BizPhyZ The Physics of Business Sun, 18 Mar 2018 20:03:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The Halo Tue, 04 Apr 2017 18:52:26 +0000 The post The Halo appeared first on BizPhyZ.


The Halo

There is a halo effect in business. Ever notice that some companies always seem to have public support no matter what is said about that company? And some companies are reviled at the slightest misstep. The companies that are always in favor are under the halo effect.

A good example might be Apple. Apple garners support of a very loyal following regardless of stories about labor abuse in China or tax evasion in Ireland. Walmart has no such halo. Every piece of negative news spurs outrage.

See the interesting parallel of science to business? While the heat may be on, it can be cool enough to see a halo at some businesses.

How do they do it?

The work at it. They foster a close relationship with their base.

Does your business do that? It should. If your business has no halo when the heat is on, you need to start an initiative to build that relationship with your customers. It’s worth it.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

Chris Reich Is the Inventor of BizPhyZ, the Physics of Business

The image at left is called a solar halo. You see them when the sky is gray. The ground temperature isn’t important as you can see halos on cold and warm days. What are they? Solar halos are ice in the upper atmosphere. Yup, ice. It can be 100 degrees F on the ground and there will be a distinct halo around the sun and it’s always ice. Ice refracts light giving us the halo.

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Bees Bring Home the Pollen Tue, 04 Apr 2017 01:26:51 +0000 The post Bees Bring Home the Pollen appeared first on BizPhyZ.


The Bees Bringing in the Pollen

Isn’t this a cool video? It took all day to get the file size down to something practical.

I slowed the actual video down a bit so you could see each bee bringing in the pollen. I think this is just so cool. How about you?

Does it remind you of where you work? Notice how some bees come in fully loaded with gold and some barely have any but they act all tired. Did you see management at the door checking them in? What a hoot.

Like this? Drop me a note.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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Clouds of 3-16-17 Fri, 17 Mar 2017 02:47:25 +0000 The post Clouds of 3-16-17 appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Clouds Time-Lapse of 3-16-17

There’s a lot going on that we just don’t see when we look up and take a snapshot view of the sky. Look at the weird formation at 50 seconds. A still is below the video. Cool!

I think they are row clouds but I’ve not seen them form this way. It’s like they were extruded.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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Bees in Action Wed, 15 Mar 2017 03:05:23 +0000 The post Bees in Action appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Happy Pi Day!

It’s beginning to feel like spring! The bees were very active today. I took a burst of stills and combined them for the stop motion video. It’s fun to follow the movement of a single bee. I use this technique often when analyzing a business process.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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Clouds Time-Lapse 3-14-17B Wed, 15 Mar 2017 02:49:34 +0000 The post Clouds Time-Lapse 3-14-17B appeared first on BizPhyZ.


This is such a beautiful time-lapse. Credit the universe! Happy Pi day!

Be sure to watch this in full-screen mode. And if you would like to learn how to make your own time-lapse movies, drop me a note. I’m happy to help you!

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Clouds Time-Lapse of 3-14-17 Part A Tue, 14 Mar 2017 23:29:35 +0000 The post Clouds Time-Lapse of 3-14-17 Part A appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Isn’t this a beautiful video? You can see so much happening. That’s the real advantage of time-lapse and why I use it for business analysis. Snapshots give moments in time. Time-lapse shows us how we got to that point in time.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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Win Some Money Tue, 14 Mar 2017 01:55:19 +0000 The post Win Some Money appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Science Gives You an Advantage Says Chris Reich

Science Gives You an Advantage: Win a Bet

An interesting question comes to mind. If you make a bet, a bet you can win because you have knowledge, is that unfair? It’s not secret knowledge.  In other words, does learning give you an unfair advantage in life? Interesting question.

Here’s a bet you can win every time.

See the clouds in this picture? When your sky has clouds, any clouds will do except for a solid sky of clouds, pick a cloud and bet that you can make the cloud disappear with the power of your mind. Just about anyone will take that bet.

You will win every time. Watch the cloud you chose and within a couple minutes, it will disappear. I wouldn’t choose a huge cloud because it could take an hour for it to melt—but it will! All clouds are constantly forming, melting (blending back into dry air) and reforming.

Try it! You’ll be amazed.

Does knowledge give you an unfair advantage? In business, an advantage is valuable. An advantage directly translates to gain. So why do we stop learning? Too busy? Too tired? I think you need a good teacher. That’s what I do. I stimulate thinking to give you an advantage. Knowing that all clouds evaporate won’t give you a huge advantage in life.

Think carefully. The point of this post isn’t about clouds, is it?

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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Pay Attention to Load Sun, 12 Mar 2017 04:24:13 +0000 The post Pay Attention to Load appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Is Your Business Under Tension or Compression?

In engineering, there are two primary types of stress on a structure: Compression and Tension.

Compression is when the weight (stress) compresses the load bearing element. If you stack a pile of bricks, those bricks are under compression. There is a point when the compression of the pile will cause the bottom brick to fail. When it fails from the weight pushing down on it, it will spread out and shatter. The second brick is now absorbing the compression weight of the remaining bricks above it. Will it hold? In theory, it could because adding the brick at the top increased the load on the bottom brick by the amount necessary to trigger failure. One less brick at the top means a little less compression. But the failed brick probably left behind an unstable foundation and the whole pile will likely fail.

