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links for 2006-04-26

April 27, 2006 at 12:18 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

links for 2006-04-24

April 25, 2006 at 12:17 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

7.5 hr marathon

Phew, we had a Shanghai VP meeting from 2pm until 9:30pm yesterday. We talked circles around the strategic positioning for two clients. Round and round. Then punched holes through them. Then patched the holes, and closed loops. I think we're all on the same page now; heck, maybe we even were at the outset, but I didn't realize it.

Sometimes in sessions like these, I catch myself being a little difficult. I hope it was just healthy skepticism. And I hope we're asking each other questions that help us focus the company. I mean, it's great to get us all "on message" and singing the right story on behalf of the client, but more importantly, I truly feel we're helping them hone strategy too. I believe, at least in my own mind, I have a better sense of where these companies are going (and need to go too). And for that, 7.5 hours was time well spent.

April 24, 2006 at 12:08 PM in Strategic Ventures | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

links for 2006-04-21

April 22, 2006 at 12:19 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

curious george and the rocket

Inspired by the weekly entry in The Pregnancy Bible for Week 32 and feeling him kick (or elbow) through Angie's tummy, her p-jays and mine, I read a story to our son for the first time last night. Maybe he was asking for a bedtime story?George

Well, we had a few books on hand, and chose Curious George and the Rocket [cover image from Amazon].

Kinda hoped to read Babar to him first as that will always be the children's series that I associate with my dad reading to me. Unfortunately we left the Babar books we picked up from Michigan with Mom in California. She's bringing them next month.

Dad used to read all kinds of books to me though and I know that's why I'm a voracious reader now. I can hardly go a few seconds without having something in my hands to read. We'll plow through these children's books soon and will need more; maybe a visit to Chaterhouse or Garden Books this weekend is in order.

April 21, 2006 at 12:26 PM in Fatherhood | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

links for 2006-04-20

April 21, 2006 at 12:17 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

links for 2006-04-19

April 20, 2006 at 12:18 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

rip in space/time

So I had a strange, non-descript voicemail in my inbox from the time when I was in class. Didn't recognize the name, but it sounded reasonable enough. So I've been trying to call back and figure out who it is and what the nature of the call was. I finally got through today. The guy on the other end seemed to recognize me, though I didn't recognize him at all. Then he puts me over to his associate and he says he'll be emailing the pricing information shortly. And then he asks if I have the "quantities" yet. I didn't know what to say. So I just said, "Er, not yet." I told him I'd look for his email, figuring that would clear things up.

So have I stumbled into some kind of illicit transaction? Have I caused more confusion and harm? I certainly hope not. However, I hope the prices are good and I order a lot of whatever it is. I think that would make everyone involved happy.

April 19, 2006 at 05:14 PM in Personal | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

email etiquette

Just got flamed for no good reason via company email. Maybe something was lost in translation from English to Italian back to English. In any event, it never ceases to amaze me how rude people can be to each other over email. And when they do it, they always find reason to extend the cc list to include people they think have more authority. Am I supposed to be impressed? How childish. And of course as Peter Chung and Dianna Abdala can well attest, these threads can take on a life of their own and they never seem to die either.

Well, I tried my best to be conciliatory. We'll see if the unwarranted apologies and offer of a free cup of coffee have the desired effect.

Otherwise, here's hoping people learn to step away from their mail client for a minute or two before shooting off responses. And maybe that they assume that people within a single organization are actually working towards the same goals. And that they learn that most misunderstandings are best resolved directly by those involved, not by adding spectators.

April 19, 2006 at 05:09 PM in Strategic Ventures | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

breakfast meeting

Had another quick breakfast meeting this morning at 7:30 out here in Pudong. I know I'm a morning person, but I really do wish I could have more morning meetings. I find that they are highly effective for business and personal meetings. Most people are more available at that time (whereas lunches tend to get booked up). The issues of the day are waiting for you at work, but you've still got that morning optimism that you'll be able to tackle them all. The length is generally fixed since you've got to get in to the office (which makes for more focus).

Not enough people here in Shanghai are doing breakfast meetings yet. For one, a lot of places don't open early enough. For two, many Shanghainese just grab street food during their commutes and don't make time for breakfast.

Well, if you want a sure fire way to get on my calendar (and ingratiate yourself with me) offer a breakfast meeting.

April 19, 2006 at 09:13 AM in Strategic Ventures | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack