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Archive for March, 2017

FUN AND GAMES AT THE AIRPORT

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 31, 2017

BRYCE ON TRANSPORTATION

– “Please report any suspicious behavior.” Are you kidding me?

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

It has been awhile since I’ve talked about airports. In the past, I enjoyed air travel but now look for excuses not to go, thereby avoiding the headaches associated with it. Suffice it to say, I find travel to be more laborious than exciting. I think the novelty wore off when they introduced the security checkpoints back in the early 1980’s. Now we have to strip and be subject to cavity searches by people who flunked their proctology exams in a foreign country. You really have to hand it to the terrorists for creating a billion dollar industry and putting the homeless to work as security inspectors.

Over the public address system you routinely hear the message, “Please report any suspicious behavior.” Hell, the whole thing is suspicious. People are plugged in and tuned out. Those people talking on cell phones look delusional as they wander aimlessly through the airport seemingly talking to themselves. Most are dressed as if they are going on a camping trip or bombing run. Even the security people look like they speak a foreign language, certainly not English. Report “suspicious behavior”? To whom? Muhammed, the head of airport security? I’ve also noticed airports are now much more handicap accessible than in years past, but perhaps they have gone overboard on some things. For example, when I went to the men’s room recently I noticed there was an infant changing table. Okay, fine, men change diapers now. No big deal. Over the table hung a sign denoting the changing table, but in addition to plain English on the sign I noticed a Braille version for the blind. This got me thinking how a blind person would ever find the spot and use it properly. I imagined a person groping around a strange airport and rest room until he finally arrived at the station only to miss the sign (as it was displayed a tad high and inset, making it easy to miss). He might even end up circling the rest room for hours to find the right spot to change diapers. God knows what he will use if he misses it.

Luggage carousels haven’t really changed over the years. The baggage handlers still send out the same 100 empty suitcases before any of the bags from your flight shows up. Actually, I think it’s a stalling tactic as they rip through your luggage to find the good stuff.

The Gestapo runs the ground transportation, for both pickup and drop-off, complete with bomb sniffing dogs, mirrors to look under your car, and tow trucks. Most do nothing but wave their arms incessantly, blow their whistle, and yell at you to move your car. I still haven’t developed the knack for picking up someone while the car is still moving. I guess I need more practice.

So, do I see anything “suspicious” at the airport? You tell me.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  THE PERILS OF PERSONAL HYGIENE – If you start to notice people starting to avoid you, perhaps it is time to invest in a bar of soap.

LAST TIME:  THE FAST-FOOD KIOSKS ARE COMING, THE FAST-FOOD KIOSKS ARE COMING!  – Get ready for major changes at the fast-food franchises.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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Posted in Transportation | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

THE FAST-FOOD KIOSKS ARE COMING, THE FAST-FOOD KIOSKS ARE COMING!

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 29, 2017

BRYCE ON TECHNOLOGY

– Get ready for major changes at the fast-food franchises.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Back in the 1960’s, teens gravitated to drive-in restaurants with “carhops,” who delivered food to your car, sometimes on roller-skates. This all changed with the burger chains, yet young people still showed up for shakes, burgers and fries. When I lived in Chicago, there was a local McDonalds where you went to hang-out and be seen with your friends. It was one of the original McDonalds, complete with the big golden arches out front and the “number served” sign updated regularly. More than anything, it was a social venue which propelled the restaurant.

Such fast-food franchises have changed over the years and I’m not sure young people look upon it as the Baby Boomers did. Whereas such restaurants back then required a crew of people to operate it effectively, it is finally giving way to a hi-tech approach.

Robotic-like kiosks have been in the experimental stage since about 2006, but with the recent push to raise the minimum wage to $15/hour, the fast-food industry has accelerated its plans. Although many people embrace the idea of raising the minimum wage, industry executives realize there is limit to what the public will pay for service, hence the need to automate.

Today, virtually every major fast-food chain is either in the experimental stage or in the process of rolling out automation to speed up the processing of orders while minimizing the need for manual labor. This includes McDonalds, Burger King, Wendy’s, KFC, Taco Bell, Arby’s, Panera Bread, Starbucks, Pizza Hut and many more. Even my beloved white Castle, home of the original “sliders,” is embarking on such automation.

McDonalds recently reported they have implemented automation in nearly 2,600 of their restaurants around the world with hundreds more planned for 2017 in urban areas such as San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, D.C. and Seattle. Approximately 500 have already been implemented in Florida, New York, and Southern California.

Wendy’s has announced they will place kiosks in about 1,000 locations by the end of the year at a cost of about $15,000 for three kiosks, according to the Columbus Dispatch. This is cheap when compared to McDonalds where a single kiosk is said to cost between $50K-$60K. Even at this rate, a franchise can realize their return on investment in as little as two years based on the labor savings.

