Friday, May 30, 2008

When it piles up

What a crazy week for expenses. The microwave went so there was $300, I needed the lawn done and there goes $800. My wife decided that the kids needed a trampoline so there goes $400, I got a ticket for my Jeep inspection and that was $200, so to make sure that didn't happen again I brought the Jeep in and paid another $400. Just when you think that was enough I found out my bank wasn't paying my property tax so there goes $4000.

A $6000 week!!!

But want can you do? Is there any point in me getting upset? ... NO!

When things like this pile up and you feel there is no end, just think about how great it's going to be to have it all done and taken care of. If you just focused on all the bad things and "what else can happen", then something else is going to happen. So the best thing for people to do is suck it up, and focus on the greener pasture ahead. After all this I know that my Jeep is good for another year, my bank is now taking that little extra each month for the property tax, I have a 4 year warranty on my new microwave, and I get to spend time making a garden with my kids.

There is always a bright side no matter how dark the sky gets. That makes me think of something my grandmother said to me before. We're from St. John's, Newfoundland where the weather is crap, and she told me once that "having so much bad weather just makes you appreciate the nice days that much more". Those my friends are words to live by.

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Thursday, May 29, 2008


I love this message from the Daily Guru, "What happens to you is not as important as your reaction to what is happening.".

It's so true that in order for us to grow as people we need to embrace change and learn from it. Nothing can stay the same and it's the people that are willing to accept the change and run with that are going to succeed. For those that fight it and choose not to accept the world as it changes around them are left behind and when they finally do give it, most times they are at the end of the race. Now it's never too late to take that first step but wouldn't it be that much better to be ahead in the game.

I use to always think that things just seem to work out for themselves and strongly believed in that because my life seems to always work out. But a friend of mind gave me a different point of view on that topic. He made me see it that because I was willing and open to the changes in my life that good things followed. Everybody is faced with change everyday, it's all in how you take the changes that determine if you are going to have a positive out come or not.

How do you feel about change in your life? Are you open to letting life lead you? or do you feel you have to fight it and keep things as they are?


Personal growth is the process of responding positively to change.
It involves risk as you step from the known to the unknown.
All your growth will depend on your activity.
Your strength and growth will come only through continuous
effort and struggle.
There will be no development without effort.

Trouble is the common denominator of living.
It is the great equalizer of life.
Your trials, your sorrows and your griefs will develop you.
When good or bad fortune comes your way,
you must give it meaning and transform it into something of value.

What happens to you is not as important
as your reaction to what is happening.
©2006 by Max Steingart
Reproduce freely but maintain © notice

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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Plain English to explain everyhting

I love these guys from Common Craft and how they make anything easy to understand. The web and technology is here to help us move forward and better our lives.
There are tons of great tools out there that we should all be using, but the hardest part is adoption to those tools. So thanks to companies like Common Craft they are creating videos that explain these tools in a way that anybody can understand them and then use them.
For the most part the tools on the web are becoming user friendly but it's the concepts behind them that hold people back. If you don't understand something or understand why it can help you then you are first scared of it and second not interested because it could just add clutter to your already full life.
The videos found here help explain why these tools can help make our lives a little less full and a little more productive.

Great job Common Craft and keep it up. Here's their simplified video on blogs.

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Goals and Attraction

Making a goal and aiming for that goal are all about thinking about them and trying to accomplish them. When you break all that down what you are doing is always thinking and focusing on your end goal and by doing this you are attracting the things that can help you make that goal come true. When you watch or read the secret theories it all applies to the same system. If you think about something and really focus on making it true in your life then all the things around you are going to line up and help you reach that goal.

But because most people over estimate how much they can get done in a short period of time then they are setting themselves for failure. If you say you can do X in X amount of time then if you pass that time and you haven't completed your goal then you are going to be depressed and think negative about that goal. When you think negative about something then you push it away and make it impossible to accomplish it, until you get back on the positive track towards your goal again.

The lessons I took from this are:
1. Accomplishing goals is all about the law of attraction and focusing on what you want.
2. People need be more honest about how long it takes them to do something.
3. Never give up! Even if you run out time that doesn't mean you can't keep moving forward towards that goal you set out to do. Odds are you are inches away from making that goal a reality. NEVER GIVE UP!!!!!!

