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Category Archives: Consulting

A random thought; I hope I get an invite to Daytum.com‘s private beta.

  • This site mimicks my belief in how reporting dashboard’s should look.
  • I would love to throw my data in to the mix and see how effectively I communicate my results based on a balanced scorecard approach (quality, production, customer service and financial performance). 

As my colleages may be able to tell, I am a huge fan of simple, concise and clear communication.  

  • I sincerely believe that communicating is something that everyone does but not necessarily well.  

At an organizational level, I believe that passive communication kills organizations and conversations for that matter. 

  • This is something I try to get across to my own colleagues.  
  • I hope I serve as the example. 🙂

I would encourage those of you reading this post  to also check out:

I think this could also serve as inspiration for:

  • The Chicago Booth PPT (Powerpoint) essay.
  • My Christmas cards this year.  How cool would it be to send out an annual report to your family as your Christmas or Holiday card?  
  • Pretty cool, if you ask me.  But then again, no one is asking me.
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The Lazy Man’s Way to Building a Great PowerPoint Presentation

In consulting I have seen a lot of nightmare-ish PPT presentations.  I believe in keeping it simple and not trying to throw the kitchen sink in.  It overwhelms the audience.

The attached article and template does a great job in keeping it simple.

VersaCharger Pro – Car, Wall, and Airplane Charger in One

I travel 100% for my consulting job.  I don’t like taking anymore stuff than I have to on the road.  That being said, I have found myself SOL on some occasions when I forget something or don’t bring enough of something else.

That being said, I love products that are intelligently designed and serve a multitude of purposes.  The Boxwave charger I link to above is AWESOME.  You can use your USB cord and this charger to wall charge or car charge.  Nice.  How is that for cutting down on the travel clutter?

A b-school colleague told me that once I went bespoke, or custom-made, with my work clothing that I would never going back to buying off the rack. I must admit, he was right.

I never really ever thought about seriously buying custom fit clothing for work. I guess I don’t know why as I have a 44 chest and a 32 waist. I figured it would be too expensive without really investigating it. It was went I went to buy a couple of suits that I began to realize that for about $600 I could get a custom suit made with a good super 120 wool.

Well, after soliciting some more fellow b-school opinions, I settled on Fit Wel custom clothing in Brentwood, Los Angeles. They measured, I ordered and waited about 4 weeks. When I finally received my suits and shirts, I tried them on and felt like a million bucks. I have never had clothes fit so well, well!

I will never go back to buying off the rack. Additionally, buying custom clothing is helping me with my transition to less is more. As I continue to simply my life by adopting GTD or reading the latest posting on zenhabits.net, I am realizing that I need to focus on having fewer things that declutter my life. So with my clothing, I am donating all the old and just having a few things. Additionally, as I am a traveling consultant, I only can take 5 shirts and pants on the road at any one time. So how many shirts, pants, suits do I really have. I can spend a little more on custom made, look better, feel better and continue to declutter my life.

So how can you get in on this? Go to a tailor, have them measure you, then find a reputable tailor from Hong Kong online.   I really like Cosmo Circle Custom Tailors in Hong Kong.  Send them your measurements. Buy a few shirts and see how you like them. I guarantee if this is done right, you will never go back to off the rack!

I am on a long term project in Chicago.  Recently, I have been leaving clothing at my hotel behind the guest services desk.  Basically, I just check my bag for the weekend when I leave.  I also drop my laundry off as well.  As soon as I get back in on Monday, my bag is there and my laundry is washed and ready for me to go.  Sometimes, when I travel to and from certain hotels, I leave a box at guest services with my toiletries if I can’t leave my clothes.

All this drastically cuts down the amount that I have to haul around.  I also spend less time in security as I have less to run through the x-ray machine and less of a chance for the dreaded “secondary screening”.

I love OGIO bags.  I have never had a laptop case and suitcase that were  so well designed and well made.  I have the OGIO City Corp laptop bad and the OGIO Layover suitcase.

I have been traveling non-stop over the last few years as a consultant and I can not afford to have a busted wheel or broken zipper slow me down.  The one thing I learned is spend the money to buy quality and OGIO delivers on that plus one.  Sure they are durable but they are also intelligently designed.  The number of pockets and compartments just blows me away.  These aren’t gratuitous either, they are each separately sized and all are within easy reach.  This is a great, for example, when you are going through security at LAX and you need to know where your ticket or toiletries are.

OGIO bags, I am a raving fan.  Thanks for a quality product in a sea of crap bags.

If you’re a consultant, then you’re going to learn to love or live with the whiteboard.  ScanR.com has put out a pretty swell application that allows you to take a picture of a whiteboard, white piece of paper or business card and email it to yourself.  The ScanR technology emails you a PDF of the whiteboard and it’s contents, for example.

It’s pretty cool and it cuts down on notetaking.  I usually cut and paste the white board image out of the PDF and put it into meeting notes or emails.  It’s great and why recreate the wheel?

http://www.scanr.com

Okay consultants, this may be a no-brainer but here is a way to reduce the amount of dry cleaning and laundry that you haul around on the road.

Leave your dry cleaning and laundry at a dry cleaner over the weekend.  Most dry cleaners will pick up your undies and shirts from your hotel.  Ask behind the front desk or get on Google and call around.  Drop your dirty clothes behind the front desk as your check out.  Also, see if the dry cleaning company will provide you a bag with your name on it.

If you need to take your shirts with you, I suggest having them boxed.  There may be some lines in the shirts when you pull them out of your suitcase but they wont be wrinkled.

Also, leave your toiletries at your office desk (in a drawer) or at the hotel.  Most hotels will provide a cardboard box for longer term desks.  Remember this is not a safety deposit box, so take your Rolex with you.

Priority Pass – 500 Airport Lounges Worldwide

Okay road warriors, here is the best deal you might not have heard of.  Priority Pass allows access to most airport lounge facilities across the world.  You don’t even have to have status or points to get in.  You just pay for the pass, flash it and you’re in for $399 a year.  The rumor is that the Amex black card used to come with a Priority Pass card, nice huh?

Walk Score – Helping homebuyers, renters, and real estate agents find houses and apartments in great neighborhoods.

Being a “road warrior”, I value convenience.  I want to know when I stay somewhere that I can walk to the gym, restaurant, bar or 7-11.

Before going on any engagement and booking out my hotels, I check this site to see what I can and can not walk to from the client site or from the hotel.