In China, a KFC restaurant is experimenting with a kiosk featuring facial recognition to predict a customer’s order. The company plans to roll out this technology to 5,000 stores throughout China. If successful, look for it to migrate to America.

Fast-food automation comes primarily in three forms:

1. Self-ordering – using touch screens, the customer can quickly make their selections, and tailor the product to their tastes. After watching a demonstration of this, it appears to be user friendly, but I still believe you can place an order faster with a human-being.

2. Order by App – using smart phones, you can quickly find a local franchise, and place an order ready for pickup.

3. Mobile payments – again, using a smart phone, you can pay by credit or debit card. McDonald’s claims “you can pay with your card at the kiosk or use mobile pay options like Apple or Android Pay. We’re even testing Google Hands Free payment options in the San Francisco Bay area.” I suspect PayPal is another option. The companies will still accept cash, which requires a human to process and make change, but the lion’s share of business will inevitably be conducted by smart phone.

There are two benefits related to fast-food automation, a reduction in labor costs and stimulating sales, particularly by young customers imbued with such technology. Older people may shy away from it.

The point is, through their protests, the “Fight for $15” activists are cutting off their noses to spite their faces. Even if they are successful, the pace of fast-food automation will accelerate, thereby reducing the number of employees. They may get their raise, but at a price of replacing workers with automation.

Like it or not, fast-food automation is here to stay and we will have to adapt to it. One thing is for sure, there won’t be any attractive “carhops.”

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  FUN AND GAMES AT THE AIRPORT – “Please report any suspicious behavior.” Are you kidding me?

LAST TIME:  UNDERSTANDING MILLENNIALS  – What we read in the news cannot all be true; can it?

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Food, Technology | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

UNDERSTANDING MILLENNIALS

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 27, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– What we read in the news cannot all be true; can it?

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

It seems whenever the subject of Millennials (aka, “Generation Y”; ages 18-36) comes up, be it in a new poll or study, all I hear about is their irresponsible behavior. There seems to be so much of it, it is hard to swallow, such as in how they vote, unemployment, driving, living at home, etc. There are obviously many level-headed Millennials out there, but evidently an inordinate number of deadbeats as well. Frankly, such discussion makes me worry about the future of our country. As a “Baby Boomer,” I have to admit I have trouble understanding them. On the surface, they seem energetic and creative, but I fear there is a dark side.

From a business perspective, I have found Millennials have an aversion to micromanagement, as do I. They desperately want more freedom to express themselves which is causing companies to change their style of management. For example, democratic style of decision making, unlimited vacations, signing bonuses, and other perks.

The dark side of Millennials in business though, according to Gallup, is “Millennials have the highest rates of unemployment and underemployment, and those who hold full-time jobs often struggle to pay their bills.”

As a byproduct, an alarming number of Millennials will remain unmarried through age 40, according to a recent Urban Institute report. The report goes on to suggest their marriage rate may drop to 70%, well below that of Baby Boomers and Generation X. According to a report released last month by the Pew Research Center, 25 percent of Millennials are likely to never marry.

This also means many Millennials will remain at home with their parents. According to Pew in a 2014 study, “for the first time in more than 130 years, adults ages 18 to 34 were slightly more likely to be living in their parents’home than they were to be living with a spouse or partner in their own household.”

Millennials also seem to have an aversion to driving. According to a USA Today report, “Quite simply, cars are becoming less important or less accessible to Millennials.” Their indifference is causing automotive manufacturers to re-think their marketing strategies for the future. Interestingly, Generation Z, the next generation, is rapidly passing the Millennials in terms of applications for driver licenses. why the difference between these two generations? Nobody knows for sure, but it suggests Gen Zers are more ambitious.

According to the Census Bureau, the Millennials recently surpassed the Baby Boomers in terms of volume, making them the #1 age group in America representing 83.1 million people. This represents more than one quarter of the nation’s population. Yet, only 24 million millennials voted in the 2016 election, representing a paltry 28.8% of their eligible voters (see report).

Perhaps the Millennials’ trait of being apathetic stems from their inclination to avoid responsibility in work and marriage, and remain at home instead. It should therefore come as no surprise that those Millennials who vote, tend to gravitate to entitlements and socialism. Had they showed up at the voting booth in 2016, the outcome of the election could have been much different. However, many of them believe the American electoral process is rigged, therefore they do not bother to vote.

Those Millennials surprised Hillary Clinton didn’t win the election because of the popular vote simply do not understand the basics of government in this country, such as the electoral college. It is interesting, this generation, which is more imbued with technology capable of accessing news and information 24/7, is perhaps the most naive when it comes to current events and our mechanics of government.

When you add these reports up, the Millennials are depicted as an irresponsible group of people who are terribly naive about the world around them. This is a frightening conclusion and doesn’t bode well for our future. As to who is responsible for all this, I think the Baby Boomers, who are the parents of the Millennials, should take a close look at themselves in the mirror.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  THE FAST-FOOD KIOSKS ARE COMING, THE FAST-FOOD KIOSKS ARE COMING! – Get ready for major changes at the fast-food franchises.

