Friday, December 2, 2022

Project Management without the Leadership Seminar

The Back Story

5th Grade:

The Superintendent of Schools came in as a guest
teacher to teach a science class.

He began the process of who would be working on which
science projects--This with no knowledge of the students' abilities, preferences, or social interactions.

I raised my hand for. "Who wants to do the report on
volcanoes?" I was selected.

Then, he announced that I should really work with someone
on this project. [Wrong. Unnecessary] He then proceeded
to seek an interested person, then chose one of my classmates to be my teammate.  I would have chosen someone else.

3 major management blunders before he finished.

I've discussed this in part in another articles in 
LinkedIn posts.

1. When you assign someone to head up a project, assign the person who is most capable to head up the project.

2. If you don't know who that person is, find out.

3. Let that person choose his or her team That person knows which co-workers are best able to handle the different aspects of the project.

4. Do not, and I cannot emphasize this enough, do not add
to or subtract from the team.

5. Do not allow others outside the team to manipulate their
want onto the team regardless of strategy. Especially when
that person's boss comes to you to offer the services of that
person [that the boss wants to get rid of for a while & shunts them off onto you & the project leader.]

6. Do not allow other bosses to borrow people from the project. And if you are a more high big boss [sic] don't approve the request from the little boss.

This should help toward tidying up the problems
in the operation.

Best wishes,


Box 33
Pen Argyl, PA 18072

Copyright © 2022 All rights reserved

Monday, August 15, 2022

Find Your Comfort Zone: Theory or Conclusion?


From Marc Anthony, "If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life." to Aristotle, "Surround yourself with a wall of contentment";

From Madame Curie, toiling away in her laboratory to discover radium to Thomas Edison, toiling away at his facilities in West Orange, N.J. to gather a rich harvest of patents for his many inventions that transformed the world;

From Dr. Albert Einstein at the Institute for Advanced Study, posing in front of a chalk board covered with equations to come to an understanding of the universe, to Honore de Balzac, hole up in his garot overlooking the rooftops of Paris, to the Lake Poets out among the beauties of nature;

From The Bloomsbury Set in England to the Algonquin Round table;

All have found their comfort zone and found great success and achievement.

You may cite Evel Knievel jumping his motorcycle over cars and trucks and The Grand Canyon--a thrill seeker, and you may cite Lewis and Clark in pursuit of the Northwest passage out in the wilderness as people who've gone outside their comfort zone, but in fact, thrill seeking was Mr. Knievel's comfort zone.  Just as exploration was the comfort zone of Lewis and Clark.

You can retort, Madame Curie died of radiation poisoning. But others will cite race car drivers who crash and die in their pursuit of thrills--what's you point?

My point is that many, many people have achieved great success by finding their comfort zone.  Still, there are those who admonish us to go outside our comfort zone.  Why?  Because that is their comfort zone. That is what they sell.

Perhaps, the next time someone scolds you to go outside your comfort zone you can defend yourself from their intrusions by turning the tables: "Why don't you go outside your comfort zone and stop telling me to go outside my comfort zone?"

Let no one take away your happiness and success by bullying your into going outside your comfort zone. Let no one take away your happiness.

Best wishes,


Bob Asken

Box 33

Pen Argyl, PA 18072


All quotations, except as noted, from

The Quotations of Slim Fairview

Copyright © 2022 Robert Asken

All rights reserved

Monday, July 4, 2022


I'm going to go outside my comfort zone.
But you can't complain, because it was 
your idea.

Why do people keep telling people to 
go outside their comfort zone? 

Because that's their comfort zone. 
Maybe they should go outside their 
comfort zone and stop telling people 
to go outside their comfort zone.

Now, why do people want people to go
outside their comfort zone?

It's like I said about talking about it.
Why do people want to talk about it?

To convince you to do what they want 
you to do.

To convince you to do what you don't 
want to do.

To delay or prevent you from doing 
anything at all.

It's the same with comfort zones.

In your comfort zone

1.  You can focus on your work.
2.  You can concentrate
3.  You can avoid judgmental people.
4.  You can avoid misdirection
5.  You can avoid red herrings
6.  You can avoid time-wasting discussions.
7.  You can be more flexible
8.  You can do & benefit from your own research.
9.  You can assess and evaluate without recriminations.
10.  You can avoid false an malicious allegations which may include but are not limited to your being:

Narrow minded
et. seq. 

Did you ever notice that people who constantly tell 
you, repeatedly, over and over again, that there is 
no difference between brown eggs and white eggs,
always buy brown eggs?  And the people who buy
white eggs, buy white eggs and never say anything?

~Slim Fairview



Box 33
Pen Argyl, PA 18072

The Quotations of Slim Fairview
Copyright © 2022 Robert Asken
All rights reserved

Monday, June 27, 2022

Quips or Quibbles or Politics

We've heard them all.
The best government money can buy.
We get the government we deserve.

And as far as the news goes, there are just as many people
who complain about Fox News as there are people who
complain about CNN as there are people who complain about, well, you get the idea.

And, as in life, 

"Some people ask questions seeking information. Other people as questions so they can interrupt, contradict, argue, & pretend they're right." Slim Fairview

Some ask a question five times longer than the anticipated answer.
Repeat the question, 
explain the question, answer the question, then argue with their own answers. If the guest gets to say anything, they interrupt the guest & argue with what the guest didn't say whether or not the guest was going to say it.

On panels, people offer up the facts, but not all the facts, in support of their position.  

And all this so they can jack up their ratings so they can charge more money to advertisers who sell diet books and clown food.

"And the reasons why people want you to talk about anything is so they can 
convince you to do what they want you to do; convince you to do what you don't want to do; or to delay or prevent you from doing anything at all."  Slim Fairview

Best wishes, 

Sincerest regards,


Box 33
Pen Argyl, PA 18072
Etats- Unis

Copyright © 2022 Robert Asken
All rights reserved

Monday, April 18, 2022

Haves & Have Nots & the Failures of Government

I. The Literal

There are three ways for government to increase revenue.
1. Increase taxes--not popular
2. Increase the number of taxpayers*
3. Increase the amount of money each taxpayer earns.
* Number 2 has the advantage of reducing government
spending when people receiving benefits begin earning
a living.

II. The Metaphor

The Haves are increasing arithmetically
The Have nots are increasing geometrically
The Challenge is not the difference between
the number of dollars between the haves and
the have nots. The challenge is the difference
between the number of people between the
haves and the have nots. This is not a sustainable

1. The haves can defend & protect what they have
2. The haves can share what they have
3. The haves can help the have nots get their own.



Box 33
Pen Argyl, PA 18072
Etats Unis

Copyright © 2022 Robert Asken
All rights reserved