Thursday, May 28, 2009

Can She Bake A Cherry Pie?

The business press provides endless articles about the actions or strategies of companies and executives, and countless books exist to provide business and career advice. Yet I've never seen the advice I'm about to give you, despite that it could have an enormous impact on your business success.

Paranormal phenomena remain at the frontier (or outland) of science, not due (in my opinion) to lack of data, but rather due to the lack of (a) any coherent explanatory theory and hence (b) any ability to make controlled predictions. However many such phenomena have been studied in sufficient detail to qualify as descriptive sciences, and they are more accepted in India where they go by the term "siddhis" (perfections, powers).

One such phenomenon is clairvoyance, including an ability to "read" or intuit the thoughts and intentions of others. While still unexplained, this has been extensively documented in "ganzfeld" experiments and there is little doubt as to its existence.

As anyone with significant business experience can tell you, this would be extremely desirable, since the business world contains a large number of deeply unethical people. Bernard L. Madoff and Marc Dreier are only the tip of the iceberg. Some psychiatrists place the number of persons with sociopathic "character disorder" as high as five percent (5%) of the general population. (See "The Sociopath Next Door," by Martha Stout, Harvard University.) And in my experience, although you won't read this in the media, at the higher levels of business the percentage is much higher, i.e., this issue is really life or death.

Some select people do seem to have clairvoyant abilities.

For example, the reign of Charlemagne is celebrated as a bright spot in French history and early medieval European civilization. According to one story I heard from a history professor, King Charlemagne had a person in his court "who could tell him the true intentions of anyone standing before him." However, when that guy died, things went to hell, darkness fell again, and the ensuing rulers resumed murdering each other. (B. Frischer, personal communication.)

In a recent example, the famous entrepreneur Nolan Bushnell (Atari, Chuck E. Cheese, uWink) was asked "Who gives you the best advice about your business?" He replied, "... my wife Nancy ... can ferret out frauds and phonies better than anyone else I've ever seen." (Inc Magazine, April 2009, page 115).

How can this knowledge help your business career?

As a young man or woman focusing on a career in business, or graduating from business school, you could (following Bushnell) put this ability on your checklist of desiderata for a potential mate. Places to look include yoga or meditation classes, spiritual bookstores, or possibly your local church. If you wanted to be sure, you could introduce your date to someone known to be a pathological liar (such people are not rare) and see whether they can spot them.

Some men or women of a spiritual bent may consider this idea overly materialistic but spiritual people need financial support and the prospect of being well cared for by a successful, ethical business person could be a positive life choice for many of them.

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At 5/29/2009 7:11 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Very refreshing. Thankyou for your clear insight.


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