LAST TIME:  MANAGING A NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION  – It’s not exactly “rocket science” but some people still don’t know how to do it.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

MANAGING A NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 24, 2017

BRYCE ON NONPROFITS

– It’s not exactly “rocket science” but some people still don’t know how to do it.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Recently I was adding up the number of Board of Directors I have served on over the years for nonprofit organizations. This includes computer societies, fraternal organizations, homeowner associations, even Little League. The number was over 50 where I have served in some capacity or other, everything from president, to vice president, secretary, division director, finance chairman, publicity and public relations, newsletter editor, webmaster, even historian. In other words, I think I’ve learned a thing or two about nonprofit organizations over the years. One of the first things I learned early on is that unless you manage the nonprofit group, it will manage you.

Running a nonprofit group is not exactly rocket science and is actually pretty simple, but surprisingly few people grasp the basics and end up bungling the organization thereby creating upheaval for its constituents. If you are truly interested in properly managing a nonprofit group, consider these ten principles that have served me well over the years:

1. Know the rules. Get a copy of the governing docs, read them, and keep them with you. Do not try to hide them. In fact, make them available to your constituents either in paper form or as a download on the computer (such as a PDF file). Got a briefcase dedicated to your group? Keep a copy of the docs in it and, if an electronic version is available, place an icon on your desktop to quickly access it.

2. Get to know your constituents. How can you expect to adequately serve them if you do not know what their interests are or the group’s priorities as they perceive them? They won’t always be correct, but understand their perceptions and deal with them accordingly. You might want to circulate a survey to get their view on certain subjects, and to solicit their support.

3. Communicate – not only with the other members of the board, but with your constituency as well. Failure to do so only raises suspicions about what you are doing. Newsletters, e-mail blasts, and web pages are invaluable in this regard, particularly the latter where you can post news, governing docs, contact information, meeting minutes, audit reports, correspondence, etc. Simple communications will clear up a lot of the problems you will face as an officer on the board.

4. Administer – keep good records, regardless if government regulations require it or not. Whether you are maintaining records with pencil and paper or by computer, it is important that accurate records be maintained, particularly about the group’s membership, logs of activities, attendance, finances, minutes, etc. It is not really that complicated to perform; you just need someone who pays attention to detail. Don’t have the manpower to do it yourself? Then hire someone, such as a management company, who can competently keep track of things.

5. Lead – people like to know where they are headed. If you are in charge of the group, articulate your objectives and prepare a plan to get you there. Also, do not try to micromanage everything. Nonprofit groups are primarily volunteer organizations and the last thing they want is Attila the Hun breathing down their necks. Instead, manage from the bottom-up. Delegate responsibility, empower people, and follow-up. Make sure your people know their responsibilities and are properly trained. Other than that, get out of their way and let them get on with their work.

6. Add value to your service. People like to think they are getting their money’s worth for paying their dues. In planning your organization’s activities, be creative and imaginative, not stale and repetitive. In other words, beware of falling into a rut. Your biggest obstacle will typically be apathy. If your group’s mission is to do nothing more than meet periodically, make it fun and interesting, make it so people want to come and participate. Try new subjects, new venues, new menus, etc. Even if you are on a tight budget, try to make things professional and first class. Change with the times and never be afraid of failure. You won’t always bat 1.000 but you will certainly hit a few out of the park and score a lot of runs.

7. Keep an eye on finances. As officers of the Board, you have a fiduciary responsibility to maintain the group’s finances and report on their status. I cannot stress enough the importance of having a well thought-out and itemized budget. Operating without one is simply irresponsible. And when you have a budget, manage according to it; if you don’t have the money allocated, don’t spend it. Obviously, you should also have routine finance reports produced (at least on a monthly basis) showing an opening balance, income, expenses, and a closing balance. Most PC based financial packages can easily do this for you. At the end of the year, perform a review of your finances by an independent party, either a compilation as performed by a CPA or a review by an internal committee. Post the results so the constituency can be assured their money has been properly handled.

8. Run an effective meeting. Nobody wants to attend an inconsequential meeting. Whether it is a weekly/monthly board meeting or an annual meeting, run it professionally. Print up an agenda in advance and stick to it. Start and end on time and maintain order. Got a gavel? Do not hesitate to use it judiciously. Maintain civility and decorum. Allow people to have their say but know when issues are getting out of hand or sidetracked. And do yourself a favor, get a copy of “Robert’s Rules” and study it (see http://www.robertsrules.com/)

9. Beware of politics. Like it or not, man is a political animal. Politics in a nonprofit group can get uglier than in the corporate world. Some people go on a power trip even in the most trivial of organizations. Try not to lose sight of the fact that this is a volunteer organization and what the mission of the group is. Keep an eye on rumors and confront backstabbers, there is no room for such shenanigans in a nonprofit group. If you are the president, try to maintain an “open door” policy to communicate with your constituents. It is when you close the door that trouble starts to brew. Also, ask yourself the following, “Who serves who?” Does the board serve its constituents, or do the constituents serve the board? If your answer is the latter, than dissent will naturally follow.

