Who Just Joined?

Remind you of the first 10 minutes of your last conference call?  You'd think we'd all have this down by now.  I don't know what's more annoying - the five people who each join late and want to be caught up while everyone else waits, the person who has no idea how to work the mute, or the guy who is obviously taking the call in the restroom. 

For a painfully accurate yet hilarious YouTube video mocking the "fun" of conference calls, click here.

Online vs. Reality

This guy may hold a clue to why some of your Instagram friends have such a perfect life.  Experts say nearly two thirds of us feel inadequate when we compare our lives to others online ...and keeping up with perfect friends is expensive and difficult - until now.  I've found an easy solution for those who would rather avoid the trouble of actually living a perfect life: LifeFaker.com* where their slogan is "Life isn't perfect. Your profile should be".  LifeFaker offers enviable pictures you can buy and post as your own.  I'm considering their "I Own All The Things" package.

*(LifeFaker.com is actually seeking to raise awareness of the negative impact social media can have on our mental health, and if you try to buy a photo package you'll be redirected to a different site that talks about unhealthy social media behaviors and how to change them).

Early Recruiting Strategy

I used to joke that I should just hire a bunch of teenagers (since they already know everything), but with today's shortage of qualified labor maybe this is a better way to get a jump on the competition.

You've got to get in front of potential recruits very, very early these days if you hope to land some of the best talent - these days even average candidates seem to have a job offer locked down long before they graduate.

Decided to Give You a Quarter

That's right...  A quarter of it!  I know, I know.  No need to thank me.  You deserve it!

Seriously, though, the very first million dollars I get that I have no use for is ALL going to you.  Then you can follow Steve Martin's advice on how to be a millionaire and never pay taxes:  "First get a million dollars".

Complete Memory Loss

One more reason to make sure you have a contract before proceeding.  It's not uncommon to be asked to do additional work before a proper agreement is in place by someone who urgently needs your help and assures you that "We'll take care of the paperwork later".  ...And it's also not that uncommon for selective amnesia to strike that person after you've solved their problem and they no longer need you.  If you've been burned by this scenario more than a few times, perhaps it's you who needs his head examined.

What's the Difference?

Here's a summary of a recent phone call:

"Brent... very sorry... gave the job to the other guy because his fee was lower... been a nightmare... over budget ...way behind schedule... can you re-do the engineering now and help get us back on track?"

This scenario happens all too often when a consultant is hired based solely on price.  And this poor guy learned the hard way that "There is nothing more expensive than hiring cheap engineers*".

Good design requires adequate time and the right people to do it. Cut-rate design may still "work", but probably not as well, and the overall cost of the project can be many times greater than the small difference in fee between the best designer and the cheap guy.

Click on the "Cheap" category link on the right sidebar for a bunch of similar cartoons about cheap design.

* Attributed to Bob Sheeran, Xavier University