Monkey on the shoulder

We attribute the paternity of the expression “the monkey on the shoulder” – or “Monkey on the back” – to the American William Oncken Jr (1912-1988). He used this expression in his lectures he had through all the United States on the time management for the company executives.

William Oncken would have found his inspiration for this analogy in the Persian fable ” Sinbad the sailor ” and more particularly in his adventures during his fifth journey. In this episode Sinbad tries desperately to get rid of an old man who caught solidly on his back.

Whatever the exact origin the expression is, it had a worldwide success and became a great classic in the theories of management and more recently in the coaching ones.

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Strategy : chess, Go and poker.

Capture d’écran 2015-02-18 à 22.16.20

Games of strategy always have constituted a domain of preference for the amateurs of intellectual challenges.
Rules and objectives to achieve are specific to every games but, if you look at it closely, everything could be summed up to a question of domination : domination by the number, by the conquered space, by the accumulated gains… A domination obtained by the pure intelligence of the player and by his ability to take the relevant and quick decisions at the right time.
Therefore it is not surprising that the managers have looked at games of strategy to try and understand the strategic principles that could apply to their company.

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John Wayne’s syndrome.

Universally known, John Wayne embodied in his movies the virile, lonesome, cowboy protecting the weakest people. He had the authority, the strength and the charisma of the undisputed chief. He always knew what is good and what is bad. He was independent and did not need help from anybody, except from a small group of loyal followers acquired in his cause.

Thirty years after his death, John Wayne always embodies heroin American.

Actually it is not amazing that certain American specialists speak now about John Wayne’s syndrome to qualify certain behavioral trends.
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Catherine and Marie de Medici: end of Valois, beginning of Bourbons.

capture-decran-2017-01-25-a-14-00-48The house of Medici has definitely marked with its imprint the history of Florence and of  Italy for four hundred years during the XVIth in the XVIIIth century. Medici also managed to export their power and their influence on several European countries. In France, Medici gave two queens, and not the slightest : Catherine and Marie de Medici. Their exceptional fates curiously got involved and followed one another.
In many respects, coincidences and tragic facts which took place during their two reigns exceed all what any historic novelist would have been able to imagine.
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Issue like puzzle or jackstraw ?


A complicated issue, a complex situation. When we use these adjectives we do not ask ourself the question on their exact meaning. Apparently one can be substituted for the other without modifying the sense of the subject. But in fact, it is just what it seems to be. We can then wonder why we have got two terms to express the same thing ? I suggest we take a moment thinking about the nuance between both. Then we shall see the importance which it can have to approach the problem solving.
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My name is Bond… Forrest Bond !

capture-decran-2017-01-19-a-17-14-32More than 90 % of people admits to have difficulty holding names of the people who are introduced to them.

This lack of memorization could be a major handicap in the interconnected world in which we live. How being member of a professional or friends networks, without remembering names of the people with whom we would like to keep in touch ?

If you look at it closely we will realize that the responsibility of this matter of fact is shared between both people who get in touch, each one needs to make an effort: either to memorize the name of his interlocutor, or to help his interlocutor to do so.

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