10. Maintain control over your vendors. Try to keep a good relationship with those companies and people who either work for or come in contact with your group, particularly lawyers. Always remember who works for whom. I have seen instances where attorneys have taken over nonprofit groups (at a substantial cost I might add). The role of the lawyer is to only offer advice; he or she doesn’t make the decision, you do (the client). One last note on vendors, make sure you maintain a file of all contracts and correspondence with them. Believe me, you’re going to need it when it comes time to sever relations with them. Keep a paper trail.

Bottom-line: run your nonprofit group like a business. Come to think of it, it is a business, at least in the eyes of the State who recognizes you as a legal entity (one that can be penalized and sued). There are those who will naively resist this notion, but like it or not, a nonprofit group is a business. Consider this, what happens when the money runs out?

I mentioned earlier that you might want to hire a management company to perform the administrative detail of your group. To me, this is an admission that the Board is either too lazy or incompetent to perform their duties (or they have more money than they know what to do with). Just remember, it’s not rocket science.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  UNDERSTANDING MILLENNIALS – What we read in the news cannot all be true; can it?

LAST TIME:  HOW LIBERALS CONTROL THE MEDIA  – Lesson #1: If you don’t play ball, you don’t get the ink.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Management | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

HOW LIBERALS CONTROL THE MEDIA

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 22, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Lesson #1: If you don’t play ball, you don’t get the ink.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

The press is howling over President Trump’s recent attacks on their professionalism and credibility, even going so far as contending he represents a genuine threat to the first amendment, specifically the freedom of the press. Remarkably, many people perceive this threat as legitimate. It is not. Thanks to our Constitution, there is no way he can do so, but there is nothing in there about how he treats the press, or they towards him.

Way before he was elected, Mr. Trump has been under attack by the news media, claiming he was a pompous clown who didn’t have a chance in hell of being elected. During the campaign, the press gave the distinct impression they were protecting Mrs. Clinton and trying to smear Mr. Trump. So, even a blind man should realize, there is no love lost between the President and the press.

The question becomes what to do about it. Since Richard Nixon’s term of office, there hasn’t been an amicable relationship between Republican presidents and the press. This includes Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and George W. Bush. They were often portrayed as incompetent buffoons and the slightest indiscretion was blown out of proportion. This is not to suggest they were all saints, but by comparison, Democrats did not experience the same scrutiny or ridicule.

Unlike most Republican presidents, who sat there and took the abuse from the press, Mr. Trump is taking a different tact and is willing to stand up to them. He is cognizant of the fact the credibility of the press is at an all-time low, and that the public simply doesn’t trust it. Such low esteem is reflected in diminishing circulation of newspapers and lower TV news viewership.

Mr. Trump’s genius resides in his ability to manipulate the press, something he has cultivated for years as a businessman and entertainer. Although the news media will not admit it, Mr. Trump put millions of dollars in their tills. The presidential debates set new ratings for viewership and circulation. Whether you loved him or hated him, the public watched closely, simply because he was provocative and avant garde. He endeared himself to the voters by saying what had been on their minds for a long time, thereby awakening the silent majority. Simply genius.

Now that we’re past the election, and as the media was embarrassed by Mr. Trump, they have stepped up their attacks, desperately looking for any chink in his armor. For example, I cannot remember the last time I read or heard anything favorable about Mr. Trump from the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, and others. Not surprising, Mr. Trump knew this was coming and instead of cow-towing to the press, he defiantly stood his ground and turned the tables on the media, to which they claimed “foul!”

I believe there is little doubt the media is biased against Mr. Trump. Having accompanied the press at Mr. Trump’s campaign rallies, I saw this first hand. Beyond this, there is also the problem of having any pro-Trump articles printed by the press. Over the years I have submitted a multitude of articles to different news outlets. One thing I learned from this, if it does not suit their political agenda, it will not get any ink (produced or promoted). And if you don’t get the ink, your career as a journalist will go nowhere.

If the media is owned and operated by the left, anything other than liberal dogma is censored, be it a major article or a simple letter to the editor. It is not uncommon for conservative articles to be ignored or buried by the main street media. Publishers will deny it, but this is a common occurrence. If you don’t play ball, you simply do not get posted or properly publicized. Such censorship has not gone unnoticed by the general public, which helps to explain why circulation is dropping.

