Monthly Archives: December 2017

Representative John Curtis On Net Neutrality

Yesterday I called my congressman, recently elected, John Curtis. I spoke with a member of his staff and let them know I support net neutrality. I then asked what Representative Curtis’ position was on this topic.

I was nervous about calling, even though I volunteered with John’s first campaign for mayor. We have crossed paths since then on a few occasions. I’ve always been happy to see him. And . . . he has been happy to see me. That always feels good, to know someone important knows you. I don’t think I’m alone in that.

I learned that John has received hundreds of calls and emails from Utahns like me about net neutrality. Silicon slopes is in his district, Hello!
               <Sarcasm> I’m sure it’s gotten a little attention. <Sarcasm>
He has taken the time to personally read each and every message. He has also held a series of Net Neutrality discussions in district 3, and will continue hosting these listening sessions during the coming weeks.

Little did I know while I was calling his office, John Curtis was on the house floor sharing his views on net neutrality. Here is a link to the video (it's short). Here is what John said:

John CurtisHouse of Representatives, District 3 Utah

I am a very strong supporter of a free and open Internet. 

The Internet is one of the most important technology advancements of our time and has become a critical component of the overall growth and strength of our economy. I support the principles of net neutrality such as

  • no blocking
  • Throttling
  • or paid prioritization.

That said, I'm concerned that heavy-handed regulation of the Internet will stifle innovation and economic growth.

As a Member of Congress, I take my oversight responsibility very seriously and will continue to closely monitor the FCC's decision making on net neutrality. Ultimately, I believe that Congress needs to take steps to modernize the statutes that govern how the Internet is regulated. As you know, in April 2017, the FCC began a rulemaking, Restoring Internet Freedom (17-108), to revisit the Open Internet Order of 2015. The FCC is scheduled to make a final decision on this rulemaking before the end of this year.

You can file a public comment on that rulemaking by visiting

You can follow John on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram at @RepJohnCurtis for updates on this issue and his work in Congress.

(His social media is actually really good. Other politicians would do well to follow his example.)

The Drip – [by Seth Godin]

Change, real change, is the result of focused persistence.

It's easy to get a bunch of people sort of excited for a little while.

The challenging part, and the reason that change doesn't happen as often as it should is that we get distracted. Today's urgent is more urgent than yesterday's important.

The concept of breaking news and the crisis of the day proves my point. If the world ended every time Wolf Blitzer implied it would, we would have been toast a long time ago. The organizations that actually change things are the ones that have a time horizon that's longer than 36 hours.

There are very few overnight successes. Very few entrepreneurs, freelancers, non-profits, candidates, spiritual leaders, activists or people in a successful relationship that got there with thunder and lighting. It happens with a drip.

PS this post is intentionally disfigured in honor of Break the Internet. I'm annoyed that we have to continually fight this fight, but it just proves my point. Drip by drip.

Keep showing up. If it matters, keep showing up.

Thanks Seth, for showing up. For inspiring us to show up.​

Notes On Motivation

Business Acumen is one of four Aspects of Leadership. Motivation is a competence of Business Acumen.

Foundations of Motivation:

1. Before anything else, people need physical survival & safety. If you can help someone with their health, wealth, or their kids you are setting a foundation of loyalty and trust. By helping with these foundational needs you free them to pursue higher needs.

2. Need to belong.

3. Need to achieve their full potential. To become the best they can be: autonomy, mastery, and contributing to a larger purpose.

Top 10 Causes of Disengagement:

Engagement is the level of positive attachment employees feel toward their job & org. These are the top contributors to employees becoming dis-attached or unengaged in their roles. 

  1. Feeling Invisible.
  2. Efforts are not measured or recognized.
  3. Work seems irrelevant.
  4. Job or workplace is not as expected.
  5. Job doesn't fit talents or interests.
  6. Little to no feedback or coaching.
  7. No access to professional development.
  8. No viable career path.
  9. Overworked & Stressed out.
  10. Lack of trust or confidence in senior leaders.

Best Practices for Staffing Teams.

  1. Hire people into the right positions.
  2. Match job descriptions to real work expectations.
  3. Provide training & development.
  4. Accurate performance review system.

Best Practices for Building Relationships.