This insight was given to me from a friend the other day after we did an awesome 10K run (my first one :). He also told me a great quote:
"We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten." - Bill Gates

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RockStartUp and PayPerPost

I've been hooked on this website a friend showed me about this awesome startup that brings bloggers and advertisers together. The basic concept behind the site is to do what I do best which is write my awesome wordy blogs and get paid for it. If I write about certain things that I think are cool and are on PayPerPost then I get paid for them. is a full video journal of the startup process of PayPerPost. Since I'm a blogger, business person and I live online I'm fascinated by the amount of insight and knowledge I've learned from watching the show. And at the same time I've got to learn about this great site where I can get paid to blog about the things I blog about regardless, while getting paid for it. One of the coolest things I’ve learned from this is how much using PayPerPost can help you promote your own blog and draw traffic to your site.
If you have your own blog then sign up for PayPerPost, if you don't then get one and sign up for PayPerPost ... LOL ... I guess you can tell I love this service and I think it's an awesome way to make a little extra on the side and also spread the word of your own blog.

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I just got this email from the Daily Guru and how funny it came on a day I sent a friend of mine a similar email.
In each of us there are strengths and weaknesses that we posses. Each of us alone can only make it so far, but with a team and support we can strive to reach our goals. This was first realized by myself in reading Tim Sanders, Love the Killer App. Here we see how it's so important to continue learning, building your network, but most important being compassion to others. The more we help others the more we are helping ourselves. Be it karma, pay-it-forward or any other believe of that nature ... it is true!!! You have to give before you can receive, and by giving you'll be rewarded with so much more than you could ever imagine. Who have you helped today?


Your success depends on the support of other people.
The only hurdle between you and what you want to be,
is the support of others.

Put yourself in another's place,
and you'll know why they think and do certain things.
You can succeed fastest by helping others to succeed.

Always think in terms of what the other person wants.
You'll get everything in life that you want
if you'll help enough other people get what they want.
Doing things for others always pays dividends.

You're not an isolated island.
You're a piece of the planet, a piece of the universe.
Personal relationships are the fertile soil from which all advancement,
all success, all achievement in real life grows.

When you help someone's boat across a river,
you'll find your own boat has reached the shore too.

©2006 by Max Steingart
Reproduce freely but maintain © notice

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Sunday, May 25, 2008

What Happened

My wife sent me an email a little while ago about how life use to be. We’re not that old but we remember leaving the house in the morning and not returning home until after dark. Our parents had no idea where we were going or what we were doing. We’d wear no seat belts, and ride in the back of pickups. The things we all did were endless, but what about today. I have two little girls and there is no way I’d let them go anywhere with out knowing exactly where they are and doing at all times. They can’t go play down the street, go in the back yard, or any basic little thing. I know she’s only four but when I was that age I was out the door and down the street with my friends all day. I remember waiting at the bus stop for his brother to get home from school so we could go play fort in the woods.

What has changed? Why have we become so protective? And is it justified? I think yes it is and yes we need to be. But why things have changed so much I don’t understand. Is it the exposure to so much information through TV and Web that as created so many predators and dangers in the world. I’m sure that these dangers have been around all the time but they are so much more main stream now. I honestly don’t have an end all theory for this one. I have out there ideas, but nothing that can let my mind say that’s a good reason. So please comment on this one and give your insight. I would love to let my kids grow up and enjoy the freedoms we all did as children but as the world is that dream is pretty much just that, a dream.

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Web Design like playing with blocks

I came across this company, K&D Interactive, and they have this awesome tool for building a website. The tool is called Template Blocks and it lets anybody build a website just like playing with blocks. The tool is built with Ajax and PHP and requires a person to build the site they want with out writing a line of code. As a developer I can appreciate the genius and hard work put into building something like this. The marketplace of future and even today is moving online, and with tools like Template Blocks anybody can join in. Thanks K&D Interactive for building a tool where building a great website is a simple as playing with blocks. You can see a demo of this product here.

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Friday, May 23, 2008

Video of Jim Pattison

Watch interview here

This is an awesome video a friend sent me about Jim Pattison and the lessons he's learned from business. The most important think I took from this was to stay strong behind your choices and always move forward. You can never be so emotionally attached to what you are doing to effect what it is you want to do ... SUCCEED!

Watch interview here

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Video on iPhone

The team at Monster and Friends have made an app that captures video on the iPhone. This is awesome and long overdue. The only down fall I have with my iPhone is there is no flash for pictures and a light for video would be awesome as well. Steve has a great product but there are those simple things that I think were over looked by mistake more than anything. Here is a video of the iPhone capturing some video.

Read more about this iPhone app here.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

You Can Do It!!

