Chess with Friends

When I was a child, my uncle use to play with his best friend, what they called ‘Distance Chess’. Basically, they send letters to each other (I am talking letters because they use to leave in different countries during the summer and the actually use the Postman to deliver the mail), yes this was before Pine, email or IM.
The idea was simple, you make a move, write a letter and send it to your friend, he receive the letter and do the same.
I use to play like that, many years ago, my first ‘Distance Chess’ was done over IRC, later on over ICQ, and sometime after that it got lost.
Last week some friends from Florida sent me an invitation to play with ‘Chess with Friends’ on the iPhone, a new game by NewToy inc.
Honestly had been a blast to begin playing chess again, I use to play a lot, and love the game, but I love the social part of the game that the computer never provide for me, now with ‘Chess with Friends’ I am playing again and having a blast.
This application, works on the iPhone or iPod touch, and has a premium and a free (with ads) version. It has been great to be back to my child days, and to discover how much I need to play again to improve.

My Twitter Office Hours

If you think something is important, you must make it important, be rudless, and give it the importance that really had in your life.

That is the most important thing I have learn on Personal Productivity, if something is important, make it important, otherwise, you are saying is not. I love twitter, but it is not important, I love the interaction, the content, the people I have connected with, but it is not important, on the contrary, I love reading, and it is important, and I make sure, I crave time on my day to read, everyday, also i have a personal goal to read more than 52 books a year, last year I read 56, this year, 24 so far.
A lot of times, we get into the busy trap, last night after read a post from my friend Dan Stratton, I leave the following comment to him:

I am glad you did your Weekly Review. Wake yourself up early is hard, but worth it every time. People (like me) insist on the night work, when really we are much more effective on the morning, I think in my case, that came from the times in witch I was busy, instead of effective.

I remember when I was busy all the time, I remember when I was busy trying to accomplish everything, and many times leaving the most important things to the midnight, honestly I don’t miss those days, now I focus on those important things first, after that, anything that gets accomplish is a BONUS!
Years ago, while I was in college, one of the teachers had a sign on her door, mention her office hours, and I think that perfectly apply to my twitter hours, so officially since today, this are my Twitter hours:

How I use and what I use on my iPhone

* Inspired by Michael Hyatt post on 3/21/2010 (
I got my iPhone on March 2008, and it is one of those little devices (and the first one for me) that I have no need to change, I love my iPhone.
The iPhone has change the way I do mobile computing, I noticed how much I spend on my iPhone instead of the MacBook, and it is one of the reasons I believe the iPad is going to be a success, I spend a lot of time on my iPhone, I am expecting to spend also a lot of time on the iPad.
My complaint is the battery, but not for the reasons people has, I am aware, that my battery issues had nothing to do with the iPhone and everything to do with the use I give to the tool (same as the rest of the users, just they haven’t discover that, and instead blame the device). I charge my iPhone at least twice a day, on weekends sometimes is more than that, but I understand that I use my iPhone a lot. Technically I abuse the iPhone, but I am not ready to admit that, guess I just did.
I use my iPhone to read, surf, email, twitter, write, chat and much more.
One of my favorites things is the spotlight on the iPhone, I believe that change the way I interact with the iPhone, I have on the first page, my use all day apps, everything else, I search using spotlight.

Not counting the ones that come pre-installed on the iPhone, I have nine applications that I consider key, and make it to the main page.
Notebook by Appigo: I have here all my reference memos, this were many of the Memos from my old Palm days end up. I have as this writing over 175 memos or notes, from things related to Work, Personal, CheckLists, Reference Information and more. I rely on this application, and I recommended all the time.
Evernote: This is something that came recently to my iPhone, I installed, and uninstalled, because you could not access your notes offline, all that has change, and Evernote is my Writing Notebook, actually this post was wrote on Evernote, and finalized on WordPress (for the iPhone). Actually Evernote is one of those applications that I am looking forward to see on my iPad next week.
Tweetie 2 by Atebits: I love twitter, and I do a lot on the Mac, but I love the portability of Tweetie on the iPhone.
Byline by Phantom Fish: This is what I use to read my RSS, and I am eagerly waiting for version three. The reason is mainly integration with Twitter and Instapaper. Sadly until that happen, I tend to mark the stuff and then open RSS Flash G by Ebisu Soft, that allow this 2 things. I hope Phantom Fish release version 3 soon.
Instapaper Pro by Marco Arment: There is no enough words of praise for this application, Marco Arment, has done an incredible job, and it is without a doubd my favorite application on the iPhone, and most likely one of the applications that I am looking forward to play on the iPad next week, this application is probably the best application on the iPhone.
Kindle for iPhone by Amazon:I am a library rat, I love to read, and most of my readings today happen on the Amazon Kindle, I also have eReader By FictionWise (Part of Barnes and Noble), since I have over 150 books that I have bough to them over the years, and also use Stanza By Lexicle (part of Amazon), since allow me to convert other kind of unprotected files and read them on the iPhone.
Finally, I use OmniFocus by OmniGroup: I have been a GTDer since 2003, and when I move to the Mac in 2009 I got Omnifocus, syncs over the air with my Mac and iPhone and is a really powerful application, if you take the time to learn it.
I use many more applications on the iPhone, but this ones are my key ones, if I lost all the others, I will be able to continue moving forward. I want also to make a special mention to: WordWeb that I use for my Dictionary, Calling Card, Splash ID and  Mint, since even that they didn’t make it to the first page, are applications that I access constantly.

Is your business having a Sales Prevention Program?

