Doug

Mar 312014
 

Running my own business brings many opportunities and rewards. Along with atypical daily snafus, and the more typical longer-term challenges, comes inspiration. One reward is that I’ve grown acutely aware of what excellence in practice looks like; whether it be in brand identity, web design, event and project management, network marketing, content marketing, social media strategy, PR, sales, professional services, and support.

Here’s a thank you letter I wrote to a key business leader that I work with, who is moving onward and upwards in her business.  We were at the corporate headquarters of LinkedIn on a business outing when she took a picture of this handsome guy-me.

Connected via Linkedin

Why I like hanging out with you.

We have similar interests, ambitions, as business owners. We recognize the importance of the right attitude, being prepared to capture the victory, being aware to learn the lesson and grow. Never the victim. Becoming someone more capable to deliver valuable service to our customers, expanding our influence. In our time together you’ve shown me your unique characteristics of success, and a willingness to take risks. I like that. Thank you.  Other items:

  • creating an online presence and an attractive brand
  • seeking new contacts, making evergreen networking activities, hosting a networking event open house, accepting my invitation to get involved in my sphere of networking business professionals
  • offering unsolicited introductions, generosity (sending me an unsolicited referral)
  • forming complimentary team of specialists (producing an event, with a great speaker lineup)
  • engaging your audience, building a community through dialogues off-line and in social media
  • thinking strategically, and creatively solving tough business challenges

What A Business Breakout Looks Like

These activities clearly demonstrate a business owner breaking out, on the move, ascending in her business by helping herself, and others along the way. She is building social currency through her volunteer efforts, raising her hand to lead in organizing events, and contributing in several communities, being diligent about the details, looking out for her event guests to make sure things are right, being an example, setting expectations, standing by her customers.

Quarterly Review and Commitment

If you have you been on the sidelines, and you’re ready to take a leadership role in front of your peers, prospects, it’s time to work on your Quarterly Plan. Spend some time with it.  Celebrate the successes, gain insights from the setbacks, find encouragement if you must, make way for new promises, share them with esteemed associates. Remember who you’re doing it for.

Tomorrow, we get a fresh start on a new quarter of the year. Here are ten considerations I used recently at my quarterly review period.  Thanks to Susan Strong for this fine list.  Business owners and sales professionals who believe it’s vital to step up, reach out, make a difference in your marketing results will write out answers to these questions and similar ones.

1. How am I demonstrating leadership to those who matter?
2. What is my financial posture? Improving, getting worse, do I even know?
3. What do my sales look like? Does my boat float? Where is it leaking?
4. About my technology, is it working to streamline and leverage my value proposition, or frustrate me?
5. Are my operations smooth, or ragged? How can this be improved?
6. Have I created 10 lead generation methods? What additional ways can I create leads?
7. How is my Team and the Culture? Is it congruent with my values, my purpose, mission, vision? What can I do to make it better?
8. What kind of customer experience am I delivering? Each touch point in the life cycle of customer engagement.
9. What is my brand doing for me? How well defined is it?
10. Have I been working from the latest market intelligence, or have things changed so much that trouble looms at various corners in my execution? What is my optimal positioning?

I’m curious what you come up with in your quarterly review.  Feel free to share your wins, challenges, lessons, and commitments in the comments below.

Dec 292013
 

What guitar player can you name when you hear three notes? I understand that on Sunday night, CBS television will broadcast The 36th Kennedy Center Honors event featuring pop star Billy Joel, Latin-rock legend Carlos Santana, jazz great Herbie Hancock, actress Shirley MacLaine and opera singer Martina Arroyo. I have a great Christmas back-story about what makes at least one of these luminaries honorable.

Honorable

A week ago, Santana reunited with an original band member not seen since the late sixties, Marcus Malone, “The magnificent” Marcus Malone. A local TV Reporter Stanley Roberts found Malone rummaging through a pile of trash while living on Oakland city streets. Roberts heard Malone tell him he was part of the original Santana Blues Band.

