Entries with the tag "business"

The Customer is Always Right, But Not With Everything

You’ve heard the phrase “The customer is always right” before. I think you’ll find an equal amount of articles online saying that that sentiment is still and always true vs the fact that the customer doesn’t know what’s best for them and they’re not right. (You’ll even hear stories about how some “great” companies like Apple ignore the customer desire and that’s how they became successful.) But they’re not really digging further into the customer... (more…)

Pitch to Programmers Like Investors

What’s the difference between pitching for new programmers to join the team vs investors to fund it? Nothing. If you’ve not been pitching both of them with equal detail and vigor, you’re missing out. (more…)

Fake It Till You Make It

You’ve heard the saying before: “Fake it till you make it.” I agree with this philosophy - especially when it comes to getting a great programming job. But, I think the way you ‘fake’ it is important. It’s important to fake it ethically. Let’s discuss. (more…)

Always Keep Learning

The other day, an acquaintance of mine was complaining about never getting ahead in their career. I didn’t really feel like I knew enough about their area of expertise to give any advice - until I heard what they did when they got home. During our conversation, they described their favorite TV shows, how involved they were with the outcomes; basically once they got home, 4 to 5 hours were spent on the couch watching... (more…)

Why Didn't My Friend Hire Me?

I’ve been in the position to hire a lot of programmers over the last few years. This is a great responsibility; one that doesn’t come without a bunch of unique situations, especially when it deals with colleagues and friends. (more…)

Track the Things You've Done Today with Alfred

For our agile workflow, it’s important to provide a check-in each day. What did you do yesterday, what do you plan on doing today, do you have any blockers? My biggest challenge is actually remembering what I did “yesterday” - especially after the weekend. (more…)

I Made A Professional Connection: Now What?

I’m very lucky to receive multiple LinkedIn requests to connect each week. I rarely accept them, unless I happen to recognize or know the person. Also, if they have a compelling message and I think they might follow up, then fine, too. But that’s where it usually ends… (more…)

The Chicken or the Egg of Hacking Your Software

Today I was faced with an interesting quandary about whether I should write the code to exploit an application vulnerability in our software at work. This vulnerability is not necessarily a “security” one, but more-so a known-risk: it was theorized that someone with enough knowledge could bypass a mechanism in our software. (more…)

Make the Reasons Overwhelming

This entry is republished from the original columns included years ago in the PHP Architect magazine. I really recommend purchasing the magazine to get timely articles, columns and PHP news. (more…)

Are All American CEO's Psychopaths?

Are all American CEO’s psychopaths? It is a very interesting question - one that I tackled in 2012 when I was finishing my capstone at Cardinal Stritch University. Considering I write a lot about business in this blog - and a few years has passed now since I used this paper for credit - I thought I’d “open source” it for those who might have an extra few minutes in their day! Hah! (more…)

Government Website Idea

I find it very difficult to find out information about my local elected officials. Even the federal website for congress mentions that there is no central database of email addresses and contact information for their members - which is just crazy to me. (more…)

I am a Failure

Fair warning - I normally don’t write too personally in this blog - but this one is something different. Something I think people need to read. (more…)

Preparing a Conference? Tell Your Presenters This

I’ve given a number of talks in the last few years. Each time I go to a new place, I have to bring this giant bag of equipment and three or four versions of my presentation. All too often, conferences don’t detail enough of the specifics for their presenters. Let me tell you, presenting and traveling can be stressful. So, to help reduce stress and anxiety, there are a few things you can share with... (more…)

Don't Underestimate the Importance of Work Space

I’ve read the articles and studies about workers creating their own work spaces and I think it’s a great idea. (In fact, the company should too - it increases efficiency by 32%!) But, I never really realized how important it was until recently. (more…)

Developers: How to get your estimates right

Estimates can be one of the hardest things to create as a developer. The word estimate is a misnomer in our industry. It’s almost as if they should be called “agreements” or “promises” according to some bosses. Yet we all know that they are just that: an estimate of the amount of time, not a guarantee. (more…)

Idea: Bible Verse A Day

I did a bit of looking for websites that will service a Bible verse of the day via email, and I did not like what I found. First, I felt that a lot of them were very confusing to use. It wasn’t immediately clear what you were there to do. I didn’t know where to put my email address, etc. Finally, after reviewing a lot of the copy right information with bibles, I wonder if... (more…)

Lessons for Managers

I’ve been a manager before. I’ve lead teams before. However, it’s important to understand the difference between the title of ‘manager’ and someone who actually manages. This time around, I’ve been putting much more effort into managing, not just being the figure head. And, I’m learning things. I think these things not only apply to technology related teams, but teams in general. (more…)

Idea for Web Design Website

So I’ve been looking at some parallax plugins with Javascript and CSS3 animations… and it got me to thinking: I have a great idea for a web site design firm. (more…)

What I look for in a code review

A few days (ok, a bunch of days) ago, someone asked me on twitter what I look for when I do a code review. Pretty certain I was tweeting that I was either… a) doing a code review or b) annoyed at doing a code review. heh. I thought for a bit, and I think I’ve distilled the list of things I look for. Now, mind you, I don’t set out with my checkbox list... (more…)

