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11.Dec, 2017 2

Silicon Valley Gridlock

The commute in San Francisco Bay Area is obscene. It’s gridlock. It’s killing people’s spirits and driving people to leave the area. For many, the morning drive into Silicon Valley starts at 4:30 or 5:00 a.m. The morning commute doesn’t die down until 11 or 11:30 a.m. By 1:30 pm, the gridlock starts anew as commuters begin heading home. The commute traffic begins to let up about 7:30 or 8:00 p.m. It’s not uncommon for it to take 60-90 minutes to drive 12 miles. It’s maddening. Whereas Silicon Valley building architecture in the early 80’s was marked with single story,…

7.Dec, 2017 0

Fossil Fuel Power Plants Going Way of Buggy Whip

Interesting news in December 2017: GE Is Slashing 12,000 Jobs In Its Power Business General Electric Co announced on Thursday it was axing 12,000 jobs at its global power business as the struggling industrial conglomerate responds to dwindling demand for fossil fuel power plants. The U.S. company launched the cuts to save $1 billion in 2018, saying it expected current difficulties in the sector to continue.”Traditional power markets including gas and coal have softened,” GE said. G.E. is seeing a grim future in building new gas and coal power plants across the globe. Many existing coal power plants are being decommissioned…

26.Nov, 2017 0

Numbers Need Context

Since early September, my 91-year young father has been fighting congestive heart failure. I’m happy to report he is now doing well. In October, he needed to be admitted to a hospital to stabilize his condition. Following the hospitalization, he went to a place for cardiac rehabilitation for 20 days to rebuild his physical strength. I recently took him to his cardiologist appointment and challenged the cardiologist for citing certain test results as “normal” based on what our family had been told by other physicians. I learned a lot. What’s normal for the average person is not normal for someone…

29.Oct, 2017 0

Proper Mindset To Dominate Your Market

In Dell’s 2017 Report to Customers, Dell Technologies opens with the following thought: “One year ago, we created a unique family of businesses 100-percent focused on accelerating customer successes further and faster. In our annual report to you, our customers, we celebrate your success and thank you for allowing us to be part of it.” This is a powerful mindset. How closely does this align with your company’s mindset? If it doesn’t, you’ve got some work to do. Thought for the week: “It is not enough to be busy. So are the ants. The question is: What are we busy…

19.Oct, 2017 0

America’s Attempt at Supersonic Aircraft

This is a fascinating video about America’s attempt to design and commercialize a supersonic aircraft to compete with the Concorde. There are many technical challenges that Boeing adopted that undermined the project. Some good lessons here.

15.Oct, 2017 2

Sexual Harassment And Predation

Many women have been wondering why men don’t speak out about sexual harassment and sexual predators. Please indulge me. For the past couple of years, I’ve felt nauseous hearing about sexual harassment and sexual predators—people who use their power over the opposite sex to obtain advantage. It’s the notion of “power over” that is so disturbing. “Power over” implies a sense of entitlement. Harvey Weinstein and Bill Cosby are celebrities who have acted as sexual predators for years. Once the stories come out, they act as though they have been victimized, not their accusers. Bill Cosby claims his improper acts…

7.Oct, 2017 0

What Happens In Vegas Stays in Vegas

Like many of my readers, you awoke to the news of the horrific act of domestic terrorism in Las Vegas this past Sunday. While I had an issue of Thank God It’s Monday written, I pulled it. It wasn’t a day for “business as usual.” I see a lot of people going through life as though they are living life in a video game: The person wildly changing lanes in a dangerous manner that puts others in danger due to their recklessness. A driver speeding at about 100 mph on the left-hand freeway shoulder throwing dust and debris into the…

24.Sep, 2017 0

Becoming More Valuable Year After Year

In an article I authored for FastCompany.com called How Much Experience Do You Have?, I quoted my then CEO, Harold Pinto, who offered: “Someone who repeats the same year of their life fifteen times doesn’t have 15 years of experience; they have one year of experience repeated fifteen times.” Employees need to work with their leadership team to innovate processes, innovate products, and grow to make more profound contributions. Employees need to make themselves more and more invaluable by diversifying their experience and their ability to contribute. Here’s an example in my life. I was Manager, Customer Support Services, at…

10.Sep, 2017 2

Business Ethics Run Amuck

You probably heard about the following stories in the news this past week: Equifax announced a cybersecurity breach of information providing hackers with everything they need to assume a person’s identity: social security number, address, birth date, address, full name, etc. This was announced some 6 weeks after the last intrusion in July; the breach started in May. Equifax claims 143 million people are affected. And, here’s the icing on the cake: If you go to Equifax’s website to find out if you’ve been hacked, you have to accept that you are automatically opting out of suing them via an…

3.Sep, 2017 0

That Embarrassing Moment When…

I lease an office in Silicon Valley. After normal business hours, I discovered the men’s bathroom was running quite low on toilet paper. The office manager was out of the country on an extended vacation but left a phone number for us to contact if we needed something. I got the phone number and quickly sent a text message: Me: Hello, Gerardo–there’s no toilet paper in the men’s room in Building 26. Thanks for your help with this. Dave Gardner Me (moments later): Never mind. A colleague showed me a backup supply. Recipient: I’m glad you found the backup supply….