I have an illustrator friend who has noted the same attitude by the news media. His work has attracted national attention over the years and has appeared on the cover of just about every major news and sports magazine in the United States. Early in his career, he was contracted to draw a picture of the current Vice President, Dan Quayle, for a major publication. Nearing completion, he was asked by the magazine, “We want you to make him look a little dumber,” and he complied. Then, as the Clinton administration entered office, he was asked to draw a picture of Vice President Al Gore by the same magazine. Using the same style he used for Mr. Quayle, he submitted his picture of Gore, whereby he was quickly reprimanded, “What? You’ve really gone too far this time! Make him look smarter.”

So, Yes, there is a double standard in the news media and frankly, nobody should be surprised by this. Newspapers in this country were founded on political agendas, going as far back as the 1700’s.

This is why I am an advocate of the Constitution First Amendment Press Association’s (CFAPA) Constitutional Journalist’s Pledge which seeks to improve ethics in the field of journalism.

Until such time as the press corps cleans up its ethical standards and truly promotes freedom of speech, look for them to remain at war with the President. This may sell newspapers but is unhealthy for the country overall. One thing is for sure, their days of controlling the president are over, and this is what angers them most of all.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  MANAGING A NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION – It’s not exactly “rocket science” but some people still don’t know how to do it.

LAST TIME:  THE LIBERAL PLAYBOOK  – The left is getting its grassroots organized; here is how.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Media, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

THE LIBERAL PLAYBOOK

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 20, 2017

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– The left is getting its grassroots organized; here is how.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Following their loss in the 2016 elections, liberals went into a state of shock, followed by a deep sense of outrage and hate, which has caused them to renew their sense of campaigning to take back the government from the Republicans. To do so, they are getting organized and following the community organizing model as touted by Saul Alinsky years ago. This is the same techniques former President Obama used to get elected.

Now, with a sense of urgency behind them, they are using the power of the Internet and social media to quickly transmit their message, solicit volunteers, and train new recruits. Aside from their Twitter and Facebook accounts, four web sites bear watching:

MOVEON.ORG

Founded in 1998, MoveOn.org is perhaps the best known liberal advocacy group and political action committee in this country, claiming a membership in excess of seven million people. Yes, this is the same group financier George Soros has been giving generous donations to over the years.

Their web site is primarily used to solicit donations and create awareness about liberal causes. To this end, they provide a feature to create on-line petitions. As of the date when I wrote this column, their petitions included:

* Investigate Donald Trump
* Don’t let Trump cut PBS Kids
* Tell Congress: Stop Bannon’s national security takeover
* Require Trump to prove he has no Dakota Access Pipeline conflicts of interest
* Require President Trump to provide the audit trail of papers proving he is no longer involved in any way, shape, or form with the Dakota Access Pipeline.
* Tell the White House Press Corps: Stand up to Trump’s blacklist
* If Trump blacklists or bans one journalist, the entire White House Press Corps must stand up and fight back.
* Tell U.S. mayors: Protect undocumented immigrants – Declare your city a sanctuary of safety!

These petitions are monitored by the press to determine newsworthy stories and to encourage members to action. More importantly, it is used to collect names and e-mail addresses, presumably to send out solicitations for liberal causes. It may also be a slick way to sell e-mailing lists to companies thereby supplementing their income.

RESISTANCE CALENDAR

This is a new web site started by liberal filmmaker Michael Moore, the purpose of which is to track all anti-Trump demonstrations and meetings. It’s nothing more than a simple calendar, but it is a convenient way for people to monitor “resistance” activities in their area, thereby encouraging participation. The volume of postings is growing rapidly, but there is a search feature to quickly find events in a specific geographic area.

ORGANIZING FOR ACTION (OFA)

Like MoveOn.org, OFA is another nonprofit 501(c)4 organization aimed at promoting community organizing as supported by former President Barack Obama. The group is headquartered in Chicago and is closely aligned with the Democratic Party. It claims to have more than 250 local chapters around the country.

More than anything, this web site is geared towards educating liberals in techniques pertaining to community organizing and soliciting members.

Their six step program includes:

1. WATCH – videos on liberal causes, including some by Mr. Obama.

2. WRITE A LETTER – either to a newspaper or politician. This includes tips for writing such letters, and even a template to do so.

3. ATTEND AN EVENT – or plan one. This also has a feature to locate meetings and demonstrations in your area.

4. BUILD SUPPORT – includes slick tips for spotting potential members and soliciting their support.

5. CONNECT WITH OTHERS – through the Internet and social media.

6. GET TRAINED – includes available training programs, internships, even a manual containing tips and techniques. The Community Organizing Institute (OSI) is also available for training purposes.

INDIVISIBLE GUIDE

Started this past December, InvisibleGuide is another 501c(4) nonprofit. According to its web site, it is “A practical guide for resisting the Trump agenda. Former congressional staffers reveal best practices for making Congress listen.” Their guide can be read on-line or downloaded in PDF or MS Word DOCX formats. An audio version is also available either for download or to be streamed live. The Indivisible Guide provides guidance in how to influence Members of Congress, particularly when they hold a town hall meetings (and disrupt them).

