What Did You Learn This Week?

Sunset & the Thinker

Today I learned that some people think I have a drawl and that they think I must have been born in Texas. Nah, I was born and raised in Los Angeles, I am a native Angeleno.

Earlier this week I learned that I was lucky to go college during a time when I didn’t have to worry about my letter(s) going viral, no matter how funny I thought the parody of said letter might be.

I also learned that sometimes making a mistake on television can lead to an opportunity to sit down with David Letterman.

What Is The Significance of These Things?

Is any of this particularly significant or important? I am not really sure how to answer that. I can tell you about how I ask my children to tell me what they learned in school each day and that I value education because it can’t be taken from you.

I can tell you about the crazy sorority letter writer may have learned a very hard lesson about what modern communication is like and some of the challenges that come with it. I can even include a comment about how a Twitter hack led to the stock market dropping and tie this into business too.

Those things have some merit and some value to them.

But I still find myself asking about the importance and relevance of these events.

Where is our focus and is it appropriate?

If the newscaster who was fired for swearing on camera gets a better job because of the notoriety that came with his mistake will it encourage other people to try something similar?

But I Want To Go Viral

Will we see more crazy emails leaked to the public in the hope that they will go viral and grant 15 minutes of fame or more to the writer(s).

I have heard professionals talk about the value proposition in imitating past successes and why we shouldn’t reinvent the wheel. I understand the sentiment and appreciate why they think it is case of working smarter and not harder.

But I am not convinced that trying to capture lightning in a bottle is a smart business tactic either.

The guy who slipped or jumped over the side of the Empire State Building today didn’t die and I would argue that he got lucky, but I wouldn’t try to do it again and expect similar results because the risk is too great.

What Did You Learn This Week?

If I were king of the world and I was running the show I would finish off the week by asking those I work with and those I live with to tell me what they learned this week and then we would talk about it.

And I would try to remember to take notes during the week about things that were meaningful and important to include in the discussion. Some conversations from the previous week might spill over, like how to use social media during a crisis.

I would repeat certain things that I thought were important. I would talk about how you can’t always prevent a crisis but you can try to manage it, or at least give the semblance of trying to.

And then I would unbutton my tie, grab my hat and go home.

What about you?

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