If you think you can then you can! Here is a motivational story I was sent by a friend about how you can accomplish anything you set your mind out to. Even without the knowledge or experience you are able to accomplish anything you can imagine.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Love this!!! In business and the road to success you have to make choices. What makes a successful person reach their goals faster is that they can make those decisions faster. It's not about making the right decision but making any decision. You always have to be moving forward, and you have to be humble enough to know how to realize you made the wrong the decision and fix it. You have to have a goal, you have to make the choice to follow through, you have to understand the sacrifices you have to make and you have to show up and always be moving forward. What choices have you made today? I've been working long and hard on a POS for my company, and I made the decision that I can't get it out the door fast enough, so I made the decision to implement a temporary solution to help our company move forward. I'll still build the POS but I had to be humble enough to know that I'm not superman and my company needs a solution now.


You don't have to buy from anyone.
You don't have to work at any particular job.
You don't have to participate in any given relationship.
You can choose.

You steer the course you choose in the direction
of where you want to be today, tomorrow,
or in a distant time to come.
You hold the tiller.

You can decide to alter the course of your life at any time.
No one can ever take that away from you.
You can decide what you want and go after it.
It's always your next move.



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Monday, May 19, 2008

Changing the world

A friend and I have been talking about this new idea for a while. He bought into much earlier than I did, but now I see it for what it is and how big it truly is. So with something this big and possibly business changing the question of how to truly distribute it comes to mind. Here are my three ideas of what we could do:

1. build a company around it and create a product to sell
2. try selling the idea to a larger company in hopes they see the same value
3. build a theory and business standards around it and evangelize it everybody
My thoughts on each are:
1. we may not reach a big enough audience to be able to make changes in the industry.
2. the company that buys it might not see the value, or they may try and keep it too closed that others are unable to see the value or underlying importance
3. others try and steal it and make their own, or we miss the boat while somebody else cashes in on our idea
What do you think?

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Faith VS Optimism

I just got this email from a friend who is also big on trying to be positive and how that can help move a business forward to success. His comments are around having faith and being optimistic.

I never really understood what faith meant, i always use to relate it to religion but today i got it a little deeper.

I consider myself an optimistic person, i am positive and always see the glass as half full. But today i realized that could be neagtive and here is the point.

An optimist will always see everything as great, and if its not great they will just be positve and things will eventually turn around. Well turns out this is not true and will not work. I am living proof of this. I used to always think like this. Oh dont worry about it everything will be ok. Its all good! and so forth... the optimistis never really get anything done cause they always just beileve everything will be fine.
On the other hand having faith is something at a higher level of awareness. Let me explain. To have faith you must stare directly at all the facts in the face (even the negative ones) and acknowledge them. You must have faith or believe everything will be ok in the future but constantly doing this by looking at the facts of the situation and nothing else.

I will give you an example for you to better understand what i mean.
There was a general who was kept in captivity and tortured for 8 years. He was asked why did he make it and who were the others who didnt last in the prison. He said the optimists all died, and the ones that kept the faith all lived. Isnt that counter intuitive a little. You would think that optimists would live... He says they kept setting these deadlines by when they would get out of jail. Like by December we will be out, or by next easter or by next thanksgiving and it never happened. hIs response to them was we are not getting out anytime soon face the facts and deal with it. He kept is faith by saying he knew he would get out eventually but focused on what he could do ni that present reality with the facts he had in front of him to better his situation....

I think this happens in business a lot! And to be an optimists is not bad, but to be an optimists who faces the facts as they are true not as how we would like them to be is to have faith. Or so I think a good term would be a faithfull realist. I know where I am and I know where I am going.

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Thursday, May 15, 2008


I love this because I'm a dreamer. I'm always thinking of where I want to be and all the different ways I can get there. While I was a full time employee at a desk I always dreamed of being on my own and making things happen with other great people, and where am I? I'm living the dream I had back then. I read a book (rich dad, poor dad) and then I dreamed about owning houses, so now I own several. It all starts with that dream, then you have to think about your dream and turn it into a goal, then start taking the steps to align yourself in making that goal reality. It's not hard, it just takes a willingness to succeed and a realization that nothing is for free. What did you daydream about already today?


Your dreams are your vision of where you'll be after the battle,
your prize at the end of your journey to success.
Your goals are the steps you take to finally attain your prize.

Unless you're willing to work hard
and establish some discipline in your life,
all of your dreams will be pipe dreams,
little mental fantasy trips that will never materialize.

Make concrete steps toward fulfilling your ultimate dream,
and start with solid objectives and goals.
Your dreams are where you want to go,
your goals are how you get there.

The indispensable first step
to getting the things you want out of life is this:
decide what you want.

Don't be afraid to think big and dare to be great.
Dreamers are not content with mediocrity.
They never dream of going halfway.

People with goals succeed because they know where they're going.



