Friday, April 25, 2008

New Rules - Old Rules - Our Rules

It is always nice to get a call from a major news network asking you to appear on one of their programs and to comment on a subject about which they apprently think you have some level of expertise. The one this past week however, turned into an unexpected and very interesting experience.

I should quickly add however that having to get there for a live interview at 7:00 in the morning which translated into getting up at 4:00 added nothing to enhance the experience, although it does give one much more respect for those folks like Matt, Merideth, et al who do it every day. Not something I would look forward to for sure.

Anyway, the program is called Money for Breakfast and the segment is what Fox calls The C-Suite Sit Down which is a regular feature on the show.

The unexpected experience came about when I discovered they have a particular question that they always use to close these interviews. They call it Three Rules. I had never heard of it before, but once they told me about it, it reminded me of the monologue that Bill Maher does at the end of his show each week and calls "New Rules as well what they do to close James Lipton's wonderful show Inside the Actors Studio when they ask each guest the same set of questions at the end like "what's your favorite word" etc.

Fox's variation on this theme is to ask the guest to share what they feel are three things that are really important to them when it comes to their business. I have to say, it gives you a funny feeling in your stomach when someone asks you something that important and you are limited in both time and number in terms of responding. The fact that it is on national television doesn't add much to your comfort level either.

Since all of this came up late in the day before the show, it gave me essentially the night before the interview to think about it, something which I can tell you is definitely not conducive to a good night's sleep, especially when you have to get up at 4:00 in the bargain.

The point of the exercise, of course, is to get their guests to share with the audience what at ExecuNet we sometimes characterize as "key learnings" in the hope that they might be of some help or interest to others.

I have no idea if what follows will or won't be of some help or interest to others, but I offer it in spirit of sharing; not the sharing of advice, but of one person's perspective. What I came up were not "rules" so much as they are beliefs:

1. Any relationship that we have, either inside or outside of our business, is based on TRUST.

2. An organization's culture should be about a feeling of working "WITH" not "FOR."

3. Everything that we say or do reflects on us all both individually and collectively.
If others have "three rules" of their own, I would love to see them and others probably would too.

If you wanted to see the entire interview you can click here. It runs around five minutes.


Anonymous said...

Dave, well done!! I am impressed, Neil Cavuto better watch out. You were very comfortable, relevant, insightful and helpful. This is an amazing piece of PR for ExecuNet!!

Dave Opton said...


You are very kind to say so. As to being "relevant", "insightful", and "helpful" for sure that was a goal, however, as to being "comfortable" that is not the word I would have used to describe my feelings. "Stark fear" was more of what it felt like.