Established in 1984, Mistral is proud to be widely considered the 'generic' software system provider for the refrigeration & air conditioning industry. In its domestic market, Mistral software is used by more than 85% of refrigeration & air conditioning contracting firms and programs have been distributed to over 17,000 users in over 100 countries around the world.


*~!^ Confucius, here are a few of the more profound* sayings of founder Chris Smith!
* printable!
click here for most recent observations



There are only two types of luck in life. The bad sort such as getting struck by lightning and the good sort, which you must generally make for yourself.

Any fool can and usually will give you many reasons why your idea will fail. Only a clever person will show you how your idea might succeed.

The route to success, as commonly measured in terms of wealth, starts not from any sort of good luck but usually from recognising and then working to exploit an opportunity.

Most poor people, in the Western world at least, are not poor because they are inherently lazy but because they fail to recognise opportunities; even when those opportunities are staring them in the face!

Just because you know that someone has done something ahead of you is no excuse for you not attempting to do it better!

I think I have been reasonably successful in life. I put this down to having surrounded myself with people cleverer than me.

My life’s experience has largely been one of success. I believe this has resulted from heeding my own counsel above that of my uninvited critics.

Those who pay the least generally complain the most.

Comment Chris made about one of his former bosses. “What he totally lacked in any sort of business acumen at all he amply made up for by being the Chairman's son.”

When it comes to profit I've always found that ten percent of something is preferable to one hundred percent of nothing.

Borders mean war. This is possibly a plagiarism. Though unintentional and much research has not revealed another origin. If anyone thinks they know of another source then please tell us here.

Misandry begins at home.

With the possible exception of career divorcees men generally earn more than women.

mistral's take on brexit referendum
...on the consequences of Brexit.

I’ve yet to meet a Socialist who didn’t expect to be rewarded for their work.

Few crimes are more abhorrent than poisoning children’s minds against their ex partner.

No one is indispensable. However some are more dispensable than others!

When a doctor makes a mistake they can risk a person’s life. When an engineer makes one they can risk hundreds. Why then do doctors usually gain more kudos and earnings than engineers?

Helping to create wealth for other deserving people generally guarantees your own.

"You’re lucky". An expression envious people use to describe you following years of sacrifice and unpaid 24/7 work in creating your successful business. If those envious ‘people’ in this statement are your relatives then they contrive to manipulate the law in order to steal the proceeds of your ‘luck’ away from you. Thank goodness true friends never attempt to do that.

Whatever other mistakes you might make and learn from in life the one essential to avoid repeating is reacting to unsolicited advice! (Don't forget that you are reading this by choice!)

One of the biggest failings of Western education systems is the planting then entrenchment of flawed, pre-conceived ideas into the minds of our once brightest pupils.

Motivate your most talented staff with the good news that one day they might be promoted to your position. To ensure their loyalty in the meantime follow that with the bad news they might still end up reporting to you.

Never forget. Those constantly trying to pull you down can only do so from beneath you.

The three most important needs of any business are its customers, its customers and its customers. In that order. The three most important assets of any business are its staff, its staff and its staff. In that order.

If you are responsible for running a business ensure you treat your suppliers with a respect at least equal to that which you extend to your customers. If not then no 'ifs' and no 'buts', you will GO UNDER!

A good employee often becomes a very good friend. The reverse is almost never true.

Profit is considered by many to be a dirty word. It is a fact though that without profit the great majority of people alive in the world today, including these cynics, would never have even existed!

Beware the person who begins any question with "Could you just..". It means they are just asking you to make a lot of effort or just spend much time and money producing something just for them but which they will then just completely fail to appreciate what it just cost you to do it.

If you ever find yourself in the position where you are recruiting a subordinate then try to identify candidates bearing the qualities needed to replace you. Otherwise you are unlikely to ever be promoted!

One of my greatest pleasures in life comes from paying my annual taxes upon earnings. ...think about it!

Every idea starts with imagination.

chris pulling
Old two strokes are better at pulling!