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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Continuous Innovation

I just got a link to this awesome site that is inline with the way I see the future of business. Growth, change, innovation and the unknown are all possible through people and their ideas. The below chart shows how the flow of ideas can help solve problems, build culture , improve processes and increase knowledge base. All of these are the building blocks for success and embracing change.I just finished reading "The Future of Work" and in the last chapter and the most important on on cultivating a company, he places a ton of importance on ideas and the idea process. He puts four rules that every company needs to follow for their idea creation process:

1. No criticism, evaluation, or judgment is allowed during idea generation.
2. No idea is too "crazy" to mention.
3. The quantity of ideas is more important than the quality.
4. Piggybacking on other people's ideas is encouraged.

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Who's fault is it?

As leaders in a company or in anything we always tend to blame others when things go wrong. IF you take the time to look back over those incidents it's evident that when a employee or teammate fails to complete a task as we set out for them, that the fault lays with the leader or person in charge. Leaders have to clearly state their expectations and their desired results. If the steps to reach the results are important then those steps need to be clearly defined. Anytime you feel you were failed by a team member take a moment to review how you tried to engage them in the activity, how you communicated what you were looking for. I assure you that for the majority of the time it's easy to see that you received the results you communicated, not the ones you imagined in your mind. Being a great leader means being a great communicator and it also means being able to take the blame when things don't go as planned. Are you big enough to recognize when you do something wrong?

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Story of Stuff

Video: Story of Stuff

I just got a link to this awesome video from a friend and it blew me away. Along with trying to be successful and reach your goals it's important to understand the results of our actions. Everybody is responsible for the effects they have on the environment. Along, with physical waste and harming nature we also need to be consciouses of the emotional effects we have on others. Running a business doesn't mean "make as much as we can at all costs". I believe that running a truly successful business is so much more. It's about crating employment, making others feel good about themselves and helping them reach their goals. A business needs to help the environment we all live in and keep it clean for years to come. Through taking care of each other and the place we all live then the economic advantages will show themselves. We each need to align our priorities and concentrate our focus on, "wanting the things we already have."

Video: Story of Stuff

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Danny Williams

I was sent this link from a friend the other day showing me a blurb about Danny Williams. The person who owns the blog is not from Newfoundland so has no island attachment or obligation to promote Danny in the way he did.
The coolest thing about this article and seeing a fellow Newfie on the "cool wall" is the people he's on there with. Donald Trump, Jack Welch and so many other great people that help make this world moving.
On a side note I first meet Danny when I was in a bus accident. He was my lawyer for my case and as big a business man he is and as high profile he is there always seemed to be time for me. I'm proud to see the things he is doing for Newfoundland and it's people.

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Business Talk

Before when I was working a dead end desk job I always dreamed of new ideas and ways to make money. The all women’s garage, the indoor climbing gym in Moncton, my high end cafĂ© on the west side of Moncton, the online dating portal, … Then all I would do is talk endless about new adventures and different ways to possibly make a buck. Whenever I would get a great idea I would find people that either did the same thing or something similar to learn how they made it happen. I was always shocked at how many business people that run their own operations we’re closed lipped. It boggled me why they weren’t so excited that it wasn’t all they could talk about. I felt that if I made it I would be sharing it with everybody I meet, if they wanted to hear it or not.

As I ventured out on my own and began to grow my own businesses I found myself thinking more about the business rather than talking about it. To put it in perspective the belts alone are a heavy mental drain at times because of employee management and cash flow. In the run of a regular month we have two payrolls averaging $1800, rent at $2000, belt inventory at about $3,000 and buckles close to $12,000. That works out to be about $21,000 a month for one kiosk, we now have ten in total, so a lot of my time is spent making sure our company can withstand a monthly burn rate of about $210,000 (and that’s not during the Christmas timeframe). For me personally I have to manage three mortgagees, with three cable, water, power and property tax bills. My mind is constantly trying to keep it all straight while at the same time keep my stress free outlook on life.

Again from the words of Robert Kiyosaki, “mind you own business”. This means keep your mind on your money, business, and mission. It’s not the rude come back we all learned as kids, but a lesson for each person to learn about their personal finances. So because of all the business I have to mind, there is little mind share left to tell the experiences to new people.

The other reason people who become somewhat successful on their own and keep from sharing it everywhere, is because most people don’t get it. I look back at a few years when I was trying to think of a business everyday, and I realize at that time I never truly understood what it really takes. People it only takes the idea, but it’s so much more involved than just building that program, selling that product, or creating that service. Every business has that process side that needs to be created, followed and refined in order for the business to become the dream you want it to be.

I always get excited, but it’s something that is kept inside and shared with the people involved with my affairs. Don’t get me wrong if anybody ever stops me and wants to talk I’ll always let my tongue run wild, but it’s more I have to be asked to share rather than me just give it freely. I don't know a lot, but I'm learning everyday and from what I've done so far I think I'm actually doing a good job. Post your comments send me an im/email and let’s chat about what's going on to see if we can take some of those ideas and make them reality.

