21. June 2016 · Comments Off on The Monk and the Riddle by Randy Komisar · Categories: Uncategorized


These are my favorite quotes from Randy Komisar’s The Monk and the Riddle

Page 29: “VCs (Venture Capitalists) have no percentage in telling you “no” outright. A “no” from a venture capitalist is as rare as the “no” of a Japanese salaryman. Unless you mug the receptionist on the way out or spray graffiti all over their German sedans, VCs seldom turn you down outright.”

Page 30: “VCs, I explained, want to know three basic things: Is it a big market? Can your product or service win over and defend a large share of that market? Can your team do the job?”

Page 35: “Even when large companies try to set up small, intrapreneurial units, they are hard-pressed to find people inside the company who will drive them with the same fervor and penny-pinching zeal that desperation demands of independent startups. The accoutrements of established businesses- the company cafeteria, the clerical support, the illusory job security, the pension plans, and everything else a large organization can provide-are inconsistent with Valley startup mentality.”

Page 38: “VCs invest first and foremost, I explained in people. The team would have to be intelligent and tireless. They would need to be highly skilled in their functional areas, though not necessarily highly experienced. Moreover, they would need to be flexible and capable of learning quickly.”

Page 47: “Good entrepreneurs are passionate visionaries, usually with one or more exceptional talents, but rarely have they actually built a company from scratch.”

Page 52: “ …that sense of momentum-in terms of market acceptance, financing opportunities, partnership interest, and the ability to attract talent- is crucial in the Valley.”

Page 53: “You have to be able to survive mistakes in order to learn, and you have to learn in order to create sustainable success.”

Page 55: “It comes down to my realization over the years that business isn’t primarily a financial institution. It’s a creative institution. Like painting and sculpting, business can be a venue for personal expression and artistry, at its heart more like a canvas than a spreadsheet.”

Page 65:  On the Deferred Life Plan

“For the promise of full coverage under the plan, you must divide your life into two distinct parts: Step one: Do what you have to do. Then eventually- Step two: Do what you want to do.”

Page 83: “Passion pulls you toward something that you cannot resist. Drive pushes you toward something you feel compelled or obligated to do. If you know nothing about yourself, you can’t tell the difference. Once you gain a modicum of self-knowledge, you can express your passion. But it isn’t just the desire to achieve some goal or payoff, and it’s not about quotas or bonuses or cashing out. It’s not about jumping through someone else’s hoops. That’s drive.”

Page  107: “The chance to work on a big idea is a powerful reason for people to be passionate and committed. The big idea is the glue that connects with their passion and binds them to the mission of an organization. For people to be great, to accomplish the impossible, they need inspiration more than financial incentive.”

Page 110: “Business conditions are forever changing. You need to reconsider your strategies and business models constantly and adjust them where necessary. But the big idea that your company pursues is the touchstone for these refinements. Ditching the big idea in order to deal with business exigencies leaves you without a compass. I always advise companies to define their business in terms of where it’s going, what it’s becoming, not simply where it is. Set the compass, then work hard to clear a path, knowing that you may meander as you stumble upon obstacles but will always keep heading toward the same coordinates.”

Page 122: “But first and foremost, to be successful, business is about people.”

Page 128: “Sever the chain of values between leadership and the people translating strategy into products and services for your customers, and you will destroy your foundation for long term success. The culture you create and principles you express are the only connection you will have with each other and your many constituencies.”

Page 135: “Management and leadership are related but not identical. Management is a methodical process; its purpose is to produce the desired results on time and on budget. It compliments and supports but cannot do without leadership, in which character and vision combine to empower someone to venture into uncertainty. Leaders must suspend the disbelief of their constituents and move ahead even with very incomplete information.”

Page 150: “Silicon Valley does not punish business failure. It punishes stupidity, laziness, and dishonesty. Failure is inevitable if you are trying to invent the future. The Valley forgives business failures that arise from natural causes and acts of God: changes, for example, in the market, competition, or technology.”

Page 153: “That should be your primary measure of success- excellence- not simply the spoils that come with good fortune. You don’t want to entrust your satisfaction and sense of fulfillment to circumstances outside your control. Instead, base them on the quality of what you do and who you are, not the success of your business per se.”

Page 155: “Only the Whole Life Plan leads to personal success. It has the greatest chance of providing satisfaction and contentment that one can take to the grave, tomorrow. In the Deferred Life Plan there will always be another prize to covet, another distraction, a new hunger to sate. You will forever come up short.”

Page 156: “Work hard, work passionately, but apply your most precious asset-time- to what is most meaningful to you.”

Page 158: “Time is the only resource that matters.”

20. June 2016 · Comments Off on Udacity site’s: How to Build a Startup · Categories: Uncategorized

Just learned about Udacity’s How to Build a Startup. Feel free to check it out.

