Category Archives: Thoughts

Random and Specific Thoughts on Life and Action.


Freedom Comes with a Price

My mothers Dog, Poochie passed away the day after Thanksgiving. The dog was very well loved and taken care of to his final day. He ended up with congestive heart disease toward the end and was slowly choking to death. It took a lot for them to finally put him down. He was a high maintenance dog; Toward the end he was very stubborn, could not participate with much and would often urinate or defecate at random times. His quality of life quickly deteriorated, as did my mothers, having to deal with this day to day.

My mother is now finally free of the burden of care, but it is replaced with the sadness of loss. This is what many call the price of freedom. Many times in life we find ourselves forced or bound into the care of another. This is a very difficult situation whether it is toward an animal, parent, loved one, child or significant other. As time goes on and patience wears thin, their passing is what is supposed to bring freedom to the individual. But it is never true freedom because the attachment toward the person isn’t lifted even with their passing. They are physically free, and to some extent, intellectually free, but not emotionally.

As human beings we have the tendency to attach ourselves to people, places and even things. We feel it is never going to change. This can cause one of two things, confidence or despair. Confident that the wonderful way of living currently being experienced will always remain, or despair that the despicable conditions currently being lived will never subside. Either way, we will become attached to things within the condition.

True freedom is being able to leave the past where it is. It’s looking at he present, with it being in ones own control, no matter the situation that may arise. You can free yourself at any point, it does not require the passing of any person place or thing. It is a decision, a mindset. Freedom comes with a price only to those willing to remain attached.


Responsible Business is Respectable Business

What ever happened to responsible business? Call me crazy but as a young business owner I dream of the day where I can hire masses of people for what they’re worth and help provide them healthcare and other benefits to measure with that worth.

When I look around at many businessmen, especially those seen in the media, bottom line seems to be more important than anything else.

A company that grows should reward those who helped it grow and inspire those people to want to stay. There are so many complaints recently regarding the need to “suddenly” provide affordable healthcare to employees for companies with over 50 employees due to Obamacare. If you would have thought of your employees first you would have already done this and it wouldn’t be a problem.

If you had built these benefits it into your business model you may have grown just as fast; you would have had higher employee retention and satisfaction. Better work which leads to better products which leads to happy clients and customers.

Every businessman needs to eat so you should compensate yourself of course, but what happened to the noble entrepreneur that is willing forego extravagant living to provide a comfortable living for his employees?

We need more of this in America, politics can’t fix the economic paradigm that has greed built into our business models.

The purpose of business is success and wealth, but this does not necessarily imply that the success and wealth is all for YOU.

Your business is greater than you which is why it is treated as a person legally. It’s a local organic economic body that is party of a larger global organic economic body. If you poison any part of your body, you’re damn sure it will affect the entire system. Stop feeding your business fast food.

What affects one person effects a business, what affects a business effects the entirety of the economy.


Don’t Kill the Manager (Messenger)

Often times a single person is assigned as the bringer of bad news, the one who gives us all the work that we don’t want to do. This person may have even been assigned by you to play this role;  it could be a friend, family member, personal assistant or just an office or project manager.

There is a psychological tendency to pair the person bringing your assignments with the negative feelings often felt about the task. Some requests seem very ridiculous or tedious, but this isn’t due to the manager. The key is to separate this feeling from the person who brought it

The easiest method for keeping this tendency from arising include consciously stopping groaning and moaning about tasks verbally while recieving assignment as well as while talking about the assignment to others involved in the project. Pay attention the the atmosphere you create. Not only will keeping positive about the assignment help avoid this psychological by product, but will also make the project more bearable and often increases productivity. Also, by removing your initial negative affect, you create opportunities to find solutions to the task quicker, while exposing yourself to the full details of the project.

Ask questions and be involved with the manager. Project managers spend a lot of time going over  projects an what needs to be done. They have to interpret the details to you and your team. Be conscious about this, and understand that by asking questions and being attentively involved you will be able to extract information about the project that your manager may have missed or deemed unimportant. Ask nicely, and clearly, so the manager can understand.  Develop a relationship with them and pay attention to it. Always remember to be kind. The more frustration you show, the harder it is for them to present information to you, and the more uneasy they will feel the next time around.

The bearer of bad news should always be treated as an equal team member, not an outcast.


Personal Responsibility

Often we find ourselves in situations where everyone around us seems to be failing. The tasks we set forth just don’t seem to work out. If your team is struggling and suffering through a project or a task, it may not be the team that is struggling, it may be you.

If you try to micromanage every aspect of a task, or command, step by step, your team members through every minute detail, you may be setting up both you and your team, to fail. You can’t possibly fulfill everyone’s role, nor be their every step of the way for them. You also put the weight of success completely on your shoulders…guess whose fault it is if your team fails?

Personal Responsibility means allowing others to take responsibility for the role they have been assigned. Everyone should be empowered to have the responsibility for their role or station in a project. They should be given the respect and trust to succeed at that role. This not only inspires the individual, but evens the burden across the entire team, especially you as a team leader.

If team members fail, offer suggestions and paths they can take to ratify the situation without overwhelming them or doing it for them. If they consistently fail, while the rest of your team is growing, then you may have identified a weak link in your team that may need to be replaced or reassigned.

There is a difference between being capable, and being willing. It’s interesting that you will notice that without either, a task can’t be done. The easiest thing for a team leader to inspire is the willingness to do a job, it is up to the team member to hone their skill to match that inspiration. Give them time and keep them encouraged and you will find yourself surrounded with many successful individuals, including yourself!


Confidence and Skill: Tip Toe Past your Boundaries

The best way to grow is to keep your confidence level slightly above your skill level.

Why do I say this? Because it pushes you past your boundaries without breaking them. As a technician, manager or even business owner, if you remain within the comforts of what you know how to do, you stay there.

I am not saying if you are a IT geek, go get a job as a cook, no. I mean, as the IT person who is used to a certain way of programming, or language…step out of those bounds and start working at something you have never encountered or been asked to do. Make small projects for yourself that test your limits, slightly. Try writing in a language you never had before, and let Google be your guide! Search! Learn! Solve!

Doing this keeps you on your toes and forces you to figure out a new way to do things. The only thing that comes out of this is growth, as long as it is done slightly. No sense trying to do something that completely forces you to reinvent your own wheels! You want to grow, not break yourself down.

Matt Cutts, the head of Google’s webspam team takes a similar approach, he has a “30 day” program where you tell yourself you are going to do something for 30 days, and do it no matter what. This is an excellent program however my approach is somewhat different…take what you are good at and modify it so its a bit more difficult, not comfortable. When that becomes easy, move onto something new.

Don’t get caught in a rut doing the same thing day in and day out. The more you can do, the more valuable you are, and the easier it will be to overcome opportunities in the future.

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