Friday Five, December 7

I’ve learned more this week about what not to do. I think Mindsharp has had one of our most difficult weeks, mainly due to forces outside our control. Yet, we are in control of how we react and the decisions we make in response to the unplanned event. I learned this week that having a process in place for the seldom occurring event and ensure that we have trained the staff for these eventualities. Events that don’t often happen do happen. We had a major miss this week by not having a plan in place for how to handle such an event.

Secondly, this article on what Americans should know about economics got me to thinking about what I wish Americans knew about economics and limited government. If I had written this article, I would have focused on the same two points RC focused on, including the fact that God owns everything and governments can’t create wealth. But I would also add the following:

  • You can’t spend more than what you take in and remain solvent.
  • If you soak the rich too much, they will eventually just leave.
  • Given our current debt, the only real choice we have as a country is to lose some government services now or lose them all later. Our level of services that we have voted for is unsustainable.
  • Without a strong, vibrant economy, you’ll lose your freedom, your country and your civilization.

Thirdly, I learned recently that just because someone understands and acknowledges their responsibility to perform at a certain level, that doesn’t mean that they have “bought into” the expectations given to them. I recently was discussing the poor performance of a member of my sales team with that member. When I pointed out that this individual was at roughly 50% of goal, their response about the goal numbers was this: “that’s just a number pulled out of thin air”. This, of course, wasn’t true. Every sales member is shown how to achieve their numbers and the product mix that will get them to their goal numbers. I was really surprised at this individual’s brazen disregard for standards while honestly believing that hitting 50% of goal was doing a “good job”. Our ability to rationalize ourselves into another realm is truly profound.

Fourthly, I was talking with a colleague this week who is in the SharePoint space and is in the ownership group of a solid, growing company. Two comments he made have stuck with me:

  1. Take the emotion out of business
  2. Hire first for culture, then process, then competence.

Lastly, as a firearm instructor and enthusiast, it’s good to stay in touch with the number of background checks being conducted on a monthly basis. As can be easily seen, the number of background checks has doubled in the last 10 years on both a monthly and annual basis. While each check doesn’t indicate a gun purchase, it is indicative of how many more guns are being purchased.

One more thing – as a favor to me – if you’re interested in firearms and live in Minnesota or Western Wisconsin, please take a moment to visit Maple Grove Firearms and register to receive $20 off your first purchase with us. I’d like to grow this side-business and avocation. Thanks.

Bill English, CEO