13. June 2016 · Comments Off on Jose Aponte, San Diego County Library Director, to bike across country to support Spectrum Scholarship · Categories: Uncategorized

Everyone should check out the story about Jose Aponte biking across the country to raise awareness and funds for the American Library Association (ALA) Spectrum Scholarship. Be sure to consider making a donation on the website cited below!

See https://www.crowdrise.com/spectrumscholarship/fundraiser/joseaponte2



I am enclosing the text from the crowdrise website below.

“San Diego County Library Director José Aponte announced today that he will ride across America to raise awareness and funds for the Spectrum Scholarship Program of the American Library Association (ALA).

The Spectrum Scholarship Program’s major drive is to recruit applicants and award scholarships to American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino or Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander students.  Spectrum provides a one-year $5,000 scholarship and over $1,500 in professional development opportunities to eligible students planning to attend an ALA-accredited graduate program in library and information studies or school library media program.

The Mission of the American Library Association Spectrum Scholarship Program is: “Improving service at the local level through the development of a representative workforce that reflects the communities served by all libraries in the new millennium.”

“This is a journey celebrating America, libraries and the promise of future leaders,” said Aponte. “Our ride allows us to test physically the limits of our human potential. Professionally, the Masters in Library Sciences opened my life to the inherent promise we all possess. By supporting Spectrum Scholars we can insure institutional change and community empowerment with future leaders that can continue to transform communities insuring safer, healthier, and ultimately a more prosperous future.”

All donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

José Aponte will ride with Cycle America from Seattle to Boston https://www.cycleamerica.com/ raising awareness, donate before September 1, 2016 to cheer his efforts! “

13. June 2016 · Comments Off on Top 22 Leadership Qualities from Entrepreneur Magazine · Categories: Uncategorized

Adam Bornstein and Jordan Bornstein’s article, “What makes a Great Leader?”, in the March 2016 Entrepreneur Magazine cited these 22 qualities as paramount for leaders. Readers should read the entire Entrepreneur article as each quality is cited with a quote from an important business leader,

  1. Focus
  2. Confidence
  3. Transparency
  4. Integrity
  5. Inspiration
  6. Passion
  7. Innovation
  8. Patience
  9. Stoicism
  10. Wonkiness
  11. Authenticity
  12. Open-Mindedness
  13. Decisiveness
  14. Personableness
  15. Empowerment
  16. Positivity
  17. Generosity
  18. Persistence
  19. Insightfulness
  20. Communication
  21. Accountability
  22. Restlessness
03. June 2016 · Comments Off on Give and Take by Adam Grant · Categories: Uncategorized


My favorite quotes from Give and Take by Adam Grant

Page 50, “The dormant ties provided more novel information than the current contacts. Over the past few years, while they were out of touch, they had been exposed to new ideas and perspectives. The current contacts were more likely to share the knowledge base and viewpoint that the executives already possessed.”

Page 51, “Dormant ties offer the access to novel information that weak ties afford, but without the discomfort. Dormant ties are the neglected value in our networks, and givers have a distinctive edge over takers and matchers in unlocking this value.”

Page 52, “According to networking experts, reconnecting is a totally different experience for givers, especially in a wired world. Givers have a track record of generously sharing their knowledge, teaching us their skills, and helping us find jobs without worrying what’s in it for them, so we’re glad to help them when they get back in touch with us.”
Page 74, “This is a defining feature of how givers collaborate: they take on the tasks that are in the group’s best interest, not necessarily their own personal interests.”

Page 101, “Because they tend to be trusting and optimistic about other people’s intentions, in their roles as leaders, managers, and mentors, givers are inclined to see the potential in everyone.”

Page 105, “In roles as leaders and mentors, givers resist the temptation to search for talent first. By recognizing that anyone can be a bloomer, givers focus their attention on motivation.”

Page 106, “Of course, natural talent also matters, but once you have a pool of candidates above the threshold of necessary potential, grit is a major factor that predicts how close they get to achieving their potential. This is why givers focus on gritty people: it’s where givers have the greatest return on their investment, the most meaningful and lasting impact.”

Page 114, “Other studies show that people actually make more accurate and creative decisions when they’re choosing on behalf of others than themselves.”

Page 116, “Givers focus more on the interpersonal and organizational consequences of their decisions, accepting a blow to their pride and reputations in the short term in order to make better choices in the long term.”

Page 119, “In my own research, I’ve found that because of their dedication to others, givers are willing to work harder and longer than takers and matchers. Even when practice is no longer enjoyable, givers continue exerting effort out of a sense of responsibility to their team.”

Page 121, “Whereas takers often strive to be the smartest people in the room, givers are more receptive to expertise from others, even if it challenges their own beliefs.”