Marcus Malone Rummaging in Streets

Heartwarming Expression

Santana and Roberts’ gesture towards Malone opened my heart, and made me realize Christmas is more than what I was imagining. There are benefits of helping the less fortunate among us, who may be family members we know, or those we don’t know who live on the streets, mostly forgotten, in the cold, the shadows, using leftovers, perhaps wrongly judged and scorned.
Carlos Santana Marcus Malone

Night on the Streets

Another luminary I know takes care of street people near where I live. His name is JC Orton. One of my sons Alex joined me and we went to JC, so that we could serve a soup dinner to the street people out of his vehicle in Berkeley.
JC Orton Night on the Streets
JC is Coordinator at ‘Night on the Streets’ Catholic Worker in Berkeley, feeding and clothing the local chronic and temporarily homeless. He’s been doing it since 1997, works most every day doing activities like gathering donations, preparing and serving breakfasts and soup dinners. Those he serves are at the bottom of society, grateful for a hot cup of chocolate or soup.

Sometimes he gives out blankets, sleeping bags, ponchos, and many other things they can use right away. He’s involved deeply with some of them, over a long period of their lives, helping them with their finances, medications, their families. He answers the phone because they are calls for help; and, he doesn’t fob calls off to a voice mail system. I see him serving them in a way that Jesus wanted us to serve those less fortunate. It’s greatly encouraging to see the attitude, the passion, the goodwill towards those least fortunate.

Profound Impact

I am touched about JC’s commitment to this long running mission. His organization has served over one hundred thousand meals since the beginning. The contributions that I make to NOSCW give me a chance to experience firsthand how others who choose to help inspire, and those who need help respond, and I am the one getting humbled, if only for one night at a time. I am grateful in a way that makes me feel a little better about myself during this difficult season between holidays.

Your Go Do

Since it is the holidays and Epiphany happens in another week, then I suggest if you’re able, to find yourself the right opportunity to touch the heart of another, and feel your own heart grow larger. Carlos Santana and JC do it. I did it with my son. It can be through your family, friends or your church group, but it can also be with people you don’t yet know. 60 million Americans do it. Here’s a place with 76,500 opportunities to get connected called VolunteerMatch.org which may have the perfect place for your spiritual journey.

Please share your experiences, and let’s go about making the world a better place, three notes at a time.

Oct 232013
 

 

It’s Halloween season.  The spirits are out. Maybe they’re in your computer.  Maybe they’re pirates.  Believe it, they are as cunning as Jack Sparrow.  Today, the pirates are cybercriminals and they are scheming to get into your computer.  They want to take over your account, your identity. They want to steal or sabotage your company’s sensitive data. They exfiltrate and you don’t know until it’s too late.  We know its true, but are we doing the necessary things now to keep the computer spirits away? The real question is whether you know their tricks and if you slip up to fall into their trap. Can you sail the high seas without being victimized, or sunken.

Have you caught yourself doing any of these things because your computing experience is haunted?  Here are some signs trouble lurks.

  • You grimace at the screen because it hangs.
  • You run task manager to monitor memory and processor consumption. With it, you’re examining its performance applications, processes tabs, looking at the stack ranking of CPU and Memory app gluttons.
  • You close apps to free up memory.  You reboot again.
  • You use Windows XP.  Did you know Windows XP has its end of life in April 2014? You’re haunted by the malware spirits.
  • You call helpdesk services again and it’s not for password lockout.
  • You’re seething with jealously because co-workers with newer machines breeze through heavy processor tasks or are multi-tasking with many more apps than you dare run.
  • You missed a critical deadline, then you make a sheepish comment to team members that you need more time to get those edits done, while under your breath you mutter that you wish you didn’t need to reboot again.
  • You sigh when presented with an opportunity to download and install a new app.
  • You observe too many maintenance warning reminders that pop up on your screen.
  • You want to detonate it, like the Duck Dynasty Peterson family does to their cars or old hunting blinds that need retirement.
  • You pick up a kindle or a book to read, rather than look at the computer screen any longer.
  • You talk to your computer like a pirate. Aaarrrgghhh!

