the worth of truth

Reading Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done and drooling over the world they describe. Larry and Ram are going on about developing bench strength and coaching their people talent.

I did an informal poll and asked my friends if they’d ever been in a company that valued the people such that coaching and promotions were part of life. We know of this, like we know of unicorns. But do they exist? Doubtful.

But that made me think. What if we could develop partnerships with teams who could assess us effectively–a kind of support group. Perhaps a group of people doing volunteer work with the idea in mind that honest and constructive feedback about strengths but MOSTLY weaknesses would happen at the end.

Honesty is so rare and valuable.

The things everyone should be told about conferencing technology

I’m preparing a presentation about conferencing. I’ve been doing it for a dozen years now, I ought to know something about it.

“They” say that managers spend 50% of their time in meetings. And every day I see meetings that are handled so badly. I would think, if I did something repeatedly and I knew I would keep doing it, I would want to get better at it.

Interestingly, there is not a lot of information about the subject. Me and my colleagues are constantly seeing ways our users could improve their experience. But nobody asks. I don’t see any books about it.

So…once i get my thoughts organized for this presentation, I may expand the topic and make a reference book. Perhaps there are some people out there WISHING they could get better at this thing, but no one is there to teach them.

When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.

Ta dah!

7:25 and all’s well

Tonight I plan to finish my book Liberal Fascism. It’s a very good book, and I highly recommend it.

But it is sooooo depressing.

It feels like there is a lot to be depressed about. The economy sucks, and while we are trying to cheer up over THAT fact, the sad state of our health insurance is on replay in the media.

Chris reads me the news and there is just bad news after depressing news.

I’m not in the mood for it. I don’t want to be uncertain right now. I want to feel as if I had a handle on things and a good idea about what is coming next. I don’t feel that way right now.

Of course, the reality is that even when I do feel that way it is an illusion. Who of us ever really has a handle on things?

Which is another depressing thought.

Well, here is what I know. I and mine are well. My new baby daughter is asleep and healthy in bed, and all is well.

I should count my blessings.

Pulling up my socks

John Wooden was a great basketball coach at UCLA, and he is well known for his successful tenure. The teams he coached won a record number of championships.

 I heard him on TV, when he was talking about being in condition to win. Even little things matter; in particular he focussed on shoes and socks.

 The very real fact is, when you practice your game the way you need to to WIN your game you will sustain blisters. Blisters are such small insignificant little annoyances, right? Just the cost of doing your business.

 But the little things matter. And if you are hampered by something as small as a blister, you might not make it to your championship goal. John Wooden paid attention to all aspects of the game, and he found a way to prevent blisters. Basically, pull up your socks. Don’t let them bunch up so that you can’t be at your best.


Be careful in the little things. As I look ahead to a lot of chaos and changes in my department’s infrastructure, I am shaking in my boots a little. How are we going to manage these many many changes that haven’t happened yet?


I know how we are going to manage. I am going to pay attention to all the little things. I am going to do my best to make sure that our stuff–our game plays–are in the best condition I can make them. That way when all the changes come, our documentation and equipment will be ready.