Category Archives: Change

Repeat yourself

A couple of times recently, I’ve come across people saying that it’s important to repeat yourself if you expect to get real action.

What I’m now telling myself:

You might get tired of hearing it over and over.

But isn’t that better than hearing the status quo over and over?


Related, here are two articles echoing two of the “Life is NOYOKE” things I get tired of saying over and over, but, per the above, shouldn’t:

Thing 1: “Don’t count calories.” This: Calories are broken 

Thing 2: “The FDA and those Big Food groups who influence it are the enemy.” This: The Food Pyramid SchemeThe feds’ dietary guide is based on dubious science—and now Congress wants an impartial review.


An image that stuck

You could see it. You could smell it.

You could hear the engine pouring it through the open hood and rear.

It was clouds of old, broken down car emissions.

It stopped my dog and me in our tracks.

Poor guy. His car was giving him trouble.

If he only knew, though, how grateful I am for the perfect image of how real this global warming thing is.

I hope he fixes his car.

I hope we fix all of our cars.

Yes, I quit

Want to quit something?

You can’t set a date. Or stop for any other arbitrary reason.

Before you quit, you have to start.

Start with “no”, add “I’m not”, and be damn proud of it.

No, I don’t work there anymore. I’m not a corporate slave.

No, thanks. I’m not a father who smokes.

No, we should leave now. I’m not the guy who shows up late.

Once you’ve changed your identity by using “no” and “I’m not”, then you can say “yes.”

“Yes, I quit that.”


The Office Chair Problem

For a while, I’ve struggled with office chairs.

Ultimately, I know I should sit on them less and will have my problem solved.

Alas, I have some computer-heavy days and am stuck with the following options.

  1. Use a kitchen-table-style chair. (No arm rests, no wheels, no height adjustment.)
  2. Use an exercise ball. (Same as above, although slightly more lateral mobility.)
  3. Setup a standing desk. (Probably best for my body. And would work great some days. But a writer’s gotta sit.)
  4. Buy an office chair from a big box store. (Over-priced, poorly built and surprisingly uncomfortable.)
  5. Buy an $800 Herman Miller office chair. (Satisfies all the above problems, but is outrageously priced.)

(TLDR: As I’m writing this, I could see the same argument being made for Vitamix. And, as I look at the Herman Miller website, I see their company history is very similar my partner from Olmsted Township, Ohio. Early 1900s, USA-based, basically one product. So, my forthcoming conclusion to this post will either be hypocritical or, perhaps prophetical on a couple levels.)

My solution?

Ask the world to create a market-disrupting office chair company similar to what Tuft and Needle is doing for mattresses.

Someone please do this.

I will advise, invest, and promote as needed.

The world needs this office chair problem solved.



What can we learn here?

Sometimes the answer is hard to say.

Anger, fear, mistrust are wounds that cut deep. Hard to think straight when they’re healing.

But once they do, there’s always a lesson.

Find it when you’re ready.

The best people in the office

Some great organizations:

What do these great organizations have in common? They all welcome dogs to the office.

Yes, these great organizations are great on their own. But would they have become as great without dogs in the office?


But according to a study that confirms the obvious, there are many benefits to having dogs in the office.

So who’s the next great organization? There are plenty of eager employees and wagging dogs ready to join the team.

P.S. Links above to listed organizations are very dog friendly.

Personnel Growth Strategy

As companies grow, they become more impersonal.

  • Emails are no longer from Cassie in accounting. Now they’re from
  • Focus is no longer on an individual’s strengths. Now, it’s on an individual’s tasks.
  • Many decisions aren’t made by you anymore. Now they’re made by a handbook or the board of directors.

The remedy for dealing with your company’s growth and it now being very impersonal?

Don’t take it personally.

And, keep doing your best at recognizing individuals. Because that’s what got you there in the first place.

[Good running into you, Brad Malis.]

Noise and Seth’s Blog

I love Seth Godin’s blog. If you don’t subscribe to it, you should. You’ll learn about business, life and other good things. Kinda like this blog (cough).

If you subscribe to Seth’s blog long enough, you’ll see the one mistake Seth makes every week. Every morning, you’ll get an email with the day’s blog post. And after a while, no matter how much you appreciate the content, you’ll begin to ignore the email. It happened to me, and it will happen to you. Its consistent delivery, every morning at 5AM becomes noise.

That noise:

  • Yields diminishing returns.
  • Dilutes the purpose.
  • Exhausts all parties involved.

Seth could benefit from a break. His readers could, too. One day per week would be enough.

Look in the mirror. Even if you aren’t writing a daily blog, you are doing a daily something. Facebook looking / posting. Clean eating. Working.

So how do you avoid producing, becoming, and delivering noise?

Keep doing what you’re doing. Write a thought-provoking blog. Eat clean. Do good work.

Just take a break.

Two choices with job hunting

Looking for a new job?

Here are your choices:

  1. Sell yourself. Explain how you’re better than your current company. Show how poorly you were treated. Give examples of how overqualified you are.
  2. Sell your current company. Explain how great your time with them has been. Show how well they treated you. Give examples of great things your teams did.

Choice 2 gets you:

  • Higher paying opportunities.
  • More opportunities.
  • An open door to return with your current company.

Yes, a small percentage of old colleagues (ones most financially affected by your departure) will treat with you ignorance and contempt. But you get that any time you get a new job.

Might as well go with Choice 2.