Thoughts


Our take on it.

Big ideas. Small ideas. Favorite things. Least favorite things. Here’s where we share our perspective on work, life and whatever’s on our minds.

My Greatest Fear

Sometimes when a few of us entrepreneurs get together, we share what our greatest fears we had to overcome when starting out on our own. Generally, the answers are what everyone hears about. My greatest fear seemed unique- could I finish anything? It was the only fear that kept me up at night.

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I Like to Play

When I talk to young people entering college or considering their future career, I’m inevitably asked why I picked computer science. This is why.

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You Can Leave Your Hat On...

Whatever it’s called—remote working, telecommuting, working-at-home, home office—the idea of not working in the office every day seems to no longer be the soup du jour in the workplace. Notable large companies are bringing their employees back into the office. Some, like Apple, have created very nice places to work. But why the change? The most recent excuse appears to be the need for close proximity of teams in order to improve productivity.

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Leadership Lessons from My Dad

Several years ago my sister and I realized that it was time for our dad to move closer to one of us. Fortunately, we found a great facility only 20 minutes away from my family. For the first time since I was in college, he was close enough to join us for lunch after church, spend Sunday afternoons with 9 of his grandchildren, attend their performances and concerts, and enjoy a time of rest after a lifetime of activity.

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Management Lessons from a Large Family

I have 9 kids. That’s right, 9. To be honest, the best training for those in leadership or management positions would be to raise a large family. No other training needed. College degree not required. Plus, the training is free and it goes on for a lifetime.

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The One Thing

In the movie, City Slickers, Curly, played by Jack Palance, shares with Mitch (Billy Crystal), the secret of life being “one thing”. For my company, life is productive and happy employees. So, what’s this secret, the “one thing” for us?

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The Curse of Foresight

“Maybe we need to experience the pain,” said the CIO of a mid-size hospital system in response to my frustration of trying to explain the value of our services for his organization. We knew what might come his way, but be that as it may, he didn’t buy.

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Christmas and the CEO

I’ve seen a lot of articles, blogs, and books on what a CEO needs to be for—or bring to—the company, such as authenticity and vision, the ability to delegate, lead, and hire well, to articulate, be transparent, show enlightenment, honesty, a positive attitude, and so on. Some descriptions list over 50 attributes. Whoa.

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7 Books for Outward Development

In my last post, I shared three books that started a chain reaction of internal changes at the company I lead. Each of those books played a role in moving us forward and creating a pattern of growth that continues today.

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I Didn’t Know All That I Didn’t Know (or—What Business Books Caused Me to Act)

Not too long ago, I made a choice to set aside time for reading business and leadership books recommended by certain editors, CEOs, and investors who seem to know what they are talking about.

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Is Time Travel Possible?

For the past 36 years (has it been that long?), I’ve been involved in moving information from one place to another. Starting with designing firmware for data I/O in multiplexers, I’ve helped with building operating systems, customizing computer languages, rolling out international cash management systems and implementing data exchanges used by thousands of companies in multiple industries. When it comes to moving data to where it needs to go, I’ve seen what works, what doesn’t, and what sort of works.

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HIPAA Is Not Enough

On February 5, Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in California discovered that their patient records and many other key files had been encrypted by a malware called “Locky.” They discovered an “instructions” file on their server informing them that the files would remain encrypted unless they paid the attackers a large “ransom” in Bitcoin, the crypto-currency of choice for Internet criminals. After exploring their options, hospital administrators made the decision to pay the ransom of 400 Bitcoin—approximately $17,000 USD.

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What’s up, Doc?

Patient care—that’s all I hear. Since 2007, whether at a healthcare conference, reading an article on healthcare technology, or in the vendor brochures I perused on doctors’ desks, everyone was talking about patient care. Patient care this, patient care that, improving patient care; patient care was, and still is, the mantra of the healthcare IT masses. As good as that sounds, it’s the wrong focus.

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The Interoperability Camel

I have been involved with interoperability standards in banking, media advertising, and healthcare in three countries for over 30 years. During that time I have consulted with industry committees and associations to design standard transaction formats and implementation guidelines, always working with our customers to make the standards work.

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Simple Is Not

When I think about the issues and problems we wrestle with everyday at work- whether contract negotiations, software development, product messaging, priorities, training, corporate strategy, customer support, HR, pricing, and so on- the most elegant solution is always a simple one. Rarely is it easy to find and, even more so, to do.

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Finding computer scientists where you least expect it

As CEO of cloud services and software development company, I’m constantly thinking of how best to use capital, whether financial or personnel. The hardest decisions are always those concerning personnel. Of those, the hardest is finding the right people.

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