The Web always promised to bring people together. But just as simply, it can drive people apart, as geographical barriers or partial or full anonymity empowers people to say things or behave in ways they wouldn't in a direct setting.
Accelerated by the new reality of realtime streams where everyone has a megaphone and seemingly everyone is working to "go viral" and make the biggest noise leads to a constant cacophony of shouting on the issues of the day. And of late, as I outlined in my last post about Trump's looming $100 billion productivity crisis
, just about every stream and news source is dominated by politics and the impact to people by political decisions.
For those opposed to the Trump team's way of thinking, the daily barrage of news and rumors can be fatiguing. Each morning can bring new horrors of gut-churning policy and more needing to escalate
Continue reading "Your Steady Stream of Tech News Will Continue When Morale Improves"
Each year, American businesses are confronted with estimates that upwards of $2 to $4 billion in worker productivity is lost
thanks to employee office pools around March Madness, the month-long college basketball championship tournament. Conventional wisdom has it that the tens of millions of players may physically check in to the office, but mentally are somewhere else, working at half speed, sapping dollars from their employer.
That single digit billion dollar gap is trivial compared to what the country has likely already seen after a year-long torture test of a presidential campaign, followed up with the looming tenure led by a person whose unpredictability and lack of respect for historical precedent, combined with a filter-free ability to share his half-formed thoughts with the world has everyone guessing what headline will flare up next.
The fidgety and distracted half-attentive employees in corner cubicles who may have been pulling for upset picks
Continue reading "Trump’s Looming $100B+ Distraction and Productivity Crisis"
It has been years since I wore a watch regularly. Considering I’m rarely more than an arm’s length away from any smart device, I’d weaned myself away long ago — relying instead on my phone, laptop or tablet to give the time. And in the past few years, with many different smartwatch options popping up, from Apple’s offering and an array of Android Wear watches, I’ve browsed regularly, but not yet found the perfect fit for me for both utility and simplicity — until Fitbit announced the Blaze
In the ensuing two months, I’ve been captivated by the Blaze watch.
Most smartwatches fall into two camps really, as I see it — too big or too tied to iOS. While this Christmas, I got my wife the Android Wear powered Moto 360, and she likes it, I didn’t get myself a matching set for two reasons — the first being that I hoped the watch’s profile
Continue reading "Stepping Out With the Fitbit Blaze Smartwatch"
For most people, new ideas and perspectives make us uncomfortable. It’s easier and less taxing to surround ourselves with people who agree with our worldview, and reinforce our way of thinking, to make us believe we are correct. We self-select our communities, both in the physical world, and the online space, and these friends or peers become an extension of our own identity.
A byproduct of this selection process is that our communities end up looking a lot like us and behaving like us. Techies follow techies. White guys talk to white guys. Democrats engage with Democrats. While the Internet has a virtually infinite pool of people and ideas to choose from, we easily ignore, unfollow, mute or block those voices and appearances that we don’t identify with or make us question our position.
A Divided Web
Ten years ago, I saw this polarization coming, saying the web was dividing
Continue reading "Listen Different And Learn"
Layoffs Are Painful. Even if the X Doesn’t Land on You
In seventeen years of work in Silicon Valley, I’ve only left a job by choice once — in 2011, when I made the jump from being a partner at my own consulting group
to join Google
. The other three times, my employer informed me my time was up, and at that my services were no longer needed, loyalty be damned.
In two cases, the startup I worked for ran out of funding, and once, the new VP wanted to change things up, bringing in somebody they previously worked with instead of going with the team they inherited. When it comes to a debate between the company succeeding versus your being comfortable, the CEO will never pick you.
Layoffs initiate feelings of numbness and outrage, fear and self-doubt. People cry at almost every layoff, even if their
Continue reading "Layoffs and Loyalty in a Liquid Valley"
As a member of the Google Analytics
team, I regularly field questions at events
or on our social channels
about how online and offline activity can drive results, and what metrics have value. As no two businesses are the same, it's critical to determine the status of your company and find if your activity can bring impact to results that matter, be they clicks, leads, registrations, opportunities or real revenue. When the goals are determined, and you have stakeholder buyin, then you can start your work. (See: Measure What Matters Most
Among the most common questions I see are those around driving visitors to a specific call to action. Most websites have many different routes for visitors to take, and the many choices can be overwheling. But in some other cases, only one outcome is required, and all efforts should be taken to get the user there.
Continue reading "Having a Clear Call to Action Can Drive Real Results"