Waking Your Hypnotized Chickens

By Peter Jeff
The Leadership Mints Guy

Here’s an idea to focus on thoughtful decision-making.   Reading time: 3:14

             Imagine the power little Johnny had in his finger. He amazed the other kids on the farm who hadn’t yet learned the art of hypnotizing a chicken.

    chicken1Little Johnny would first hold a chicken’s head down against the ground so the chicken would stare straight ahead on the ground. Then he would draw a line along the ground with a stick or a finger outward in front of the chicken.

    The chicken would then freeze, trance-like for up to 30 minutes.  It’s a biological defense mechanism the chicken has evolved to quickly play dead trance-like  whenever it feels threatened.  The suddenly “paralyzed” chicken  then thwarts off  predators very effectively.

   Likewise control-oriented managers  have learned how to paralyze an audience in a deep freeze like trance. With PowerPoint slides.

     PowerPoint is in fact so numbing that the media relations officials in the Pentagon call it –Hypnotizing Chickens—when they show a series of boring and confusing PowerPoint slides for 25 minutes of a scheduled 30-minute news conference. That leaves only 5 minutes at the end for reporter’s questions “from anyone still awake,” notes Thomas X. Hammes, a retired Marine colonel.

      Gen. James N. Mattis of the Marine Corps has had to ward off more than his share of PowerPoint presiding –a.k.a.  “hypnotizing chickens”  antics via PowerPoint. No wonder he flatly states: “PowerPoint makes us stupid.”   Continue reading “Waking Your Hypnotized Chickens”

POV : Where You Stand Depends On Where You Sit

By Peter Jeff
The Leadership Mints Guy

Here’s an idea to help you factor  your frame of reference in problem solving. Reading time: 2:44.

        A friend of mine tried to change the subject every time her five-year old granddaughter wanted to know her age.

       “Old enough to know better,” she would say to dismiss the subject. Or she would joke:  “So old that my back goes out more often than I do.”

Grandma's purse is just another toy box to a five year old girl.

        But then one day the wily little 60-month old seemed to get the best of my 60-year-old friend.

     “Grandma, I know how old you are.”   “You do,” her grandma wondered?

      “Yes it’s right here,” the little girl said as she spilled the contents of her grandma’s purse.  And out flipped her grandma’s driver’s license on the floor.

     “I see your birth date right there,” the precocious little girl said pointing to the grandma’s driver’s license. “And grandma , I see that you were not a very good student, no, no,no.”

    “I wasn’t,” the grandma asked?

    “No, no, no.  See you got an F.”

    “An F,” the grandmother exclaimed!

     “Yes look at that F….in SEX.”

    They both laughed. That scenario showcases the critical insight that every leader faces: defining reality. Continue reading “POV : Where You Stand Depends On Where You Sit”