Maybe you do other things when your machine runs like its haunted.  If so, please share them here. We’d love to read about them.

I wrote an eBook for ways to cut risks of getting hacked by the computer haunts.  Check it out here: http://honestintentions.com/go/ebook/

Sep 132013
 

You want to focus on your business, not on your Information Technology, technologists excepted.

Apple is launching OS X Mavericks and Microsoft will release Windows 8.1 in the fall of 2013. The MS XP operating system from Microsoft will reach end of life in April 2014. Intel Developer Forum happens this week in San Francisco. These events make it a good time to plan for an upgrade to your mobile computer system. Whether you call it a Laptop, Chromebook, MacBook Air, Ultrabook, or Notebook, there are many design choices today.

Taking guidance from engineers at Intel, I recommend you consider six aspects for your next piece of hardware. With the latest generation devices, we all can expect improved productivity capabilities because these devices have multi-core processors for handing heavy workloads, fast solid state drives (SSD) no longer have motors running disks. This yields instant-on uptime and longer battery life. High speed file transfers are possible with USB 3.0.

 

Performance

Core processors, Memory and Battery life should support the type of workloads you have. Gamers and digital media professionals will need more processing, while number crunching and document handling will require less.

  • Visuals
  • Videos
  • Games
  • Speed

 

Touch

Newer operating systems offer many flexible ways to interact with data. In addition to the old school keyboard and mouse, it’s great to compute using my finger or a stylus on the glass. Stemming from the handheld device explosion, Microsoft pointed its research investments to create an operating system using touch. Its first touch device was surface, and more recently it’s Windows 8. Personally, I find using a mouse and keyboard is fine, but combined with touching the glass on a convertible laptop/tablet, I have more efficiency interacting with the data than ever before. It won’t surprise me when Apple’s MacBook Air, and Google’s Chromebook will offer touch capability, like their tablets and Smartphones.

  • Finger
  • Control
  • Display
  • Stylus

Convertible

New set of device designs give us new ways to interact with the screen data. The best one designs let me use it in many new ways, and positions.

  • Tablet
  • Laptop
  • Flip
  • Slide
  • Swivel
  • Tent-good for use while cooking
  • Stand Mode
  • Work to Play

Responsiveness

You expect more speed, especially when starting up from a suspended state. Gone are the days where we drum our fingers, or watch the donut of death while the operating system spins up. It has been a long time coming, with great relief.

  • Faster Access
  • Smart Response
  • Wake
  • Deep Sleep
  • Rapid Start
  • Standby Mode
  • Three Seconds
  • Resumption
  • Blink Eye

Svelte

A lean and graceful design invites me to take it more places. If I’m using a laptop also as a tablet, it must be as light as a book so that I can prop it up on my chest while I’m laying down. Just because it serves as a tablet, doesn’t mean I’m OK with expecting less from its functionality as a laptop.

  • Lightweight
  • Less than 1″ thick
  • Goes Anywhere

Secure

Your reputation and identity depend on it. Your responsibility to your customers, partners, and employer demand it. You’re device, and its use should not compromise security features.

  • Anti-Theft
  • Protects Data
  • Disable if Lost or Stolen
  • Identity Protection
  • Safe Online Interaction

 

There are many aspects to choosing the best mobile device. I’m curious what factors influence your decision for choosing your ideal mobile device.

Jul 312013
 

Most computer users want to stay in control. In this note, I’m addressing the question how to make your computer run faster. As I observe computer industry leaders like Steve Jobs of Apple, Bill Gates of Microsoft, and Larry Ellison of Oracle I notice a common thread. It is they are control obsessed. Most of the rest of us aren’t quite that extreme, but we do have our issues about our computers and control.

Separately, a related issue for many users to guard against problems that may slow your machine down is to be wary of downloading and installing software from the internet. Make sure it’s from a Trusted Source, especially, freeware and shareware. These are high risk items for vulnerable code and can compromise your system.

