Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Essay II: How to solve your Economic Problems

Why write about focusing your attention, on learning to use humor, and the need to make emotional connections? How does practical wisdom and the proper use of humor, help with solving life’s problems?  Use humor to focus your own attention and make emotional connections with others.  

When something seems wrong, it is time to reflect on your life and your journey.  So when something really seems wrong, almost enough for loud complaining, start writing in your daily diary. 

Loud complaining is frowned upon or even not allowed, especially in libraries.   All the signs say SHUSH …..  Please be Quiet.  So if you are in a library the best solution is not to complain out loud, leave and travel to a place where you can complain as much as you want.  Even do a primal scream if you think it will help.

I was in the Union College Library and the golden tongue wisdom spoke to me through the staff.  I called my lawyer who represented me in court on a landlord – tenant disagreement.  Immediately the librarian approached me and told me I was talking too loud on the phone.  I continued my conversation, and another minute went by, he approached me again and told me to lower my voice.  What was the message?  It was SHUSH … I am very annoyed and bothered by hearing your voice.  Gaining perspective and having conflict and mediation training at business school I was wise enough to apologize and agree … my voice need to be softer.  I definitely felt embarrassed and by the way he approached me I knew I was not on dean’s list this semester.  Since I wanted to put some of my leisure reading to good use, “Leading with Humor” in Harvard Business Review came to mind.  Using humor to make an emotional connection with the librarian, by giving him a tickle during the exam cram period, would have been the best solution.  Was this a humorous situation or a not humorous situation? 

The volunteer experience
So I wanted to turn my volunteer work into something more useful in an effort to solve my economic problems.  Today I use the word useful, as I adopt a need for practical wisdom.  My practical wisdom tells me that economic problems are solved first by increasing income or simply adopting habits of good decision making and right actions to reach economic solutions.  The application of phronesis boils down to using common sense.    Time spent on getting the right education and getting more than several practical degrees, I finally realize that I just need people smarts and common sense. 

Goal:  Clear all obstacles to finding a source of income or getting a job.
Priorities:  All tasks are directed at meeting that goal.
Take Note Any Obstacles:  Best to view your new job as task leader towards project completion.  Set priorities see the practical use of your efforts and acknowledge success

Phronesis –           The Habits that enable you to
      Make the Right decisions
                                Take the Right actions
                                Relentless pursuit of excellence

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Essay I: Solving Economic Problems

The first essay on solving economic problems is about finding ways to improve your personal financial situation by increasing your income or bringing in more revenues.   If you are working on your personal finances, the chances are you need to increase income by finding a job that pays you more money.  If you are unemployed then you may just need a job.  If you are currently working, you need to get a raise, get a promotion or establish a second stream of income.  A second stream of income can be created either by securing a second job or starting a small business.

To minimize the time associated with the task of increasing your personal income, don’t spend a lot of time over analyzing the problem; instead write a paragraph or so about the best solution.  The solution should paint the ideal scenario, in a descriptive paragraph, by making statements that provide the information needed to determine how to find what you are seeking.

Decision Making Skills:  Making good decisions determines your level of success in life.  It seems like common sense but maybe many of life’s decisions are based more on common sense, less on your feelings.  Decisions cost more when you have more responsibility, at work and at home.  So developing your abilities to analyze the potential outcome of your decisions,  and being able to estimate their likelihood,  helps with the decision making process.

 Making the selection:  You hear of an opportunity from a colleague or a friend, and it offers the best opportunity for work quickly.  The real reason is you have bills piling up and you have current expenses that require you bring in additional income.   This prevents you from spending the savings you have accrued in the past.

Making the selection:  You find an open job opportunity in the newspaper.   The company becomes a target company as soon as you decide to apply.  You need connect to the hidden network by contacting employees within the organization.  In order to build the network, send email notes; make phone calls, and arranging face to face meetings.    The real goal is to get back to work quickly so if someone tells you about a job opening and gives you information about who is the hiring manager.   Then you can contact the company and arrange an interview.

