Tag: book

screenshot of document filled with mark-ups and track changes
AccountabilityBooksGoalsPlanning

Track Changes – capturing the fine-tuning of creation

My book is just 1/2 way there. I write about habits, goals, planning and the like …and I missed my own August 2014 deadline. It wasn’t for lack of trying or regular writing. The ideas just needed to get clearer, the “killing the darlings” process is mentally tiring, and overcoming the lizard brain (quoting Seth Godin – “the part of you that controls you, makes you afraid, and pushes you because it says you’re a failure”) was surprisingly difficult. After all, who would want to read what I write?

As a non-writer person (lots of ideas and stories, but not great at explaining them), this is quite the process!screenshot of document filled with mark-ups and track changes

I’m worried about deleting all of these thoughts and ideas. What if I leave out something that was the main point? What if the life changing phrase is mistakenly deleted?

This is where the beauty of “tracking changes” comes in to play. I can save the tracked changes daily and start the next day with a new draft called “accepted changes.” Sure, I’ve now got 35 files stacking up in the My Documents folder, but it is a relief to track this mental and physical process of re-arranging, refining, and refreshing the content. 

Aren’t we lucky that we can change? And, that we can track it? The use of apps to track calories, bike riding, running, and debt reduction is a major signal to the power of tracking the changes we make in our lives. We get to see where we were, where we are going and get excited about where we may end up. It’s about growth, adventure, and new horizons while capturing the junky-ness of the journey.

Also helpful, is a morgue file of sorts – a document that I can copy/paste my unused quotes and notes just in case I need them later or …for another book. If anything, it provides mental relief to my non-writer soul. The thought is preserved.

There are quite a few writing gurus out there that have a lot to share about the writing process – what tools to use, what process to go through, and how to become a millionaire eBook creator. I’ll learn what I can from them more in due time.

For now, I’ve got to write, to change, to modify and to morph. And, I’m going to track it!

Quitter by Jon Acuff
Ideas

Early Morning Conference Room Hiding – Quitter lesson

Last week I read Quitter by Jon Acuff, a member of the Entreleadership team.

Quitter by Jon Acuff

Quitter by Jon Acuff

A lot of great thoughts in the book that I’m sure I’ll write more about later.

Jon definitely doesn’t encourage people to just go quit their day job, in fact quite the opposite. But, he did share a tip that I’m applying right at this very moment.

He would go to work (the day job he didn’t like) early each day and find a conference room to hide in before all the madness started. In that space he would write a blog post for his personal blog and take care of a few personal items as well.

This was an AWESOME tip!

It freed him up to get something personal accomplished at the beginning of the day and when he went back to his desk he was ready to completely focus on the work he was getting paid to do!

So, here goes my first morning putting this concept into practice. I got here at 7:30 a.m. and actually put in an hour of work and am now taking 30 minutes to knock out a few personal items besides creating this post.

I feel great!  Let the bombardment begin!

Picture of a boy sticking his head out of the sand on the cover of Anything you Want
BooksIdeasInspirationLeadershipMarketing

Anything You Want!

Just finished a great book. Remember? It is the book I ordered directly from Seth Godin’s blog post without even finding out what it was about, who the author was, etc. Now that shows Seth’s influence!

It is a cute little book. You can read it in an hour.Picture of a boy sticking his head out of the sand on the cover of Anything you Want

By Derek Sivers – Anything You Want!

Derek is the founder of CD Baby, an extremely profitable business that enabled any musicians to get started in the world of sharing their music instead of waiting for a big name to pick them up. He’s since sold the business…and the story about that is also in the book.

Why do I love his little book?

Derek is REAL. He made mistakes and shared them. He doesn’t pretend to be this power CEO that must hobnob with the big boys. He encourages all entrepreneurs to follow what makes them happy. And, that will be a different answer for each one.

He is open in sharing that you will have to make decisions along the way that may make you less money, but will make you more happy. It takes guts to run a business this way.

So many great little thoughts, but one I really liked was “Being, not having.” So often we think we need to make more, grow bigger, and have widespread influence. Instead of trying to grow big fast, focus on enjoying what you do and creating value for your customers. Figure out what you really want to spend your time doing – do you like being out and about all the time networking or do you like to keep it small and manageable and immerse yourself in the actual work? “To each his own” so to speak.

One of his business mottos was to do whatever it takes to please the customer. Derek shares the story of how he changed his feedback forms to include a space for customers to ask for whatever they wanted. Someone asked for some cinnamon gum. So, CD Baby had a worker pick up a pack at the store when they ran an errand. They included it in the customer’s order. Another asked for a squid. They complied.  How awesome is that! You think you are just filling space with some weird request to get a reaction and the company actually gets it for you!

