Tuesday, June 28, 2016

A few years ago, I downloaded a free Sudoku app called Sudoku Joy. I had not played Sudoku before this app and I was not sure I would like Sudoku. In fact, I was pretty sure I would not like Sudoku.
Turns out, I was wrong. I like Sudoku quite a bit, and this app is my favorite. As I learned how to play from the app, I quickly realized how this app has great management skills.
1. It made me want to play the game.
It immediately offered me a choice of difficulties, and the easiest level was so easy that I was able to grasp concepts immediately.
2. It gave me progressively more challenging work.
As I improved, I was able to keep challenging myself and accomplish more.
3. It highlighted my accomplishments and motivated me to get better.
After each game, it told me how fast I completed it compared to other people and my best time. If I used hints, it only compared me to people who used hints.
4. It provided hints when I wanted them.
It did not provide the answer. It first points me in the right direction, which helps me learn. If I’m still stuck, I can request another hint, and it gets me closer to the answer. If I’m still stuck, it gives me the answer so I can continue on.

5. It identifies things I’ve done wrong without judgment.
When I ask it to “check entries” if I’ve done something wrong, it tells me where there are incorrect entries and offers to correct them so I can continue on.
What can you do to make your team members more engaged and gently guide them to their potential?

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Galaxy S7 - My short review

I've had my S7 for 2 weeks now after upgrading from the S5. My S5 was losing battery quickly giving me less than 1/2 day use. So I bought the S7 hoping to solve that problem.

I felt unsure about the upgrade, after all, other than battery life my S5 was running fine.  Until I realized what I was missing.

The S7 was immediately faster. Significantly faster.  Wait, I said to myself: It has to be due to it being new, once I load the apps it will slow down.  Nope. Still fast.  So much faster.  I had forgotten how much speed makes a difference on a phone and the S7 is blazingly fast.

Battery life is a winner. Only 1 day so far of heavy use has left me needing a charge.  Most days, I have over 40% left at the end of the day.

Camera is taking gorgeous photos and selfies are clearer too.  The camera is faster too.

I took at risk at dinner with friends one night and put my phone in a glass of water completely submerged.  It was fine.  How cool is it to know that if I drop my phone in water, I'll be fine.

There are many other things I like about the Galaxy S7 but the highlights in order for me are:

  • Speed
  • Battery
  • Camera
  • Waterproof
As for things I don't like, I'm still getting used to the headset jack on the bottom.  Otherwise, I haven't found a thing about it I don't like.

The wireless charging is cool too but I wouldn't buy the phone for it.  The case I bought is the best case I've had for a phone so far. Slim, light, good grip, and great price: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01BAHHVQM.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Why my dad is special

My dad inspires me.  Just this week, I needed my dad.  He was there for me.  This isn’t the first time I needed him and it won’t be the last.   My dad has been there for my sisters too. He’s been there for my children and for many others.

Tuesday night we had my dad over for early Father’s day because I’ll be traveling on Father’s day.  When we sat down for dinner, I asked my kids to think about what makes “Papa” special.  Each of them told stories about what they loved.  What amazed me is the details of the stories they told.  Details of things that happened long ago but that created a bond with him for them.

One of my children talked about the time he (my son) was facing a significant personal challenge and became significantly anxious.  My dad came over and talked with him on 2 different occasions and helped him work through the challenge when I was out of town on business. 

I teared up as my son told the story because my dad has been there for me during my times of challenges. Every time.  Always supporting me, always caring, always available.  As my son finished, I said “ditto” because that is all I could say without crying.

Beyond being there whenever any of his children, grandchildren, or friends need him, my dad is impressive for many other reasons.  For example, despite being 70+, he has not stopped improving himself. He hasn’t stopped looking at other perspectives. He hasn’t stopped listening to see what he might be missing.  In fact, he has done more listening and has become more open-minded.   This trait of his is so inspiring to me and makes him fun to be around.

He is always giving of himself to others.

When my family moved back to Florida 4 years ago, the moving van was late and I had to travel and was not here during the unloading.  We live in a neighborhood with very small 1 way streets, barely enough for a car to drive if someone is parked on the road.  The moving van was not going to be able to make it because of the dozens of cars parked on the road between the entrance to the neighborhood and my house at the back of the neighborhood.  This meant additional expense of another truck and unloading twice.   Rather than let this happen, my dad went door to door and asked people if they would move their cars until all the cars were moved.  I often drive down my streets and think about how my dad did this.  It’s a reflection on who he is and how much he cares for others because while he did this for us, he would not have done this for himself.

My dad is special and I’m so thankful for him every day. 

Happy Father’s day dad! I love you.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Play Hurt

The athlete knows the day will never come when he wakes up pain-free. He has to play hurt.

I am no athlete but I am athelitic.  As I suffer through another bout of Plantar's Fasciitis, I can't run.  Running was my stress reliever.  When I can't run, I can't relieve my stress.

Athletes have to play through the pain and they do lasting damage to themselves.  We are fortunate to be able to take time to heal.

Business is not a game but we often have to play "hurt".  Our head is not in the game.  A challenge takes away our motivation.  S*** Happens.   We have to play hurt.

It's what we are paid to do. At least we do no lasting damage to ourselves.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Mobile payments

Cash is so 1990's.  Credit cards are so 2000.  Mobile payments are truly the future but adoption is slow by consumers and by retailers.

I love the convenience of securing and paying for Uber on my phone. It's not a true mobile payment, but the experience of not pulling out my money clip is so nice.  So I just activated Android Pay and Samsung Pay (I'm not sure which I'll use more).  I have used Square on my mobile phone before where merchants accept square. It's awesome.

When I go grocery shopping, I will likely be able to grab my phone and be done.  I may not need my wallet eventually for many trips.

Samsung Pay has the advantage that it can simulate the credit card even if the NFC is not available.  Android Pay only works if the credit card machine works with NFC.  Apple Pay for Apple users only works if the machines support Apple.

Hotels are starting to use phones as keys to enter your room. More and more, your phone is your world.  Whatever phone you are one, setup the payments feature (apple, android, samsung) and start to experience it. It's a great way to get comfortable with what is coming.  I expect that in 3 years, it will be very common for us to pay with our phones in the US like it is in many other places in the world.

As far as security, it's far more secure than a card.  Properly secure your device and you'll be fine.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Prioritizing and the lack of time.

Last week I was in DC and the week before that I was in Mexico for 2 days (all business, but fun business).   During that time, I responded only to the most urgent emails and requests.  I just this morning got to some voicemails that were left during that time.

Now I'm essentially caught up.  Thus, I am taking the time to start blogging again.  I intended to blog every day (or weekdays) but the work I was doing required all my attention.  Returning home, it was a mix of family and work needing my attention.

We all have times where we have more to do than will reasonably fit into our day. Yes, I could have still made time to blog or even return a phone call or 2.  However, I chose to focus all my energy on the work in front of me rather than split myself too much.

I already split myself more than I should so this is an important shift for me. We all need to focus more.  The constant news feed we get keeps us jumping from one thing to the next.

The reality is we almost always have enough time to do what needs to be done.  What we don't have is clarity of priorities.  Time forces us to prioritize.  Sometimes we truly don't have enough time, but it is rare.  Instead of more time, we need to prioritize better.