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Saturday, May 10, 2008


I'm trying to get this blog out there and finally give myself a home on the net. I'm not completely new to the blogging game but I am new to marketing it and spreading it to the masses. So I'm trying Technorati today and I had to write this post to confirm this blog is mine. At least I didn't have to show them my passport, that could of been a little harder than just writing a new post. But then again a trip to San Fransisco is never a bad thing ;p

Technorati Profile

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Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill preaches this same message. It's good and all to think of your goals and want them, but you can never get something without giving something up. So when you revisit your goal you must take the time to think about what it's going to take from you to make that goal happen. I travel, spend time away from my family, pretty much stopped watching TV, and get little sleep, I do all these things so that I can be self employed away from the corporate BS and bring myself closer to my desired financially free age of 37.


It's a universal law: You have to give before you get.
You must plant your seeds before you reap the harvest.
The more you sow, the more you will reap.
In giving to others, you will find yourself blessed.

The law works to give you back more than you have sown.
Those that obtain have little.
Those who scatter have much.
The giver's harvest is always full.

Nature does not give to those who will not spend.
This is the time of year to show appreciation to those you love.



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Friday, May 9, 2008

Future Business

I made an observation a couple years back about how our world is going to change a little. My insights were about how we’re going to see a shift in the world to more of a free set, laid back and just plain fun outlook. With so many people becoming rich at such a young age and the baby boomers starting to retire, it’s only a matter of years before the effects are in full effect.

As corporate America was growing it was happening in an age where parents were strict and children respected their elders. Rules were put in place and they were followed. They were followed so well that those children grew up to be exactly like their parents. Thus, business was run in this manner, money was spent on items that were important and necessary, and everybody followed the same line.

Sure the 60’s changed a lot of that, but not to the extent that is coming and is already started. Remember a CEO in big business is not a young pup, so during the 60’s they were following the rules to get ahead and they are only now entering their last stretch. The baby boomers that were straight laced are going into retirement and who’s left to run this world … the lost children of the 80’s, the rebellious teens of the 90’s and the care free youth of the new millennium.

Another reason this process is speeding up is because of how we glorify our heroes, stars, and just plain normal Joes. So many young athletes go straight from high school to the pros. Boom, instant millionaire. Young bands signing massive contracts. Bam, instant millionaires. Some talented teenage webmaster finds a niche and gets bought out. Whack, instant millionaire. Win a game show. Smack, instant millionaire. And what happens? These kids are thrown into a situation where they never have to grow up. And why would they? All the richest they’ll ever need. So these are the people that are breaking the rules, changing the way we spend money, and our outlooks on life.

I’m not complaining, I’m happier than most about this new movement. I’m sitting here with an over caffeinated drink, punk rock blasting in my ears, and my psp ready to hit the ‘can’. I want the mold the break, I want to wear my kicks and jeans in the office. I want to hear rap and punk on the intercom. Give me MTV on the TV in the lunch room. Screw it, throw in a couple of ping pong tables, playstations and a hot tub. Now that’s the corporate America we have to look forward to and I for one can’t wait.

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Thursday, May 8, 2008

Only three email folders

I was trapped in my endless gmail labels and there was no end in sight. I would make a label for each person, company, contract, .... and so on. It was taking me longer to file something than it was to read it. A friend sent me this link talking about the trusted trio and so far so good. I did add one other folder called Reference for those links to books, websites and other juicy info I'd like to keep around.

For those action items I need to have with me I found this cool notes app to sync with my iPhone. So I place all my action items in my notes in a GTD style, @home, @computer ... and so on. I'm going on day three and so far it feels like a weight lifted so far. I think this system is key and once I hammer out my note tasks list it's going to be heaven.

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Double fisted and loving it

I was at a friends house a few nights back and for the first time in my 30 years I had the chance to try Boone's wine. It was the orange hurricane flavor and it reminded me of orange crush ... hmmmmm ... sure there is a chance of getting every sick but it just taste so good trying to get there ;)In the other hand there is some Southern Comfort and Ginger Ale. Always a crowd favorite.

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Wednesday, May 7, 2008


Today is a good lesson. Nobody lazy has ever made it big as a self made business person. You have to always be working and on top of your game. Thnking and planning in advance it important, even if you plan the wronge thing atleast you are planning and being a forward thinker. It all works together. You need to have that goal, you need to plan yor steps to reach that goal, and while you complete one step you need to be thinking about how you are going to complete the next step. All the chips line up and work to your advantage as long as you are focused and working towards you end goal. Driving in the dark is never easy without your lights, and it's even easier with high beams.