There are four levels of involvement to check to boost your control and performance.

Four Levels

  1. Quick and Easy
  2. Maintenance
  3. Hardware Upgrades
  4. Rip and Replace

Quick and Easy

You can speed up your machine if you use Task Manager. I use it all the time with my Windows machines. The way to launch it, is to use three fingers on the keyboard from two hands at once. Control + Alt + Delete, then pick Task Manager.

When you highlight the ‘Performance’ tab, you’ll get a graphic of how much processor and memory is being used. On the ‘Processes’ tab, you will see a list of your running applications. You click the column which says, “Memory”, then you’ll see a sort order ranking which tells you each application instance that is using the most memory.

In the graphic below, I’m showing the before and after I closed three Chrome browser windows and it freed up about 3GB of memory. Notice on the left, the blue line drops? That’s what I want to boost my speed, and power. On the right, it shows when I closed four IE browser windows, it reduced my machine’s memory usage minimally, compared to the left side.

Many things cause so much or little difference, but the idea here is to get more speed quick and easy.

The way to get quick and easy speed for your computer is to look at your task manager to see what applications are using the most computer resources. When you discover which apps use the most memory and CPU, ask yourself if you need to run that particular app? If not, close it in the task manager. You can always re-open it later.

You don’t necessarily need to do a major download or update, close everything, buy more memory, or even get a new machine.

 

Reboot Maintenance

Computers leak memory. Aside from the question about the math, architecture, or design behind it, slower computers happen over time and usage. That’s a problem, because you need performance when you’re running a bunch of tasks. The Start Menu is your friend. The system tools highlighted below will lead you to the utility when you type it into the start>search bar. I encourage you to become familiar with them. Some functions will ask you to restart your machine to capture the benefits.

Performance Information and Tools

  • Windows Update
  • Disk Clean Up
  • Disk Fragmenter
  • System Restore

Hardware Upgrades

Most computers have some extra space on the motherboard for adding memory. If you run video editing or photo editing applications, you’ve probably already gone down this path. To find a source, just do an internet search for ‘memory on my computer’. The cost is not much and the performance boost is almost like getting a new computer.

Rip and Replace

Some people just buy a new computer every couple years. The rest of us must look at maintenance, to extend the life of our machines. On your path to get to modern, you want to consider how much your time is worth. At some point, it makes sense to get a new machine. You may have been delaying your replacement computer purchase, but know that Microsoft will stop supporting Windows XP after April, 2014.

Maybe you have a story about your need to boost your performance, or have greater control with your computer systems. Please feel free to use the comments section, and let us hear your experience.

Jun 142013
 

Apple aficionados at Monday’s World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) saw a revamp of Mac OS X and iOS7 for mobile devices. For some, it’s almost as exciting as Edward Snowden, the NSA Spy Whistleblower getting fired at his employer Booz Allen Hamilton, for leaking details about how surveillance activities of big brother US government watching over all American’s communications.

Apple Worldwide Developers Conference

Many Apple pundits characterize the announcements on Monday as lackluster. It seems to me that those critics failed to note that it was a software, not a hardware conference. It was for Apple’s developers and customers, not the Wall Street Bankers and Investors. Apple gave us new computer operating systems; desk, lap, and handheld OS with faster speeds and more efficient energy usage.

Apple will offer us all day battery life on OS X Mavericks. That has my attention, and should have every mobile device enthusiast’s favor. This announcement alone bodes well for Apple device owners, coming off of their maps release debacle last fall, when Scott Forstall, senior Apple exec and skeuomorphism design lead got his pink slip. Snowden and Forstall give most observers high drama attraction, but the following facts reveal to developers and Apple device users some dramatic results.

