Coming Out Of Your Own Closet

While I’m not proud to admit it, I am a people pleaser by nature. I’m inclined to go an extra step if I think it will gain favor in someone’s eyes, and I’m hesitant to lovingly speak tough truth if I think it will cost me that relationship. It’s debilitating to picture myself in those […]

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Blog Post: A Mobile Workforce Isn’t Bad

I think the headline of this Ars Technica piece on the mobile workforce can be a bit misleading. When you read the nuts and bolts of the piece, a different message is sent. Compared to this headline, it’s clear an agenda was meant:

“How Mobile Technology Created A Workforce That Never Stops Working.”

Some vision-casting for the future of our workforce is necessary, and what better way to think of them than with a mobile device or two in their hands. It does beg the question of how connected we should be, though. 

As someone who can’t put their phone down, or manage to let it out of my sight, I see the conundrum  We should be able to disconnect and allow ourselves some space from everything that’s going on. There’s also some physiological issues that can stem from needing to be available at all times.

Instead of looking at it that way, I would like to focus on how being connected can help us manage our workdays a little better. 

For many of us, work used to be a time where you put your head down and cranked out as much as you could so that you could be home in time for dinner. There was no ability to take work home once. If you could, there was no way to collaborate or manage workflows correctly. As a result, our time in office was very stressful.

Now, I can go throughout my day knowing that work will get done by the talented people I collaborate with every day. If that means I respond to an email before bed or over the breakfast table, it means my time in the office can be used for tasks that are more important. Face-to-face interaction, building each other up, making the best products possible, and more. 

Instead of getting bogged down by all the electronic communication requirements we have, get them out of the way during off-peak hours and focus on enjoying the day with some great people. That’s how people build great things together.

The next time you feel bad for checking your email in bed, or answer a text from a colleague during your morning run, consider it one step further towards sanity from 9-5 (or whenever you work). Don’t overload yourself, but use the right boundaries for work and home.

Blog Post: A Mobile Workforce Isn’t Bad

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Blog Post: No Tool Can Replace Actual Conversation

Loved this post on communicating with customers from Intercom co-founder Jon Hainstock because it highlights something very depressing about how we work today: live conversation has been replaced in many ways. Regardless of your industry or company culture, there is a tool available to you that gives you the opportunity to avoid communicating.

I am not saying I dislike software that assists with categorization, priority flags, auto-responders, and case numbers. The bigger your organization, the more of a challenge it can be to keep everyone in the loop. At the same time, we must take advantage of every opportunity to have live conversation with co-workers and customers.

Trust is key, as the article states. That must be build with time and effort. You’ll have to swallow a lot of pride and words. When I say “you”, I mean me for sure.

Who have you had challenges with? Make a point to have some interaction that can give both people a chance to share and grow together. 

Blog Post: No Tool Can Replace Actual Conversation

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Blog Post: Reject Isolation

At a church I attended back in Abilene, Texas, the men there have this motto they plaster over everything. Something that is very important I have always remembered: Reject passivity. Accept responsibility. There is a lot of wisdom in those words, because it is the opposite of what a lot of society teaches. The world […]

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Blog Post: Welcome Serendipity

That was the big takeaway from this fine post from Gary Vaynerchuk when discussing why he takes random meetings. There is simply so much good that can come from having an early morning meeting on a Wednesday that it is worth the time. Sure, not every gathering is pure gold, but you will never know until you try.

Where I think many will lose the entrepreneur is they don’t work for themselves. If they do, it may not be in an industry or market that lends itself to “welcoming serendipity”. Dont worry, you still can.

When I started at my current company a few months ago, I volunteered for everything I could. I spent the first few weeks solid in meetings and conference calls. I walked the halls shaking my hands asking if I could help. People thought, and still do think, I am nuts. They told me I would get run over, and extend my team to far.

While that may happen someday, I think what it did was show I was ready to help. Change things for the better. Find real solutions.

Another thing I volunteered was to get on the phone with customers. I wanted to hear from them: what they wanted and why they wanted it. I gave them an actual voice with someone who could do something about it. I then went about finding a way to make it happen.

If you already do either of those things, find something else off the wall to try. Find a meet up and network. Start posting in LinkedIn groups. Write emails to companies you admire. Ask for help in accomplishing your goals (or fining out what your goals are).

We don’t actually grow when we are comfortable. So stop reclining and welcome a little serendipity into your life.

Blog Post: Welcome Serendipity

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