Author: RRI

And Just Like That!

Often attributed to the movie character, Forest Gump the title phrase can be interpreted as an abrupt change in one’s life. The past few years have brought significant changes to many of us.  Illness, job change, moving to a new location, kids out of school and so it goes.  Disruption can be intimidating, yet it

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Age Discrimination: Mandated by the Fed

The current president of the United States is 80 years old.  He has indicated that that he will run for a second term.  If reelected, at the end of that terminus he will be 86! Is that too old to run a country?  The Speaker of the House is 80, and her peers include a number of

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Delusional: The Martha Mitchell Effect 2.0

Attributed to the late Martha Mitchell, wife of the then Attorney General Oxford defines it as “A misinterpretation of a person’s justified belief as a delusion, often by a psychiatrist, clinical psychologist, or general practitioner.” Climate deniers, election deniers, COVID vaccine deniers, The Science deniers and all kind of deniers.  Treated as delusional and even

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Whoa Nellie–Delays in the Smart Horseless Carriage

In the just released NCHRP Research Report 1001/BTSCRP Research Report 2, a new framework provides government and non government parties and other stakeholders a tool for the assessment and risk management for emerging automated driving system (ADS) technologies. This Framework for Assessing Potential Safety Impacts of Automated Driving Systems reminds this reader with a sense

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It’s The Holiday Season–Maybe?

At least in the United States we will soon be kicking off the Holiday Season with all the craziness it brings. Starting with the US Thanksgiving, followed by Black Friday (often practiced the entire month of November) many will prepare for Santa Claus then on into the New Year’s celebration.  Many religions have holy days

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Hierarchy of Team Needs in Challenging Times

First it was Covid-19 and now a Recession?  Is a Global Military Conflict on the Horizon as well?   Social, economic and personal pressures continue to mount.  There is already evidence of Reductions in Force, (RIF) aka layoffs are underway or planned.  With consumers stretched to the max, higher interest rates, equity markets in retreat and

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Agility, Resiliency and Sustainability: Needed Now More than Ever

This pundit and his firm have long been proponents of building organizational cultures that provide firm the capability of adjusting to ‘events on the ground’ quickly with strong Situational Awareness.  Moreover, when adversity raises its ugly head, the response of a High Reliability Organization enables the resilience to adjust and go forward.  Finally, stakeholder value

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At the Precipice?

On October 8, 2021, we posted the blog, Welcome to the 70s–Again!  The point that the awful economy of that decade could return.  It seems that one year later, those comments have come true.  Many are now freely comparing out contemporary time to that period before most adults were born.  This Baby Boomer graduated from

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Crippling Green

“Yes, hope is a strange thing.  Peace at last.  But at what price?” — Khaled Hosseini Great Societies have been lost in the past–a number of times.  There is no reason to believe our current crop is immune! Ariel Durant, the co-author of the 11 volume tome, The Story of Civilization is credited with, “A great

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What We’ve Got Here is Failure to Communicate!!

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” George Bernard Shaw The 1967 movie Cool Hand Luke, popularized the term, “What we’ve got here is failure to communicate.”  The American Film Institute lists this statement as number 11 out of the top 100 movie quotes.  The basis of this

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Sun Sets in the West: Science or Commentary?

One newscaster recently used the metaphor of the sun setting in the west as settled science so contrary views were not newsworthy.  His argument–Fairness is Over Rated!  What?  One wonders whether this is true for those who believe the world is round or for those in the Flat Earth Society? Yet most political commentary and

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Reports of Fossil Fuels Demise Premature? – Renewables Remain Marginalized?

Who would have thought that in the summer with temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit the wind would stop blowing. According to NOAA, “The main cause of wind is a little surprising.  It’s actually temperature.  More specifically, it’s differences in temperature between different areas.”  With a major Atmospheric High Pressure parked over a large geographic area,

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The Power of Synergies

An oil and gas industry group, the U.S. Energy Workforce & Technology Council recently released a survey which stated, “companies with a higher percentage of women in executive positions have a 34 percent higher total return to shareholders than those that do not and companies with ethnic diversity on their executive team are 25 percent

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Why Corporate Initiatives Fail

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, one definition of initiative is. “A new plan or action to improve something or solve a problem.”  In corporate parlance this often translates into yet another short-term and often politically correct effort to demonstrate forward motion/social citizenship.  Often forgotten faster than the evening news cycle as new searches for performance

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Innovation: The Key to the Global Future

Henry Ford, the Founder of Ford Motor Company is famously attributed to this statement.  “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”  In other words, most of us think linearly. One wonders if this line of reasoning is the best way during the current situation.  Perhaps, non-linear mindsets are

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Who Let the Dogs Out?