  1. Know your people individually.
  2. Use OOO meetings to support professional dev.
  3. Provide coaching and training.
  4. Look for growth opportunities

Best Practices for Engaging Teams.

  1. Be clear about events and goals.
  2. Communicate the business case for why things are happening.
  3. Express your faith in the team.
  4. Help team identify what support they need.
  5. Celebrate successes, large and small.

Notes On Leading with Vision & Values

​Self Awareness is one of four Aspects of Leadership. Leading from Vision & Values is a competence of Self Awareness.   

Definition of Integrity:

  • Adhering to your Values.
  • Quality of being trustworthy.

What people look for in their leaders?

1. Someone who leads from their values.

2. Someone who shares an inspiring vision of the future.

Be clear on your values.

Share your values.

Let your values lead your vision.

Be relentless in pursuing your vision.

Reading List​

How Great Leaders Inspire Action​

Do You Work Too Hard?

Do you get in early? Stay late? Eat lunch at your desk? Check email from bed? Do you take a lunch only when you’re drowning and just need to get out of the office? Is a burger, fries and a shake a reward for a grueling morning? Have you ever said, “I don’t want to live like this. This isn’t me."

Do you have more than you can reasonably fit on your plate? Do you basically handle whatever falls off? But only if it explodes? If you have ever asked,

“How do I deal with one thing after another blowing up in my face?

I need . . . something . . . because I am drowning. Wave after wave of work is knocking me down and the tide is coming in.”

I’ve been there too.

Over a quarter of a professional’s working day is spent emailing, 28%.

28% is spent emailing and email is open the rest of the day in case something potentially explosive comes through:

  • A short reply from the boss, asking about that deliverable
  • An unhappy client
  • Last week’s fire rearing its head, creating this week’s emergency

A study of employees at Cisco revealed that failing to respond to an email can lead to a swift breakdown in trust. Are you sitting on an unexploded time bomb?

The research: Major source of work related stress is the pull for timely response to emails.

Is email killing you? That might read like hyperbole; read on and decide for yourself. A study of British civil servants found that the rank and file employees were at greater health risk than higher ranking administrators. Chronic stress was the culprit. These employees were accountable for outcomes where they had little authority, influence or control. Negative outcomes appeared, as if at random, outside of their control and influence. The result, chronic stress.

Often the sources of stress are small and varied, but chronic stress is linked to six of the leading causes of death, a slow death by a thousand papercuts. It’s not a huge leap to see that many of those small and varied stressors are coming from your inbox.

How does our work culture respond to this threat? Researchers have coined the term telepressure to describe the urge to respond immediately to email. I guess you can’t cure it ‘til you name it first. This urge includes thinking about emails that need to be written. As a result, says Larissa K. Barber, an assistant professor of psychology at Northern Illinois University, “You have trouble cognitively letting it go.”

I've been there. The research is helpful. But it only confirms I'm not the only one that struggles with email, but that is not a solution. Managing email is a significant part of work. For my own sanity I went looking for a process to get my inbox under control because there had to be an easier way.

Getting Things Done.

Have you heard of David Allen’s Getting Things Done? GTD for short. I’ve never read his book because my first exposure to his material was an MP3 download of the GTD LIVE Two Day Seminar. David Allen offers an introductory GTD course thru LinkedIn Learning. It’s an introduction to the theory and general practices. It’s not bad. But if you want to really master the skill, it will only get you started. You will need something else to get into the details and best practices. If $99 and two days is too much, an alternative is this Inbox Zero course from Udemy. I like it because it is highly specific, actionable, and it’s video instruction. This course wasn’t around when I was figuring this stuff out, but this is exactly what I did in my gmail.

The GTD LIVE Two Day Seminar is fantastic! Skip the book. I highly recommend this seminar. At $99 it is pricy but, I have listened to it again and again. As David Allen says, the process is iterative. It isn't all or nothing. You can apply parts of it. You can learn, apply, and grow. Then repeat. I've taken a lot of notes.

The Two Minute Rule

One of the biggest takeaways from David Allen is the two minute rule. Do anything that takes less than two minutes right away the first time it is in your face. It’s surprising how many things you put off that can get done in two minutes or less. For example, wash your dishes immediately after you eat, toss the laundry in the washing machine, take out the garbage . . . invest in yourself . . . invest in your time.

Buy the seminar. You have two minutes.