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Book Reading List From 40+ Years Ago

Working, Studds Terkel

Confessions of an Advertising Man, David Ogilvy

The Office: a Facility Based on Change, Robert Propst

1984, George Orwell

The Fountainhead, Ann Rand

Atlas Shrugged, Ann Rand

The Workplace

There’s one thing I’m truly passionate about in business. What is it? That work sucks for too many people. 70% of people don’t like their job. That’s sad.

I started a website to reverse the trend. I bought 2 RVs and took two cross country trips to reverse the trend. I wrote a book. Gave 100+ speeches. Started a program in a Foundation. Did everything I could, and didn’t make a dent in that statistic.

So what now?

I have a digital marketing company that’s been named a best place to work both years we’ve been in business, but didn’t specialize in anything. And as a result, didn’t do anything exceptionally well.

So, we decided to specialize in the one thing we do best: SEO.

Then we combined it with our passion: the workplace.

We’re a SEO Company that connects small businesses with customers…and has a good time doing it.

Shoe Dog Book Notes

Shoe Dog is one my favorite books.

Here’s my notes.

Surprises

// How long it took (average overnight success is 17 years. It took him 18)

// How he never stopped

// How many similarities he and I have in family life (forgetting groceries, balancing out of you’re a good leader / dad or just good enough)

// We’re both Accountants

// How much fun he had with friends in the business

// Why his entire memoir focused on the early days – 1962 – 1980

// World trip at 24

// How sad it is that he lost Matthew

// That his bucket list is blank – what’s on your bucket list?

// That journaling is the only way to remember the details

// That he lived most of his life in debt. If you’re not borrowing, you’re not dreaming big enough?

// That he always ran to clear his head

// That bamboo would be a foot taller next year (invest in people)

// the Buttfaces – executive retreats. The culture of Nike – especially in the early days

// the cowards never started, the weak died along the way…that leaves us

// Don’t tell people how to do things, tell them what to do and let them surprise you with their results

// but instead of seeing how far we’d come, I only saw how far we had to go.

Karl Eller

Wanted to take a moment to celebrate the life of Karl Eller.
Karl helped instill a confidence in me that I could be an entrepreneur, a CEO, and a marketer.

He did this in a really easy, and subtle way. He simply accepted my invitations. First to be interviewed early on in the first Pursue The Passion roadtrip. Then again on an invitation to do lunch a few years later. And then again when I randomly saw him at Miracle Mile Deli, where he welcomed my invite to sit together and enjoy pastrami sandwiches.

To me, Karl’s legacy represents many things. The willingness to pick yourself up at any stage in life. The audacity to try. The capitalization on creativity. But above all, it’s just that a serendipitous crossing of paths creates a ripple effect of opportunity…and that some people, like Karl, create more serendipity by the way that they choose to live life.

Bear Down!

Thoughts on successfully launching a sponsored cross country roadtrip

Whenever someone is doing a cross country trip, I usually get connected to them through a mutual friend to set up a time to pick my brain on some lessons I learned through successfully launching a series of sponsored cross country roadtrips.

Here’s a couple general notes I share in each of these conversations…

1. Hire a full time driver. Driving an RV is stressful and time intensive. If you want to get work done, hiring a driver is the best decision you could make.

2. Equip the RV with wi-fi so you can work on the road.

3. Wrap the RV in your branding if one of your objectives is to get “press” out of the trip. Every city we pulled into we had a press appearance on TV or in print because the RV made for such a great visual. It’s pricey – about $7,500 – but worth it in the PR value.

4. Sleeping arrangements. Depends on the RV, but we had a RV that comfortably slept 3 people…and we were over it within the 1st week. We stayed with hosts in every city we went, parked the RV out front, used their shower and bed space, and used the RV as a place of refuge.

5. RV time is like dog years. Every month in a RV is about 3 months in real time. You cram so much into a short amount of time that time expands. With that said, we were on the road for 4 months, 120 days, and that was a long, long time.

6. Consider splitting up the trip. We did a loop of the west coast first, with Phoenix as our home base. After our first loop we spent a week in Phoenix to relax and recover from the road. Then we set out for an East Coast loop. That break in between was like refueling the RV.

7. Meetups. I’d assume you’d do this anyway, but Meetups in each city are a great energizer for a weary road crew and a great way to make new connections in each city.

8. Small cities vs. Big cities. There’s more space, cheaper prices, easier roads, friendlier people and more press in small cities versus large ones. As you plan the logistics of where to go, I’ve always thought that visiting a city like Flagstaff (for example) has more of an advantage than visiting Los Angeles.

9. Schedule. Being on the road you’re in a constant battle with the optimal amount of time to spend in each place. On a roadtrip there’s a different vibe. 3 days in a city can feel both long and short – long in the sense that you can’t believe you have another 2 days to spend in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and short in the sense that you are uprooted once again to go to the next city like Cheyenne, Wyoming. Finding the scheduling balance is the key to keeping the team going.

10. Avoid the Midwest. Yellowstone is cool. That’s about it. Otherwise it’s long stretches of flat road with fast food and windshield bugs. I’d try to get out of going to states like South Dakota, Wyoming, Kansas, Nebraska, etc.

11. Sponsorships. We were rejected a lot. It comes down to who finds value in the mission of your project. Kickstarter people? A venture backed startup? A rich uncle? It’s up to you to connect the dots or figure out a way to finance it.

I’ll update the rest of this list, one day…