• Sign Off Etiquette

    As fun as it can be to let a project drag on for eternity, and as much as I thoroughly enjoy working for free, one of the best things I can do for my relationship with my client is to define a clear end point for the project. I need sign off. The problem, is how do I terminate a project in such a way as to strengthen my ongoing relationship?

  • Building a Remote Team

    Lately we have been investing a lot of time and energy into sproutwire.com instead of sales. Meanwhile, our team has often been idle, developing their side projects, as we hunt for work. One great benefit and risk of working with independent contractors is that they are required to have other sources of income. This is great because it means we are not responsible for keeping our team working full time, but it is dangerous because […]

  • Setting the Stage for Success

    I’m going to get a bit naked here. Maybe I’ve been reading Naomi’s blog too much (don’t worry, my mom washed my mouth out with soap as a kid, so I’ll never talk like her). A few days ago Julie and I took a series of walks, whose dialog revolved around perception, motivation and sex. I asked Naomi for advice because I wanted a woman’s view and found out that she and her lad had […]

  • Be Explicit & Intentional, Your Business Depends on It

    I started climbing again today. Sitting on the ground stretching, my climbing shoes and my chalk bag at my side, I watched a few people prepare for their ascent. On goes the harness, then the rope gets looped in and tied off in some crazy fancy eight knot that should save your life as you plunge into the abyss. Your buddy checks you. Each buckle gets reviewed, your knot is inspected. Chalk bag, check. Additional […]

  • All-Nighters Suck, Overtime is a Myth

    Don’t wait to deliver bad news hoping that you might fix everything with a mad sprint to the finish. All-nighters suck. And if you lead a team, overtime is a myth. There are times when optimism has gotten us in trouble. I’ve noticed this in a lot of freelancers. After all, we can do it all! We think, “gosh this deadline is looking tight, looks like I get to do another few all-nighters. No worries, […]

  • Setting Tomorrow up to Win

    I wake with anywhere between thirty-five to a hundred and fifty legitimate emails in my in-box. A voice-mail or two. A honey-do list (I love you babe). And my IM flashes the minute I log on. The day begins anew with the urgent constantly pulling my attention. So how do you make sure that the important is not overwhelmed by the urgent? The answer lies in an old Jewish custom. According to Jewish law, each […]

  • How to be a Good Client

    I don’t believe that clients set out to be “difficult” on purpose. Sure, there are certain personalities that just don’t mesh, or clients can have expectations of the designer that are unrealistic, or be unclear about communicating, but for the most part people don’t shell out money with the intention of it ending badly. Projects end badly for a number of reasons, but the majority of them have to do with a lack of communication […]