Posts Tagged:sustainable

rfp-robotRFP ROBOT: Website Request for Proposal Generator

The time has come for a new website (or website redesign), which means you need to write a website request for proposal or web RFP. A Google search produces a few examples, but they vary wildly and don’t seem to speak really to your goals for developing or redesigning a new website. You need to write a website RFP that will clearly articulate your needs and generate responses from the best website designers and developers out there. But how?

Have no fear, RFP Robot is here. He will walk you through a step-by-step process to help you work through the details of your project and create a PDF formatted website design RFP that will provide the information vendors need to write an accurate bid. RFP Robot will tell you what info you should include, point out pitfalls, and give examples.


Trickle-down workaholism in startups

“And then I said anyone not willing to break their backs working for me was a tourist!”If you want to understand why so many startups become infected with unhealthy work habits, or outright workaholism, a good place to start your examination is in the attitudes of their venture capital investors.Consider this Twitter thread involving two famous VCs, Keith Rabois and Mark Suster:These sentiments are hardly aberrations. There’s an ingrained mythology around startups that not only celebrates burn-out efforts, but damn well requires it. It’s the logical outcome of trying to compress a lifetime’s worth of work into the abbreviated timeline of a venture fund.It’s not hard to understand why such a mythology serves the interest of money men who spread their bets wide and only succeed when unicorns emerge. Of course they’re going to desire fairytale sacrifices. There’s little to no consequence to them if the many fall by the wayside, spent…

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Launch: Our Knowledge Center!

I’ve always believed that getting to know your company better requires more than using a piece of software alone. Yes, Know Your Company has been helpful to thousands of people all over the world…But if you want to foster a sustainable culture of feedback within your team, you have to change how you do things day in, day out. You have to shift your mindset. You have to practice a methodology.We’ve spent the past three years developing that methodology. And finally, we created a resource to share it with you.Today, we’re launching our brand new Knowledge Center — a place for every employee, manager and CEO to learn our methodology on how to cultivate open, honest workplace environments.Based on insights and data we’ve collected from over 15,000 employees at hundreds of companies in 25 countries, we’ve distilled all our learnings into 21 chapters I’ve written for our Knowledge Center.These chapters are organized into six…

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I live my podcast life a quarter hour at a time

How we found our ideal episode length for The DistanceIn the communities of podcasters and aspiring podcasters that I frequent on Facebook and elsewhere, a frequent topic of debate is the ideal length of an episodes—25 minutes? An hour? I also get asked from time to time how we came up with 15 minutes for The Distance. I’d love to tell you that we thoughtfully deliberated episode length during the planning process for the show, drawing on years of collective storytelling experience to arrive at our decision, but the truth is that the 15-minute guideline just kind of happened—and then became a useful constraint that’s guided our production ever since.The Distance started in 2014 as longform written stories of about 2,500 words each. At the end of that year, as Serial was wrapping up its first season, we started talking about trying audio for our stories about long-running businesses. The consensus was…

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What Not to Wearable: Part 1

With every advance in connected technology, potential new features abound. Sensors monitor your fitness performance or sleep quality. Haptic vibrations in insoles guide you to take a left or a right, allowing you to navigate without looking at a screen. NFC technology in a ring allows you to pay for a purchase without fumbling around in a bag or combing through pockets. These technologies allow our accessories to become devices for input and output. All this sounds exciting, freeing even. These innovations could allow us to turn our focus away from screens and back to the material world, to be simultaneously connected to technology while also present in the moment. And that’s incredible. However, this also presents new challenges. Besides the multitude of complex technical problems we must address, from charging and battery life to data networks and security, we will also have to solve some key strategic and design problems. When Fashion and Tech Collide Connected technology has migrated from appliances,…

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Searching for Clean(er) Searches

Inspired Magazine Inspired Magazine – creativity & inspiration daily If there is one year for positive change, look no further, it’s 2017. Because there’s no better time than now to do something, but also because this world, on so many levels (well, you know, you’ve been there too) was seriously derailed in the past couple of years. You are probably involved already, struggling with small or large steps to make a difference in the world, to have a positive impact, minimize your carbon footprint, leave the air breathable and the water drinkable for your kids and their kids. You probably cycle, volunteer, decided to run for office (yay!), sign petitions, enjoy the outdoors. But by the end of your life you will still have spent a few good years staring into a screen. Due to nature of work or for entertainment only, it’s gonna be years, trust me. They add…

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They Know What’s Up

Here are 3 parenting principles that my wife and I talk about more than others: Kindness Thoughtfulness Respect These clearly aren’t unique and, I imagine, are universally shared with every parent on the planet. But why I know that they matter to us more than other similar ideas and ideals is that we continually use this language with our children. In other words, when they do something poorly or make a mistake or ask a question or encounter something new… we almost always use one of these words in our response. Are you being kind? Were you thoughtful in that decision? Are you being respectful or disrespectful? Many of our response(s) are framed in questions rather than telling our children if they are or aren’t being / doing something well. We want them to think through their thoughts and actions. We want them to be critical of themselves, the biggest (healthy)…

