Posts Categorized: Best Practices

Postel’s Law Asks, What Are You Ignoring Today?

Posted by & filed under Attention, Best Practices, Identity.

There are quite a few memes circling this week I’m actively ignoring. Things where this sentence is exactly the amount of energy I’m giving them. If you also follow Doc Searls, these are snowballs I don’t think deserve pushing. This is where the attention metadata stuff gets mushy. I’m talking about the triangles in the […]

Lawyers That Get Niche Publishing and Podcasting

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Customer Relationship, Marketing, Podcasting.

Some of you may remember the 6-part series I did with Parsinen Kaplan Rosberg & Gotlieb P.A. over at the First Crack Podcast. For your convenience, I’ve consolidated all the PKR&G podcast conversations including 2 bonus conversations that didn’t make the original series. This week PKR&G came out with their annual lifestyle magazine, “Perfectly Legal”. […]

Why Conferences Should Be Free

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Thought of the Day.

Earlier this week, Lori and I were talking about the crazy $500-$1,000+ ticket prices for industry conferences. Considering the you’d have to block the time off your calendar, close up the shop, and book travel, the additional admission cost seems like a good way to artificially prevent people from showing up. At every professional-related meeting […]

This Email is Bloggable Signature

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Email, Etiquette, Usability.

I’ve been thinking about when to send an email verses blog. I’ve decided on a loose guideline: if more than 3 people would find something useful, I’ll blog it. If not it’s an email (or, even better, an instant message) Somethings, like mailing lists, don’t map well to this guideline. To cover that, I’ve followed […]

Waiting Room Wireless is a Must

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Business, Thought of the Day.

If you have a waiting room, where people are likely to sit for longer than 5 minutes (doctor’s offices, corporations, hotels) you need to offer free wireless internet access. From personal experience, it’s the difference between continuing check things off my daily to do list and the frustration of being held hostage.

Even the Almost Perfect Customer Experience Takes 15 Years

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Customer Relationship, Worst Practices.

I bought a car last week. We’ve been looking for another one for some time and not been real happy with what’s available (anything under 20 mpg just seems irresponsible). My father-in-law has a fantastic, nearly 15 year old relationship with a dealership. He’s purchased every car I’ve ever seen him drive there. When Jen […]

Productivity Tip: Empty Your Dock

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Productivity, Software.

Back in the pre-OS X days, I used DragThing religiously to keep applications, websites, and documents at my finger tips. That mentality migrated with me to OS X – put everything in the Dock, keep it handy. Today, I shed it. Inspired partially by my preparation for the Tiger upgrade and partially by my proficiency […]

More Gets You to Better

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Innovation.

As I mentioned in my interview at, I had an art professor who believed everyone had 5,000 bad drawings in them. Five thousand drawings bad drawings before the good ones could come out. This perspective is re-iterated in Throw More Pots over at Crossroads Dispatches. In this same token, I’m a firm believer every […]

The Creative Grotto Vibe

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Work.

This morning Jen brought up the Temporary Office Space idea again. It’s something she’s brought up before. As a highly-mobile professional, the idea is very compelling. To have comfortable, secure place to send faxes grab a decent cup of coffee, and recharge off a good vibe for an hour or two, I think you can […]

Better Email Tips

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Bookshelf, Email, Employee Relationship.

On MPR the other morning, they had consultant and author Marilyn Paul talking about ways to spend less time in your inbox. Her suggestion is to institute email subject line tags. You include these tags in your email subject line. Here are the one’s I remember: ty: thank you nrn: no reply necessary nbd: need […]

Advertising is Dead, Part 2

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Customer Relationship.

First Amazon, now Dorothy Lane Market ends advertising and focuses on offering customers value. “We realized that we couldn’t give club members the deals that we wanted to give them if we continued spending $5,000 to $10,000 a week on print advertising” More in this Fast Company article: Dorothy Lane Loves Its Customers

Care and Feeding of Your Harshest Critics

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Customer Relationship, Innovation.

Marqui is paying people to test drive and blog about their content management system. From Marc Canter on the origins of the idea: When I first came up with the idea – the question was poised “what if they blog something negative?” My answer was “that’s a good thing! Can you imagine how powerful it […]

More Slack Keeps Projects on Track

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Bookshelf, Productivity.

Plans are worthless, but planning is everything. There is a very great distinction because when you are planning for an emergency you must start with this one thing: the very definition of ‘emergency’ is that it is unexpected, therefore it is not going to happen the way you are planning. – Dwight D. Eisenhower Swap […]

Find Failure Fast

Posted by & filed under Best Practices.

“If you want to increase your success rate, double your failure rate.” – Thomas J. Watson Sr, founder of IBM “…fail faster so [you] can succeed sooner.” – David Kelley of IDEO I’ve got any number of projects in the works at any given time (current count is north of 20). Last year, there was […]

Cost of Stolen Towels Comes Out of Marketing Budget

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Customer Relationship, Usability.

A couple years back, Amazon attempted two things: Advertising in print and on television. Charging for shipping. They found little return on the first, and a found a huge backlash against the second. Amazon now finances their Super Saver shipping with their advertising budget: NY Times – Amazon Tries Word of Mouth Holiday Inn just […]

Success Comes in Small, Cheap Projects

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Lean Thinking, Productivity.

Instead of spending milions of dollars on “The Superbowl Ad”, why not spend that money cranking out beermat campaigns, till you find one that really works? Using beermats in small, test markets, you could easily create 50, 100 (500? Who knows?) campaigns for the price of one decent Superbowl/TV commercial. It would be a simple, […]

5 Tips For Better Customer Interviews

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Customer Relationship, Research.

The easiest way to collect interesting, usable data from a research effort is to blend into the background of the subject’s life. Media journalists know this – that’s why they’re embedded in the presidential campaigns and in the military actions. To give honest unselfconscious, response, subject’s need to be comfortable with researchers – as peers, […]

Six Step Process to Motivate Others

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Employee Relationship, Etiquette.

In a highly collaborative working environment, the traditional hierarchical relationship between employees doesn’t exist. The result is peers making requests to one another to move their respective projects forward. More akin to a volunteer organization than a button-down for-profit business. The best volunteer organizations use a 6-step process to motivate peers in assisting. This is […]

Yes, and – not But

Posted by & filed under Best Practices, Productivity, Teams, Work.

Improvisational comedy, like all team sports is about effective, high-energy, spontaneous collaboration. One of the seven major tenets of Improv is building off each person’s comment and suggestion with “Yes, and…” rather than dismissing it with a “but…”. “Yes, and…” extends, explores, and enhances the previous suggestion – building trust among all the team members, […]