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Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 04/19/2021

Alan Weiss's Monday Morning Memo

Alan Weiss’s Monday Morning Memo® – 04/19/2021


We had a substitute teacher one day in grammar school, sixth grade, and he gave us an assignment to sell something to the class the next day. Kids sold cuff links, perfume, bikes. I attempted to sell happiness, offering a money-back guarantee. He said, “Weiss, that’s just stupid, sit down,” sort of like that famous song in A Chorus Line. (I was never enthralled with substitute teachers ever since one told me that I was wrong in third grade because I said “xylophone” began with an “x” and she condescendingly told me that it began with a “z.”)

I believe in happiness. My colleague and guest speaker, Dan Gilbert, the rock star of psychology up at Harvard, has written Stumbling on Happiness and his TED talk (one of the few decent ones) drew over 15 million views. We both believe that “synthetic” (my word) happiness (“Getting fired was the best thing that ever happened to me”) is as important as genuine happiness events (weddings, anniversaries, births, etc.).

I also believe that no one has the right to consume happiness (or wealth) without commensurately creating it. But what makes people happy? What is happiness really? Can there be a money-back guarantee?

My belief is that happiness is unrelated to material assets and money. It’s rather directly connected to personal fulfillment: Is my life meaningful? Am I leading a life of worth?

I’ve found newspaper delivery people, restroom attendants, and receptionists entirely fulfilled, cheerful and helpful, obviously believing that their jobs have meaning and are important. I’ve found entrepreneurs and executives who are miserable, despite the mansion, the big boat, and the diamonds. In the scheme of things, how much of a “calling” is merely making money? There is a lacuna sharing their lives with them.

I’ve encountered a great many people, while watching their unhappiness and unfettered appetites for more and more, to whom I want to shout, “At the end, are you going to say to your family, ‘this was my calling’? This is what you’re proud to have done?”

If you’re not happy, consider whether you’re doing something meaningful, or just marching alongside a gerbil. And then think about changing. Once you do change you can say, “This is the best thing that ever happened to me….”


Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go. —Oscar Wilde

It is not easy to find happiness in ourselves, and it is not possible to find it elsewhere. —Agnes Repplier


The Fishbowl

I’ve been asked continually how I can coach and consult with people rapidly and effectively, and what’s the line between “efficient” and “curt”! People are also astounded by how many clients I can work with concurrently. I recall in grad school being in T-group “fish bowls” where we watched the expert therapist deal with someone or a group while we observed and asked questions about technique later. This was like a “teaching hospital” and worked wonderfully well.

Well, here we go. I’m going to coach a man and a woman, separately, for 30 minutes each, once a week, for four weeks on Zoom. They are volunteers and have legitimate, real-time, business growth problems. Each is at a different stage of success. The “audience” will observe, muted, and after the sessions I’ll open the meeting to questions and comments. My intent is that you’ll pick up some practical coaching and consulting techniques you can use immediately, you’ll learn some things for your own growth, and, of course, I’ll learn more than anyone! (That motivation is a key to outstanding coaching in my view.)

The sessions will be recorded in case you can’t be present, and this will begin June 8 and continue on June 15, 22, and 29 at 10:30 US eastern time. I anticipate, depending on questions, the sessions will run about 90-120 minutes—an hour of coaching/consulting and the rest observer questions and observations.

The fee is only $500! I know, how do I do it? A big heart. Write to me to enroll: Or go here:

Get Back on Track: A Livestream Experience: In this 60-90-minute session, I’m going to convey skills and mindsets that are needed to succeed and help others in a tumultuous and ambiguous world. Late last year I predicted a “Business Renaissance” to occur in March/April/May. And that’s exactly where we are. But it’s insufficient to merely rejoice in the rebirth, it’s important to position ourselves stronger than ever, and change the way we operate and the way we help ourselves, clients, and customers. This is the time of “no normal.” This includes material from my new book, Legacy. April 27, recorded for later use, $350.

Written by

Alan Weiss is a consultant, speaker, and author of over 60 books. His consulting firm, Summit Consulting Group, Inc., has attracted clients from over 500 leading organizations around the world.

Comments: 2

  • Jim Salmon

    April 19, 2021

    How do I sign up for the Monday Morning Memos?

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