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The Future | Inspired by Nature

Inspired Magazine Inspired Magazine – creativity & inspiration daily Nature* feeds us, purifies the air we breathe and the water we drink. Unbeatable booster, it cures stress, sadness, reenergizes humans. It’s all around us but most of us fail to appreciate it or even notice it, which is a bit like turning the back on our own selves. No, we’re not going into a philosophical discussion about nature, and how our own beings are (part of) nature. We’re just trying to remind you of the importance of looking at nature – an incredible source of endless inspiration on top of everything else. Look again, or maybe for the first time, with the curiosity of a child. Sure, the occasional romantic strolls help too, but don’t forget to study, explore, examine, through a magnifying glass if needed. Be amazed by the universe at our fingertips. “Glance at the sun. See the…

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Moving Medium.com Posts to Self-Hosted WordPress

Recently, WordPress announced the ability a new import tool to move Medium.com posts to WordPress.com. And, of course, the #1 request was to have a self-hosted tool to do the same thing. There is a plan for it but there’s no official ETA on a self-hosted plugin or the integration with JetPack… so for now we’ll just have to wait… right? Eh… well, you don’t have to. A “quick” solution is to simply just migrate your Medium.com posts to your WordPress.com site and then export those posts to self-hosted. Yes, this is about double the amount of work but it’s not that bad. I did it this morning. Watch: 0 – Make Sure You Have a Clean WordPress.com Site No posts…! What I mean by this is that you should have a fresh WordPress.com site with no posts. I think this makes it easy to manage and then when you have…

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Don’t Stop the Presses

Illustration by Nate OttoIn 1989, Deborah Maris Lader had recently moved to Chicago and was looking for a studio where she could make prints and meet other artists. She couldn’t find a place like that, so she opened her own: the Chicago Printmakers Collaborative. Deborah also took the unconventional step of setting up the print shop and gallery as a business rather than a non-profit. She’s learned how to run a sustainable enterprise without grants or donations, which are the lifeblood of other arts organizations, and to balance her dual roles as business owner and artist.https://medium.com/media/8a056765ebcbb2b6de230f1d6d196f3c/hrefTranscriptWAILIN WONG: In printmaking, there’s a technique called linocut where you carve a design into a sheet of linoleum, roll ink over it, and then press a piece of paper on top, transferring ink from the raised parts of the design to the paper. I’m at a studio and gallery called the Chicago Printmakers Collaborative watching a…

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Why we choose profit

We’re outspoken about running a profitable company in an industry that so often eschews profits for potential. So why? People ask us why all the time. Why choose profit?So I thought I’d detail some of the reasons why we designed Basecamp, our company, to be profitable as quickly and consistently as possible. And 17 years into it, we’ve been profitable for 17 years straight. Being profitable is a feature of our company (companies are products too).To set some context, since we launched the company in 1999, our revenues have grown every year (2016 being our best year yet), and for years we’ve been generating millions in annual profits. We currently have just 51 people at the company (the most people we’ve ever had).Reasons, in no particular orderA non-comprehensive list, but a complete-enough one:No one ever went broke taking a profit. Unlike companies that reinvest all or most of the money back into the…

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How some people walk into to Basecamp

Different businesses, similar paths. From scattered to orderly, from cobbling it together, to seeking out a system designed to work.Most companies start small. A person or two, maybe three.They need to work together on something. That something may just be their company — putting it together, getting it set up, hashing out early ideas for what they want to do.So they begin shooting a few emails back and forth. Maybe they use Dropbox or something to share some files. Maybe they use Google Docs to share some notes, or put together a simple spreadsheet.Maybe they find a free to-do tool or maybe they don’t. Early on, basic communication may be enough to handle tasks. Maybe they use Google Calendar or Apple Calendar or another free shared calendar tool to start keeping track of deadlines ahead.Then email starts to feel a bit inefficient, so they try out a free chat tool or two. Something as common…

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Join Basecamp as our new Rails programmer

Basecamp is hiring! We have a rare opening for a Rails programmer to work on new product development within our General Practice team. We haven’t had an opening for this kind of work for a few years, so we’re excited to welcome someone new to the team!This is a position for an experienced Rails programmer, but you don’t have to be a rock star, a ninja, or a superhero to apply. In fact, if you self-identify in any of those categories, we’d rather you don’t!We’re looking for someone with a strong track record of putting Rails to work and bringing products to life. This is not a junior position, but, imposters everywhere, this is in reach to YOU. If you ship solid work, you have the experience we’re looking for.We want strong, diverse teams built from different backgrounds, experiences and identities. We’re ready for the ongoing work that goes into building an inclusive,…

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Junior Talent: Win-Win For Business and our Community