Page 131, “Because they value the perspectives and interests of others, givers are more inclined toward asking questions than offering answers, talking tentatively than boldly, admitting their weaknesses than displaying their strengths, and seeking advice than imposing their views on others.”

Page 133, “Takers tend to worry about revealing weaknesses will compromise their dominance and authority. Givers are much more comfortable expressing vulnerability: they’re interested in helping others, not gaining power over them, so they’re not afraid of exposing chinks in their armor. By making themselves vulnerable, givers can actually build prestige.”

Page 137, “It’s the givers, by virtue of their interest in getting to know us, who ask us the questions that enable us to experience the joy of learning from ourselves. And by giving us the floor, givers are actually learning about us and from us, which helps them figure out how to sell us things we already value.”

Page 140, “By asking questions and getting to know their customers, givers build trust and gain knowledge about their customers’ needs. Over time, this makes them better and better at selling.”

Page 144, “Fragale (Alison Fragale, University of North Carolina professor) shows that when people have to work closely together, such as in teams and service relationships, powerless speech is actually more influential than powerful speech.”

Page 146, “When givers use powerless speech, they show us that they have our best interests at heart.”

Page 147, “The paradox comes from people thinking an inclusive leader isn’t strong enough to lead a team, when in fact that leader is stronger, because he engenders the support of the team.”- Batron Hill managing director and global head of marketing at Citi Transaction Services

Page 150, “New research shows that advice seeking is a surprisingly effective strategy for exercising influence when we lack authority.”

Page 151-“Advice seeking is a form of powerless communication that combines expressing vulnerability, asking questions, and talking tentatively. Research shows that people who regularly seek advice and help from knowledgeable colleagues are actually rated more favorably by supervisors than those who never seek advice and help.”

Pages 152-153, “Seeking advice is a subtle way to invite someone to make a commitment to us. When we ask people for advice, we grant them prestige, showing that we respect and admire their insights and expertise. Since most people are matchers, they tend to respond favorably and feel motivated to support us in return.”

Page 153, “Regardless of their reciprocity styles, people love to be asked for advice. When persuading and negotiating, givers speak tentatively and seek advice because they truly value the ideas and viewpoints of others.”

Page 165, “Givers don’t burn out when they devote too much time and energy to giving. They burn out when they’re working with people in need but are unable to help effectively.”

Page 166, “In research with two colleagues, I’ve discovered that the perception of impact serves as a buffer against stress, enabling employees to avoid burnout and maintain their motivation and performance.”

Page 168, “When people know how their work makes a difference, they feel energized to contribute more.”

Page 177, “When they’re on the brink of burnout, otherish givers seek help, which enables them to marshal the advice, assistance, and resources necessary to maintain their motivation and energy. Three decades of research show that receiving support from colleagues is a robust anti-dote to burnout.”

Page 178, “Otherish givers build up a support network that they can access for help when they need it.”

Page 179, “Over time, giving may build willpower like weight lifting builds muscles.”

Page 182, “Surprising as it seems, people who give more go on to earn more.”

Page 183, “It seems that giving adds meaning to our lives, distracts us from our own problems, and helps us feel valued by others.”

Page 190, “Trust is one reason that givers are susceptible to the doormat effect: they tend to see the best in everyone, so they operate on the mistaken assumption that everyone is trustworthy.”

Page 193, “The ability to recognize agreeable takers as fakers is what protects givers against being exploited.”

Page 198, “Once successful givers see the value of sincerity screening and begin to spot agreeable takers as potential fakers, they protect themselves by adjusting their behavior accordingly. It’s wise to start out as a giver, since research shows that trust is hard to build but easy to destroy. But once a counterpart is clearly acting like a taker, it makes sense for givers to flex their reciprocity styles and shift to a matching strategy…”

Page 199, “Being otherish means that givers keep their own interests in the rearview mirror, taking care to trust but verify. When dealing with takers, shifting into matcher mode is a self-protective strategy. But one out of every three times, it may be wise to shift back into giver mode, granting so-called takers the opportunity to redeem themselves.”

Page 206, “And Vanderbilt professors Bruce Barry and Ray Friedman found that in short-term, single issue negotiations, givers do worse than takers, because they’re willing to give larger slices of the pie to their counterparts. But this disadvantage disappears entirely when the givers set high goals and stick to them- which is easier for givers to do when advocating for someone else.”

Page 238, “People often take because they don’t realize that they’re deviating from the norm. In these situations, showing them the norm is often enough to motivate them to give-especially if they have matcher instincts.”

Page 258, “This is what I find most magnetic about successful givers: they get to the top without cutting others down, finding ways of expanding the pie that benefit themselves and the people around them.”

Useful Websites to Explore


http://www.humaxnetworks.com/default.asp (Check out the Reciprocity Ring)