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Frank Patrick's Focused Performance Business Blog
This Focused Performance Weblog started life as a "business management blog" containing links and commentary related primarily to organizational effectiveness with a "Theory of Constraints" perspective, but is in the process of evolving towards primary content on interactive and mobile marketing. Think of it as about Focusing marketing messages for enhanced Performance. If you are on an archive page, current postings are found here.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Seven Years of Blogging -- Just realized that this Focused Performance blog is seven years old today. In the Catholic upbringing of my childhood, 7 years was the "age of reason", after which one is responsible for their action and needs to start going to confession.

Maybe that explains the diminishing rate of blogging here over the last couple years - starting off with a bunch of provocative posts when I was trying to get attention for my old consulting practice, but now it seems like I get enough of this stuff from "9 to 5" (more like 7:30 to 5:30 with an 45 minute commute on each end), leaving little energy for additional thought and writing.

It seems that my recent theme in these pages comes from Pink Floyd...
Thought I'd something more to say.
Then again, maybe it's because I'm blogging more over at Unfocused and tending to my Facebook profile.

After all, life is more than work.

Happy New Years, folks.

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Sunday, December 09, 2007

Behavior is not Performance -- From Blogspotting - BusinessWeek:
"Does a company evaluate workers by their performance? If so, it shouldn’t need to monitor their behavior."
Influence performance-enhancing behavior, probably. Encourage responsible behavior, maybe. But what is "performance-enhancing"? What is "responsible"? If the bottom line is performance, it's performance - not the things on the edges of the delivery of that performance, whether recreational web-surfing at work, or even hours spent on the job.

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Thursday, December 06, 2007

On Design and Marketing --From Phillipe Starck's talk at TED 2007...
...there are different types of design. The one, we can call it the cynical design, that means the design invented by Raymond Loewy in the '50s, who said, what is ugly is a bad sale, La Laideur se vend mal, which is terrible. It means the design must be just a weapon for marketing, for producer to make product more sexy, like that, they sell more, it's shit, it's obsolete, it's ridiculous. I call that the cynical design.

After, there is the narcissistic design; it's a fantastic designer who designs only for other fantastic designers. [laughs]

After there is people like me, who try to deserve to exist, and who are ashamed to make this useless job, who try to do it in another way, and they try, I try, to not make the object for the object but for the result, for the profit for the human being, the person who will use it.
It's all about the users' needs. Take care of them, and the marketing almost takes care of itself.

Then, again...isn't marketing merely the process of 1) understanding the needs of potential users of your products/services, 2) making sure those products/services truly meet the important needs they're designed to address (the connection between marketing research and product design), 3) crafting compelling offers around the satisfaction of those needs, and 4) communicating those offers where those potential users might be found (where marketing meets advertising and selling, which are different things).

(Of course, putting it all in perspective, this is from a guy whose own site annoyingly takes over the user's browser window size to land-grab the whole screen.)

Another line that grabbed me from the talk…
Nobody is obliged to be a genius, but everybody is obliged to participate.
Not sure why, but it grabbed me nonetheless.

Whole transcript and video version at, although be advised he rambles off into a more metaphysical direction about us all being mutants, and designing stories for a future we really can't know, and that the best we can do is leave blank sheets of paper and the "best tools" for those who follow us.

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Strategic Thinking and Improvement

Enterprise PM - It Starts with Strategic Interdependence

Face Reality

How to Think With Your Gut

Hugger-Mugger and Helter-Skelter

Managing for Murphy, Satan, and Yourself

More of the Same (Local/Global)

PMI Congress Notes: Using Risk Management for Strategic Advantage

Tell Me How You'll Measure Me and Ah, But What to Measure?

What's in Your Strategy?

Why Can't We All Just Get Along?

Why TOC Works
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Critical Chain and (not or) XP

Defining Project Success (But for Whom?)

Down 'n Dirty w/TOC and PM (Part 1 of 5 consecutive posts)

End of Project Review

If Project Management is the Answer, What's the Question?

In Defense of Planning

It Ain't the Tools

Lessons Learned, Revisited

Predicting Uncertain Futures

Project Conflicts

Project Determinism (and other myths)

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Removing Bottlenecks - A Core Systems Design Principle

Stage Gates and Critical Chain

Ten Top Sources of Project Failure (The Executive Version)

The Meaning of "Schedule"
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Invisible Dogma - Perpetuating Paradigms

Nothing But Value

On Assumption Busting

Personal Productivity - An Excuse?

The Psychology of Change Management

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