All of this is aimed at manufacturing protests and creating photo opportunities for the media, thereby creating the illusion the country, as a whole, is unhappy with President Trump.

The point is, considerable thought has been invested in these programs. They are well organized and quite effective. The Republicans should be so organized. Remarkably, they are not.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  HOW LIBERALS CONTROL THE MEDIA – Lesson #1: If you don’t play ball, you don’t get the ink.

LAST TIME:  PROCRASTINATION  – Why we do it and what can be done to overcome it.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

PROCRASTINATION

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 17, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Why we do it and what can be done to overcome it.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I think we’re all pretty much guilty of some form of procrastination during our lives. I know I am. The word itself comes from the Latin word “procrastinatus”: pro- (forward) and crastinus (of tomorrow). We try to put something off as long as possible, hoping that it will go away, but it rarely ever does. We avoid it because procrastination means to do something considered painful to us, be it a hard decision or a difficult task. We often use the lame excuse that we don’t have time to do something, but the reality is we plain and simply don’t want to do it. I don’t think anyone actually procrastinates over something they really want to do. So we should look upon procrastination as a sign of how a person really feels about something.

This got me thinking about how many decisions we make during the day. We make all kinds of trivial decisions, such as what clothes we will wear, what to eat, etc., but how many significant decisions do we really make? Probably not as many as we think. Financial decisions are often painfully difficult, such as where we should invest money, the purchase of a new house or automobile, insurance, etc., but we don’t make as many of these decisions as we should. We also infrequently think about career and health related decisions. Probably the two areas we most frequently make decisions about is related to our jobs and maintaining our homes. In terms of our jobs, it seems the bigger the assignment, the harder it is to make decisions regarding it and we often seek advice, particularly if our jobs depend on it. But the same is true at home as well; the bigger the task, the more likely we are to seek advice. For example, there is a big difference between replacing carpeting in a room, and replacing a roof. This implies there is a comfort factor involved with making a decision. In other words, do we know all of the variables and are we convinced this is the proper course of action to take? If we do not, we tend to procrastinate. Replacing a roof is a much more complicated problem than simply replacing a carpet, thereby requiring more studying and advice.

Perhaps the best way to overcome procrastination is to simply prioritize your objectives and assignments, determine not only what you would like to do but what would be most beneficial to you, and get up off your ass and do it. Avoid defeatist attitudes, and try to think positive. You might just find that the problem you have been procrastinating over is not as difficult as you thought it was. But understand this, it will not go away on its own and the old axiom, “Not to decide, is to decide,” will inevitably kick in (and usually not in your favor).

“Take time to deliberate; but when the time for action arrives, stop thinking and go in.”
– Andrew Jackson

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  PROCRASTINATION – Why we do it and what can be done to overcome it.

LAST TIME:  PSEUDO-SCIENTIFIC MANAGEMENT  – Where you learn to sing “Kumbaya.”

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

Posted in Life, Management | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

POLITICAL BOOK CLUBS

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 15, 2017

BRYCE ON HISTORY

– A tremendous way to learn American history.

Recently I wrote a column on citizenship where I mentioned American History is being taught in our schools rather superficially. From this, I received e-mails asking how people can become more proactive in terms of learning history outside of school. To this end, I belong to a political book club which we started a couple of years ago. It took us awhile to find our footing in terms of organization and how to conduct the meeting but we worked it out and it is now an important club for raising the awareness of history.

The club meets at night on a monthly basis with members taking turns hosting it in their homes. One person volunteers to be the moderator for the meeting and is responsible for preparing an outline of questions pertaining to the book of the day, and controlling the conversation. The round-table discussion is perhaps the most rewarding part of the meeting as it is interesting to see how people interpret historical events.

As an aside, we encourage everyone to attend, whether they have read the book or not. The club also makes active use of the Internet and social media to communicate with club members and invite outsiders.

The following is a list of the books we slowly went through, over the first few years. Notice it starts at the founding of our country and slowly moves through the years.

