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Author: Matthew Furlong

Book Review: Finish – Your Perfectionism is Blocking You

Book Review: Finish – Your Perfectionism is Blocking You

Jon Acuff hates Brussel sprouts! He also writes incredibly insightful and thought-provoking books. In his last book, “Finish: Give yourself the Gift of Done,” Jon brings up countless stories to help others successfully define and cross the finish line in whatever they want to achieve. Jon points to perfectionism as the enemy of getting anything done. In other words, our fear of being anything less than perfect prevents us from accomplishing so much in our lives. I have to say…

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Got Milk? And the Value of Emotional Connection

Got Milk? And the Value of Emotional Connection

Do you remember countless celebrities photographed with the iconic milk mustache from the 90s? That was, essentially, phase two of the Got Milk campaign. We have Goodby, Silverstein, and Partners to thank for phase one and the creation of “Got Milk?” as a campaign. Before that, Milk’s primary campaign was “Milk. It does a body good.” A little “womp womp” if you ask me. According to Fast Company, 80% of consumers came into contact with the “Got Milk?” campaign on…

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Vendors vs. Partners: How to Work with an Outside Delivery Team

Vendors vs. Partners: How to Work with an Outside Delivery Team

Purchasing software is complicated. Meeting with each vendor is time-consuming. It takes time to get a feel for the product. Not to mention the day job you probably have on top of being responsible for acquiring new software solutions. But when you do meet with each vendor, don’t just look for features. Look for partners If you want a tool you’ll replace in a couple of years after investing countless hours implementing it, then, by all means, don’t take my…

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Blamers Anonymous – How Awareness is Everything

Blamers Anonymous – How Awareness is Everything

Whenever you run into a stumbling block, it’s easy to look for someone or something to blame. Admittedly, it’s something I struggle with, as well. When I do find myself at that moment looking for blame – I mentally come back to this short video by Brené Brown. It’s a helpful reminder of what’s going on for me. It merely means that I’m feeling uncomfortable with something and looking for someone to pin it on. It’s easier to rage and…

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Winning the Argument: Does Someone Need to Lose?

Winning the Argument: Does Someone Need to Lose?

When I was 5, I argued with my cat and yelled out, “Liar. Liar. Pants on Fire.” Clearly, I won the argument because Cleo stopped what she was doing and sauntered off. So obedient, you know, like all cats. (Or at least, that is how I choose to remember it). Today, I disagreed with a coworker on a particular approach. We both jockeyed to win the argument. She was right. But then I was right. And then she was right….

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Facing a Challenge – The Semmelweis Perspective

Facing a Challenge – The Semmelweis Perspective

As the chief resident of Obstetrics in Vienna in the 1840s, Ignaz Semmelweis oversaw two maternity clinics. But he had a problem. One clinic had a maternal mortality rate of about 10%, while the other had a considerably lower maternal mortality rate of 4%. This gap was very well known to people outside the hospital as often, women would beg to be admitted to the Second Clinic due to the reputation of the first clinic. Semmelweis struggled to determine why one mortality…

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Letter to Executives

Letter to Executives

Dear Executive, You did it. Thank you. We know that you spent a significant amount of money on new software. But, in the end, you selected the right one, and it’s intended to help us be more efficient and give you visibility into what we do. It will allow us to deliver more in less time, and we are 100% behind that. So, for that, we say a heartfelt “Thank You!” We are all invested in making our company and…

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5 Questions to Ask Your Vendor About Services

5 Questions to Ask Your Vendor About Services

When purchasing software and services, it’s easy to overlook what’s included in the services. Because, well, the software is so fancy. But if you are about to purchase software and services together, these five questions will help you get a handle on what you can expect going into the implementation. 1. Do you have a methodology that you adhere to (and can I see it)? If the vendor has done this before, they should have a methodology. This question is intended to…

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ER – A Reminder of Possibility

ER – A Reminder of Possibility

The script for ER sat on a shelf for nineteen years before it got picked up and made into a show. A show that lasted for fifteen seasons. A show that picked up 116 industry awards. And launched any number of careers. And it sat for 19 years – very close to having never been. How many other shows are still sitting on a shelf? Better yet – How many of your ideas are sitting on the shelf? It’s worth…

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It’s Not About the Nail – Empathy

It’s Not About the Nail – Empathy

My most challenging interactions play out a lot like this. I’m a fixer. I want to get in and fix it (or if I can’t, I want to figure out how to motivate others to do it). As a result, this video called to me for two reasons: 1) It’s a reminder that we need to Listen More – sometimes, the conclusion we draw is not shared. Consequently, Empathy is best when we are not trying to insert our opinions…

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