Bill Gates’ New Rules

Read this article this morning from a link.
Written by Bill Gates 18 years ago.
(and how it holds true till today)




By BILL GATES Monday, Apr. 19, 1999

BILL GATES From Business @ The Speed of Thought: Using a Digital Nervous System, by Bill Gates. 1999 by William H. Gates, III. Published by Warner Books, USA.

If the 1980s were about quality and the 1990s were about re-engineering, then the 2000s will be about velocity. About how quickly business itself will be transacted.

About how information access will alter the life-style of consumers and their expectations of business. Quality improvements and business-process improvements will occur far faster. When the increase in velocity is great enough, the very nature of business changes.

To function in the digital age, we have developed a new digital infrastructure. It’s like the human nervous system. Companies need to have that same kind of nervous system–the ability to run smoothly and efficiently, to respond quickly to emergencies and opportunities, to quickly get valuable information to the people in the company who need it, the ability to quickly make decisions and interact with customers.

The successful companies of the next decade will be the ones that use digital tools to reinvent the way they work. To make digital information flow an intrinsic part of your company, here are 12 key steps.

For a large company to be able to maneuver as well as or better than a smaller competitor is a testament to both the energy of the employees and the use of digital systems. Personal initiative and responsibility are enhanced in an environment that fosters discussion. E-mail, a key component of our digital nervous system, does just that.

It helps turn middle managers from information filleters into doers. There’s no doubt that e-mail flattens the hierarchical structure of an organization. It encourages people to speak up. It encourages managers to listen. That’s why, when customers ask what’s the first thing they can do to get more value out of their information systems and foster collaboration in their companies, I always answer, E-mail.

I read all the e-mail that employees send me, and I pass items on to people for action. I find unsolicited mail an incredibly good way to stay aware of the attitudes and issues affecting the many people who work at Microsoft. The old saying Knowledge is power sometimes makes people hoard knowledge. They believe that knowledge hoarding makes them indispensable. Power comes not from knowledge kept but from knowledge shared. A company’s values and reward system should reflect that idea.

I like good news as much as the next person, but it also puts me in a skeptical frame of mind. I wonder what bad news I’m not hearing. When somebody sends me an e-mail about an account we’ve won, I always think, there are a lot of accounts nobody has sent mail about. Does that mean we’ve lost all of those? A good e-mail system ensures that bad news can travel fast, but your people have to be willing to send you the news. You have to be consistently receptive to bad news, and then you have to act on it.

 Sometimes I think my most important job as CEO is to listen for bad news. If you don’t act on it, your people will eventually stop bringing bad news to your attention. And that’s the beginning of the end.

6 Simple Habits that Change Managers into Effective Leaders

Sharing this great article by John Eades

  • Published on August 23, 2017 @ LinkedIn




The debate about the difference between a manager and leader has been settled. Without question, there is a difference in both definition and behavior.

Just to ensure we are on the same page, here are my favorite definitions of both in action form:

Management: The manipulation of others for your own success

Leadership: Serving and empowering the lives that have been entrusted to you

Unless you grew up in a place of worship or had really strong figures in your life that taught you about serving and empowering, you most likely default to management. Why? Because it’s what’s taught in high school, college and organizational leadership development programs. In many ways, our environment is teaching us to be managers, not leaders, but unfortunately, that’s not an excuse. Here are six habits that can help change managers into leaders.

  1. Find a Purpose Beyond Money

While there is no question that money is important in life, one of the best ways to make a leap towards being a leader is to find a true purpose in your work beyond money. If the only reason you go to work is for money, your people will know and you will never make the leap to serve.

If this is an area you struggle in, pick up Simon Sinek’s new book Find Your Why when it comes out in September.

  1. Decentralize Decision Making

Most people move into a position of management because they were good at their job. Typically their first actions are to solve all the worlds problems and be a major part in every decision facing the team. The problem is the people they are now leading are being treated as followers and have a sense of being in a subordinate position, thus creating more followers, not more leaders. As leadership expert David Marquet says, “followers have limited decision making authority and little incentive to give the utmost of their intellect, energy, and passion. Those who take orders usually run at half speed, underutilizing their imagination and initiative.”