BOOK-AUTHOR

*5000 Year Leap – Skousen, Cleon
1776 – McCulloch, David
Common Sense – Thomas Paine
His Excellency: George Washington – Ellis, Joseph
Alexander Hamilton – Chernow, Ron
John Adams – McCulloch, David
Miracle at Philadelphia – Bowen, Catherine
American Sphinx: Thomas Jefferson – Ellis, Joseph
Ben Franklin: An American Life – Issacson, Walter
James Madison – Brookhiser, Richard
John Q. Adams; a Public Life, A Private Life – Nagel, Paul C.
American Lion: Andrew Jackson – Meacham, Jon
Henry Clay: The Essential American – Heidler, David & Jeanne
**Democracy In America – De Tocqueville, Alexis
A Country of Vast Designs – Robert Merry
Lone Star Nation – H.R.Brands
Team of Rivals – Doris Kearns Goodwin
The Impending Crisis – David Potter
Killer Angels – Michael Sharra
A Short History of Reconstruction – Eric Foner
American Colossus – H.W. Brands
Unreasonable Men: Theodore Roosevelt – Michael Wolraich
Sleepwalkers – Christopher Clark
Woodrow Wilson: Roots of Modern Liberalism – Ronald Pestritto
The End of Order: Versaillses 1919 – Charles Mie
New World Coming: The 1920’s and the Making of Modern America – Nathan Miller
The Forgotten Man – Amity Shales
The Defining Moment: FDR’s 100 Days and the Triumph of Hope – Jonathan Alter
Presidential Courage – Michael Bechloss
Presidential Leadership – James Tarantano
The Case Against Hillary Clinton – Peggy Noonan
Art of the Deal – Donald Trump
When Character Was King: Ronald Reagan – Peggy Noonan
Decision Points – George W. Bush
Clinton Cash or Crisis in Character – Peter Schweizer/Gary J. Byrne
Night – Elie Wiesel
If You Can Keep It: the Forgotten Promise of American Liberty – Eric Metaxas
Reagan’s Revolution – Craig Shirley
This Town – Leibovich, Mark

*5000 Year Leap – this was an excellent book to begin our program as it is an easy read, yet serves as the foundation for the next few books. It is also a book which I believe all High School students should read as it would clear up a lot of misconceptions about our government.

**Democracy In America – De Tocqueville’s account of visiting the young United States is fascinating and describes the strength of our nation from an outsider’s perspective. Either try the condensed version or the four volume set.

As we are now in a new year, the club has already drawn up an impressive list of books to study. The members of the club come from all walks of life, including academia and business.

The book club has been an invaluable source of information to explain how our country works, why our governing documents were written in the manner they were, and who the real founding fathers of our country were. It is very educational and something I highly recommend to anyone who is truly interested in American history.

It is interesting what you can accomplish when you allow for civil discourse.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  PROCRASTINATION – Why we do it and what can be done to overcome it.

LAST TIME:  PSEUDO-SCIENTIFIC MANAGEMENT  – Where you learn to sing “Kumbaya.”

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in History, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

PSEUDO-SCIENTIFIC MANAGEMENT

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 13, 2017

BRYCE ON MANAGEMENT

– Where you learn to sing “Kumbaya.”

(Click for AUDIO VERSION)
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Lately I seem to be receiving more than my fair share of e-mails. Among the spam I get daily, I can always count on some flyers on various management related workshops. Lately I have been studying these flyers more closely. It has been my observation the courses being offered seem to lack substance and tend to rely on facade. They seem to dance around the issues and, instead, offer classes aimed at making students feel good about themselves or how to be more politically correct. Even worse, they tend to offer some crackpot theory of management under the guise of being scientific, thereby trying to make them fashionable.

To illustrate, I recently received a training flyer which boldly stated in its headline, “Negativity costs the U.S. economy an estimated 3 billion dollars in lost productivity last year alone. What’s it costing you?” This originated from a vendor who specializes in combating negative attitudes in the workplace. I found the claim rather hollow. There is no doubt negative attitudes have an adverse affect in the workplace, but how can you substantiate such an estimate? I am not aware of any mood detectors that keep track of time. In other words, the claim is frivolous and without merit. Anyone can pick numbers out of thin air, but are they credible? Yet such claims are common in such classes.

This was part of a two day class entitled, “Workplace Conflict Training Camp” featuring a “Stop Your Drama Methodology” which is an “eight part empowerment process to increase clarity and improve productivity and personal effectiveness.” Having coined the term “methodology” in this industry back in 1971, and trained thousands of people around the world in it, I think you can safely assume we know a thing or two about methodologies. This is certainly not a methodology. Rather, it is a spin on the word to give the illusion it is based on some sort of scientific principle. I believe it is nothing more than some organized ideas for overcoming negativity in the workplace. In other words, it is a structured table of contents; but a “methodology?” Tut-tut.

I received another flyer touting a “Productivity Training Camp.” As in the other course, they boldly claim: “Distractions cost American companies time and money — approximately an hour a day and $10,790 a year per worker.” Again, I would challenge the vendor to substantiate the claim. As I read through the flyer, I found it was nothing more than a class on basic leadership and how to maximize your use of time. As a true course on productivity though, Tut-tut.

I have a great respect for the science of management and tend to believe such courses denigrate the science. Yet, they appear to be selling well. Maybe it’s because people are gullible about management or perhaps the subject matter is fashionable. For example, the Information Technology sector is particularly inclined to following any fad that comes along, good or bad, without question.

