The Ethics of Symbolism

There is nothing inherently wrong with symbolism. It is only symbolism that masquerades inaction that is unethical and destructive.

Continue reading


Ideology is No Ersatz for Strategy

A friend of mine recently observed that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s strategy to deter a Chinese seizure of the disputed Senkaku Islands makes no sense.

Continue reading


Forget Recruiting. Poach.

Don’t recruit. Poach. In a tight labor market, there is no percentage in tentativeness. If there is any time to go on the offense, it is now.

I don’t know why recruiting firms call what they do a “search.” Who cares about a search? A search is easy, and often consists of little more than trawling through LinkedIn. Continue reading


Increase Your Attrition

Many companies are struggling to find the qualified people they need, so they resort to retaining the people they have whether qualified or not. They fight to eliminate or at least reduce rates of attrition when it is increased attrition that can do the business the most good. Retention of the best is all that matters.

Recently, the head of a large business unit of a major international company here in Japan told me that the company’s rate of attrition is of no particular concern to him, even though it is higher than industry average.

Continue reading