I want to tell you a story. It was 1979. I was flying high. My company had just completed the best year it ever had. We made a ton of money, or so I thought.
I know this sounds like a pretty obvious statement, but is this something you’ve ever thought about? When I first read it in Thinking Fast and Thinking Slow by Daniel Kahnerman I wanted to hit my head and just say, “Duh.”
I wanted to know why I hadn’t spent time making sure I was in a good mood when I did work. I know there are times when I’m annoyed and I might as well do myself and those around me a favor and just go take a walk.
We’re all going to die. We know it, and we do everything in our power to pretend that death is not the real end. We use terms like moving on. The truth is we’re not moving on, we’re dead and we’ve stopped.
This is not to say that death isn’t scary for me, it is. I’ve just come to terms with death in a way that you may have not.
It’s no secret that I’ve been to way too many Grateful Dead concerts. I started going to shows when I was 18 years old and continue doing so to this day. I might be too old to continue doing this but old habits die hard.
There have been a bunch of books written about The Dead and the influence they’ve had on all sorts of lives. There are even at least two books on the business practices of the band. I thought I would add to that some of the lessons I learned from them over the last 42 years.
At one point in the twentieth century we thought that management would fix all the ills that we faced. In the 1960’s we thought that management could fix all problems. The poster child for this thought was Robert S. McNamera. He was President Kennedy’s secretary of defense and truly thought that systematic management could solve any problem and help us make all of our decisions.
He focused on the internal and forgot that there were external forces that also needed his attention. His problem was he forgot to think and take into account these 4 issues:
This is a question posed by Peter Drucker in his book Managing. It’s also true for everything else that we face in life. Instead of focusing on the personality of correctness doesn’t it make sense for us to spend time thinking about what is correct?
Get your ego out of the way.
We’ve all been there. Our day is going along very nicely and boom, the phone rings. What was shaping up as a really nice day has just turned your world upside-down. You may have thought this emergency was never going to happen, but the Universe had different plans for you.
All of us have had this happen. For me, it was the call that I had to go in for a biopsy. For you, I hope it was something less serious. I also know that you’ve had at least one of those calls, it’s part of life.
We have tons of conversation in this country about whether we should have a single payer health system. Sometimes we talk about Medicare for all, sometimes it’s a pure single payer system. In my opinion either one is fine. It’s just a method of paying for our health insurance.
What about a single provider?