I’d venture to say that those customers are still with him. (-:

Go buy the book! It is under $10 and worth the read. Plus, who wouldn’t like a book with this cover? A cute kid stuck in the sand.

Reminds me of a picture of my own, but I wasn’t so happy. (-;

Link to the book Anything You Want on Amazon

Orbiting the Giant Hairball book cover
BooksIdeasInnovationInspiration

Orbiting the Giant Hairball

A few weeks ago, on of the directors of our division gave me a book that he thought I’d enjoy. He asked me to read it and give him feedback. He also said, “apparently people really love it or hate it – engineers hate it.” Well, if that isn’t motivation, what is?Orbiting the Giant Hairball book cover

So, book in hand I got on my flight across the country to my brother’s wedding.

And, I loved the book!

It is called “Orbiting the Giant Hairball” by Gordon MacKenzie.

It is about a creative guy that worked at Hallmark for MANY years. But, he moved around a lot and started a lot of great things within the company – an intrapreneur.

However, this book offers great ideas on taking action if you are an entrepreneur as well.

As an example, Gordon (the author), moved with a small group to a new work area. Instead of defaulting to the same desks and a Dilbert type cube farm, he asked for something different – to find furniture at thrift and antique stores.

After the “not sures” and the “you can’t do that” people died down, the right person gave him permission to move forward.

Each person ended up with their own unique desk, decorations and lighting.

The cost? A little less than if they had created a cube farm.

The cost for the employees? What is the MasterCard ad? – Priceless! They were motivated, they were focused, they were creative and ….other divisions wanted to do it too.

The creativity cost less than the typical model and productivity went up.

Gordon shares this story, and many others, in a creative array of book pages – some are plain, some have little doodles, and others are just plain written like they are a sheet of notebook paper. So, the guy practices what he preaches on creativity.

When you get a chance, buy a copy on Amazon.

Part of the table of contents of Orbiting the Giant Hairball

Excerpt from the Table of Contents

P.S. Guess I’m not an engineer. (-:

ApologiesBooksCustomer Relations

Apology Nudges

Yes, there is such a category as “apology nudges” and it was just invented by the Chief Nudger because …she neglected to send a prize (the Crush It! book) to a villager (Mary Kay) in a timely manner.

What happens when you don’t deliver what you promise? And, when you promise it?

Resentment from business partnerships? Distrust of customers? No second chance from prospects?

Perhaps you are thinking – “Ok, it was just a book and it was free. Perhaps it isn’t that big of a deal in this case.” Or, is it?

Every single interaction – email, phone calls, text messages, website appearance, Facebook responses – send a message. They are part of your personal brand.

Are you ok with yours? Or, are there areas to improve? What are those areas? Do you know someone who is better in those areas than you? Have you asked them what they do?

Here at Nudge Village, we know we have to make some improvements and luckily we are learning just like you and will share the good, the bad, and the ugly along the way. After all, sometimes we learn A LOT more from mistakes than from when things are going well.

So, as a start on improving – we again say “Mary Kay, we apologize for taking two entire weeks to send out a book and hope that you will forgive us.”

P.S. That reminds us – we selected another winner for “The James Miracle” this weekend and will post that on Tuesday.

Free - the Future of a Radical Price
LearningMarketing

FREE – The Future of a Radical Price

Yes, this is a post about something FREE.

And, thank goodness it is free because the name of the book/podcast: Free - the Future of a Radical Price

Free – The Future of a Radical Price by Chris Anderson

You must download this into your iTunes account or listen to it here.

Part of this is based upon a concept we are familiar with on our Saturday trips to the grocery store or Costco. Free samples, supposedly free add ons to an item we’ve purchased, and rebates that make us feel like we got a deal.

But, Chris is talking about really giving something of value free to the marketplace.

He even uses an example of an airline in Europe that can afford to give free airplane flights because their business model allows them to earn money through other avenues.

As an entrepreneur, you most likely need cash and you need it fast.

However, this book/podcast gives a long term perspective on building relationships, adding value to the marketplace and …in the long term maybe even making more money through providing a lot of your expertise for free.

Don’t want to share too much here, but it is worth downloading (or listening to on the laptop) while you go on a walk or clean the kitchen or garage. It came out a couple of years ago, but is still applicable to where the marketplace is going.

P.S. I just went in and looked at the times for each chapter. Looks like this will take three hours to listen to which means it was interesting enough for me to think I only had it on for an hour. (-: