Food for Thought "If you have the right people, with good, basic values and good work ethic, you can have a tremendous journey."

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Food for Thought 2 "The follow-up in my Food for Thought series, with more focus on my experiences with Six Sigma and Kaizen."

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July 30, 2012

Yogi Berra : We need a little humor today… at least I do!

Filed under: Food for thought for friends — Alec @ 12:39 pm

Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra played Major League Baseball for 19 years for the New York Yankees.
He played on 10 World Series Championship teams, is a MLB Hall of Famer and has some awe-inspiring stats.
His name is consistently brought up as one of the best catchers in baseball history, and he was voted to the Team of the Century in 1999.
Amazing accomplishments aside, they probably aren’t how you know Lawrence. You know him as Yogi, a nickname given to him by a friend who likened his cross-legged sitting to a yogi. Yogi is famous for his fractured English, malapropisms and sometimes nonsensical quotes. He’s closing in on 86, and there seems to be no end to his fan’s love for him.

Here are 25 Yogi Berra quotes that will make you shake your head and smile!
1. “It’s like deja vu all over again.”
2. “We made too many wrong mistakes.”
3. “You can observe a lot just by watching.”
4. “A nickel ain’t worth a dime anymore.”
5. “He hits from both sides of the plate. He’s amphibious.”
6. “If the world was perfect, it wouldn’t be.”
7. “If you don’t know where you’re going, you might end up some place else.”
8. Responding to a question about remarks attributed to him that he did not think were his:
“I really didn’t say everything I said.”
9. “The future ain’t what it use to be.”
10. “I think Little League is wonderful. It keeps the kids out of the house.”
11. On why he no longer went to Ruggeri’s, a St. Louis restaurant:
“Nobody goes there anymore because it’s too crowded.”
12. “I always thought that record would stand until it was broken.”
13. “We have deep depth.”
14. “All pitchers are liars or crybabies.”
15. When giving directions to Joe Garagiola to his New Jersey home, which is accessible by two routes:
“When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”
16. “Always go to other people’s funerals, otherwise they won’t come to yours.”
17. “Never answer anonymous letters.”
18. On being the guest of honor at an awards banquet:
“Thank you for making this day necessary.”
19. “The towels were so thick there I could hardly close my suitcase.”
20. “Half the lies they tell about me aren’t true.”
21. As a general comment on baseball: “90% of the game is half mental.”
22. “I don’t know (if they were men or women running naked across the field).
They had bags over their heads.”
23. “It gets late early out there.”
24. Carmen Berra, Yogi’s wife asked: “Yogi, you are from St. Louis, we live in New Jersey, and you played ball in New York. If you go before I do, where would you like me to have you buried?” Yogi’s answer: “Surprise me.”
25. “It ain’t over till it’s over.”

July 22, 2012

Our Own Paradigms

Filed under: Food for thought for friends — Alec @ 5:21 pm

We are a product of our own biases. We developed these biases over our lifetime,  from our parents, our schools, our teachers, our occupation, our careers, our friends, our extra curricular activities,  and significant events in our lives.

Biases become our Paradigms, they help us make everyday decisions quickly and accurately. However, they are also our weakness. Our Paradigms can sometimes keep us from seeing what is real, even when given data.

Me too!

So what do we do? Make sure you look at the data, then question the source of the data. Question opinions! Make sure you know the real goal for yourself and your family.

July 2, 2012

Power of Habit: PART FOUR

Filed under: Food for thought for friends — Alec @ 3:12 pm

My Comments and Conclusion

One of the best books I have read in a long time that find correlations to both my personal life and what I do professionally.

Pg 276 Change your habits, change your life; At the core of every habit there is a cycle: Cue, Routine, Reward. If you can identify the routine, experience the reward, isolate the cue, you can set a plan on how to react differently the next time you have a cue. Set affirmations. Write them on a post-it and stick it to your mirror, your refrigerator, or your computer monitor so you are constantly reminded.

Pg 277 Identify the Routine.This is the behavior we want to change. Look at why you are doing what you are doing; this is the cure to your routine. Examine the reward; what is appealing about the reward? My routine is going to Subway.

Pg 278  Experiment with NEW rewards. For me, the reward of my routine is getting a cookie. So maybe I set a different reward, like eating strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries instead of cookie one day. And the next day I go to lunch with colleagues. One day I go home for lunch and the reward is a power nap before returning to work. This should help narrow down what craving is driving me to reward myself with a cookie.

pg 283 Isolate the Cue. Write down the cue for three days. Where you were? What time? Emotional State? Who else was around? What action preceded the cue?


Define WHAT you want to change and WHY you want to change it.

a. What is the reward if you change? What are the obstacles to change it?

b. Believe you can change


Analyze the data collected from 3 days of observations your cues. Is there a common thread in your cue? What could you substitute for the routine you want to change?


What: My addiction to dark chocolate (first, and most importantly, I have to want to change.)

a. Why? To lose that 5 to 10 pounds
Reward > Hills on bicycle are not so difficult, Run a 5k

b. Why? Blood pressure, cholesterol
Reward > Get my blood pressure and cholesterol into my target range

Obstacles: I like dark chocolate. I buy it and leave it in the pantry.

Once you decide to change your habits, you now have the tools to figure out how to accomplish it. Change your life, change your business!




Power of Habit : PART THREE

Filed under: Food for thought for friends — Alec @ 2:58 pm

Can you tell I love Charles Duhigg? This stuff is so good! I have so many habits that I want to change that I found myself jotting notes on almost every page. See below:

Pg 151 A company in a test group gave employees more empowerment to make small decisions;  hours, uniforms, etc…. and productivity went up by 20%.

Pg 156 All institutions and businesses have habits, cultures. It’s almost like an internal brand.

Pg 178 Good leaders seize crisis and take strides to change habits.

Pg 184 How Target matches your buying habits to predict future buying : ie. predicting mothers are pregnant before the anyone else knows. Something to think about – could manufacturing predict events similarly?

Pg 187 Grocery shoppers are creatures of habit. They keep rearranging our grocery store???

pg 211 Profile of YMCA successes : Members joined because of the fancy machines, but having people know the members names got them to stay.

Pg 218 Rosa Parks was not first to protest, but her social habits and network was so strong it sparked change.

pg 224 Weak ties can force you to build a whole new network. This can sometimes be better than close, comfortable ties because you are made to start fresh and can break bad habits.

Pg 225 Peer pressure habits, or to break habits

Pg 233 Rev. Rick Warren,  an American evangelical Christian minister and author,  wrote The Purpose Driven Life where he discusses habits of faith, applicable sermons, casual dress, good music, Bible study in the homes

Pg 252 Habits: smoking, drinking, gambling,  sleepwalking, eating, snacking all leave an opportunity for change

Pg 272 William James speaks of our free will to change. In other words, if you believe you can change a habit, you can! Swiming for a fish is a habit. Flying for a bird is a habit.


When We All Get to Heaven

Filed under: Personal Philosophy — Alec @ 7:11 am

So many argue about what is so unimportant. Every heartbeat is a gift from God and from yourself.

What is really important? Grace, Good Works to Others. Scripture says we resemble God, we could act a little more God-like.

What a wonderful life.

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