Some Facts Quoted in the Tim Cook Keynote

The Numbers on Apple Worldwide Developer Conference June 2013
1000 Apple Engineers at Worldwide Developer Conference
407 Apple Stores Open, the latest to open is Berlin Germany
72,000,000 Million MAC Computers Installed, growth outpacing PCs
72% Lower CPU Activity from software updates, saving battery life
1,500,000,000 Billion devices use Safari Browser, uses less energy Firefox, Chrome
600,000,000 Million iOS devices sold
93% iOS users on version 6, not fragmented
6,000,000 Million Apple Developers
1,000,000 Million Apple Customers a day in the stores
50,000,000,000 Billion applications downloaded in Apple App Store 5 years
575,000,000 Million Apple credit card store accounts
10,000,000,000 Billion Dollars Apple paid to developers ($5 Bil in 2012)
186,000 Thousand tweets on #snowden on 6/10 the NSA surveillance whistle blower

 

Notable Changes in Favor of Apple Customers:

  • Bing and twitter search replaces Google on SIRI
  • iCloud keychain for password management across devices, auto-filled
  • Push notifications for Mac OS now available as iOS has been
  • iBooks app on Mac
  • delivers more paying customers to developers than any other OS
  • OS X available in the fall
  • iTunes radio is added
  • Calendars and maps get updates

Some Pain Points

Owners not able to monitor and manage App usage in multitask mode. Whenever you’ve looked at a red battery bar, been moving from one airport gate to another with tight time deadlines, or you’re in a spotty network coverage area, you know the pain of poor management capabilities. At these times, you don’t want to see a bunch of automatic app updates, data downloads, or file scans happening while you have a critical small task to quickly complete. Secondly, the design has needed an update for some time, been looking tired. We got that.

Demonstrations at the WWDC keynote

The best part is seeing the demonstrations, from Tim Cook, Jonathan Ives, and Craig Federighi. The design team work, and the software engineering resulted in us having many changes in a short time, and gave us a greater degree of services integration. The mobile device warrior can be happy about those improvements.

Swipe Up from the bottom of iOS7

iTunes Radio

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

iTunes Radio gets added, allowing user to share stations with friends, and search by music genre or artist. These features are mostly catch up with Spotify Rdio, or Pandora.

Siri

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

SIRI has male voices and uses new search engines, not Google

Integrated into Automobiles

iOS to be integrated into Automobiles by 2014

Photo Viewer

Photo gallery has been redone, viewable by year, or by ‘moments’, like facebook’s timeline; and can be shared with a space for comments,

AirDrop for Sharing Photos & Files

Airdrop allows photo sharing via Wi-Fi with friends. The camera gets photo filters.

Safari is now full screen

Safari browser gets updated features: bookmarks, shared links, reading lists, more than eight tabs

iOS 7 Multitasking now has Android features

Multitasking on all apps.

iOS7 Flat Screen Design

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gone are green felt or wood grain skeuomorphism. Flat design comes to Apple iOS 7.

For the company that made the mouse an indispensable computer accessory, it seems retro, not revolutionary that they’ve ushered a simpler alternative, with a touch of the finger to swipe, flick, pinch, and zoom between tasks.

May 222013
 

If you looked at your bank account balance expecting to see a big pile of cash and the balance was zero, what actions would you want to take? What sense of urgency would you have? Put another way, have you ever had the fire alarm go off next to where you sit? The loud blaring noise is insufferable. You do something, right? I want you to hold that mindset for what I’m about to tell you.

Password Management Software and Intentional Management Services offers Bus Execs Security

ALL IS NOT NORMAL

While on a work out session at the gym, something happened to my email account. When I returned to my computer, I received a wakeup call seeing some crazy messages in my inbox. Hackers exploited my Hotmail account because of a weak password. They somehow got access to my email account, used it to send out their spam email. They did not change the password. So luckily, I easily regained ownership of my account, changing the password, stopping them in their scheme.

Intentional Management delivers security consulting services

I was used, determined to do something about it. They violated my good name and credibility to send my contacts their spam. Maybe this has happened to you. Because of this event, I know some of my contacts might question receiving email from me in the future. Fortunately, a couple colleagues quickly alerted me to the problem, realizing I wouldn’t solicit them with the type of spammy offer in their inbox. I suggest you notify your friends if you detect their email account has been violated. They will thank you for it.