Keeping a little ahead of conditions is one of the secrets of business.
The time to repair your roof is when the sun is shining.
So, do things before they need to be done.

Let your advance worrying become advance thinking and planning.
Position yourself ahead of time in the best place for you.

You'll gain the advantage in any situation through the medium of time.
When you think ahead of any approaching action
you'll always have the advantage.
You'll be the winner.

When you do what is necessary,
all the odds are in your favor.


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Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Secret

I’ll preach about my favorite book of all times "Rich Dad Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki. People read it and may think it's about real estate but that's far from what I took away from this awesome book. Before I read this book all I thought about was making more money to get that new toy, put more away, and somehow better my life. But thinking that making more money is going to change everything is so far from the truth, more money truly does mean more problems. As your salary increases so do you expenses.

The most powerful teaching in this book was to stop thinking "I can’t afford that", but to "How can I afford that". The power of the mind is so amazing. The moment you start to train yourself in to thinking how can I afford this, or how can I make this happen ... IT WILL HAPPEN!!!

I don't have a lot of money, and I especially never had a lot when I started to make the change. I thought how can I get a rental property, and I willed myself to make it happen. Then I used those lessons learned and found away to get the second one.

I going to say it, I think Dan is amazing at thinking this way. When Spheric was born I know he was thinking about how can we make this company into what we wanted. If he was thinking about all the things that needed to be done and how much effort, drive, and money was required odds are none of us would be reading this blog today. The power of wanting it and willing yourself and your surroundings to make something happen is the key to how and why the rich get rich and stay rich.

We are all doing great for selves at Spheric and there is no reason why each of us can’t be slowly moving ourselves closer to that ultimate dream “Financial Freedom”, the ability to only work because we want to. Robert gives the perfect definition of wealth. “How long somebody can be self dependent”. If you lost your job today, how long could you survive without any income. However long that is, that’s how wealthy you are today. When you have the ability to life indefinitely without that weekly salary, then my friends you have achieved true wealth and financial freedom.

Lets all think how can we make it happen, and we’ll all be truly rich in more ways than one.

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Spheric at ThinkNB

Just found this old post about Spheric's booth at Think NB conference last year. It's awesome to see how much Spheric's culture is visible in every interaction a person has with the company. From the owners, founders, team members and even the customers people are talking about how Spheric as a company is different and just plain fun to be around. You can read the comments from an outside objective source here.

I love how they went out and found the Spheric associate image that shows what each team member is made up of. Here's a quick overview of what you get when you hire a Spheric team member.

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Monday, May 5, 2008

Spheric wins KIRA Award

We did it!! Spheric is the proud winner of a 2008 KIRA Award. The official list of winners is posted here. Along with winning this awesome award we also got plenty of press on the subject:
Daily Gleaner
Times and Transcript
and All over Tweeter ;)

We are still a young company but after almost 4 full years it feels like a lifetime in the making. This award it because of the team we've built over the past several years. Spheric truly is an awesome place to work!

Here's a pic of Adam MacDonald accepting the 2008 award for Export Services:


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John Maxwell and feeding 5000

I had the great opportunity to see John Maxwell yesterday at my church, it was great to learn that our pastor is a life long friend of John's, to the point where John insisted on being apart of the church's grand opening. His message was about miracles and he used the story of Jesus feeding 5000 people with 2 fish and 5 loafs of bread. The essence of the story was that everybody has a purpose and a part in making a miracle happen. No matter how small or unimportant you may think your part is, that part is needed for that miracle to take place. In the story, out of the 5000 people there was only one boy who had that small portion of food, and he felt that he could do nothing to help all the people because he hardly had enough for himself, let alone the 5000 hungry mouths. But as long as he was willing to help where he could then he was doing his part in the bigger picture. Everybody is important and everybody has a role in the things that happen around them. You always have to be ready to help, you always have to be willing to help and everything else will work itself out. The biggest steps to be take are to just show up and be ready to start, 90% of success is showing up. Imagine how awesome the world would be if everybody decided to show up :)

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Life Online, Google Docs, gMail, BaseCamp, Amazon s3, and the countless other online services each of use on a daily bases. I personally wouldn’t survive right now if I lost my or gMail. If these companies turned and forced me to pay, I honestly would have no choice but to pay.