Follow Through if You're Trying to Seduce a Developer

I remember a scene from A night at the roxbury where the less-than-slick brothers take some girls back to their room and have a problem closing the deal. One of them keeps saying pickup lines while he has the girl sitting on his bed. She basically says OK - we’re past this. He just can’t seem to close the deal - no matter how much she wants him to. (more…)

TrackThings.com

Idea: TrackThings.com. This website is made to track sales people and distribution of promotional materials. It was initially thought of as a way to track on-the-ground sales distribution. For example, if you had someone go to three businesses on one street, they could easily track where they went, and mark the interest for followup. (more…)

Ideas Online

This idea is to create an idea repository. I started out wanting to make this website - and instead just decided to list my ideas on this blog. But, here goes. (more…)

Site profile: whatscloseto.me

Goal: Clever named site that shows local establishments close to your location. Was based on Google Ip location services. The thought was just for people to think ‘whats close to me’ and type that up. (more…)

Employed Resumes vs Unemployed Resumes

There are two types of resumes out there: employed resumes vs unemployed resumes. Or that is to say bragging resumes vs qualifications resumes. There is a time and place for both… and mixing them up may not be in your best interest. (more…)

Site profile: thebetterbachelor.com

Goal: to create a bachelor cookbook and sell it to other bachelors online. The price of the cookbook was to be very cheap so that it wasn’t too much of a risk. The book itself was supposed to be picture rich and very verbose. It showed how to accomplish tasks that other books assumed a person knew. (more…)

Service profile: mketweeps

Goal: I came up with an idea that I wanted to find local people in our area and mention them using a twitter bot. Pretty simple. Two requirements were they either had to use the word milwaukee in their profile or be from the milwaukee location, and they had to not have a blank profile. The tweet contained a shout out to their name and as much of their profile as could be fit in... (more…)

Site Profile: amazondiscount.me

The goal was to use links that Amazon provided themselves to showcase categories and percentage discounts with my affiliate tag. The thought was a clean interface would easily encourage people to click a discount of say 90% but send affiliate contributions my way. (more…)

Read Something Else

Many years ago, a business mentor of mine told me that I should “read something else.” I didn’t know what he meant so I asked for more. He said I should go find some biographies, some history books, etc, and read those before I go to bed. He said it would not only expand my mind and show me that my problems weren’t that bad. He also told me it would increase my vocabulary. Well... (more…)

Don't Always Lead: Sometimes Just Be Great

What is the measurement of a good career? Promotion? Raises? Running a project / leading a team? Usually all of this. However, the most traditional measurement of success in a career is moving upward. Time to run a department, time to lead a team, etc. However, I submit a very radical idea: Sometimes just be great, don’t lead. (more…)

Solving the Problem, Not the Solution

Raise your hand if you’ve ever been told how to do your job… Yep. It’s happened more than once - and I’m sure you already had a flash of red and maybe some warmth come to your face even hearing that phrase. In my current position, I run into scenarios where people seem to think they have the best solution for the problem. And, you know, they may be right, but it’s not their job.... (more…)

It's not shameful to cut your losses

One thing I’ve learned about the entrepreneurial spirit is that it leads to failure. With figures as high as 90% of businesses fail, this is something you have to get used to. Even leaders like Robert Kiyosaki mention that knowledge is what makes money - and that knowledge is gained by failure. You’ve heard the sayings before, learn from your failures… (more…)

My NonDisclosure Promise

As you may remember, I wrote a piece about why I do not sign any NDAs here. I’ve had some time to reflect on that entry, and I want to move forward. I want to give any client I work with my new “promise” - the Non Disclosure Promise. Let me tell you a bit more why I choose not to sign NDAs, and what I can offer you instead. (more…)

Aaron on NDAs

From time to time, I get approached with a new project from an excited business person. They are just bursting to tell me all about it, to see if I can help them out (or even make it for them), and looking for some clarification on their next steps. This inevitably is hindered by my reluctance to answer their first email. You know that email. The one that includes the attached Non Disclosure Agreement. (more…)

Milwaukee PHP Users Group

I started the Milwaukee PHP Users group a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, today we had to cancel a meeting because of the outpouring of snow… but it’s on for the 4th tuesday of the month. (more…)

Why the Boss makes YOU make a List or Proposal

From time to time, I’ve been asked to make a list of my design ideas, or to develop a better proposal for an idea I have. This really irritated me: didn’t he believe me? Didn’t he trust my ideas? But in the constant battle to become a better businessman, I’ve taken a bit of time to think about why this happens. He’s not out to get me, right? Yours isn’t either. Lets take a look... (more…)

How to throw an AMAZING meeting

I’ve been to far more meetings than any one on earth should ever have had to by the time they’re 25. With that experience, however, I can start to pick out key points of running a great meeting or demonstration. I know this is a different type of post for this blog, but I think its important. There may be times that you’re called on to conduct a meeting or demonstration, as a technical resource.... (more…)

Why are there different web browsers?

In the same way that not everyone drives a Honda, we find that we have different web browsers. For the beginner to the Internet, this might come as a surprise. Normally, they are only used to the default browser on their computer. For example, Windows users are familiar with Internet Explorer. Mac users might be familiar with Safari. (more…)

What do all of those acronyms mean?

Whether you’re looking at web hosting advertisements or speaking with an internet firm, you’re going to run into various acronyms. If you’re not familiar with the industry, this can get confusing. Let’s check out the main ones to see what they really mean to you. (more…)

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