Tag Archives: jobs

Ten Rules For Success Not A Myth

Adam Savage is a dude who knows about which he speaks.

A special effects master, a Maker, a knowledgable sort-of scientist, an amazing television co-host of Discovery Channel’s Mythbusters, Savage is an all-round astonishingly good guy.

He spoke recently at a theatrical event for Makers, designers, engineers, eccentrics and anyone who wants to be around clearly odd folks like that in San Francisco. His topic was on how to succeed. Savage didn’t actually say succeed in what. But, after looking over the interesting assortment of suggestions he put forth, I’m thinking these ideas could apply just about anywhere.

I’m going to just run them here because, really, there’s not much I could add right now*. Thanks to boingboing.net, which originally ran the list.

1. Get good at something.
Really good. Get good at as many things as you can. Being good at one thing makes it easier to get good at other things.

2. Getting good at stuff takes practice.
Lots and lots of practice.

3. Get OBSESSED.
Everyone at the top of their field is obsessed with what they’re doing.

4. Doing something well and thoroughly is its OWN reward.

5. Show and Tell.
If you do something well and you’re happy with it, for FSM’s sake, tell EVERYONE.

6. If you want something, ASK.
If something piques your interest, tell someone. If you want to learn something, ask someone, like your BOSS. As an employer, I can tell you, people who want to learn new skills are people I want to keep employed.

7. Have GOALS.
Make up goals. Set goals. Regularly assess where you are and where you want to be in terms of them. This is a kind of prayer that works, and works well. Allow for the fact that things will NEVER turn out like you think they will, and you must be prepared to end up miles from where you intended.

8. Be nice. To EVERYONE.
Life is way too short to be an asshole. If you are an asshole, apologize.

9. FAIL.
You will fail. It’s one of our jobs in life. Keep failing. When you fail, admit it. When you don’t, don’t get cocky. ‘Cause you’re just about to fail again.

10. WORK YOUR ASS OFF.
Work like your life depends on it…

*Which is not to say that I won’t find something to say in a a day or so, which I can almost guarantee will be the case. Check back tomorrow and see if I’ve recovered the power of voice by keyboard.

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Labor Day

No, even though my Mom kept saying this was the truth, today doesn’t have anything to do with how long our various mothers labored to bring us into this world.

Instead, Labor Day is a day set aside to allow us to labor over a grilling fire one last time before summer ends, to give us one more day at the lake, one more time out in the heat of the backyard with the sprinklers flashing rainbows into the sunny sky.

Or, you know, not.

It could be that Labor Day originally was founded to celebrate the working man (and he was, for the most part, a man back then), who sweated his day away on the assembly line, or out in the hot streets, laying down the roadway the white-collar workers used to drive in to their cushy jobs in the city with their fancypants air conditioning.

Labor Day was designed to honor those who actually produced an actual thing, instead of giving us a service. The people honored by Labor Day were singled out for a number of reasons: 1) to say thanks for helping build this country on their metaphorical, economic backs and 2) labor unions used to have a lot more members, a lot more money and a lot more pull so they could get something like this put on the national calendar with relative ease.

What? It’s true.

Since it’s founding, many folks have tried to usurp Labor Day’s reasons for celebrating. (Hello, Mom, wherever you are!) A lot of folks these days think it’s a celebration of the dwindling few who actually are able to find, get and keep a job for longer than a quarter or two. And a job with bennies? Dude! That’s something to celebrate.

Regardless of the reasoning behind Labor Day, I do enjoy one last fling at summer. I’ll be using the day off to relax in the backyard, crawl under some shade and spray an appalling amount of bug spray at anything that so much as twitches a blood-thirsty proboscis in my general direction.

We all have our own ways of celebrating. That’s mine.

Enjoy yours.

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Independence Day: Library For All

Happy Independence Day, my fellow Americans.

Normally, I’d take this as a day off so I could be outside blowing stuff up with my young dudes. And, realistically, I will be doing that. However, I wanted to talk first a little about a different kind of independence.

The independence that knowledge brings, and how our modern world can bring itself to the doorstep of anyone. You can help educate the world. You know I’m a huge believer in the healing power of education. I believe, and science will back me up on this, that better education can reduce crime rates, foster a better sense of self, inspire self-confidence, create jobs, raise people out of poverty. All of that.

And with out flourishing market for tablets and e-readers, we have the capability to bring that education to anywhere in the world. No longer would we have to cart a two-ton set of Encyclopedia Britannica around, only to watch the pages moulder in the heat and humidity. We can bring that entire set, plus every single other book in the Library of Congress, on a single e-reader.

The world’s knowledge in the palm of your hand.

Which is why I’m talking to you today about Library for All: A digital library for the developing world, which is a Kickstarter project, which still is short of its goal, that is designed to bring a library of world knowledge to the very poorest people, those most in need of the ameliorating effects of education.

From the project designers: We are harnessing the power of technology, and mobile phone networks found across the developing world, to give low-cost access to a digital library of relevant content. 

The library brings together content from Open Source providers and top global publishers. It is designed for low-bandwidth environments through the use of a local network topology. The platform is designed to be device agnostic. That means it can be accessed via mobile phones, e-readers or even low-cost tablets.

This is a worthy effort here, dudes. It NEEDS your support. Even a few dollars, every few dollars helps. The fine folks running this program have only a little more than 8 days left to make their funding goal. They’re still short. The even better news is that donating to Library For All is tax deductible. It can actually help you, when you help others.

On this Independence Day for America, why not give a little of yourself to support the independence of the rest of the world. Education is something worth fighting for. Education is something that can make fighting itself a relic of the past.

Education is the pathway to a better future. Donate. Become a backer. It’s not hard. Ten minutes, tops. That’s all it takes to help spread the independence we so treasure to others around the world.

Independence, freedom, can never be given to someone. It must be earned. Help them earn their freedom, to earn independence from poverty and oppression.

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