How reliant have we become on these free online systems, placing all our data there, sharing, collaborating, back ups, communications, our entire lives. This setup is starting to scare me more and more each day. It really hits when I need to access my bank account and the only place I have the login info is in It would be such a hassle for me to loose that info and have to start making phone calls to recover it. Everything for the Belt Company is in, Google spreadsheets and BaseCamp. All the payroll, address, contacts, bank accounts, action items, you name it, it’s in there. The new POS system being built for the Belts is completely web based. The software and database is hosted on some server that I can’t even physical touch or see. If internet goes down then I’ll be blind to the company for that entire time, better yet I’ll be unable to make any sales.

It’s amazing how much these online services have taken over our lives and how dependent we are on them. I’m not as bad as most, but even at my knee deep level I’ve become completely vulnerable to any downtime. Have we all gone too far? Is relying on these online systems a good thing? Or are we going to regret it in the end? Please comment on this post, I think this topic is worth engaging.

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You have to have a clear mind, a clear goal and a strong focus on what you want. Nothing bad that happens is bad, it's just a lesson to help you learn and move forward. Pitfalls are just a way of not doing something, so they are never a bad thing but a good thing. The beauty of a pitfall along your path is that it well happen when it's ok, because they are things that if they happen later when you are closer to your end goal then they could have a much bigger impact. Imagine learning the lesson of budgeting for payroll at 4 employees compared to 400. It's a lot easier to explain a situation to those 4 close people than corporation of 400 ;). As much as you need to focus on the future you have to always be and live in the now. Details, plans, and actions are all things that happen in the now, and they the things that bring you in the future closer to your end goal. As you take time to be on your own and think about your goals and what it's going to take to get there, you have to always be aware of your self today and where you currently are at. From there you can compare the person you need to be when you get there and then adjust the person you are today. Being self aware and applying that to your end goal is going to help you get that much closer and inline with the success you dream of. Do you know yourself today? Do you have your goal? Do you know the person that can reach that goal? Are you that person?

Your future is a big adventure.
Prepare for your future don't live in the past.
Savor your good memories,
use any bad ones as lessons in life.Carve out a niche for yourself in your imagined future.
Think, feel and see yourself as successful.
To achieve any goal in life, you need to project your end result.
Think of the elation, the satisfaction, the joy you'll feel.
Carry these ecstatic feelings with you every day
and they'll bring your desired goals into view.

Sooner or later, you can win if you think you can.
The cards you are dealt in life
are less important than the way you play them.
Everyday you're offered a new deal and new cards.

Success is in your future if you're willing to work for it.


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Sunday, May 4, 2008

Friendly Skies

Looks like I’ll be off on another adventure. Lately I’ve been in the skies more than ever, and it’s not as friendly as it once was. If you need to catch that plane odds are it’s going to be delayed. Four out of my last five flights have been delayed. It’s funny when a plane from Des Moines is delayed by two hours and when I arrive at Chicago the flight I was suppose to be on two hours prior is still there because it to was delayed, what are the odds? Good these days!

I don’t think it’s the heightened security causing the effect I think it’s the people traveling. They are trying to bring stuff on the plane they know is not allowed. When the new limitations took effect things were great because you couldn’t take anything, now with the changes people are unsure what’s allowed so they try everything and thus hold up the line. This whole thing causes a ripple effect which results in my ass sitting in a terminal waiting on a plane from somewhere else which is waiting for the lady in the check point. Don’t get me started on waiting for the guy at the bar who’s oblivious to the fact his plane is boarding while he sucks down another beer.

This week should be a fun one and let’s see how many delays I can get. I flew into Des Moines from Moncton two nights ago, I leave this Friday for Las Vegas (hey Rick the UFC is at the HardRock on Saturday night), I fly into Newark on Monday, then return to Des Moines on Wednesday , and finally go home to my family in Moncton on Friday. My flight status might hit Super Elite before this year is out, I already have Prestige and quickly closing in on Elite as we speak. I don’t know the big difference, expect I can skip lines and get some upgrades. My goals as of late are get as many free car and hotel points so I can start going on some free vacations.

Why I wrote this blog, because some jackass stole my gig memory stick out of my PSP while in O’Hare, Asshole. I was listening to music and I saved my game (stick as to be there for both of these), I sat down and played for a while then stood up and walked 5 feet to hear the announcement, when I got back I could no longer save games. The only reason for this would be 1) no space or 2) no stick. I assume no space because I knew I had a stick, wrong. Now this stick is not easy to get out, there is no way it can fall out. You have to open a flap, and then bend the flap back, and press on the stick. It’s like a digital camera, the shit doesn’t fall out. The Asshole who took it is smart because if he took the whole PSP I would of kick some ass until I found the idiot, but by taking the stick I never noticed until I was on the plane high in the sky. Anyway they just came out with a four gig stick and I picked it up last night at Best Buy. The worst part is all my saved games are lost, but with all this flying I can take the time do them all again.