The key here is to not only be ok with your people making decisions make it a core part of their job.

  1. Give and Serve Outside of Work

I don’t mean to give financially, I mean give your time. Winston Churchill famously said “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”

Look for ways to volunteer in your community or start a support group. The point here is if you learn to give up your free time to serve those that you don’t know, you most certainly will begin to serve and empower those that you do at work.

  1. Focus on Your Example

The old adage ‘do as I say, not as I do’ is an awful way to lead and a sure-fire way to erode trust with your team. Leading by example encompasses all your actions, from what time you show up at the office, how much vacation you take, what you wear, to the moral and ethical decisions you make both at work and home.

The choices you make every single day are watched and judged by others. Do your actions exemplify the way you want to be portrayed? One of the most important things you can remember is not allowing your title to effect a positive example you set for your team.

  1. Thinking You Have to Be the Hero

Like most professionals, I met my biggest weakness early on. I thought I was the only person who could do things right, and I had to have my hand in every decision. Then someone told me,

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

It was exactly what I needed to hear. From then on, I knew I didn’t have to be the hero. Now, I surround myself with talented people, ask for help, give more responsibility, and try to listen more than I talk.

  1. Stop Making Excuses

If you habitually struggle with saying or thinking on a regular basis “There is never enough hours in the day” or “this quarter is so important,” stop and reflect on what you are saying. Every quarter is important and every day is important but it shouldn’t for a minute stop you from thinking critically about how you are leading other people.

I don’t care what the circumstance eliminate your excuses, take responsibility and put in the work.

The Windshield Mentality

No matter if you are a manager or a leader, I want you to begin embracing the windshield mentality. All the windshield mentality is, is thinking about what’s ahead of you instead of behind you. Start thinking and planning how you are going to implement these habits moving forward and never look back!


Write …. don’t just talk.


Many many many years ago, to be a great sales professional, perhaps the greatest asset to have would be the ability to talk and present well. This was the needed “communication skill”.
Then, as one progressed to be a Manager or even higher, besides being able to talk well, one must also then be able to write well. Both talking and writing becomes equally important. However, “writing skills” was often neglected or overlooked.
TODAY, in our digital age ; and the creativity one can do on social media, the ability to WRITE and EXPRESS oneself are perhaps equally important if not more so than our ability to talk (or present).
Short/ concise/ captivating messages (artwork) can reach millions of people worldwide by a click of a button. Customers do not even have to see your face nor hear your voice to buy from you.
So, are you good/creative in sharing your ideas/thoughts in written-form or WORDS to seduce your customers ?

True “LOVE” to sell

A true Passion to Sell 

Is like finding love and falling in love
You believe in it, you pursue it  

It’s non manupulative
There’s no deception, no coercion
It has to be of free will

You act, speak and smile with your heart
Your action match your words,  pure and sincere

You serve, you simply do your best to impress
You get the sale, you take care of your customer
You hope for a long term relationship

Is selling your passion ?
Are you selling right ?

Passion to sell

When we speak 

When we present

When we try to influence someone 

We must “FEEL”  deeply for things we say


We must be sincere

There should excitement

There should be enthusiasm

Only then can our proposition move our audience and make them emotionally connected.

Touch their hearts 

Serve their needs

Show them WHY our proposition is important and meaningful.

Only then are we adding value and knowledge to our audience.

A well informed customer will be our good customer.

Communication when in crisis

Challenges will occur. Crisis will happen.

Here is where EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION is needed. Like it or not specifics on corrective actions and deadlines need to be given.

Angry customers do not like vague answers. Today, every customer is a SMART customer and can smell poor excuses a mile away. Lastly, I cannot agree more that in today’s world “sorry” is simply NOT good enough. It is just a word.

An organization needs to demonstrate in clear actions how a “sorry” can compensate a customer who has suffered.



The disastrous IT failure at British Airways (BA) that ruined travel plans for more than 75,000 has sent the company’s reputation and share value into a sharp dive, and its poor communication is surely not helping.

The airline’s parent company, International Airlines Group, saw a drop in stock of more than 4% on Tuesday; it finished the day down 0.41% on Wednesday.

Analysts at Citigroup estimated that the IT problems could cost British Airways around EUR 100 million.

