1.The Best Way To Show Your Team They Matter: Fix their small problems. Every team member has some small problem – like they always have issues logging into some app. Find out what it is and fix it. That’s how you show you care.
2. Creating Culture Around Celebration: When your team has a win tie it to playing a song. Magic will happen.
3. Thing I’m Watching: Masterclass. I’m loving these. And what’s not to love? David Sedaris teaching you writing and Chris Voss teaching you negotiation – and so much more.
4. Hack I Learned This Week: Exporting audio from video in iMovie is really easy. Simply click the share button – select file – and pull down audio only. Your videos can be turned into podcasts with the click of a button.
5. Thing I’m Thinking About: – What I want my life to be apart from running my firm. It’s important to remember that it’s all one thing – personal and professional goals.
1. Simple Winter Tip: I was always losing lip balm. This winter I bought a 4 pack and left one in my car, one in my office, one in my coat, and one on my nightstand. It’s like magic. I wish I had thought of this sooner.
2. Currently Reading: The “The Infinite Game” by Simon Sinek. One of the great problems of today is so many people playing finite games. Read this book, it’s great.
3. Loving This: I’m loving this Best Self 6 month planner. I have used the quarterly planners before. The set up of this 6 month planner is outstanding. I highly recommend it.
4. Fitness App: Many have goals for the New Year that involve fitness. I have used a bunch of apps and can’t think of a better one than the free “My Fitness Pal” app. Check it out.
5. The Thing I Hate That Works: Logging my food. Simply being mindful of my consumption makes me consume less. I’m back at this in 2020.
1.I’ve Wondered About This: Water goes “stale” overnight because when it warms up its aroma opens up. Cold essentially masks taste. Wired.
2. Elf On A Shelf Tip: Parents know modern Christmas Eve means hiding your elf in a safe place to be taken out 49 weeks later. The last thing on your mind is remembering where you hid the elf. Set a reminder on your phone for next Thanksgiving with the “safe place” you hid the elf.
3. Hack of The Year: Use your phones Notes app to dictate ideas as the come to you. Time block time on your schedule to execute on those ideas. For example, I have a note called “operational ideas” and I block off 2 hours on each Wednesday to work on those ideas. I have not found a better way to move things forward.
4. Skill of The Year: Training yourself to listen to podcasts and audio books at 2.5x. It took me roughly 20 minutes of listening at those speeds for my mind to adjust. I’ll never go back. I can consume 2.5x the content that I would at 1x. That’s a lot of knowledge.
5. Percussive Massagers: Got one for Christmas. I haven’t felt this flexible in decades. Amazing technology.
1.Winter Solstice: One of my favorite days of the year. A signal from the universe that major change often begins unnoticed and in the depths of darkness.
2. For Any Small Business Owner: I love Gary Vee. His keynote “How To Get Your Business the Most Attention Possible in 2020” is especially excellent. Watch it now and go out and “crush it” in 2020.
3. Best Tech I’ve Bought In The Last 6 Months: Apple TV 4K. It never loses wifi connection or buffers. The UI is intuitive. The remote is well done. And it plays so nice with all things Mac and Apple.
4. Big New Projects: I spent a lot of 2019 without a big new non-firm related project. Last week, I discovered my next big new project. It is invigorating and necessary for me. These things tend to fuel all else.
5. See Me In New Orleans: I’m beyond thrilled to be speaking at AAJ Annual Winter Conference in New Orleans. I’ll be talking about basically this.
1.Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker: Want to change your life? Change your sleep.
2. Beastie Boys: A story of friends and growing up. Life happens fast. Enjoy the ride with these MCA, Ad-Rock, and Mike-D.
3. Trillion Dollar Coach by Eric Schmidt: The story of Bill Campbell and the life and business lesson’s he taught the leaders of Google, Apple, Amazon, Ebay and many others.
4. Radical Candor by Kim Scott: Growth as a leader lies just outside your comfort zone. Kim Scott does an excellent job on how to give and receive feedback and move a business forward.
5. Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyou: An absolutely gripping book about Theranos. What fascinates me about this book is it is a book about what happens to smart people when they want something to be true. Great read.
