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Wastes of time better outsourced, or: better ways to spend your money.

Today, I’ve sat back, watched, and provided input (where needed) as a team of 6 guys proceeded to pack up everything in our house and load it into our moving truck.

It has taken over 60 professional man-hours to pack and load our 2000 cubic feet of worldly belongings, and, hiring professionals (at $40/hr) may not have been our least expensive option, I have no doubt that it was the right one.

Had Becky and I attempted to do this all ourselves, there’s no doubt it would have taken at least twice as long: 120 hours. Trying to do this would have occupied all of our spare time while not working for at least a month, and, realistically, much of the burden would have fallen on Becky due to my travel schedule this fall. It would have strained our relationship, and we both would have been completely exhausted and stressed constantly. Avoiding that is worth way, way more than $2,400 to me, isn’t it?

I’m constantly reminded that we have three primary options for every “discretionary” dollar that we spend. We can spend them on things, we can spend them on experiences, or we can spend them to make time. The saying “you can’t buy happiness” certainly applies if you’re trying to buy your happiness by way of things (which I know I’ve been guilty of over the years). A number of studies have talked about the value of buying experiences, and I certainly am a proponent of seeing the world, but I would propose that the most valuable thing you can do with your hard-earned cash is to spend less time doing the things that don’t make you happy (maybe that’s packing and moving or cleaning the house or cooking or cleaning up leaves or shoveling your driveway), so that you can focus your time and energy on the things that do make you happy. Turn your focus towards spending time with family, exercising, hobbies, learning, whatever it is that you love to do.

Time is the only thing we can’t make any more of, don’t squander it just to save a few bucks.

Dear Apple

I have been a big iPhone user for many years, but the iPhone 6 and iOS 8 were just not ready for prime time.  After getting my 6 on release day,  I was excited for it to be the greatest phone ever made,  instead, what I got was a device that had been barely usable and plagued by bugs.

This has caused me to, for the first time in years, look outside of the Apple ecosystem, and I just received my Samsung Note 4, and, in my limited experience this far,  it is everything I could want a phone to be. Fast, powerful, the stylus is awesome… First impressions can be deceiving, but, if this holds up, I’m going to be an android guy now.

This post written from my Note 4

How terrible products get built

The story of the Pontiac Aztek

Pontiac-Aztek-INLINE-626x352These things require a culture of complete acquiescence and intimidation, led by a strong dictatorial individual who wants it that way.

The danger with the totalitarian management style is that people won’t speak up when there’s a problem. They’ll get their heads cut off or the messenger gets shot.

From the project leader on the Aztek:

We’ve all made up our minds that the Aztek is gonna be a winner. It’s gonna astound the world. I don’t want any negative comments about this vehicle. None. Anybody who has bad opinions about it, I want them off the team.

Teams need to be a safe place for people to have opinions, and good leaders need to be able to hear those opinions and evaluate them without ego or hubris getting in the way.

Read the entire article from Car and Driver

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