For Dummies Books…For Dummies

My best friend’s wife did her MBA at Dalhousie University. In fact, that’s where I met her and eventually introduced her to my best friend, who she eventually married and stole away to Ottawa… but I’m not bitter. Anyways, last year I decided to read The Complete MBA for Dummies. I made a little game out of telling her that I was completing my MBA and then telling her that I was doing so using a “for dummies” book. She thought that I was being serious and that I thought that I was, in fact, earning my MBA (which I clearly did not). Now, why did I read The Complete MBA for Dummies? Because why not?

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Sacred Hoops

They say that you can’t judge a book by it’s cover. And they’re probably right, unless you’re talking about a book, in which case people usually judge a book by it’s cover and they’re usually right. What they really mean is that you shouldn’t judge something without knowing everything about it. That’s the case with Sacred Hoops. The book is written by Phil Jackson, known worldwide as one of the greatest basketball coaches of all times, leading the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers to 11 World Championships and winning another 2 as a coach in the 1970’s with the New York Knicks. This means that even if he uses his thumbs he still has 3 extra rings that he can’t wear. But this book has, at its core, nothing to do with basketball.

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Chunky vs Smooth: The Salsa Dilemma

My wife and I LOVE nachos. Love. We use some kind of non-dairy cheese that I believe to be made from leaves and/or nuts or some other thing and it’s actually surprisingly tasty. The issue is not with the chips, or the cheese, or the meat (or lack thereof as my wife is a vegan), the issue is with the salsa. I like chunky with a little bit of heat. My wife likes smooth and incredibly bland. There is no reconciling our disparate views on salsa.

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Buzz Words are Buzz Killers

I’ve been thinking lately about a startup that I’d like to ramp up working on over the course of the next few months. Now, I’ll tell you a secret. I talk to myself. Like, a lot. Like, all the time. I conduct, in some cases, full blown interviews with myself. I find it a good way to work out the pros and cons of a project because it allows me to play good cop/bad cop and work through a lot of things on my own. Today, I was conducting an “interview” about how I saw this particular startup improving the world when I used the word “agile” and instantly walked out of the interview (with myself).
I worked for a long time as a manager and trainer at a call center. Firstly, I actually enjoyed my job. I made lifelong friends, was able to work on a lot of management and educational theories that I still use today, and generally had an all around good time. But there is one part of my life as a call center employee that I do not miss, will never miss, and will never repeat in my own life. Buzz Words.

The Click Moment

I don’t trust motivational speakers. I think Tony Robbins is full of it. If your book has a title in it (i.e. the 7 habits of ANYTHING) I believe that you are trying to pull a fast one on me. Why? Well, I simply don’t believe that there are quick fixes, easy solutions or guaranteed methods for pretty much anything. This directly contradicts my history as an athlete and a coach but I simply can’t believe that there is an exact method for most thing because if there was then, in general, there wouldn’t be overweight people, there wouldn’t be unhappy people and there wouldn’t be poor people. I’ve always felt that there was a little luck involved. No, let’s be honest. I’ve always felt there was a LOT of luck involved. And then it clicked… quite literally.

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The Movie-Goers Guide to Business

I’ve been talking a lot about movies lately, including starting a movie review site with a good friend, and it got me thinking about all the movies I’ve seen that made me think about business. And when I started thinking about it, I realized that there were, in my mind, two movies that defined entrepreneurship as far as I was concerned and I wanted to take this time to introduce you to the philosophies of my two on-screen business heroes.
Meet Jim Young. Jim Young works for an investment firm called JT Marlin. Now I’ll start by saying (SPOILER ALERT) that the activities at JT Marlin are highly illegal and I don’t encourage or endorse them. BUT, then there’s Jim Young. Jim Young is played by Ben Affleck and is a very minor character in the film in terms of screen time but certainly not in terms of screen presence. He is introduced to us through a series of short and powerful speeches. My favorite is the “act as if” speech. 

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Twitter Rules of Engagement: Never Go To Twitter Angry

There is a company in Germany that is working on a way to eliminate the angry email. They’re working on a piece of software that scans your email, as you type, for what it determines to be abnormal typing patterns. It checks to see if you’re typing faster than usual, making more than your normal share of errors, and if it determines that this is the case, it makes you review your email at a later date and will not send it. Why? Because it doesn’t want you to send an email in anger that you can’t take back. It makes you think about the consequences of your actions. Do you hear that Twitter?
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