There are none so easy to offend as those who want to be offended.

Never join the shortest queue. People in the other ones know something about it you don’t. Possibly not totally original but definitely not plagiarised. Chris came up with it himself!

It is bad enough over estimating a contract at time of tender and losing it on price but there is one situation far, far worse. Under estimating the costs and then winning it!

A wise man follows his own instincts. A fool tries to follow everyone else's.

Unsolicited advice is rarely if ever worth the value of the oxygen consumed in delivering it. This advice was delivered to you in writing.

People cannot ‘get’ stressed due to the actions of others. However others can ‘cause’ you stress. Such as those that threaten your life or the lives of your loved ones, your property or your livelihood. If these things don’t cause you stress then you aren’t human.

Someone once said to me “Better men than you tried and failed.” Then I must owe my success to not being as good as these men.

History has proven over and over again that businesses offering products cheaper than those of any of their competitors almost invariably fail. I can send you my list of these. It's very long and quite expensive!

Easier to destroy than to create. Hardly surprising then that nine out of ten people choose the former.

The Father of one of our talented staff once said "How on earth would your company manage without my son?" I replied "I’d look for and find another employee like your son. Would your son though manage to find another employer like us?!"

Everyone knows the credible maxim that states “Build a better mousetrap and people will beat a path to your door.” So I decided to build a better door!

"Sonny, I was looking after our valued customers before you were even a sperm. Ask any of them. They're still our valued customers; whilst you're still only a sperm." Chris, replying to a young and very stupid self professed IT 'expert' who failed to follow a few simple 'industry standard' instructions that even a child of five could understand, then complained with the totaly unwarranted insult - "You aren't in the habit of keeping your customers then?"

Forgiveness only serves two people. The perpetrator and their redeemer. For the rest of us it further unravels the valuable lessons of civilisation.

Some people get fatter as they get older whilst others get thinner. I'm one of the lucky ones. I didn't get thinner.

If you have to study a book in order to operate a piece of software then find another piece of software. Books you get from WHSmith bookshops. Expert System software you get from Mistral.

If there is anyone left alive in the twenty second century to comment about the failings of the twenty first then it will surely be about how newly gained freedom of information destroyed everyone's freedom.

Being clever will only take you so far. Integrity and motivation combined with self discipline will take you much further.

People lamenting about how there are no good opportunties left sadden me. The first person* to market an anatomically correct and ergonomically practical set of toenail clippers will become a millionaire overnight. *UPDATE As will anyone designing a bandage sachet not designed by a descendant of le Marquis de Sade.

Envious fools build dams of sand trying to stiffle invention. For every dam built a new raging torrent forms each side. All mankind’s best inventions therefore quickly appear downstream.

For every law maker there are a score or more people working to find ways of circumventing their new laws. This is a good thing. It keeps unemployables busily out of the way and where they can do least harm to civilisation’s real contributors.

The British appear unique amongst the world’s citizens in respect of their attitude to success. From pauper to civil servant to politician to journalist (especially journalist) they seem hell bent upon trying to destroy it.

As I approach the winter of my life I have finally become aware there is no god. If there was then he (or she) would have spared mankind from the harm done to the planet by environmentalists.


Shakespeare too (Sorry!)

now is the winter of our discontent


Why is it that those so keen to tell me how to run my business of 34 years haven't got a clue about what my business does, why it does it, how it does it or who it does it for?

chris_in_barrel People can tell you so much more by their silence than by speaking.
(I'm sure someone else must have quoted something similar. I remain silent.)

I find it strange how one’s aspirations, fears, dreams and nightmares change as one gets older. As a teenager my recurring nightmare was being caught wandering down our local High Street, naked, apart from a barrel suspended around my waist. Half a century on and my fear is that it’s now highly unlikely to ever happen. (cue Freud!)

My life's most vivid memory is that everyone else's is selective.
This could be a plagiarism or at least a paraphrase. If so entirely unintentional. I really can't remember though.