Our often called, ‘Best Friend’ has and continues to teach us all manner of life lessons.  While the Dog Days of Summer will soon be upon those who live in the northern hemisphere, not all dogs choose to stay on the porch. Most dogs are action oriented.  Throw a ball or a stick and some

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A Windy Position

In a recent online discussion, this pundit put forth the thought that fiberglass wind turbine blades can pose an environmental problem when decommissioned.  This position was quickly challenged with the rebuttal that burning coal ‘kills’ kids so it did not matter if discarded blades litter the countryside as it is worth it. According to research

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ESG Explained

According to Investopedia, “Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria are a set of standards for a company’s operations that socially conscious investors use to screen potential investments.”  Definitions of the three components are pretty straightforward: Environmental–Generally refers to the stewardship of the planet and how organizations facilitate that responsibility. Social–Facilitating organizational responsibility to the global

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Clickbait Redux

We are offered the world at the tip of our fingers, But!  There are many prices to pay.  Theft by scam simply by clicking on a great opportunity is getting more sophisticated all the time. Recently, this pundit was offered a once in a lifetime possibility if only I would listen to an MS Office

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Will Price Controls Work This Time?

Update: Just after we published this edition, Goldman Sachs released this comprehensive research piece; Stagflation Risk. Recently, one media outlet raised the suggestion of government price controls.  Generally, seen as a bad idea, none-the-less in this inflationary environment, some may perceive value from an action of this kind. Additionally, in the current environment some politicians

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So Here We Go Again?

Will gas lines return? Recent geopolitical events have driven the price of gasoline sky high–again!  As of this writing it is difficult to say where this will all lead.  What is known is that the cost of all things related to petroleum have significantly increased and may go even higher. According to the U.S. Department

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The Thirteen and The One

As of this writing, the situation in Ukraine is fluid at best.  Many see the Ukrainian people as heroes winning against all odds.  Other pundits predict they will be overwhelmed in the near future.  History suggests the later is a premature prognosis. In the 1940’s European resistance played a major role in the defeat of

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Beware The Guns of March?

Readers know that as of this writing there is geopolitical and military tension in eastern Europe.  Hopefully, the situation will resolve peacefully. This piece is not about those politics.  Rather it is about the potential for accidental engagement and how that risk can be mitigated. President Kennedy is famously cited for the comment that referred

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Going Green? Or NOT!

The total or lifecycle carbon footprint for any energy source is a function of the manufacturing, commissioning, operation (including maintenance) and decommissioning of that asset.  Moreover, the value of an electric powered vehicles (EV) is seen as a function of the amount of fossil fuel no longer used by the vehicle.  However, this is only

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The 1950s Were So Good Because the 1930s & 40s Were So Very Bad

An early Baby Boomer, born in 1948 this post war pundit watched (pun intended) the beginning of the broadcast television age, featuring I Love Lucy, The Honeymooners, The Ozzie and Harriet show, Leave It To Beaver, Disney’s Mickey Mouse Club, The Roy Rogers Show, Superman, Looney Tunes, Captain Kangaroo, The Howdy Doody Show and more. 

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100

This edition marks the 100th post in our Critical Mass Blog series.  We have sought to provide thoughtful, unbiased insight into the contemporary business and organizational challenges we all face.  Since our first blog post on November 27, 2017 our world has turned over in ways none expected.  Likely, this trend will continue. This series

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Getting to Diverse and Inclusive Teams

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Team Models There is a tendency to see DEI through the lens of initiatives or often a process semi-outside the daily ‘organizational’ grind.  Does this represent reality? Organizations spend countless sums training employees and others they depend on for Operational Excellence performance.  They often trust global Teams to add stakeholder

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Learn from the Big Guy

We have all heard the flight attendant say, “Thank you for flying with us and welcome your destination, another on time arrival.”  Usually stated with gusto, as if an on time arrival was uncommon! Pundits and politicians are telling us that Santa will be late this year.  More salt on the wound, the jolly elf

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THE SCIENCE: The Reason We Need STEM

Almost every day, we hear that “The Science” says . . .  We are told Covid-19 and Climate Change are based on The Science and as such we must accept that expert analyses as ‘settled.’  Then something changes and once more the science police demand we accept their new interpretation. The near-term result: confusion and

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