Doing the Work: 
The ideal situation is to send out an application for employment.  Get called up the next week for an interview where you get a chance to meet the managers and co-workers.  Have a conversation and find you have many traits and qualities they are looking for in an employee.  You are highly skilled or have the potential to learn the job quickly.  The interview goes well.  In two weeks you are handed an offer with a start date and a salary, bonus and benefits.  The salary range is acceptable and you accept the offer and set a start date.   You have a reliable means of transportation and have the proper dress to start working.  You have two weeks to prepare, how do you prepare?

Goal:  Clear all obstacles to finding a job thus increasing income.
Priorities:  All tasks are directed at meeting that goal.
Take Note Any Obstacles:

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

National Womenbuild Week 2014

There is a great movement to promote volunteerism across the US.  The reason is rankings of states have been based on the people's effort to help by volunteering.  Volunteering to keep busy, or to be altruistic, or to make friends or for professional networking or to find a job.  Many factors are influencing me to work on the Habitat for Humanity Womenbuild Program in Schenectady New York.  The one that stands out is the fact that I still remain unemployed after years of study at the university and years of networking in the hidden job market.  This week marks the 3rd week of volunteering to help support the vision of creating a world where everyone has a decent place to live.  This Saturday we raise the walls on the 7th Womenbuild house and it commemorates national womenbuild week.  This volunteer to professional network has a great cause.  Today I met 4 women that decided to help paint the concrete and wood structure with indoor and outdoor paint.

Effective Networking - for Employment and Career Opportunities

How many people know that I need employment is a question I wonder about everyday? I noticed that close to everyone I have met at networking events has avoided direct mention of the topic. I found it curious that very few people have approached me about the status of my job search.

Finding opportunities can happen at networking event, I guess that is all about the nature of the hidden job market.  I learned about HJM after sending hundreds of online resumes to potential employers. Recently I decided humiliation due to lack of success drove me to publically analyze and reflect on the outcome of my networking efforts.

The IEEE foundation funded the making of the documentary I just watched. I have spent more hours volunteering for IEEE that I wish to admit. Since IEEE sponsored the event, I had expected to know about the showing of the new documentary on Charles Proteus Steinmetz titled 'Divine Discontent'. But it was an unannounced event.

At this networking event, most everyone met at the auditorium 1/2 hour before it started. Many of the attendees found seats early. Quite a few people attended, mostly from the college or retired employees of GE. Since the refreshments were served in the auditorium, it was difficult to connect with anyone before the event.  I was luck to pass out 3 networking cards, but received not one in return.  It appears that no one is following the standard networking practice of business card, elevator pitch and handshake. Fortunately for me, one of the three people I gave the pitch to worked as HR at Global Research GE. Anyway the luck of the draw on that encounter.  Now here comes the follow up on the event.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Oh what an Opportunity

The Career Fitness Program & exercising your options by Judith C Kilday.

After taking a deep breath, I thought about my talks with Allison. Again it was an exercise and I patiently attempted to re-frame my attitude. Attitude they say is the deciding factor which creates success. Maybe just one of may factors. At the same time a friend who I realized later was one of the best friends I could ever have, gave me a book. It was just because he cared, he surprised me but he had a helpful nature. The book "I don't know what I want but I know it is not this" was written by Julie Jansen. Julie Jansen has written a step by step guide to finding gratifying work.

What I did discover was working through both books, required grit and commitment. The time was more than I wanted to commit to my professional development. Made me ask a question, what were the results of my efforts?

Monday, February 24, 2014

13 Reasons You're Not As Successful As You Should Be by Jim Kukral

#1 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Laziness
#2 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Entitlement
#3 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Fear
#4 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Negativity
#5 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Stop Thinking
#6 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – No Goals
#7 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – “They”
#8 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – No “X” Factor
#9 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Time Waste
#10 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Social B.S.
#11 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Think Small
#12 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Don’t Want It
#13 Reason You’re Not As Successful As You Should Be – Don’t Believe

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Financial Empowerment

An acquaintance from my graduate days at University of Connecticut contacted me about his son applying to RPI.  He and his two boys love to ski, and the winter Olympics drove their enthusiasm.  Skiing was one deciding factor for their college selection.  I hadn't much luck with finding a job after graduating from RPI so I hardly recommended it as a potential choice.  After I sent the email letting them know I  would discourage RPI,  I was quickly escorted off Sage College Campus and asked not to return.