I tend to think of management as simply, “getting people to do what you want, when you want it, and how you want it.” If we lived in a perfect world, there would not be a need for managers; people would know what to do, and projects would be executed on time and within cost. However, as we all know, we live in an imperfect world. People make mistakes and problems arise, hence, the need for “managers”, people charged with assigning and directing the work of others. Managers are in the business of solving problems; people problems.

So, instead of singing “Kumbaya” together or learning Political Correctness 101, managers need to learn such things as cultivating and controlling the corporate culture, empowering people and managing from the bottom-up, defining true methodologies in the workplace and standards, improving discipline and accountability, communications, coaching and encouraging teamwork, promoting craftsmanship, and much more. To get an idea of what true management is, be sure to download a complimentary copy of my eBook, “THE BRYCE IS RIGHT! Empowering Managers in today’s Corporate Culture.”

I do not mean to dismiss the courses mentioned earlier completely out of hand, but I tend to consider them as doing nothing more than “making mountains out of mole hills.” They may have a couple of good ideas, but certainly nothing worth the amount they charge for such a course. Who knows, maybe they include in the price a signed copy of the lyrics to “Kumbaya” for each attendee.

I think we have enough pseudo-scientific approaches to management. How about we get to work instead?

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  POLITICAL BOOK CLUBS – A tremendous way to learn American history.

LAST TIME:  THE IMPORTANCE OF THE FAMILY RESTAURANT  – It is more important than you think.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Management | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »

THE IMPORTANCE OF THE FAMILY RESTAURANT

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 10, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– It is more important than you think.

(Click for AUDIO VERSION)
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I have a friend who owns and operates a family style restaurant nearby. It has been around for at least thirty years, maybe longer. I’m sure you have one in your neighborhood as well. Sometimes they are called “diners” or “grilles.” My personal favorites are the prefabricated or silver streamliner diners I would frequent up north.

I’ve watched the clientele change in my friend’s restaurant over the years, but he still gets civic clubs, golfers, groups of neighbors, special interest groups, and of course families, where they enjoy camaraderie, a few laughs, talk a little business, or just to pass the time of day. It has become a cultural icon in the area, as most family restaurants do.

I do not believe my friend truly understands the significance his restaurant has on the community though. He sees it as nothing more than a place where people come to enjoy his food, particularly breakfast and lunch. However, it’s much more than this. People come in to discuss such things as local politics, developments in the area, such as the need for a new traffic light or sprucing up the downtown area, business interests, make travel plans, plan family events, or to simply relax from a difficult day. In this way, the family restaurants of today perform the same function as the old taverns of yesteryear, a place to sit and discuss current events or catch up on news. Because of this, it is an important social hub for the community. More business can be conducted in such a venue than can be accomplished over the phone.

Unfortunately, the family restaurant faces two threats to its existence: coffee shops, and fast food franchises. Coffee shops are rapidly becoming the de facto place to meet and talk business. Unlike the restaurant where you typically stay longer and enjoy a full meal, the coffee shop is for quick meetings. You spend less time at the shop, and for good reason, the company wants to flip the table in order to make more money. As such, they do not encourage long dissertations.

The fast food franchises have changed the way people think about meals, particularly breakfast and lunch. Instead of sitting down to a regular meal, people have been trained to consume their meal on the run. The cuisine includes such things as breakfast sandwiches, chicken fingers, burgers and fries. This explains why the menus in family style restaurants have been changing in recent years. Fading from view are such things as Swiss steak, beef tips on noodles, lamb shanks, goulash, meatloaf, even fried or baked chicken. If all you want is burgers, dogs and chicken fingers, what is the point of stopping at a family style restaurant?

Overseas, lunches are considered important. In Europe, for example, it is not uncommon to take a full hour for lunch, not just to enjoy a delicious meal, but to talk business. The same is true in Japan. The Japanese have a fast-paced lifestyle, but they understand the importance of a luncheon meeting, be it formal or informal.

Over the next ten to twenty years, we are going to see the family style restaurants in America slowly disappear. It is already starting to occur in my area. To compound problems, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find qualified cooks who know what they are doing in the kitchen. So, one by one, we are watching such restaurants quietly close their doors.

What I fear, as such restaurants go, they will have an impact on our social mores. We already have problems communicating with one and other, but this is going to be compounded when there is no longer a suitable venue to meet and talk.

As I told my friend, do not underestimate the importance of the local family style restaurant. As they disappear, our socialization skills will greatly diminish, and our communities will not function as well.

Yes, such restaurants are very important as they serve food for thought, as well as meals.

Also published in The Huffington Post.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  PSEUDO-SCIENTIFIC MANAGEMENT – Where you learn to sing “Kumbaya.”

LAST TIME:  MY TALK ON CITIZENSHIP  – Some thoughts on how to promote citizenship in America.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; KIT-AM (1280) in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Food, Life | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

 
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