So Good They Can’t Ignore You by Cal Newport

51IjORMFLkLSo Good They Can’t Ignore You is a story of a man’s search for the truth behind our quest to find passion in one’s work. He uses his interviews, with those that have claimed to have found passion in what they do, to derive a thesis that he believes is THE way to find a positive work environment.

Two key take aways I had from this books are the importance of:

  1. Deliberate practice
  2. Small projects

The two make up critical pieces needed for the “10,000” hours of expertise Malcolm Gladwell made famous.  Deliberate practice specifically looks at the importance of getting a steady stream of critique for your craft while you practive. “Small projects” look at the importance of dipping your toe into side projects that help you explore your craft, while building new skills. As a tinkerer I relate to those two points immensely, though I can improve on my search for harsh outside critique. For that I often think I am my own worst enemy, but that’s just a copout.

As a book I found the writing to be a bit redundant. Not a bad book per se, and the stories and perspective on what could be a common myth to “follow your passion” are interesting, but he could have done it with a book half its size – or just a long blog post. Unfortunately, because of the way it is written, you have to work through the repetitiveness to get to the good parts. Is it a must read? In a way, yes – it is a nice supplemental to books like Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. But, I think the cliff notes may do just as well.

His conclusion to find work you love rests of the following rules:

  1. Rule #1: Don’t Follow Your Passion.

  2. Rule #2: Be So Good They Can’t Ignore You.

  3. Rule #3: Turn Down a Promotion.

  4. Rule #4: Think Small, Act Big.

Related Books or Similar Themes:

  • Outliers

Google Hangouts Finally Work!

I have been trying Google Hangouts sporadically for the last … 6 months or so. Using it once a month to handle a group chat or video chat instead of my regular Skype, phone, or webex usage. It improved tremedously each month, but since in the first few months it wouldnt evenload correctlt thta wasnt saying much. By the time it finally started loading correctly for me it was dropping calls left and right and very choppy in the UI.

All that being said, it was a great day in the video conference world today: our team at Socialize used Hangouts for a group call and it worked flawlessly! Hooray, finally a group video chat system that actually works. Of course I am holding back a little bit since most video chat services are hit or miss, but I must admit that the steady growth of improvement on Google Hangouts is nice, and if it keeps up this trajectory it will be the goto for me and my team.

 

Some cool features that come with GHang:

1 – You can schedule a hangout on your calendar

2 – You can video chat with multiple poeple for free

3 – It comes with the standard “effects” sweet people know and love. We had a good time using the “applause” effect for each persons update, and the “gong” effect when the meeting was over.

4 – You can screen share to the group pretty easily

5 – You can pull in your Google Drive data into the chat. Which is nice for us since we use GDrive a lot. I haven’t tried it yet, but presentations in GDrive should integrate well…

Give Google Hangouts a shot, and let me know if it worked smoothly for you too, or if my glee is premature.