Re: Customer Not Always Rig LO2259

Barry Mallis (
28 Jul 1995 09:07:16 -0400

Reply to: RE>>Customer Not Always Right LO2245

From: Barry Mallis to: Jim Michmerhuizen's response to Barry Clemson's

Nice, Jim. "Deliberate and willful act of NOT thinking." How that makes
me think.

When I do sometimes ponder this topic of groups "getting down" to the real
problem at hand, or root cause, or whatever, I personally tend to look at
universal explanations of behavior rather than very academic, often
pedantic dissection of behavior which seems to wander (or from which I
wander, more likely).

Don't get me wrong: I think deepest study has a deep place to live and
react, from where edible fruit can be harvested. But I'm so impatient.
When you write, Jim, about "spirit" as opposed to the "letter" of the
undertaking, I can't agree more. Here's my simple, very strong reaction:

I believe that willful and deliberate "not thinking" is a result of how we
grown-ups are afraid to take risks at expressing our thoughts. That's it
in a nutshell. Just like most people don't like to sit in the front row
of a filling room, most of us (this list EXcluded, I'll wager!) don't want
our ideas up front so that "we" could be exposed to...simply, ridicule.
Who is that "we"? A tangle of the physical, intellectual and emotional
centers. When we are made into managers, we sometimes forego our fears
(not rid ourselves, simply supress them) and speak out. But we also seek
to protect our ideas with devices as disparate as seniority,
self-deprecation, printed memos without chance for reply, talking to
rather than with, etc. etc.

And then, when we come in touch with someone who really values what it is
we mean to convey in word and gesture, we momentarily melt inside. Only
to congeal again to protect the generally fragile ego. This, in my humble
opinion, is what sometimes occurs in board rooms and meetings rooms and
department meetings.

I think today's world is bringing some of us business people closer to
untrammelled freedom of exchange. I am envious of small companies where
such exchange is already manifest. Just this morning I copied these five
lines of poetry to another growing friend:

Inside wisdom, a bright-flowing, analytic power. Inside love, a friend.
One a psychic source, the other plain water.

Walk out into the indications of where you must go.

Thanks for your comments, Jim, which provided stimulus for my response.

Barry Mallis"