocation, photography. For example, when photographing people […]

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This topic, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff,” came up recently during a slightly heated debate David and I were having about the proper way to prepare something we were having for dinner.  (As the reader might imagine, David and I have many debates, some over trivial matters, on an almost daily basis.)  I don’t recall […]

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If You Won’t Practice, Don’t Bother Learning

As I mentioned in my previous post, “practice makes perfect,” my childhood piano teacher, Corella Johnson, insisted that all her piano and organ students practice their instrument(s) at least 30 minutes a day. The first thing she did at every lesson was ask her students to play the piece of music they were learning, so […]

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Childhood music lessons didn’t work well for me.  I tried guitar and piano but found I’d much rather go fishing or tromp through the woods than hone those skills.  Perhaps it was also because my early music lessons focused too much on fundamentals, rather than playing a song, these music experiences were not attractive to […]

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Practice Makes Perfect

Practice makes perfect. How many times have we heard this phrase? I have heard it too many times to count! I started playing the piano when I was 6 years old. I started playing the organ when I was 11. My piano and organ teacher was a wonderful friend and neighbor, Corella Johnson, who had […]

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I can attest to Melissa’s commitment to practice.  She takes it seriously and is religious about it, as long as her “day job” doesn’t interfere.  But practice gets a bad rap, that is a bad name.  Melissa’s practice time is often better characterized as “playing” as in “playing the bass.”  Practice seems repetitive and punitive.  […]

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Magnus’ Women Power

In the almost 30 years that David and I have co-owned Magnus Research Consultants, we have employed many people of both sexes. We have had several long term employees, 2 of whom are men and 2 of whom are women. In addition, there have been 3 women who are former Magnus employees who have gone […]

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On the day I started writing this post, Melissa was wearing a pink t-shirt that said “Pretty Good for a Girl.”  I bought it for her at a Mindi Abair jazz concert.  Mindi has a song by that title because it is a phrase she’s heard many times over her career.  She decided to embrace […]

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Old School Tech

I recently read an article about the executive director of a professional association who uses an IBM typewriter to send notes to members. He said he liked using a typewriter to personalize the notes. I thought it was pretty cool to use old school technology so effectively. I could never afford an IBM typewriter, those […]

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David and I have written about our fondness for “old school” things in several previous posts.  Although I never owned a typewriter, nor am I a good typist, I appreciate David’s fondness for his trusty old typewriter.  It comes in handy when he makes labels for files in our personal filing cabinet.  I remember David’s […]

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Fix it as Soon as it Breaks

I am an ardent fan of the maxim, “fix it as soon as it breaks.” I have never known anything that fixed itself, whether it is a leaky faucet, a flat tire (or tyre, on all the British cars I have owned), or a faulty electrical outlet. Admittedly, I am not good at fixing things. […]

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Homeownership seems to involve an endless “to do” list.  There is always something to do.  Sometimes, the to dos are small items, easy to resolve.  Sometimes, expertise is required, or at least more expertise than I possess.  Or strength – some fixes take more expertise and muscle than I have, or any one person has.  […]

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If You Don’t Have a Ph.D In Psychology Don’t Presume to Understand Human Nature

I have written about the phenomenon of people who have no education, training, or expertise in psychology who think they know as much about human behavior as I, a psychologist, know. I am frequently asked for my opinion about someone or something, only to be told, “Well, I don’t have a degree in psychology, but […]

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Knowing what you don’t know or knowing that you don’t know are important skills for getting through a career, or life.  An economics professor once pointed this out to me when I remarked that I felt, despite having earned highest grade on a test in his class, there was so much I didn’t know about […]

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