Acting on Principle Pays

Acting on Principle Pays

An MBA student of mine who had just read my book commented: “Those principles you write about make a lot of sense, but at the same time, business is ruthless, and most people do not follow such moral principles. How can you act on principle when others don’t?” My...
Who Owns Your Life?

Who Owns Your Life?

One of the most important and far reaching questions in moral philosophy is: Who is the proper beneficiary of an individual’s actions? There are only two possible answers to the question: The individual taking the action, or others. “Others” may mean the community,...
Three Reasons to Learn a Formula

Three Reasons to Learn a Formula

At a humor workshop I attended recently, Judy Carter taught us a formula for creating a joke around something mean that someone said to us. The steps were: 1. Remember exactly what words were used, plus the tone and body language, so you can act it out. 2. Backtrack:...
Fear: The Great Inhibitor

Fear: The Great Inhibitor

Fear is the great inhibitor. When rational, fear is life-serving and life-protecting. However, the purpose of fear is avoidance. You rationally avoid things in order to obtain what life has to offer. You avoid an oncoming car when crossing a street in order to survive...
Your Life is Your Responsibility

Your Life is Your Responsibility

If you were alone on a desert island you would not be able to escape the fact that you must work to sustain your life. Alone on the island you could spend your days in any activity of your choosing—hunting, fishing, building a home, swimming, or napping. But you would...
“Waste Not, Want Not” — Another Myth!

“Waste Not, Want Not” — Another Myth!

Dear Dr. Hurd: My mother is a good, well-meaning lady. But every so often she reminds me of the fact that she grew up during the Great Depression, and so learned the value of saving things. And whenever I am seen throwing away a plastic bag or a piece of aluminum foil...
What Love Is and Isn’t

What Love Is and Isn’t

When you love someone in a rational, genuine way, you love that person as an individual. You sincerely want him or her to be happy, and you want to add to their life while, at the same time, experiencing your own enjoyment of that person.

“Moneyball” and the Source of Values

“Moneyball” and the Source of Values

“Moneyball” is a baseball movie that isn’t about baseball. It is a movie about the passionate pursuit of values. And more fundamentally, it is a movie about the source of value creation—the rational, independent judgment of innovators. Starring Brad Pitt as Billy...
Coping with Interruptions

Coping with Interruptions

By some estimates, people lose 2 hours of work a day due to interruptions. The time is wasted in two ways: First, when you are interrupted, you often lose your place. You have to go back and redo some of the work to restore your working context. Second, the topic of...