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Talk About Embarrassing!

Note from Bob: This week, our long-time employee and office comedienne, Mary Nicholas, is our guest writer for the Thought for the Weekend. Enjoy! Murphy and I are good friends. You probably know his laws, including: “If something embarrassing is going to happen, it’s going to happen to me!” Truer words have never been spoken. On a recent business trip to Bay City, Texas, I was looking forward to meeting Karla. Karla and I have worked together for years, but this would be our first meeting in person. I got dolled up for the

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Just Three Words

The end of May marks the end of the school calendar, the promise of summer, and for some, graduation. Richard Lawson wrote: “Graduation season means, among other things, commencement addresses that drunken, sleep-deprived kids will sleep through”. That said, some graduation speeches are definitely worth listening to– like the one beloved Carnegie Mellon professor Randy Pausch (of The Last Lecture: Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams fame), gave to the Class of 2008 just three months before he passed away from liver cancer. Other commencement speeches, however, last far too long and only offer the

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Tuesday Tips- Got White Space?

  Advertising executives say that the power of an ad is in the “white space”. Think of the Nike “Just Do It.” ads. Those words were even more powerful because they were surrounded by lots of white space. When it comes to managing your calendar, time management experts say you need lots of white space there as well. Do you tend to jam-pack your calendar from 8am to 5pm without giving yourself a single minute to re-group, eat lunch, or return phone calls? Plan for a little white space so that unexpected events, meetings,

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Selfless Choices

It was Memorial Day 1996. Kathlena Peebles was a Junior at Highlands High School in North Highlands,California when she wrote the essay below as punishment for missing a Memorial Day band function. Instead, she chose to attend a Memorial Day presentation by her father’s submariner veterans group aboard the USS Pampanito, regardless of having an extra assignment because of her absence from a band performance. As we’ve seen this week in Oklahoma, life can change in an instant–sometimes for the better; sometimes for the worse. Sometimes those life-altering moments are due to choices we

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The Power of Habit

On a recent business trip, I started reading The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg. It turned out to be a page-turner that I didn’t want to put down. Duhigg, a NY Times reporter, explores the science behind habits by telling incredible stories that really drive home how habits have a huge impact on our lives and our businesses. Duhigg argues that in almost any scenario in life, habits can be changed, provided we know how they work. For me, one of the most

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Magic Mom Powers

Last year, on the Friday before Mother’s Day, I wrote about my own Mom from an adult perspective. This year, I thought it would be fun to explore how kids view their mothers. A group of 2nd-grade children were asked to participate in interviews about their moms. Here are some of the questions they were asked, followed by a few choice answers: If you could change one thing about your Mom, what would it be? She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I’d get rid of that. I’d make my

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Tuesday Tips- This Post Could Save You 64 Hours Per Year**

Using keyboard shortcuts can greatly increase your productivity, reduce repetitive strain, and help keep you focused. For example, highlighting text with the keyboard and pressing Ctrl + C is much faster than taking your hand from the keyboard, highlighting the text using the mouse, clicking copy from the file menu, and then returning to the keyboard again. You might already know these quick and easy shortcuts: CTRL + C = copy CTRL + X = cut CTRL + V = paste But did you know that CTRL+HOME will take you to the first character

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What Happens in Vegas

“What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”. The ad slogan has been used by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority since 2003, and just like “Where’s the Beef?” and “Just Do It!”, the expression entered our culture’s mainstream lexicon. From Jay Leno to Billy Crystal to Laura Bush, it seems that everyone is making reference to “What happens in Vegas”. Perhaps the most interesting use of the phrase came from former Education Secretary William Bennett. After a video of Bennett sitting at a Vegas slot machine hit the news, and he became embroiled

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Finger Lickin’ Good

Eggs, milk, sugar, salt. They are classic commodities, products so uniform in quality that you can’t tell the difference between one company’s product (or service) and another. Commodities are sold based on price with increasingly thinner margins. And, over the past several years, many in our industry have bemoaned the commoditization of transportation logistics. The way I see it, this is a glass half-full/glass half-empty quandary. One could argue that every product and service is a commodity just as easily as one could argue that no product or service is ever truly a commodity.

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Tuesday Tips- Customize Your Cubicle

Bored with your bland cubicle? Keep the walls from closing in with these strategies from Lifehacker or grab a few of these funny cartoons from Doug Savage. They’re cleverly designed to look like Post-Its….so the boss won’t even notice what they say! If you really want to create a fun first impression with your coworkers, make your “cube” even more unique with this book!

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