Planning, Startups, Stories


Tim Berry on business planning, starting and growing your business, and having a life in the meantime.

Guy Kawasaki and the Zen of Not Zen 2

I admit it. I got really jealous of all the Zen of this and Zen of that writing, dating all the way back to the book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, which I wanted to like, tried to like, but couldn’t. Zen templeYes, I gave into the horrible temptation, and even posted Zen and Business Planning here. I’m sorry. It was a moment of weakness.

Yes, I’m conflicted. Here I am after 30+ years of professional business planning fascinated by Gil Fronsdal and friends on Zencast, trying hard to reconcile Zen and business planning, and failing. Putting Zen and business planning into the same post is kind of like putting a dog and a raccoon into the same laundry bag.

Confession: my vanity license plate reads “not Zen.” If I could add a subtitle, it would be “… but trying.” After all, if I really were Zen, I wouldn’t put it on a vanity license plate. Right?

So you can only imagine my envy when Guy Kawasaki manages to bundle Zen of PowerPoint, Facebook, and Twitter, all at once, in a single post on the American Express OPEN Forum. Complete with 10 Japanese Zen concepts, each of them in Japanese, and each connected  to the points he makes. And then 10 more, which is really showing off. Damn, he’s good! He writes:

I love this kind of stuff: not only can these principles improve your PowerPoint pitches, products, website, and outlook on life, but they make people think you’re smart when you mention them.

Amen to that. Or something more Zen than Amen.

(Image: well, at least I get a point for that one. I took that picture in a Zen temple in Kyoto.)

  • “Namaste” for that excellent article! The marketing of Zen in such venues is akin to a lecture-series on the value of silence. I’m thinking maybe the Art of War is a bit more apropos for business. Anyway, loved the article.

    • Thanks Stephanie, I love the idea of a lecture on silence. And BTW, for other readers here, Stephanie’s wickedstepkids.com blog is great; and the title has a similar irony to it. Tim.