I am a sales manager, I have been making my living selling technology for the last 7 years, in Latin America, the US and Canada. I am always impress by the amount of Sales Prevention Programs available in so many big and small companies.
The Sales Prevention Program are all those activities that are done that keep people from making sales, the internal endless meetings for example; the planning for the sales process instead of actually making sales, are two typical and common examples.
In many cases, businesses struggle with sales, not because they don’t have a great product, not because they don’t produce excellent results on the projects they embark, but because they don’t sale, the have in place a Sales Prevention Program, they lack any system or investment of time, or process for the sales.
Sales are hard, they are hard to do, hard to make, and hard to keep them coming, they require time, and effort, if your sales process is not growing, your sales are dying.
Internal meetings, are another typical Sales Prevention Program, that many organizations had, lets meet for product inventory, or to brainstorm, or to discuss the lack of performance, or the quarter numbers, or many other examples, those tend to be call Sales Meeting, but in reality are all but sales, they are Sales Prevention Programs called Sales Meetings, Sales Meetings are opportunities to train, to improve Sales abilities, to improve technique, to practice sales, not for anything else.
Are you doing Sales Prevention Programs or you are making Sales Improvement Programs?
When was the last time, you pick the phone and make a cold call, or spend 15 minutes researching a possible costumer and make the call, or call your costumer and propose a new project, when was the last time you use your time to sell something? If you can’t recall when, most likely you have a Sales Prevention Program in place. Many Small Business owners, because of fear, establish these Sales Prevention Programs, they don’t trust their Sales Team, or lack a Sales Team because they have a great product, and they will be able to sell when need it, or in the time that sales slow down, begin trying to help their sales force, and sometimes they are good at sales, but in many cases, they get to be their biggest obstacle, they get to the point that it is more difficult to sell internally than to the costumer, they without their knowledge establish a great Sales Prevention Program.
Do you incentive sales, of do you have the best Sales Prevention Program of your industry?

Having the right technology, change everything

Recently I was having a phone conversation with a good friend of mine, we where geeking out about devices, phones, laptops, the iPad and other devices.
Not so long ago I use to lust (gadget lust) about all of them, I spend countless hours researching on the web, saving money, testing devices, but last night was different, ok for a while had been different, I just got remind of this last night. I do not have this gadget lust anymore for a lot of these devices. My turning point, my original iPhone, 2008.
Before I got my iPhone, I had a Palm, a Treo and I was always on the search for the next improvement, the next cool device, the iPhone was the end of that search. I got my original iPhone and only upgrade to the iPhone 3GS because my original one was in really bad shape, otherwise I will have keep it.
The change to the iPhone, bring me to test again the Mac platform. I had test the Mac platform on 2007, but at the time I was heavily invested on the Microsoft Patform, and having a Treo, I quickly discover that my new Mac and my Treo did not play well together, actually was that the main reason I let go the original Macbook to my wife. After the iPhone came, and I began distancing more and more form Microsoft products and platform the change to the Mac in 2009 was as easy as I would have dreamed originally on 2007.
The interesting thing is that since I move to the Mac, the geek lust had been dying little by little. I think the aluminum Macbook is beatiful, as well as the MacBook Air, but I am in no hurry to replace my White Macbook yet.
I was trying to expliain this to my friend, when he pulled the iPad card. Would I get an iPad, most likely, eventually. Will I be getting an iPad on day one. Unlikely. The reason is simple, I do not see yet, how the iPad will change my workflow, a soon as I see it, most likely I will do the investment, but as an reader platform is not enough, I type fast enough on the iPhone (actually this post has been written and review on the iPhone) and for heavy lifting I have my Mac. I read over 50 books a year on the iPhone. I will test the iBookstore, if it is available for the iPhone, I am satisfy with the Kindle Platform, and I honestly will continue reading more on the iPhone, because it is always with me. I am not worried to leave Amazon behind if the iBookStore is better than the Kindle, I did that already once with my friends of ereader, so I have no problems on leaving my books behind. Actually I can read on the ereader in the iPhone, just is not as great as the Kindle app for some reason.
But the big change is on discovering the right technology, and when you get to the right technology, you will be willing to evaluate new one, only when the problem arrives or the proposition for better workflow or productivity is present, there is no geek lust, or at least there is not geek lust-need-to-get-it.
I have a friend that had a collecion of almost every iPod that has come to the market. Recently upgrade to the iPhone. I am waiting for the next iPod release to see the change on her geek lust, I am expecting that we are not going to find it there.
Did I beleive Apple are the only ones making the right technology?, no. But I am going to say that my Mac life is more relaxed and works better than my PC life ever did, I don’t miss the registry, or the installers, or the driver issues, I am sold on the simplicity and the premise that my Mac Works.
At the time of this writing, I had finally discover the right technology for me, and have worked for me for more than 12 months, that in technology terms is almost incredible, I am sure will change, will evolve, but for now, will stay as it is.

Stop that Good Work.

Courtesy of:

Last night I was reading Purple Cow, New Edition: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable–Includes new bonus chapter by Seth Godin, when he said something that make me think:

The opposite of


is very good

On the same lines Michael Bungay Stanier on his book Do More Great Work: Stop the Busywork. Start the Work That Matters., when he said that:

You should stop doing

Good Work and begin doing

more Great Work.

I am guilty of this, on more occasions that I am ready to admit on this forum, I am guilty of focus on the good or very good instead of the extraordinary, this focus on the good or the very good limit the amount ofextraordinaire stuff we can do, and while a lot of good stuff is done, and we are accomplishing a lot, we are just one more on the pile, and sadly you will only be noticed when you are out of the pile. You need to get to an extreme, on one extreme you will be noticed because the big lack of performance on the other because you are extraordinaire, if you are good or very good, you are invisible, so:

Stop that good work,

and be Extraordinaire!