Aside

Darn that Ben Franklin

I’ve been away from posting here lately. My company has a newsletter we publish and I was responsible for doing the intro copy to our collective work. [For those interested, you can check it out at www.rubiconconsulting.com.] I guess I ran out of creative juices during or after that and didn’t want to write for a bit.
Here’s the intro:

“Be always at war with your vices,” was an axiom of Benjamin Franklin’s. With it, he encouraged all of us to be better than the person we were yesterday, to rise above our history and our failings. Worthy advice.
In the high-tech world, that advice can surely be applied, but perhaps it’s better stated as, “Be watchful of focusing too much on today’s business.” It’s not the past you need to worry about, or even to some degree the present, it’s the future.
In this newsletter, we talk about the many ways Microsoft is attacking technology markets, what blogging can and should do for businesses, the continuing SaaS evolution and the opportunity it represents, lessons from Cisco’s market expansion plays, and the hidden outcome that lurks behind lawsuits in business.
What’s interesting about all of these topics? They won’t impact this quarter’s revenues or results. Instead, they represent ways in which the topography of the market keeps moving. It’s that horizon, that new landscape that needs to be understood to reshape your strategy, to go to war with your own preconceptions, to change what needs to be changed.
As business leaders, all of us need to pledge to look up – often. So we can shape what is to come, as well as respond to it. And then we have the opportunity to transform our industry, our future as we live it. I hope this newsletter provides at least one idea to do that.

I like it, but here’s the back story. I started with the Franklin quote. It had been running around in my mind for several days prior like a bad song that wouldn’t leave, and then I was trying to build the whole notion of my note on it. This piece I do is supposed to be short, impactful, and relevant to the articles the team writes. It took me forever (aka 1 hour) to figure out a parallel to personal vices that worked. I had to brainstorm. I had to stew on it. Or, at least, I think I did. It’s over. And now that I look at it, I wonder what took that long?!

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