Posts in category: Business Practice

Making money in software

Making money in software

Here are four broad approaches to make money in software development today. Let me know if you find them useful. 1. Create and maintain bespoke software for vertical markets. Conservative industries like banking, manufacturing and mining. Rely on on specialised...
Working on vs working in

Working on vs working in

Working In: habits and operationalised processes; dealing with the day-to-day. Working On: is invocation, new habits, new processes. Dealing with strategic decisions and putting in place...
What does your brand sound like?

What does your brand sound like?

I spotted this question on LinkedIn recently. I want my brand to be quiet. Because I want it to be about listening to what my clients have to say. I want it to be a quiet contemplative creative space they can grow new possibilities in. Much of branding can be pushy...

Empathy in customer service

Expressing genuine concern and empathy for the customer’s predicament helps. It does not take much to say “That sounds really unpleasant. I’m sorry you had to experience that.” When we express empathy, most people’s gut reaction (at least...
“What an ugly baby”

“What an ugly baby”

Would you ever tell someone their baby’s ugly? No? Then why would you tell a client their business or project is ugly, broken, etc?! Yes some projects start on the wrong track, address the wrong issues, become blind-sighted and lose their way. Yes some babies are not...
If we were our own client

If we were our own client

Do you treat others better than you treat yourself? Do you forgive others more easily, even as you demand more from yourself? Do you put off doing something that needed doing because you didn’t feel like it?But if your clients were to request the same thing...
Un-extraordinary Vertu

Un-extraordinary Vertu

Vertu may be for extraordinary people but this ad of theirs at Berlin Tegel airport was definitely sub-ordinary. Actually rather poor. The composition is amateurish. The layout looks like it had been assembled last-minute with elements spread mechanically, evenly and...
Selling game alphas is the ultimate lean

Selling game alphas is the ultimate lean

Game companies selling alpha-release (essentially unfinished, work-in-progress) games has to represent the ultimate in lean. More game companies seem to do this. Instead of taking the more conventional, longer process of building the complete product,  testing,...
Idea banks and the need for curation

Idea banks and the need for curation

This is Bjercke og Eliassen’s idea bank in the National Museum of Architecture in Oslo. Bjercke og Eliassen are Norwegian architects who build many of Oslo’s landmark buildings between 1914 and 1960. Their idea bank contains 1600 postcard, prints and...
Curating methodologies

Curating methodologies

I love models and methodologies. They codify real experience and hard-earned learning, and make them accessible to others. One challenge with models and methodologies is the sheer quantity of them, across different industries. Many of these can be really similar, and...
Let me tell you how it should be

Let me tell you how it should be

Recently in Amsterdam, I saw a young American woman telling a Starbucks staff that there was a lot more choice back home and she was not happy she couldn’t get her green berry yeast tea with unicorn dust hold the cats milk here in Amsterdam. They’re are...
Lesson from Van Gogh 3

Lesson from Van Gogh 3

I found myself profoundly moved by Van Gogh’s story while visiting the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. In his isolation, Van Gogh wrote to his brother Theo. From the few letters I saw at the museum, the act of writing was clearly very cathartic for Van Gogh, as well as...
Lesson from Van Gogh 2

Lesson from Van Gogh 2

I found myself profoundly moved by Van Gogh’s story while visiting the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. No one creates in isolation (on an island or otherwise.) Van Gogh actively reached out to other artists, and had thoughts to set up a utopian art colony. Lesson 2 of...
Lesson from Van Gogh 1

Lesson from Van Gogh 1

I found myself profoundly moved by Van Gogh’s story while visiting the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. The immediate impact was the sheer volume of work; work completed in spite of huge challenges. Lesson 1 of 3: The body of work is what matters. In spite of mental...
9,000 year commitment

9,000 year commitment

In 1759 Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease for the brewery in Dublin. Now that is commitment to a vision. Can you imagine signing a 5 or 10 year lease for your office today?!! What conviction must one have to think this far ahead? How confident must Arthur...
Travelling is like a startup business

Travelling is like a startup business

The mentality we adopt when travelling is very similar to that of a startup business. Traveling is externally focused. Outward bound. Get things done now. Use whatever means is at hand. Make-do when required to keep moving forward. Don’t worry too much about the...
Driving over vs walking around potholes

Driving over vs walking around potholes

Driving a car along a potholed road is like applying brute force to solve a problem. You are going to feel the effects of the potholes. The harder you drive the solution, the more you will encounter resistance, and the more noise and dust you will throw up. An...

Design + applied psychology: A hybrid problem solving process

This is a work-in-progress hybrid process that combines three problem-solving processes I use regularly; Design Thinking, Crisis Support and Suicide First Aid: The design process strengths: creative exploration, collaboration, co-design buy-in, problem definition,...

Avoiding suffering

“…the more you try to avoid suffering, the more you suffer, because smaller and more insignificant things begin to torture you, in proportion to your fear of being hurt.” From The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking by Oliver...

From big external to small internal

From one of many discussions with the ineffable Bob Jacobson. Here on control, drivers for action, influence, and empowerment. Global village Village global People power Personal empowerment Mass Personal Fast and sterile Slow and rich Big Small (appropriate)...
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