We Need Thomas Jefferson!

A few weeks ago, a relative sent the following to me in an e-mail.  As we look at our country today, we are going through a very difficult time financially, with job security, ineffective government, strained international relations and a deteriorating global position.  Many of you are struggling under these extreme burdens and life has become more stressful than ever before.  Many of the basic principals of our nation are being challenged, as evidenced by the recent Warren Buffet article (See previous Web Blog on “Let’s end the Deficit now”)

I thought it would be great to illuminate one again the brilliance of One of our greatest leaders and founders of our country, Thomas Jefferson. 

One evening, John F. Kennedy held a dinner in the White House for a group of the brightest minds in the nation at that time.  He made this statement: “This is perhaps the assembly of the most intelligence ever to gather at one time in the White House with the exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.”

Here are just a few of the many quotes and insights from Thomas Jefferson that resonate for all of us today, 200+ years later:

  • “When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe.”
  • “The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”
  • “It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes.  A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world.”
  • “I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”
  • “My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.”
  • “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against the tyranny of government.
  • “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.  If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property – until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.”

Thomas Jefferson said that in 1802.  Things that make you go hmmmmm…….

Where are you Thomas Jefferson?  We need you now!

Thanks again for reading this blog.  Let me know what you think by sending comments along below.

Webman

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Ignorance is…….

First of a series of articles about why businesses fail.

According to Dictionary.com, ignorance is defined as a lack of knowledge, learning and information.  The truest characters of ignorance are vanity, pride and arrogance. The recipe for perpetual ignorance is: Be satisfied with your opinions and content with your knowledge.

Ok swebman, you say this is a business blog, what does this have to do with business?  It has everything to do with your business being successful.  But why?

Great businesses like Apple, Google, Walmart, Intel and so many others that we admire continue to forge ahead and not only embrace the future but  define it.  They have no fear of the future; they require that their employees stay ahead of the market trends, try new ideas, embrace social media, test new technologies and disrupt their own businesses for the benefits of future growth.

Then of course there are many companies that are trapped in old business models, putting their toes in the water on new ideas, just to say that they are doing it, trying to convince their employees that there is a future, even though they already know there is not one, except for the owners and their cronies who will continue to bask in the glow of their former glory and continue to make money, be satisfied with their own opinions and content with their own knowledge.  They will sit around and convince themselves that they are still relevant and meaningful.  Now that is ignorance.

You know that they have no clue about what you are talking about and they are too lazy to actually learn.  They ask questions like “What does that company do” or ‘how does that align to our strategy”?  Not only do they not know but when you explain it to them they still do not understand; you know why, they don’t care to understand.

These same companies monitor employees e-mails, interpret them out of context, and then sit there, comfortable in their own smugness and arrogance, and determine if you or another employee are a threat to their relevance because you challenge their opinions and their knowledge.  And then when they feel threatened, they can concoct any story they want and find a reason to move an employee out of the company, you know why, because they can.

They do this to make sure that you do not disrupt their safe havens; do not challenge their self-indulged superiority, nor have to work any harder to explain to their equally self-absorbed superior what you were trying to do.  They just dismiss it and move on.

What type of business leader are you?  One that embraces the future and can lead people that know things you do not know or do you just squash innovation and beg for the good old days.  Headline for you; those days are not coming back.

Whether you are running a small business or a large business, it is time to wake up and embrace the current and future changes.  If you do not, your ignorance will make you irrelevant.