Just pay shipping and handling

Happy New Year colleagues! I had an intention to write a note during the holidays. It just wasn’t happening! These last few weeks have been like a bobsled run – just steering, no brakes!

Between football and advertisements on television, it is inevitable to come across the “deals” that make television advertising so compelling.

I remain fascinated by my own gullibility. But even for me, it is unimaginable that such valuable appliances and cures can be made available for so many for so little. The best deals are doubled – just pay shipping and handling.

It’s almost impossible not to “call now,” but I have discovered a nagging feeling that wants me to think about why these deals can’t be as valuable as touted. I have tried to imagine all of the possible underlying motives of the pitch person. Can it be that they love us, their customers, so much that they are extending their heartfelt generosity? Do they donate all of their excess profits to charitable organizations that support our community?

I have become somewhat skeptical about deals.

The word “deal” has taken on a new and perhaps more sinister slant. It seems that every week or so, a deal is brokered across the world. Historically, the very best deals turned out to elevate the lives humans across whole countries. Our country engaged in a deal with Europe after the last world war that sought to rebuild the damaging effect of war and has had lasting positive effects.

Many of these positive deals are preceded by the most thoughtful and magnanimous actions as can be imagined. These are the real deals – the ones that are created out of the purest of motives.

So, now we are discovering that there are other types of deals. These deals are embedded with an underlying catch. There may be subtle but intentional signs that of what appear to be intentional manipulative leverage. If the deal is driven by motives such as power and control, the outcome is likely to be dysfunctional.

“Real deals” seem to take place within a context of caring and compassion. Can one imagine making a deal with your children? Even when discipline and tough love are involved, due to the intention, the outcome is likely to be positive and rewarding.

As we face the New Year, I have resolved to work toward that very best of real deals that can be created in my personal and professional life. It is my intention to work against deals that are defined by a win-lose dynamic, no matter how compelling they may appear. I refuse to pay shipping and handling for two of the same gadget!

My new word to test my own intention is the word “optimal.”

That one word will suffice as my New Year’s resolution. How about yours?



One comment

  • I like the word “optimal” – may it define our work ethic and motives at BSOM in 2014.

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