Wit And Brevity In Your Business: The Bix Berry Effect


Every business manager and leader needs a Bix Berry. Bix doesn’t really exist. But he represents common sense, humour and the truly “grounded” manager and leader. He’s a reality check, a conscience and a way to review your business decisions.

Dame Edna Everage, aka Barry Humphries, Australian comedian and stage presenter puts it this way. “Never be afraid to laugh at yourself. After all, you could be missing out on the joke of the century”.

John Wooden, unquestioned doyen of the 20th Century basketball coaches reminds us, “Whatever you do in life, surround yourself with smart people who’ll argue with you.”

Sir John Monash was the Allies most successful field general of WWI. He said, “I don’t care a damn for your loyal service when you think I am right. When I really want it most is when you think I’m wrong.”

Even years ago, Aristotle said, “For things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.”

Is there a business manager or leader who doesn’t benefit from such reminders and insights?

The Big Temptation

Virtually every business manager and leader faces the “big temptations”. They take themselves and their views far too seriously. They need a Bix Berry mentality for balance.

You see it frequently in many ways

  • A business owner finds a new technique that works well. He or she recommends the technique to clients failing to realize that it’s effective application is limited to specialist business
  • A successful business owner makes enough money to buy a large house with pool and stables: he or she tells clients that he’s found the path to rewarding long term wealth
  • Forgetting the virtue of brevity by repeatedly using lengthy overblown explanations

It Boils Down To …

Managers and leaders can readily take themselves, their businesses and what they do far too seriously. They need someone/something to challenge their perceptions. I call this person, Bix Berry.

Typical Bix Berry Buckets Of Brevity And Wit

  • Have your ever heard a pin drop when someone told you it was so quiet you could hear a pin drop?
  • There are three types of people in the world: those who can count and those who can’t!
  • If we must eat and drink to stay alive, let’s do it as well as we can possible afford.
  • We spend millions of dollars each ear trying to establish definitive proof of climate change but can’t walk past a “wet paint” sign on a wall without putting our finger on the paint to see if it’s really wet.
  • The business you’re in is the business your clients and prospects perceive you to be in: perception is the only reality.
  • Bix would also like one of my favourite Mark Twain quotes; “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble: it’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.


Avoiding The Big Temptation. If you fail to avoid it, you’ll be swept along in the overflow of over-elaboration and seriousness. And you’ll probably make serious errors of business judgment  in the process.

What To Do Now

Check the links in the article for more information. Please leave a comment below. And please contact me direct at leonn@ozemail.com.au  if you have a particular issue you want help with. And feel free to share the post with colleagues.


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