The parable of the troublesome product manager

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Once there was a product manager named Joan who worked at an Italian foods company called Patitucci’s Delights. Joan loved Italian food, and she loved helping her company sell it and make a profit. She was in charge of prepared dinner products, working alongside two other product managers for pasta and sauces. Joan had a … Continued

The Iron Imperative of writing: don’t waste my time

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When writing documents, posts, or emails, keep one thing in mind above all others. I call it the Iron Imperative of writing: Do not waste the reader’s time. To help you internalize this, remember the Golden Corollary: Treat the reader’s time as more valuable than your own. To act on this, you must internalize the … Continued

Google’s new mission statement

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Writing as a Forbes contributor, Steve Denning makes a great point in his analysis of the failure of Google+, Google’s social network. “Google’s mission statement is clear and simple, but wrong,” he writes. Here’s that mission statement: Google’s mission is to organize the world‘s information and make it universally accessible and useful. As Denning puts it: … Continued

Why there is so much bullshit: an analysis

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All day long we read on our various screens. This has vastly increased the demand for content, which comes to us through many channels. But those who create it have forgotten what good writing is. Think back to the world of 1980. The average consumer or businessperson at that time had no email, and there was no Internet. What … Continued

Forbes bloggers, contributed content, and the decline of editing

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Content from an established media site is credible, right? Not when it’s contributed content. Media sites need content; people need to promote their ideas — the web makes it easy to connect them. The only thing lost is editorial judgment. Unlike the native advertising I discussed yesterday, contributed articles are unpaid, unlabelled self-promotion. The person placing the … Continued

You’re the victim of bullshit. Tell me your story.

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You just got an email. It might be from HR, or your boss, or the head of some other department. And you’re scratching your head and saying “Is this real? Does someone actually think this makes sense?” Don’t just cringe. Don’t just lean over and whine to the guy in the next cube. Don’t write … Continued