What Don’t You Know?

By: Dan Kennedy on: January 3rd, 2011 5 Comments

I’ve discovered people I thought were smart, aren’t; people who should be right on top of things occurring, threatening or directly affecting their specific businesses or professions are either ignorant and clueless, in denial, or unable to think through the series of possible consequences.

Real estate investors weeks late knowing about the U.S. Supreme Court’s rewriting of eminent domain law, permitting, actually, under certain circumstances mandating forced transfer of one person’s private property to another private party.

Publishing executives unaware of the California Supreme Court decision putting B&N.com at a 9% price disadvantage to amazon.com.

Talk of a possible Do-Not-Mail-List legislation.

Both threats and opportunities are ignored. And I’m alarmed that people who should know, don’t.

So I question what you are paying attention to, reading, watching….whether you are intelligently choosing what to know and what to ignore.

If you care to try a 30-Day Experiment that we used to force on salespeople, I’ll bet you’d find it illuminating. Unplug all your TV’s and lock them away in the garage for a month*.

Use the TV time to read whatever you now don’t have time to read, say, The Wall Street Journal or Investors Business Daily, Business Week, my newsletters, your trade journals, and three books (or more) per week…and to discuss what you and your other family members read with each other.

Do NOT read, watch or listen to ANY ‘pop culture news.’

Unintended Consequences

Whenever we act, we should think about the UNintended consequences, not just the intended consequences. Geo-political example: not long ago, fewer than 4% of the Chinese population owned automobiles. Now, they’re all driving and using oceans more oil. Their rise as the global center of manufacturing requires more oil. Our hand in turning China into a modernized industrial power (intended) has directly led to the higher oil prices (unintended).

In business, few people give much thought to everything that may occur when they do ‘x’. They look only at the immediate result. When automakers originally abandoned their sticker prices and introduced discounting, negotiation and rebates, I doubt they thought all the way through to all the long-term consequences.

Info-marketers who’ve switched from small group coaching to unlimited group size coaching ala Strategic Coach have most certainly NOT thought through all the consequences (and have ignored my comments about them).

I find I have a bigger, broader, longer-term view of possible consequences. Some of that is thanks to experience. But more of it is simply due to a decision to slow down long enough to connect dots into the distance, to think.

*Don’t misunderstand. I like and watch a fair amount of TV. I’m not suggesting this as permanent. Just 30 days.

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    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Dan Kennedy is internationally recognized as the 'Millionaire Maker,' helping people in just about every category of business turn their ideas into fortunes. Dan's "No B.S." approach is refreshing amidst a world of small business marketing hype and enriches those who act on his advice. For more money-making marketing tips, tactics and strategies, go to www.GKIC.com

    5 Responses

    1. Scott says:

      I unplugged the tv once and almost got divorced. drat!

    2. Roman Krikov says:

      That’s a good idea actually! I turned of my TV and online viewing for a month and I’m surprised to how much I got done!! and that’s with me procrastinating like crazy. But since I worked video production for the last 8 years there’s no way I’m giving up the motion picture entertainment!!

      Thanks Dan

    3. Neil says:

      I thought this was an excellent post. I completely agree with what you are saying about people not looking forward. I find that I tend to be one of the only people in my circle of friends that does that. I can’t tell you how often the words I told you so have come to my mind.

      Also I second the no TV notion as I think it’s the single biggest waste of time in nearly all of our lives. I am going to make a point of watching less and reading more this year.

      Neil

    4. Bud Brown says:

      Thanks, Dan. I just finished your book “No B.S. Marketing to the Affluent.” It was great and now I’m following your blog. Thanks for the great info.
      Bud

    5. Barbara Stendal says:

      I unplugged and got rid of my television in 1988. I find people and books far more interesting.

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