Archive | June, 2011

No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

There’s no such thing as a free lunch. In English, this is a popular phrase that suggests you can’t get something for nothing.  (Readers, is there a similar saying in other languages?)  Like many common phrases, its origin is shrouded in mystery. At the heart of the phrase, the concept of a “free lunch” refers…

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Numerosity heuristic

The Numerosity Heuristic

Learning about the numerosity heuristic can save you money. As a three-time CEO, I’ve had a lot of experience with incentive stock options and have been appalled by how poorly they are understood by employees. Many employees fixated on the number of shares they were granted, rather than the percentage of shares outstanding. They would multiply their…

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Orchestrator or Autocrat?

This weekend’s Wall Street Journal contained an article by former Chrysler and General Motors executive Bob Lutz called “Life Lessons from a Car Guy.”  Lutz believes that different kinds of organizations require different kinds of leaders.  A loosely-connected conglomerate like General Electric requires a leader with vision and portfolio management skills; investing/divesting lines of business,…

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Spell Cymotrichous To Win

At the 84th annual Scripps National Spelling Bee, Sukanya Roy, a 14-year-old from northeastern Pennsylvania, correctly spelled cymotrichous to win the top prize over 274 other spellers after 20 rounds. Cymotrichous? I had no idea that word existed, let alone what it meant. Cymotrichous, which means having wavy hair, isn’t even recognized by the spell checker in Microsoft…

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