Deeply rooted in the open source ethos of contributing to a larger community, Phase2’s investment in our BuilDesign program, our multi-disciplinary internship program, is our way to contribute to the rising tide that lifts us all. Training junior talent lifts our culture, our industry, and our community, all while being a great business decision. At first glance, you may think that the most successful companies are the ones with the most senior talent. But if you pause to think about it, you will realize that that isn’t really the case. In order for an organization to be healthy and grow, there must be an investment in junior talent, a culture of learning and mentorship, and constant infusions of new energy and ideas. We believe that the world’s digital transformation will be led by the next generation of tech talent, and BuilDesign is our powerful tool to inspire and enable them to…

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Why You Need To Use Facebook’s New Dynamic Mobile Install Ads Right Now

Even after all the giving of the holiday season is over, there are still consumers on the hunt for new things to buy. Maybe they have cash or gift cards that they’re itching to spend, or maybe they’re trying to give themselves the gifts they didn’t get. After all, who hasn’t hit the post-holiday sales? Maybe they have cash or gift cards that they’re itching to spend, or maybe they’re trying to give themselves the gifts they didn’t get. After all, who hasn’t hit the post-holiday sales? But the must lucrative of all these customers might be the people that received new gadgets as gifts — smart watches, phones, tablets — and they’re looking to fill their blank slate with all their new favorite apps. If you’ve developed an app, you need to be reaching these customers. Their pockets are open and they’re excited about trying new things on their…

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Running a Business at 10 Years Old

I couldn’t be more excited for my 10-year old who is now, officially,  one of my business partners. She’s going to take over an existing revenue-generating project and, over time, oversee all of the administrative and operational needs. Stoked! Today was the first day of “training” and I captured a bit of this via the VLOG: A few of my motives for doing this are as follows: I want her to learn, as early as possible, how rewarding it can be to run a business and how fun it can be to create something of value, for others and for herself. I want her to understand how difficult it can be to manage a project end-to-end and how much of life is really just hard work. I want her to learn the fundamentals of accounting and finance, much earlier than I did. I had to learn in environments where there was a…

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The Calm Company (our next book)

It’s about time for something new. What follows is the introduction to our next book The Calm Company. We’re working on it now, and will be shopping to publishers soon for publication later this year.“It’s crazy at work”How often have you heard that? Or said it yourself?Probably too often.For many, “it’s crazy at work” has become their normal. But why so crazy?At the root is an onslaught of physical and virtual real-time distractions slicing work days into a series of fleeting work moments.Tie that together with a trend of over-collaboration, plus an unhealthy obsession with growth at any cost, and you’ve got the building blocks for an anxious, crazy mess.It’s no wonder people are working longer, earlier, later, on weekends, and whenever they have a spare moment. People can’t get work done at work anymore.Work claws away at life. Life has become work’s leftovers. The doggy bag. The remnants. The scraps.That’s just not OK. It’s unacceptable.What’s worse is…

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What is DevOps?

DevOps is a much used term, but it seems like everyone you talk to has a different definition of it. Here’s my own interpretation: DevOps is a series of processes designed to reduce the time between development and deployment. By reducing this lead time, development teams can gather feedback more quickly and iterate their solution, delivering value based on real data and customer feedback. Viewed through this lens, DevOps is a key component in realizing the true value of Agile Development. As The Agile Manifesto states: “Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer’s competitive advantage.” So, reducing the time spent getting features out into the wild is key. In practice, that means less time spent in testing and deployment. To do that, the practice of DevOps has…

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2016 Year in Review

Wow, what a year. Honestly, I wasn’t very interested in doing my Year in Review (as I’ve done in the past for ‘15, ‘14, ‘13, and ‘12),  but I eventually overcame my general inertia about it and sat down to give it some thought. Honestly… where to start (and what to include)? Previously, what I’ve done to jog the memory is walk through my archives and copy and paste titles and then expand on them. But, today, I feel like that is cheating (and I can’t tell you why). There’s a part of me that wants to just write what first comes to mind, which might mean that the things that first come to mind are the most important or perhaps more poignant memories of the year. Perhaps… both? I’ll start at the beginning, I suppose… … … … When January 1st, 2016 rolled around I was gainfully employed at…

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Millennials, Workplace, Purpose, Etc…

This has been passed around quite a bit and landed in my inbox a handful of times yesterday. I finally sat down and watched it end-to-end before I went to bed last night. If you’ve got 15 minutes to spare, give it a view: For starters, I really do like Simon Sinek and his book, Start with Why, has been crucial in my thinking when building projects and even larger businesses. But, I found myself shaking my head a bit more on this talk than on most. What Simon is absolutely incredible at is communicating ideas in a linear, logical, and believable way. This is not to say that the ideas that he communicates are bad or inherently wrong, all the time, but, it means that if you don’t actually track smartly then it’s easy to miss the finer details and may get swept up emotionally into the track. Per Sinek’s…

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