Maxims, rules of thumb and other observations on human cognition and sociocultural affectations

This will be added to on an irregular basis...
  • What is said to humans directly is received with skepticism and considered with dubiousness while that which is heard in passing, especially that which most conforms to their mentality or prejudices, is readily believed.
  • Humans have a certain cognitive latency between exposure to new information or experiences and the ability to think dispassionately and intellectually about it.
  • Humans have a certain cognitive spectrum starting with the moment of exposure to new information or experiences and ending with some point at which the thing is effectively "in the past" for them.
  • This cognitive spectrum is linked to the emotional process often referred to as shock, anger, denial and acceptance.
  • The more and faster information or experiences are presented to people and the closer the quarters and the lesser the distance between people, the more their early reactions in the passionate emotional stage are reflected back to them in the manner of responses to those reactions from others in light of those responses.
  • The more outrages which are suffered without sufficient time to allow emotional bleed-off, the farther the bar for subsequent reaction and outrage are pushed, and the more further events must progress before reaction and outrage.
  • It is possible for serious detriments to eventually sit below this threshold for long enough for their damaging effects to build and multiply until their entire society undergoes some reactive convulsion.
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Friday, January 16, 2009

Circuit City's creditors realize what their management doesn't: there's no rational reason for them to be in business

Circuit City seeking to liquidate - Jan. 16, 2009

This quote is at the same very accurate and very inaccurate:

"This company made massive mistakes," he said, citing a decision to get rid of sales people and other mismanagement.

One wonders if they've ever been in a Circuit City. The accurate part is that they made massive mistakes. The inaccurate part is that sales people being removed had anything to do with that. Their floor sales force was one of the biggest reasons for Circuit City being known far and wide as Circuit Shitty.

First, they engaged in blatant bait and switch tactics on a constant basis. I cannot remember ever walking into their stores and not seeing one or more so-called corrections of alleged advertising mistakes where a product was either advertised at too low a price which they would not honor or they did not actually have the product and were simply going to substitute another product of their choosing which was not necessarily and in fact usually not of comparable value. More numerous were the unstated cases where no notice was made as you walked in. They simply told you when you went looking for the item from the sales circular that you couldn't have it and they'd give you something they felt you could have.

Second, their floor sales staff has consistently been the worst floor sales staff this side of the perfume people at the New York City Macy's near Times Square. Ever walk through and get sprayed in the face with a perfume without warning never mind asking first and not waiting for your answer? I did and it was like getting maced. I react badly to most perfume formulations and nearly went into shock. The Circuit City floor sales staff has been rude, pushy, and very in-your-face for as long as I can remember. "NO FOR THE THOUSANDTH FUCKING TIME I DON'T NEED YOU TO SUGGEST ANOTHER ITEM OR HELP ME IN ANY WAY BECAUSE FOR THE THOUSANDTH TIME I AM A COMPUTER AND NETWORK PROFESSIONAL!!!"

I remember on one occasion telling no less than four twits in a row right in front of each other that I did not need help, thank you. They swooped in like vultures over and over to get their commissions which were the cornerstone evidently of their paychecks and their base hourly pay more like thin set mortar underneath.

Third, in the face of competition from Best Buy and Wal-Mart they decided that the best possible course of action would be to continue to sell a sub-median product line of quality below that of Wal-Mart and well below that of Best Buy for a higher price than either of them. The latter part of that is a course for boutique stores but demands that the first part be to sell above-average and unique merchandise with sufficient demand to justify the consumer going to your store specifically and paying a higher price.

I feel for their employees who were sold cosmic possibilities for salaries based entirely on commissions at sales success rates completely unrealistic for almost any market. I feel for their employees who were told the company was a serious contender in the market and intended to compete but then actually did everything they could to not complete.

I have no sympathy at all for their management who should be barred from holding business management positions involving company-wide decisions relating to the strategy of the company, ever again.