The foggy mirror
Most people can't resist a mirror. It makes the wait for an elevator more palatable, and we can't help checking--how do I look?
In many ways, though, this is futile, because we can never know how we look through other people's eyes.
No one else has lived your life, heard all of your jokes, experienced your disappointments, listened to the noise in your head. As a result, no one else sees you (and your actions) quite the way you do.
And, to magnify the disconnect, every single person has their own narrative, so even when two people see you at the same time, they have different interpretations of what just happened, what was just said.
The same goes for brands and organizations. No one has experienced your brand or your product the way you have. They don't know about the compromises and choices that went into it. They don't understand the competitive pressures or the mis-steps either.
Even the best quality mirror tells you very little. It doesn't make a lot of sense to focus on this sort of grooming if you want to understand what customers or friends are going to see. Far better to watch what they do.
(But yes, you do have a little green thing stuck in your teeth).