According to YouGov Brand Index, which measures consumer perceptions of brands, BA’s “Index” score, which is a combination of metrics including quality, value and reputation, has also plummeted. It dropped by a statistically significant 9.5 points over the past week on a list of the UK’s 28 biggest airline brands.

The chaos all began when the airline’s computer systems went down on Saturday(27 May 2017) and there was no functioning back-up. UA cancelled all flights and only managed to resume full version Tuesday(30 May 2017), with thousands of passengers now still without their bags.In response to the turmoil, Alex Cruz, the chief executive and chairman of British Airways, said sorry a couple of times through three videos BA released on social media as well as its online press-room, yet he has refused to be publicly questioned and declined calls to step down.

According to The Daily Mail, he had even emailed staff members, urging them not to comment on the meltdown as the company “are not in the mode of ‘debriefing what happened’ but rather ‘let’s fix this mode’.

…If you do not want to get involved or cannot get involved, I would kindly ask you to refrain from live commentary, unless it is a message of support to the thousands of colleagues that love BA as much as you do.

– Cruz in his letter to the UA staff members.

Angry Twitter comments revealed that unclear organisations and explanations had left thousands of passengers stranded in airport terminals. Many waited hours for just a Twitter response, and some passengers were unable to call its customer services centre, or were directed to a phone line that costs at least 50p (HK$5) per minute when called from a mobile phone.

Adding fuel to the fire was the airline’s announcement on Monday, which said passengers who gave up on waiting in airport queues or on hold to the call centre were not entitled to the airline’s coverage of the cost of additional tickets.

The airline has now reportedly soften its approach, saying it will look “on a case-by-case basis”.

BA should announce a timeline to let customers know “when to expect”

“It’s safe to say the airline hasn’t handled the crisis very well,” said Alan Casey, partner at Prophet.

In the first place, Casey said the information released by BA is believed by many to be incomplete, yet customers expect full transparency when a problem occurs – how long the problem would last, why it is happening, and the structural changes that the brand would made, both operationally and culturally. Casey said users expect the brand to explain how they would get back in control as soon as possible.

Although the brand explained the cancellation was caused by a worldwide IT systems failure, people familiar with IT will know it’s not usual to experience such destruction in a well-established company like BA. Such suspicions will destroy trust fundamentally, Casey explained.

“Either people would question if it is something else, for example, if the system is being hacked, and that BA is forced to shut down the whole IT system; or they will suspect BA had over-cut its IT budget. These two suspicions lead to concerns: could BA’s quality and maintenance be affected by the IT meltdown?”

Trust is fundamental, especially when it comes to an airline company. Customers do not want to fly on a system they believe is not safe or trusted.

Vincent Tsui, chief marketing officer at Next Mobile Ltd, agreed that BA should clarify speculations as soon as possible. “It would solve many problems if they could clarify that the chaos has nothing to do with BA, and they have yet to formally respond.”

However, Tsui said it is understandable for Cruz to refrain from being publicly questioned, and asked front-staff to keep silent.

“The larger the corporate is, the harder it is and the longer it takes for the CEO to understand which part went wrong in a catastrophic event,” Tsui explained. “It’s better though, if the chief can give a clear and concrete timeline on the steps that BA will take. For instance, he could say they will undergo a deep investigation on the issue and report two weeks later, so concerned customers and investors know what to expect.”

Furthermore, Tsui suggested BA explain its compensation through an FAQ on social media as soon as possible, as it would answer most of the passengers’ inquiries and help lift the busy customer service team’s burden.

Saying sorry is not enough

“Going forward, people will still take British Airways, but it would be harder for the brand to charge a premium, with customers no longer feeling inclined to pay extra for the airline’s claim of quality,” said Casey. “The two remedies they should take now is to be over-communicating and over-compensating: being especially open on the information they have and the time BA would need to get the problems resolved, and make it up to the people most affected.”

“Sorry would not be enough – BA will have to invest in showing they are taking the crisis seriously.”

Drawing reference from Toyota’s vehicle recalls controversy between 2009-2011, which demonstrated a change in both culture and production line, Casey advised BA to show they are revamping its leadership and customer services to prove it is still a world-class airline brand.

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