Why You Need a Side Hustle

Why You Need a Side Hustle

Unable to find any work as a teacher or academic, Albert Einstein took a job as a clerk at the Swiss Patent Office. He found the lack of intellectual challenge perfect for his side hustle. To Albert Einstein, the patent office was “that worldly cloister where I hatched my most beautiful ideas.” A clear understanding of your hustle (the job that pays your bills and feeds your stomach) and side hustle (the work that feeds your soul) can make all the difference….

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Implementation Parable – Starfish

Implementation Parable – Starfish

If you are ever overwhelmed with the amount of work or the number of people coming your way and just feel that you can’t help them all – I’m hoping the below Parable will help. Adapted from The Star Thrower: Once upon a time, there was an old man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach every morning before he began his work. Early one morning, he was walking along…

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The Customer is Always Right

The Customer is Always Right

The Customer is Always Right. One of my Executives mentioned that to me the other day when I was speaking with them about an Irate Customer. The Customer is Always Right. That phrase has haunted me for over 15 years in software implementation. And another ten years in various service industries. That line, however, is Bullshit. The Customer is NOT always Right. Customers are often wrong, and in many cases, they have a financial incentive to ignore data that indicates…

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Do Successful Implementation Leaders Play Candyland or Chess?

Do Successful Implementation Leaders Play Candyland or Chess?

Software Implementation is not like Candyland. Take a card, and move a few spots. Then, take another card, and move another few places. Repeat until the game ends. Implementation is more like chess. It requires an active mind, an understanding of the pieces on the board, an understanding of your opponent (change, in this case), and the flexibility and grit to move around newly found constraints throughout the game. Most importantly, to be good at it, you need to practice….

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Implementation Parable – The Ceramics Class

Implementation Parable – The Ceramics Class

There’s a classic story from the book Art and Fear: The ceramics teacher announced on opening day that he was dividing the class into two groups. All those on the left side of the studio, he said, would be graded solely on the quantity of work they produced, all those on the right solely on its quality. His procedure was simple: on the final day of class he would bring in his bathroom scales and weigh the work of the “quantity”…

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The Idiot Leader

The Idiot Leader

I’ve found, and this will be controversial, that there are very few idiot leaders. Instead, I’ve seen employees who believe they deserve recognition, and the only logical reason they don’t receive that credit is that their leader has to be an idiot. I’ve seen this mentality many times, and I’ve even experienced this firsthand. But unfortunately, I think many people fail to recognize that the only thing they can truly change is themselves. They may have an imperfect leader, a…

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Pent up – What to do with Irrational Feedback

Pent up – What to do with Irrational Feedback

We all need a way to deal with irrational feedback. I love how a group of Creatives in Ireland formed Creative Catharsis to handle that kind of feedback. They created hilarious posters featuring some of the ridiculous client feedback they had received over time. Some of these will be familiar if you’ve ever been a Creative. When you implement, you’ll want to create an outlet for handling the irrational elements. Creative outlets, like the one in Ireland, will not solve irrationality, but they will keep you sane….

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The Middle Manager’s Guide to Middle Management: Books

The Middle Manager’s Guide to Middle Management: Books

Managers account for 70% of variance in employee engagement scores. Gallup, 2014 Why Great Managers Are So Rare It’s daunting for a leader to think that most of their employees leave because of them. As a middle manager, it is too easy to attribute this rationale to reasons above or around you. However, in a survey by Career Addict, 4 in 10 employees stated that they would return to their jobs if their boss were replaced. Still, 40% is an…

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War Time vs. Peace Time – Preparing for Implementation Role Change

War Time vs. Peace Time – Preparing for Implementation Role Change

In the last episode of Band of Brothers, a mini-series following the US 101st Airborne Division during World War 2, the troops from Easy Company – who have been through hell and back, are struggling with their new roles. Then, the war is over — no more fighting. No more dying – or so you’d think. But, somehow, the troops continue to die – this time, instead of at the hands of the Germans, they turn on themselves. Easy Company…

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The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side – Unless You Are a Fish

The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side – Unless You Are a Fish

“The grass is always greener” is a common phrase leveraged to combat employees fleeing a company. Often, that phrase is used to help employees understand that they may have an inflated perception of their new job offer. Like, beer goggles, but for jobs. It turns out it’s an actional Syndrome. If your employee is showing a “grass is always greener” rationale for leaving their job, there is actually another approach worth considering. What’s your Water? Many core aspects of one’s…

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