WHAT TO DO NOW

Get a password safe or vault with the following attributes. The safe is a software application dedicated to storing your secret user name and password logins. Here is a site that compares several 2013 Password Management Software Products. It’s a partial list, but a starting point. They include RoboForm Everywhere, Sticky Password, Kaspersky Password Manager, DataVault, Handy Password Manager, SplashID Safe, Aurora Password Manager, TK8 Safe Pro, AnyPassword, and Password Agent.

  • You and only you know its password to gain access
  • It holds all the login credentials of the sites you visit
  • It’s encrypted with AES 256-bit keys
  • It’s synchronized across multiple devices in different locations
  • You use passwords or phrases that are not guessable

WHAT NOT TO DO

  • Use the same password in multiple places
  • Use a guessable password
  • Tell your trusted friend or partner your password
  • Write them on paper or post-it notes
  • Make an excel or text file on your computer called ‘passwords’ to store them

TAKE AWAYS

The good news is this episode motivated me to change some of my passwords because they were guessable and had a low level of complexity. They needed to be updated. If the bad guys guessed my password for email, I reasoned they might guess the password for my other accounts too. I noted the number and type of characters in the login passwords that I use on many sites. For the ones with weakness, I changed them, extending their length and complexity by using upper and lower letters, numbers, and characters. I am not using words that someone can guess. Further, I am not using the same password repeatedly on different sites.

There are no shortcuts for us.  We need to be vigilant and take action here. Can you hear the alarm? Can you see the big pile of cash gone? When you use password management software, it’ll do two things: thwart hackers and criminals from compromising your most precious asset, your identity; and secondly, it’ll increase your confidence to set up and manage more trusted online accounts so you can take advantage of what’s great about the world wide web. The risk to your reputation of being digitally violated grows every day, and the delay of inaction using strong passwords and a manager is not worth taking chances.

For additional tips to contain the security risks of digital lifestyle, download my report: “18 Ways to Cut Risk of a Security Breach

I welcome hearing your comments, stories and realizations that password management is serious. Perhaps you made a difference in someone’s life because you helped them realize they needed to manage their passwords better.

Apr 042013
 
Work Life Balance Mobile Warrior

We who carry mobile computing devices sometimes have the challenge of breaking our driven habit of working long hours.  We might as well admit that like the compulsive gambler on the slot machine, we have trouble keeping our eyes off the glass.

Work Life Balance Mobile WarriorThe Scene

You’ve made a pledge to spend more time with family.  You’re at home after a long day at the office. You’ve been away from your associates, the social media data feeds, the email for a while. Now, you’re tempted to open the laptop thinking ‘I do a quick check on my email.’

Then suddenly as you look at the clock, four hours whizzed.  It’s 1:00am.  This lapse compounds when you realize you have several early morning back-to-back business meetings.  Better get some sleep right away.

In the morning, your companion grumbles because you buried your head into your work at last night again.  You’re first mitigation step is to slug down a double shot caffeine drink.  You admit the morning commute was a bit edgy.  You vow never to snag a quick glance at your email after hours again.

To keep going in the afternoon, your desperation remedy is to guzzle an ‘energy’ drink like Monster or Red Bull.  Turns out you get a buzz, but you really don’t want to be awake at this time, because you heard rumors in the office that you dozed off during the manager’s meeting, and shot some off-hand remarks like Jim Carrey.

Work Life Balance Mobile worker

Pattern Wrinkle

If this has happened to you, then my recommendations may mean something.  It’s time to become aware of the pattern causing the problems, and put a fold into it.