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Saturday, May 3, 2008

My Time

I want to write this blog to let people know where I stand with my time. I know it frustrates a lot of people that there are times when I’m completely unavailable, these times are not many but they do happen bi-weekly. When I’m onsite I can be reached via email, instant messenger when available, and always voice mail from my awesome number, more about in a sec. During the onsite nights I’m always free to chat, but again voice is always me calling you not visa versa. I’ll explain why and how this is going to be changed in the New Year. The times I’m not free to I make almost zero effort to be responsive is during my flying days because of connectivity and when I’m home with my family because “I’m home with my family”. When I’m home that is where I am and that is where my mind is. The only action I take while home is financial based, completing expenses, doing timesheets, submitting payroll, picking up or paying rent, any bank transactions required right away. This frustrates a lot of the people I deal with and I make no apologizes for it, family is #1 and that’s that.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way lets talk about and how awesome it is, especially now that they have a new pay program. For a low cost of $44/mth I have a 800 number with unlimited North America in/out calling, plus I have unlimited in/out fax, voice mail, find me at a million numbers, and if I feel like it I can hold conference calls. If you are a traveling consultant or business man a number has to be the #1 one thing on your Christmas list this year. One thing it provides is the ability to change you personal numbers because all you ever provide to people is your 800 number and you decide where that finds you. So to make the move form a crappy Canadian phone plan to a kick ass US plan doesn’t affect anybodies address books.

Why I’m going to be more reachable in the New Year … Verizon Wireless. They have a kick ass North American plan that reaches almost every part of Canada and all of the US. So for $100/mth I get 1400 minutes and the ability to call Moncton from Moncton with no long distance charges. Their coverage map is untouched by any competitor.

So to recap this lengthy blog let me make note of the lesson learned:

$44 + $100 Verizon = $144 to find me anywhere and I’ll answer.

I’ve had months where I’ve hit $500 for cell phone and I know Dan has surpassed that, but on this new setup the odds of topping it are slim to none. There are bigger plans for Verizon and you have the freedom to change it every month up or down. The other lesson .. when I’m home, don’t expect an answer until the following week.

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Thursday, May 1, 2008

Create and Keep Customers

What an awesome holiday. I’m actually still home until next week and I’ve already been home for about three weeks. Over the holidays I had two completely separate but yet both inspiring meetings.

The first was an all day seminar with the Spheric management team. It’s a great honor to be placed back into that group and have my opinions count. We had Gair Maxwell from the Fundy Group speak to us. I meet him two years back and felt a connection then. He completed a Profile on me and ever since then it was like he saw something in me he liked and there was something in him I wanted to learn. So having the all day with him as the speaker was just an awesome experience. Plus, I found another die hard Van Halen fan.

The next day I had another all day meeting for the Belts. I spent the entire day with my business partner at Joe Moka Cafe lattes (one of the best vanilla lattes I’ve ever had) and using free wi-fi all day. I was able to carry a lot of the teachings from the day before over. The biggest one was the purpose of a business, “Create & Keep a Customer”. I didn’t see how it applied to us as a kiosk setup but it made sense. I came up with some of the following ideas:

- Customer appreciation cards to capture their info

- As a card holder you get 10% off

- Buy 4 get the 5th free

- Newsletter with updated on product line, exclusive sales, etc.

- A free gift with every purchase

As I read “The Starbucks Experience” and having Gair talk endless about WestJet it was clear to me that:

1) Our employees need to feel ownership and

2) I need to make my employees feel apart of something special.

These are all things Dan has burned into Spheric from day one and it makes perfect sense. So why can’t I do the same with my kiosks? I can and I well. The ideas I had are simple and a start

- A book club for the employees

- Employee of the month program

- Over lapping employee shifts to let them know their co-workers

- Monthly staff meetings

- Internet at the kiosks to let them interact with other kiosks while working

- Profit sharing

- RRSP contribution program (how many part time jobs have that)

- Career path program

Obviously there are more but this is a sample of where my mind is going right now. Spheric has about ten employees, four are creators and two more have been here since almost day one, and even at lower numbers it’s an extremely hard task to put everybody on the same page at all times. At the belts I have about thirty employees with an average of three leaving each month and three new ones coming in. About 20% are computer illiterate and 60% don’t own one, and 100% have never used one for work purposes. And my employees are located all the way from Nova Scotia to Victoria, BC. (I only know what 6 of them look like in person)

I need my employees to be on board and buy into the company.

As far apart as Belts and Spheric are in regards to industry and cliental they are both businesses. Anything that applies to one business can always be applied to another.

Create & Keep a Customer” – it’s that simple and that universal.

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