Productivity

Why We Use Excel, Google Sheets, AND Libre Office Calc

When we were first starting the business and saving every single penny mattered, we shunned buying a lot of expensive software (x 4 people) and instead embraced free open source alternatives like Mozilla Thunderbird and Open Office. As time went on though it became apparent that we needed Microsoft Office, particularly Excel, for two main reasons. First, the advanced tools in Excel could make real positive impacts on our business when it came to higher level data analysis like forecasting. Second, other companies we work… Continue reading

2/11/15

The Simple Brilliance of Using an Index Card for Daily Goals

In 2007 I wrote about how I started outlining my daily goals on an index card after reflecting upon the following passage from The Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss: Don’t ever arrive at the office or in front of your computer without a clear list of priorities. You’ll just read unassociated email and scramble your brain for the day. Compile your to-do list for tomorrow no later than this evening. I don’t recommend using Outlook or computerized to-do lists because it is possible to… Continue reading

10/21/14

Freedom via Gmail on Android

Depending upon who you talk to, our ability to check email on our phones anytime and anywhere is either a blessing or a curse. I think most people see someone they know – a loved one, a friend, or a co-worker – glued to their phone at all hours of the day, constantly receiving push notifications for every email that comes through, and then jumps to the broad conclusion that always being connected to the inbox is pure hell. To that I say: they are… Continue reading

10/20/14

Settling In To My Home Office

There were only a few things I really wouldn’t budge on when home shopping, and #1 on the list was a good office space. Given that I’m working from home 3 – 4 days/week, I spend more time in my home office than I do anywhere else. I took a few quick photos that I posted above. The sun was blaring in so they’re not beautiful but they get the job done. The highlights for me are: Plenty of room for my standing desk setup…. Continue reading

6/3/14

Why We Do REMOTE Work

I recently finished reading REMOTE: Office Not Required by Basecamp (formerly 37signals) founders Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson. The book covers why and how companies should adopt remote work. In typical 37signals fashion the book is simple, elegant, and jam-packed with practical and useful information. Why exactly do we REMOTE? The timing of this read was good for me. We recently started a new schedule where my partners and I spend even less time at the warehouse, both to empower our employees and free… Continue reading

4/24/14

Back in Control of My Inbox

I wrote a lot about how I manage my inbox several years back (see Making Email Efficient, My Email Bliss, and Not All Email is Created Equal). The methodologies outlined in those posts served me well for years, however a lot has changed since then: I receive a lot more email, we’ve grown quite a bit, we have a team of employees, and I’ve gotten married and bought a house. Re-reading those posts years later, it’s almost laughable how little applies to me in 2014…. Continue reading

2/27/14

2014 Aspirations

I’ve never been a huge fan of New Year’s resolutions. This year though, I think that the change from 2013 to 2014 signifies more than just flipping the page on a calendar. The phrase “New Year’s resolutions” didn’t feel quite right so I’m going to go with “2014 aspirations” instead. I’m going to keep it simple here. I have only two aspirations for this coming year. Aspiration #1 – Focus on Revenue and Profitability Often times my partners and I have prioritized revenue growth or… Continue reading

1/4/14

Meeting Momentum

Have you ever gone to a meeting that ended with a positive vibe, lots of promise, tons of action items, and then…nothing happened? I bet you have. I know I sure have. One of the best things about our internal meetings is that this rarely happens. When I’m at a meeting I’m always taking notes, generally either in a notepad file or on a sheet of paper. My goal isn’t organization – it’s to get everything recorded in the most frictionless manner so that I… Continue reading

12/11/13

A Post About Not Posting

My posts have come to a screeching halt lately. I don’t think I’ve ever gone a month without a post since I started blogging back in 2005 so I didn’t want to start now! Mike and I have been pushing really hard to release the aforementioned new version of Detailed Image. As a company we’re probably devoting close to 40% of our time right now working on new site related tasks. Things are busy for me personally right now as well, so I’m pretty much… Continue reading

2/19/13

Standing Desk: 1 Year Later

It’s been just over a year since I switched to a standing desk (see: Standing Desks are Awesome (and exhausting) and My Efforts to Sit Less). Some thoughts after sticking with it for over a year: Like any new habit, it was hard at first but now has become such a part of my daily life that I barely notice it.  Standing is how I do my work when I’m home. After a few months my endurance got to the point where a 10-12 hour… Continue reading

11/14/12