Someone said to me "You only get to die once." They were wrong. Back in 2002 I was informed by my brilliant French surgeon that technically I had died the day before on his operating table. He went on to tell me that only the determined and unrelenting efforts of the anaesthetist pulled me back from the brink. I would like to reassure everyone that I can recall none of that. Incidentally, the disaster that is Britain's NHS consistently denied I was even potentially terminally ill. In which case had I not emigrated I certainly would have died. Just the once!

Business leaders frequently operate under the delusion endless meetings are constructive. Failing to notice the majority of attendees are ‘larynx wrigglers’ whose sole aim it seems is to frustrate the efforts of their colleagues. My solution when convening meetings was to set the agenda with the first item ‘Any other business’. Complimenting this still further by removing all meeting room furniture in advance.

Leaders instigate solutions. Their lessers envisage problems. Leaders instigate solutions.

In the final analysis the Banking Sector only has one product - Inflation!

This for those having difficulty understanding the statement above!
Only four of mankind's activities actually create wealth. These are primary and are Agriculture (along with Forestry), Fishing, Manufacturing (including Construction and Engineering), and Mining (along with Drilling). All can be described as what man takes from the planet and in so doing enhances or adds to its value. Everything else, be it Banking, Communications, Defence, Education, Government, Healthcare, IT, Marketing, Retailing, Transport, etc., etc., is parasitic. Although for the most part essential, these latter activities nonetheless deplete the net value and thus contribution of the primary group.

People say I’m a cynic. Thereby proving my point.

Reincarnation? I don't believe in it.

"You should." A friend said.

"But I might come back as an earthworm." I replied.

"Then you'd get eaten by a crow." Replied my friend.

Exactly. "That's what I'd plan. Then I'd come back again. As Julius Caesar!"


Shakespeare (Sorry!)

friends, romans, countrypersons, send me your arrears


System failure. Restart computer. Change user.


Any mariner worth his salt will testify that the ancient device of splicing a rope works simply because the more it is stretched then the tighter it becomes. I've met scores of people like that.


Answers Chris supplied on Aviva's retirement pension claim form questionnaire on the third submission. The first two occasions Aviva claimed to have 'lost' the submitted forms. Despite being sent by recorded delivery. Due of course to Aviva stalling for time so as to pass the government deadline for lump sum payment applications.

Aviva: 'Are you incontinent?'

Chris: 'Yes. In the continent of Europe.'

Aviva: 'Are you doubly incontinent?'

Chris: 'No. Just Europe.'

Apparently it gained Aviva's jobs worth's full attention third time around!


A professional works tirelessly perfecting their creation. Next day they work tirelessly again improving it. And the next day. And the one after that.


People in Sales often receive bad press. Deservedly so in many cases. There are exceptions and those are the ones knowing the answer to this sales staff recruitment interview test.

"When does your obligation to your newly won client cease?"

A Once you have received their order.

B After delivery or installation has been completed.

C When the invoice has been paid.

D Following expiry of the warranty period.

E Never.

Interviewees not understanding this question or answering incorrectly at the first attempt please close the door on your way out.

"NEXT!"


From Chris Smith's School of Lateral Thinking.

The One Time Only code reset.

There are a couple or so ways one can achieve this.

One is the Gordian Knot.

Introducing a Gordian Knot into the code is simple.

One becomes two and two becomes one. This can though introduce unforseen latent problems. Such as when two comes back as one and one comes back as two and two bites one in the arse too.


Of course I'm against adding flourides to public drinking water. There isn't one single food or chemical ever consumed by humans that hasn't been the subject of contradictory or totally opposing reports as to its safety. Not one. I never have been a supporter of obligatory mass poisoning! What's your view again?


If the British government are so committed to reducing (Anthropological) Global Warming why aren't they adopting CET/CEST (Central European Time)?

It would save 5% of domestic energy consumption at a stroke. For absolutely nil cost. If it was good enough to save precious energy in WWII then it's good enough now!




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Bringing the benefits of computerisation to our industry - without the historically associated problems.