Tension is stress that causes elongation. If we make 2 stacks of bricks and then span the gap with a piece of wood, the wood is under tension. If you add weight to the wood, like a bridge, the wood will bow. That is a tension force. Add more weight to the board and the bricks will hold but the board will fail under tension. Adding weight away from the center of the board will convert some of the stress to compression because force (weight) will be transferred to the bricks.

Look at the tree in the middle. WOW. It’s nearly 100 feet tall. These trees grow very slowly and this tree could be 125 years old. The wood is very dense. I had to cut the dead ones up and a log can weigh 50-75 pounds. In other words, there is a lot of weight being supported by the root system of this tree. Is the weight in tension or compression?

Both. A straight tree is under compression mostly. But a bent tree is dealing with downward force and lateral pressures from the weight being off center. Add a wind load and this tree is under tremendous stress. And it’s survived 125 years. Pretty remarkable.

Now consider your business. There are compression stresses that come from above and there are tension stresses that come from every direction. All that stress can make failure happen in key areas. A person can fail, a system can fail or the whole business can fail under load.

Can we learn from the tree?


How does the tree do it?

First, there is no unnecessary load. If a branch dies, it falls away.

The tree is flexible. Wood can bend as needed. So this tree can move around a lot when it’s very windy. It doesn’t snap, or hasn’t yet and I’ve seen this tree dancing in some serious wind. Being flexible makes wood a terrific building material in earthquake zones.

The curves assist the tree in supporting weight. True. Arches are a great example of a curve dealing with tension and compression. In wind, three is able to distribute the stress. Pretty amazing. What appears to be a flaw is actually an advantage. But trees are supposed to be straight. Look at the others.

If you take the time to do a little thought exercise about your business, you can make it stronger.

Where is your business under a lot of compression? What about tension? Take time to think deeply about this and you will find places where you can strengthen your business.

Science is fun and it can help your business. The key is taking the time to think.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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DuMM THinking Fri, 10 Mar 2017 19:33:15 +0000 The post DuMM THinking appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Chris Reich of BizPhyZ Wants to Improve Thinking

Dumb Thinking

“First-year doctors will be allowed to work 24-hour shifts in hospitals across the United States starting July 1, when a much-debated cap that limits the physicians to 16 consecutive hours of patient care is lifted, the organization that oversees their training announced Friday.

The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education said the change will enhance patient safety because there will be fewer handoffs from doctor to doctor. It also said the longer shifts will improve the new doctors’ training by allowing them to follow their patients for more extended periods, especially in the critical hours after admission.”

This is old, old thinking that goes back to the turn of the last century. That was a time when doctors believed that handwashing was a waste of time. (Look up the struggle that Dr. Semmelweis ran into. Then look up Dr. Lister)

The outdated theory behind having doctors work insanely long shifts is based on faulty thinking and probably greed. The hypothesis is that doctors working under stress and fatigue will learn to make better decisions under duress.  What really happens is that doctors make mistakes when they get too tired. Shouldn’t that be obvious? If this practice is so beneficial, why not have all doctors periodically work 24 hour shifts? Under this reasoning, wouldn’t that sharpen their skills?

Personally, I think this is greed-based. It reminds me a bit of college sports. An athlete can be used to make piles of money for a college, but they can be punished for accepting a meal. That’s why so few athletes complete college with a useful degree. Another topic for another day.

We know that close to 100,000 people die every year because of medical mistakes. (Institute of Medicine published the famous “To Err Is Human” report)  Why add to that by having doctors work beyond human limits? Stupid.

I see dumb thinking at nearly every business that I evaluate. I recently concluded work with a client that operated under such flawed thinking that I doubt they will be in business at the end of this year despite being in the most rapidly expanding industry in the country. At this company, the top paid employee was writing procedural manuals and corrective action reports. Problem is, the company continued to make very costly errors despite lengthy reports analyzing failures. Dumb thinking. If the person in charge of quality spends more time writing reports about quality than he does supervising and thinking about quality, there will be more trouble ahead. Dumb thinking.

Why do we cling to outdated or dumb concepts? The reasons are legion. They range from lack of knowledge to ego to greed. Yes, greed. It is erroneously concluded that it is cheaper to “stay the course” than to re-evaluate processes.  Dumb thinking. As loss after loss pile up, we still believe that we should continue on the same path because it’s cheaper than change. Dumb thinking.

This is why I love to present talks about the scientific method, thinking, and time at businesses. If we would stop and think we could greatly improve profitability. So much resource is wasted on things that produce no return. Everything should be evaluated with the central question: Does this work?

I know the term “dumb thinking” is harsh but there is no other word for it. Dumb thinking at your business could be holding it back from the success you want. This applies to large and small businesses.

When was the last time you stopped everything and took a good look at where the time goes at your business? Is it well spent? Is there a lot of waste? Do mistakes recur? Is the business as profitable as it could be?

We can reduce dumb thinking by taking time to think.

Chris Reich, BizPhyZ

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Clouds Time-Lapse 3-9-17 Fri, 10 Mar 2017 01:51:10 +0000 The post Clouds Time-Lapse 3-9-17 appeared first on BizPhyZ.


Sometimes a gray day is the most interesting. I love the way the low fog moves around. Isn’t it just beautiful?

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