Consider This

Robert Stevenson’s Thoughts on the Pursuit of Excellence


The Contrarian

October 26, 2019

by Robert Stevenson

A contrarian is a person who takes an opposing view, especially one who rejects the majority opinion.  A contrarian can also serve as a very useful tool when it comes to making decisions. At every management meeting, I would suggest you assign at least one person to be The Contrarian; even if they agree with your idea, make them try to shoot holes in it, find fault, or consider alternatives.



The Second Right Answer

September 21, 2019

by Robert Stevenson

I once read that our educational system tends to teach students to solve problems based on a recipe that leads to a single, correct solution. But, the real world of business isn’t like that; there is more than one right answer.



Recessions Are Great Teachers

July 28, 2019

by Robert Stevenson

Andy Grove, former Chairman of Intel, once stated. “Only the paranoid survives. Paranoids believe someone or some force is out to get them.” In this time of a thriving economy, companies have a tendency to relax and that, to me, is a big problem. Mr. Grove went on to say, “Success breeds complacency and complacency breeds failure.”



The Art of Decision Making

May 5, 2019

by Robert Stevenson

Back in 1920’s the life expectancy for a U.S. Mail pilot was a mere four years. Flying in bad weather was proving to be detrimental to a pilot. In fact, of the first forty U.S. Mail pilots, thirty-one died carrying the mail. Something had to be done to change the attitude of the people who were making the “DECISION” of when a pilot should fly. The pilots worked out a deal with their field managers. They said they would fly in bad weather if the field manager would be willing to get in the co-pilot’s seat and take-off and fly once around the airfield and then come back and land. If the weather was so bad, that the field manager was too scared to comply with that rule, then the pilot would not take-off. The year this rule was made, 1922, U.S. Mail pilots had zero fatalities.



Pay Attention to “7”

April 14, 2019

by Robert Stevenson

The number “7” is used, referenced and associated with a lot of things. There are the 7 wonders of the ancient world, 7 continents, 7 seas, 7 colors of the rainbow, 7 notes on the diatonic musical scale, Snow White had 7 dwarfs, three 7’s is a winning hand (Blackjack), three 7’s on a slot machine hits the jackpot, and there is the 7th inning stretch in baseball. You also have the 7-year itch in marriage, 7 letters in the Roman Numeral system, and 7 deadly sins: greed, gluttony, pride, lust, sloth, envy, and wrath



Who Should Adjust to Who?

February 3, 2019

by Robert Stevenson

The problem with many leaders is that they believe their subordinates need to adjust to them. The boss has the title, the power, the authority to make everyone adapt to their way; the “My way or the highway” mentality is a lousy way to lead people.



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