  1. Make a Promise to someone that you’ll be attentive to them when you’re with them, no devices.  Perhaps you can set a house rule everyone keeps eyes off glass for a place or time, like the dinner table.
  2. Leave the laptop in the car. Don’t bring it into the house, unless you want to sleep in the dog house or couch.  If you bring it into the house, put it away in a closet or cabinet.
  3. Limit the times you turn it on, and make sure it’s only for a specific reason, like getting a report to your boss.
  4. Use a timer, set the buzzer to go off at a pre-determined time frame, and then stop.
  5. Change your routine in some way. Ask your friend or family what would they like you to do for them.

work life balance, putting a fold in the pattern

Pattern Break Resources

Mayo Clinic Work-life balance: Tips to reclaim control

Chris Brogan Work Better, Be Brave, Tell Bigger Stories

Lucy Gower Showcase of Fundraising Innovation

Benefits

With a better work life balance, you can anticipate some improvements.

  • Plummeting stress levels
  • Less fatigue
  • Capture time with loved ones and friends
  • Less Expectations from everyone

Be The Example

If you have younger, GenZ children, there’s still time to model a more sane way of being with them.  What kind of model for them do you want to be?  Will you become the master of your mobile machines?  Is technology the answer to improving the work life balance challenge? Or, is it something else?  Will the experts from Google, Sergey Brin and Larry Page provide insights, just like Jordi from Star Trek did in the past?

I believe Google Glass will not likely help you do this.  I can hear it in the future, “Grandpa, will you play catch with me, and stop scanning meta-data and curating taxonomies on your Google glasses?”

It’s too late to model proper work-life balance for those of you with Millenials or older GenZ children (those with high school or college students at home in 2013).  You may have seen 1-2-3,000 text messages per month on the wireless bill.  Or the internet connection at home is too slow between 4-11pm.  You realize what you’ve done.  They’re probably modeling you, if you’re reading this.

Mobile Warrior Deals with Work Life Balance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A good boss, work life balance

A Good Boss Helps

I remember one of my favorite managers at Microsoft dealt with this problem when it erupted periodically amongst his direct reports. He announced moratoriums on email storms, certainly over holiday weekends.  During the email moratorium periods, anyone caught shooting an email to co-workers over the time frame got public shame and zapped with a $100 fine.  It provided relief for the hard working teams, and felt good.

I’d like to Hear from You

Having work-life harmony is a continuous process because your needs from family and workplace change.  It’s important to pause and review your priorities and make some changes, if required.  I welcome hearing about your key moments of awareness that things got out of balance, and you deftly averted a disaster by changing your pattern.

 

Mar 312013
 

It was thirty years ago in the fall of 1983, that the first version of Word was released for the MS-DOS operating system. Happy Birthday Word.
Microsoft Word is 30 in 2013

Building on that franchise, it seems like Microsoft has made quite an impressive array of productivity applications in their cloud-based Office 365.

There are many old favorites, but also some new ones. So, I thought it would be good to put a spotlight on them for those of you who wish to get re-acquainted.

Intentional Management Partner of Record Microsoft

Why not take a look at blogs from the Office 365 client and cloud apps we know and want to know better?

Most computer operators know Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. There are many more users that may not know OneNote, Access, Publisher, Lync, and InfoPath. Together, these nine applications form the client application suite in Office 365 Proplus.

When I hear critics of Microsoft applications, it usually comes from someone that last used it ten or more years ago. I invite you to look at some of them here. There are so many improvements in Microsoft software in the 2013 iteration, its not funny.

In case you’ve been running the web-app combo client app version, please share your impressions here of the big shift of Microsoft Office Productivity suite onto the cloud.

Feb 122013
 

I find it important to note any correlations that may explain opportunities or an impact on my business at a local level.  The sentiment results of a national survey, like the Wall Street Journal/Vistage is a good place.  Here’s a monthly survey result measuring the sentiment of U.S. small-business CEOs and owners about the economy.  How does its picture compare with your growth results?

Wall Street Journal Vistage Logo Survey CEORespondents are limited to businesses with annual revenues of $1 million to $20 million. The findings are analyzed by Dr. Richard Curtin, University of Michigan. Read more about the survey.