Book Report: The Game of Our Lives

game-of-our-lives“The world that English football is now played in has changed again. The country is increasingly diverse; society is more individualized and more networked, and the economy has become an exemplar of a globalized and deregulated liberal model of capitalism. Given its roots, English football has come a long way in adapting to wider changes in attitudes to ethnicity and gender. The journey is hardly over, but football remains an unusually powerful popular theater in which racism and sexism are displayed and challenged.” (The Game of Our Lives)

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Posted in Books, Everything, Soccer, Sports

Competitive and Market Intelligence: Leadership, Strategy, and Innovation

“The military are excellent planners; the private sector are great at execution. There are strengths and limitations of both paradigms, and we can learn so much by talking to each other.” – Retired Maj. Gen. David Fraser

At last night’s Communitech Competitive and Market Intelligence P2P, we were treated to a presentation by Retired Maj. Gen. David Fraser, the COO of INKAS Armored Vehicle Manufacturing.

In this session, he examined private sector business and the military, contrasting their differences and explaining how each can learn from the other in order to be more effective; specifically, Mr. Fraser dived into several topics, including: strategy, planning, teamwork, innovation, and leadership.

Sprinkled throughout with anecdotes both from the battlefield and the business world, this session was both entertaining and enlightening.

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Posted in Leadership, Management

Technical Communications: Plain Language for Clear Communications

“One of the things that sets an organization up for failure is to assume that plain language happens after everything else is done; instead, think about it right at the beginning.” – Christa Ptatschek

The most recent session of Communitech’s Technical Communications Peer-to-Peer group focused on the importance and impact of clear communications:

Small changes and easy metrics can make a big impact in any organization. Focusing on small, easily understood changes in writing habits creates a climate that nurtures the growth of plain language best practices with minimal effort. It also makes plain language a habit that everyone practices, instead of something that adds extra effort. Doing it right the first time is good for business. This presentation is filled with examples and practical advice that you can start using right away.

Our presenter, Christa Ptatschek, did a great job showing us some simple habits that can make a big impact, and pointing us to useful, practical resources.

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Posted in Everything

Book Report: Everything Bad Is Good For You

everything-bad-is-good-for-you“So this is the landscape of the Sleeper Curve. Games that force us to probe and telescope. Television shows that require the mind to fill in the blanks, or exercise its emotional intelligence. Software that makes us sit forward, not lean back. But if the long-term trend in pop culture is toward increased complexity, is there any evidence that our brains are reflecting that change? If mass media is supplying an increasingly rigorous mental workout, is there any empirical data that shows our cognitive muscles growing in response? In a word: yes.” (Everything Bad Is Good For You)

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Posted in Books, Everything

…about Disrupted

Hey – so the other day I read Dan Lyons‘ Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble. I’d heard about it because of the whole kerfuffle, and then a colleague read it and brought it to the office, so I give it a whirl.

Apparently, as a marketing person, I’m supposed to express my opinion and pick a side in the Lyons v. HubSpot battle.

I’m not gonna do that second thing.

But, I will expand upon the tweet that I, um, tweeted upon completion:


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Posted in Books

Competitive and Market Intelligence P2P: Achievement Unlocked

CI isn’t just about numbers, data, and information; it’s about having an opinion.

Back in December 2015, two important and very connected things happened:

Competitive intelligence (CI) and market intelligence (MI) are of enormous strategic and tactical importance, but sadly are often ignored completely or are executed poorly by companies that just don’t seem either to value or to prioritize them.

I’m hopeful that this chapter and peer-to-peer group will help the companies of KW and area share insights and learn best practices, together, for the competitive betterment of the entire region.


Barbara and Sanaz kicking things off. Hey, that’s my head in the bottom-left. [Photo Credit: the P2P group]

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Posted in Marketing

Book Report: Elements of Wit

Elements of Wit“There you are, in a big sales meeting. The client makes a weak joke in your direction and the boss looks your way. Say something. Say anything. Well, not just anything – you need something clever but innocuous, smart enough to show your intelligence without showing off, something funny but not a joke. you don’t want to be offensive, snide or holier than thou. If this were a game of tennis, you’d simply want to keep the ball in play. At this moment, what you need is wit.” (Elements of Wit)

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Posted in Books, Everything

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