SOME OBSERVATIONS WHICH HAVE BEEN HELPFUL TO ME OVER THE LAST 60 PLUSYEARS.
By ED ALLEN...
(The key to success) You are what you think you are
Success breeds confidence
Contrary to popular belief, nice guys CAN win.
It doesn't cost a dime to be nice to people
It's not what you say or what you do, it's how you treat people - that‘s how they will remember you.
It may take 20 years to make a friend, and only 20 minutes to lose him.
Be forgiving. Once words have left your mouth, you can never take them back.
The truth is ALWAYS a perfect defense. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember what you said.
(With apologies to Shakespeare): Be true to yourself, always, and then you will never be false to anyone else.
Never have any dealings with a liar or a thief.
Nowhere is it written that life is fair - so don't expect it or you'll be disappointed.
The difference between a HELPING outstretched hand, and a BEGGING
Outstretched palm, is just a twist of the wrist.
If someone hands you a lemon, make lemonade.
Ed's Golden Rule #1
Do unto others, as though you were the others.
Ed's Golden Rule #2
He who has the gold, rules.
In your personal relationships, initial reservations are probably valid. First hunches are often right)
Anyone who views the world at 60, the same as he did at 30, has wasted 30 years of his life.
An honorable man's public reputation for honesty and integrity is more important than his name.
Have unquestionable integrity, and your integrity will never be questioned.
I give you what I received from my father, an untarnished name.
You can't unring a bell or squeeze toothpaste back into the tube.
A short pencil is better than a long memory. Write it down.
When you get something for nothing, you are usually getting your money's worth.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Once you raise your voice, you have lost the battle.
To change is difficult, NOT to change is fatal.
ED ON LEADERSHIP:
A true leader does not INFLICT pain ON others- he bears pain FOR others.
Unless you are the lead dog, the scenery never changes.
A good executive is one who surrounds himself with enough good people who can get the job done so he can put his feet up on the desk and think- that is what he is being paid for..
Hire smart people and then have the good sense to listen to them.
Until you get the hang of it, leave the thinking to me.
On time is late for leaders.
ED ON BUSINESS ETHICS:
The financial success of a SERVICE business is inversely proportional to
the greed of the owners.
There comes a time when Near Term Profit has to defer to Long Term Responsibility.
You should earn your profit only after you have discharged your Public responsibility.
Put principle before profit, and people before portfolios
What you own is not important, what you do is.
Reputation is what others say about you. Character is what you think of yourself.
It is more important to be a good man than a good manager.
ED ON BUSINESS:
The minimum acceptable level of quality is Perfection - If better is
possible, then Good is not enough...
Focus you energies only on the important and essential - don't sweat the small stuff.
Reasons are acceptable - excuses are not.
Just plain old "dumb" is not allowed here.
Old Haitian Proverb: Don't irritate the alligators until you get to the other side of the river.
You can never win a fight with a customer, a reporter, or a politician.
Don't ever get into a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel.
When two men in a business always agree, one of them is unnecessary.
No Surprise Rule: There is no such thing as a "good" surprise.
It is pardonable to be defeated, but never to be surprised.
The hours is until the work isn't
An organized mind is more important than an organized desk ( but, unfortunately, some people have neither)
Don't be content with "average". "Average" is as close to the bottom as it is from the top
Never borrow money to pay a dividend
No one ever went broke making a profit.
If it wasn't for people and money, running a business would be a piece of cake.
Never risk a lot to make a little
Preparedness is the best defense - against anything.
If you get up in the morning, and don't want to go to work, you've got the wrong job.
ED ON ACTION:
Eventually, why not now? Do it NOW. Indecision is destructive.
It is better to do Something, even if it requires fixing later, than to do nothing.
Don't just put it down - put it away.
The secret of getting ahead, is getting started.
If you are going to do something anyway, do it the first time gracefully.
Wishing and worrying are the two greatest time wasters.
Delay is the deadliest form of denial.
ED ON POLITICS:
Power corrupts - absolute power corrupts absolutely.
Political power breeds political arrogance - absolute power results in
The world is full of politicians - but not very many real Statesmen.
A politician shifts with the political winds like a weather vane - a
Statesman points the way like a compass.
A politician looks ahead to the next election - a Statesman looks ahead to the next generation.
Most politicians think they were elected to regulate, when they were really elected to govern.
Anyone who enjoys good law, or good sausage should never watch either of them being made.
Before beginning any substantive discussion, define your terms.
If you start with a false premise, you will wind up with a false conclusion.
Without communication, understanding is impossible - without understanding, conflicts are probable.
The greatest enemies of any cause are its blindest believers.
ED'S SHORT COURSE IN HUMAN RELATIONS:
The Six Most Important Words. "I admit I made a mistake"
The Five Most Important Words " You did a good job"
The Four Most Important Words " What is your opinion?"
The Three Most Important Words "If you please"
The Two Most Important Words " Thank You"
The One Most Important Word " We"
Least Important Word " I "
ED'S ORDER OF PRIORITIES CABLE OPERATOR VS ASSET PLAYER:
Subscribers Lenders Employees Investors Franchisers Creditors Investors
Employees Lenders Subscribers
I hope this bit of philosophy helps our industry, as competition challenges us to do more with less, and to return profits to our companies.
Never forget who you really work for. "The Customer".
If you follow the philosophy of a successful cable operator, you can not help but succeed yourself........"
If you want to be successful, Imitate that which is successful"
Ed Allen 1924-2000
President- Winona TV Signal, La Cross TV Signal. 1956-1965
ATC Communications, Lafayette, California 1965-1967
President- Western Communications Inc. Walnut Creek, Ca. 1968-1991
Founder and Partner - Intermedia Partners- 1991-1992
Chairman - National Cable Television Association 1984 and 1985
Board Member- California Cable Television Association