1.Trend I’m Watching: Most retail is contracting. Dollar Store is expanding rapidly. “Dollar Tree CEO Gary Philbin added last week that low-income consumers are often “one doctor bill or one car repair bill away from not being in such good shape.”
2. Daylight: In Hartford, and across the northern hemisphere, the days are getting shorter. Between today we will lose 8 minutes and 12 seconds of daylight. The darkness dominates this time of year. But come December 11th we will actually start gaining daylight in the evening.
3. Quote On My Mind: “One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.” – Maya Angelou
4. Thing That Has Gotten Much Easier: Creating a playlist. I don’t usually do this but did one this week. Creating a mixtape for someone in the 1990s took a lot of time. A good mixtape was a well received gift. Now it is so easy to do that it is instantly disposable.
5. What I’m Listening To: The Notorious B.I.G. – he died at age 24. And 25 years later his music sounds as fresh as the day it was released.
1. Long Range Winter Forecast: Cold and lots of snow – “snowiest winter in years” for New England.
2. It’s About To Turn Around: Just 22 days until the winter solstice.
3. Allbirds: I’m a massive fan of Allbirds shoes. There battle with Amazon gets to the heart of the future of capitalism, branding, and the environment. Read this article if you want to understand why.
4. Connection To Our Things: Both vinyl record sales and physical book sales are on the rise. In an age of everything digital there’s a yearning for emotional connection and that trickles down to connection with our stuff.
5. Make The Changes Now: There are 33 days left in this year. I’m using the next month to get a head start on 2020.
1.Question I’m Asking Myself: What can I stop doing?
2. How To Defeat Paywalls: Using Safari in private mode and/or clicking on reader view.
3. Making Time For What Matters: There’s no better productivity tool than putting everything on your schedule and blocking time to get the things don that need to be done.
4. Daylight: Today the sunsets at 4:25pm in Hartford. That good news is the earliest the sun will set here is 4:19pm from December 7 – December 10. After that we start adding afternoon daylight. By the solstice the sun will set at 4:23pm.
5. Quote I’m Thinking On: ‘I emotionally underestimated the pull on my emotional bandwidth, the sheer determination it takes to stay calm under pressure, and the weight of continuous problem solving and decision making.’ – @BreneBrown speaking about transitioning from studying leaders to becoming one/CEO. h/t @hellodivorce
1. Book I’ve Enjoyed The Most This Year: The Beastie Boys Book (affiliate link) – it’s a story of friendship and growing up and ultimately mortality. Worth buying the hardcover for the art and pictures.
2. Thing I’m Going To Get Back To: Journaling for 5 minutes a day. I find journaling to be so productive but for some reason my execution is hot and cold. I’m going on a hot streak.
3. Currently Reading: Clockwork: Design Your Business to Run Itself (affiliate link) by Mike-Michalowicz (author of Profit First) and his Queen Bee principles are resonating with me. Read it if you’d like to improve how your business functions.
4. If You Read One Article Today Make It This: How the Climate Crisis Is Killing Us, in 9 Alarming Charts by Wired. Climate change is not some problem for the future. We are in trouble at this moment.
5. Some November Poetry: The world is tired, the year is old, The little leaves are glad to die, The wind goes shivering with cold Among the rushes dry. – from November by Sarah Teasdale h/t @inspiredcat
1. Best Article I’ve Read All Week: Matt Eagan’s article on modern parenting is both moving and insightful. Read it.
2. Unlocking Travel Deals: I start vacation travel planning on Google Flights. If you keep an open mind as to a destination you can unlock amazing airfare deals (like $200 RT to Europe kind of deals). For example you can search flights to Europe in February and then click on Flexible dates.
3. The Future of Conferences: Jim and Tyson from Maximum Lawyer just announced a 2 day Zapier workshop. These specific, technical, and productive workshops are the future of conferences. Conferences are great for ideas but where the rubber meets the road is implementation.
4. The Goal After The Goal: Setting a goal and then setting a goal after a goal is a way to keep going.
5. Radical Self Candor – I just finished speaking to the Minnesota State Bar Association. The have a wonderful conference facility. My only ask was that they record my talk so I can watch it back. I most recently watched a talk I gave in Park City and was mortified at the amount of pacing that I did. Watching myself speak is an awful mirror being held up to my face. But my goal is to get better – and this week I didn’t pace.