I was reading about financial security at the time.  From the online version of the WSJ By Chris Heilmann of US TRUST Comment: This article caught my eye so I decided to read and comment. US Trust's has a program to help kids get rich. Their program is designed to pass those values to the next generation. Do we adopt the values that generate wealth from our parents, and at what age do we own the responsibility? Are parents trying to pass these values to their youth?

The dean of students approached me when I was reading this article online at the Sage College Campus in Troy NY.  He mentioned there was a disturbance in the classroom and since I had not been in a classroom I quickly replied not my problem and I don't assume to take any responsibility for the college's problem.  Had I been a paid member of the community I would of course take this more seriously. He gave me a letter stating I was a persona non grata and said I was disallowed from coming on The Sage Colleges campus without further notice.  I was taken aback and now am working on what to do next.

To continue on with what I was reading US Trust published an article and video online in the Wall Street Journal, January 2014. Here is another WSJ article: Teaching Your Kids to Be Rich Article: It's not just developing a work ethic—these days, they need to deal with social media too. Comment: so I was interested in what is it about social media that will bring us understanding of our world of work? On one side of the coin, technology advances has caused a new type of business to spring up. What type of businesses are forming and how we do note the drastic changes in how to make money through these new businesses. The current advances in technology have made many changes in how we work and in our society.  Mobility has allowed us to communicate from remote locations, so we can do business anywhere in the world.

So back to what happened, this acquaintance has tracked me down using social networking and online searches and has asked me to help him.  And he wanted me to apply for work at ORACLE.  I am definitely interested since I know the pay will be better than no pay or unemployment.  But my ethical backbone,  told me to inform  him about the truth about the status of my career after graduating from RPI. Right? Wrong I hinted there was a problem and told him that skiing was really important part of his son's future, shouldn't he base a large part of his decision on the quality of that program?

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Making a Makerspace Creating a Business Model

This article by Guy Calavacanti is a series of workshops and articles sponsored by Artisan's Asylum and MAKE. The first article in the series is on how to get insurance for your creative manufacturing makerspace. The next one discusses the business model. Consider the ways you can make money in this creative manufacturing environment.

  Creating a Business Model

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Build Your Own Website (Free)

The website is full of useful information. I have found it a valuable resource and rely on it frequently for general information about "anything" I need to learn about quickly. From What Free Website Service Is the Best? They suggest Reviewing the options (1) Blogger: A free blogging service (2) WordPress: A blogging tool and publishing platform TVCOG make space had a workshop on WordPress. (3) Google Sites: A web page publishing tool. (4) Tumblr: A microblogging platform for multimedia-rich content The URL will read:,, or TRY WEEBLY Weebly offers a free online website creator so I thought I would try it. I started and closed after I could not upload my business logo so it matched the background. I did decide to try this free website creator since it also offers blogging and e-Commerce. It supports paypal. Comparison of free web hosting services is a great wiki to read before spending lots of your time on creating a versatile website with e-Commerce features. Well how did Weebly measure up? ONLINE MONEY TRANSFERS Paypal is the gold standard for e-Commerce transactions. With one catch, it can not load money to a prepaid Credit Card. Macy's and IEEE both do not accept paypal as a method of payment. A fix for this is MoneyGram. Weebly supports basic features for blogging and e-Commerce. Site owners can develop simple stores with payments through either PayPal or Stripe

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

LEDs to brighten Palace, save cash

National Grid grant helps pay for new bulbs By Eric Anderson Published 8:03 pm, Thursday, December 19, 2013 The Palace is embarking on a project to replace 8,000 bulbs throughout the theater, many of them energy-hungry incandescents, with the LED fixtures. National Grid provided a $70,000 grant to help pay for the move, which is expected to cut the Palace's electric bill by 30 percent, or about $31,500 annually. "This project will have paid for itself in less than two years," said Ron Semp of Rise Engineering, which works with National Grid on energy efficiency projects. The theater will realize savings "just (on) the manpower alone," said Holly Brown, the theater's executive director. "Some of the spots in this theater are extremely challenging to get to." National Grid offers grants to small businesses to help them save energy. Funding comes through what's known as a system benefits charge on ratepayers' utility bills. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority offers similar grants.