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Deeper Weekend 2014

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Innovation

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  • Adrian Simmons
    Adrian Simmons
  • Bryan Coleman
    Bryan Coleman
  • Greg Kyte
    Greg Kyte
  • guestblogger
  • Ian Crook
    Ian Crook
  • Jason Blumer
    Jason Blumer
  • Jennifer Blumer
    Jennifer Blumer
  • Scott Kregel
    Scott Kregel

Scott KregelWe are all seeing the influence of technology on our lives. It is rewiring our minds; it is accelerating the pace of innovation, and it is causing dramatic changes in how we live our day to day lives. Some people embrace this and say, ‘bring it on’; others are a little more resonant about it; and a few others still reject and deny the impact of technology. Kevin Kelly, the founding editor of Wired is one of those prophets of technology and when he speaks to what is going on, people take note. Kelly gave a talk in 2007 (after what many consider the first 5,000 days of the internet) about the next 5,000 days of the internet. In that talk, he shared the following highlights: Read more

Category:
Book Review, Innovation
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REFM -  Adrian Photo Square - CATOBSystems are so important as enabling mechanisms. Sometimes I like to call them “structures of freedom.” I’m reminded of a quote from Tim Williams at Thriveal’s Deeper Weekend last fall, “Process is the architecture for getting things done.” Even creative processes, like transforming your firm, require some level of scaffolding to help you see it through from concept to realization.

 

Systems can compete with each other too. The system you know and use now will almost always beat out the one that’s fledgling or undefined. This is why it’s almost always easier to spend hours replying to e-mails than to change your firm. There’s a system for e-mail, but not for transformation.

 

So our goal is to develop a creative system for our firm, shield it during its fledgling stage, and then let it grow to become part of our way of doing things, that stands its ground and evidences its value as part of our firm’s operations.

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Greg Kyte 2“Live a life worth commenting on.” – Pete Holmes

 

Science fairs suck. They’ve always sucked, and they suck even more now than when we were in school. Because the Internet. No elementary school kids are asking real science questions that they really want real answers to. Kids come home with a list of requirements, and parents Google the cheapest, fastest, and least-lame way to help their kid get an A.

 

But this year at my house, science fair did not suck because my daughter is awesome. She asked a real science question that she wanted a real answer to: How long does it take for an egg to blow up in the microwave? This like all great science fair projects was inspired by America’s Funniest Home Videos. And we got more science learning done than we bargained for because we also discovered how many eggs it takes to blow up a microwave. Read more

Category:
CPA firm, Innovation
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Jason BlumerI’m a Peter Thiel fan. He is a contrarian, and there is power in contrarian thinking. In his book Zero to One, Thiel talks about Secrets in Chapter 8. It’s one of my favorite chapters.

 

secrets

 

In his book, Thiel contrasts secrets between conventions and mysteries. He contends that conventions within business are easy to uncover (like, you should use a CRM to manage your client’s information), and that mysteries are impossible to uncover (like, you will make a lot of money if you can predict what the stock market will do tomorrow). He makes a point that secrets are not easy to discover, yet they are not impossible. You will not stumble into secrets – if they are to be found, then you must search for them.

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Category:
CPA firm, Customer Experience, Innovation
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4

Greg Kyte 2Moe Szyslak is a crappy entrepreneur. He’s crappy at lots of things, but he’s a really crappy entrepreneur. The only reason his tavern hasn’t gone out of business in the past 26 years is because it’s not real. That being said, sometimes he comes close to not sucking.

 

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In the middle of Season 3, Moe says to Homer, “Business is slow. People today are healthier and drinking less. … If it wasn’t for the junior high school next door, no one would even use the cigarette machine. … Increased job satisfaction and family togetherness are poison for a purveyor of mind-numbing intoxicants like myself” (“Flaming Moe’s”). However, people’s aversion of rats, cockroaches, and Hepatitis B are also poison for Moe’s business. His bar is a dump, but he pins the problem on the business environment. It’s easy to blame business troubles on external forces: competition, stupid consumers, changing regulation, etc. Read more

Category:
Innovation
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3
Jason BlumerI’m reading Peter Thiel‘s new book, Zero to One. Wow. He is truly a contrarian as most of his ideas fly in the face of doing business in any type of traditional way. Some would even say his ideas are scary. One overarching idea I’m noticing in the book is about his focus on building the future. He is dead set on investing in things now that have far reaching future-focused results. I’m glad he has made this his focus. This sums up the struggle in our profession – we do things for immediate results instead of investing in the future. Truly, creating a future-focused firm is hard for a number of reasons:

 

-You have to commit to a future that you think you can create. The future is not here yet. Peter Thiel believes the future will be here when we create it. Many people avoid thinking about the future, as it brings uncertainty and fear. What if we don’t like the future that we create?

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Category:
Book Review, Business, Innovation
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