Being creative after a layoff

I’m also now blogging about business stuff I’m seeing over on my Fast Company blog. Here’s one I did titled “You’ve Survived a Layoff at Work, How Do You Get Creative Again?”

A ton of ideas on how I’ve seen people get creative again after a layoff. On Sunday Loic Le Meur, CEO of Seesmic, admonished me and told me it’s very important to get back after a layoff and be optimistic again. Otherwise your work will suffer and people around you will see you as having less value.

He’s right, so I’ve been working on just that. Do you have any other ways you get optimistic after having a bad day at work?

The community wins

One neat thing about being on FriendFeed is that the community gives you a TON of feedback. I’ve found that the community there is really constructive, even when giving pretty harsh feedback. Anyway, tomorrow on WorkFastTV we’re making a ton of changes. It’ll be interesting to watch FriendFeed tomorrow to see what people think of the show, especially since the changes that got done came from there.

Anyway, tomorrow we’ll have Matt Rissell, CEO of TSheets, a Boise-based provider of online timeclocks used by employees and consultants. Here’s his blog. All that is pretty cool, but what I found interesting is that he went on a mission to determine what made the most productive people successful and interviewed tons of CEOs. His surprise: Tools didn’t much matter. His discovery: There are 10 rules that the 75 successful people he surveyed all followed. We’ll talk about those tomorrow.

I bet that one of them is “listens well to feedback.” See you at FastCompanyTV at 10 a.m. Pacific Time tomorrow. We won’t have a chat room during the show (that’s one of the many changes that we’re making) but will be interactive after the show. We’re doing that so we can give our guest our full attention during the show and this way we’ll be interactive, but at the appropriate time.

Let us know what you think.

BestBuy gets more productive on WorkFastTV

Every week we film a live WorkFastTV show at the Revision 3 studios in San Francisco as part of our FastCompanyTV family of shows. It’s where we cover how work is changing thanks to the Internet. Last week we had BestBuy, one of the world’s largest retailers, on the show to tell us how they are using collaborative software to make themselves more productive and better train their employees. That video is now up, some really interesting things they are doing with their 140,000 employees.

This week? We’ll film Thursday 10 a.m. Pacific Time because of the Fourth of July holiday here in the United States. Guest? New York Times Bestselling author Tim Ferriss (he wrote the 4-Hour Workweek). That should be lots of fun as we find out what he’s been doing to avoid working too much.

Who should we have on future shows? Coming up soon is David Allen, too.

Now that we’ve done a month’s worth of WorkFast, what do you like or hate about the show? How could we add more value to it for you?

Working Fast on Office 2.0

Another guy I interviewed yesterday up at Microsoft was Chris Capossela, head of a bunch of Microsoft Office stuff (they call it the Information Worker group). He’s a senior vice president at Microsoft. He told me several reasons why companies aren’t going with the latest shiny object coming out of Silicon Valley:

1. Everyone knows what Microsoft Office does, and how it works. Trying something new in business? Not easy to do when there are hundreds, or even thousands of people involved in the decision.
2. IT wants to stay in control inside corporations. Why? Cause they have many constituencies to serve. Lawyers. Executives. Regulators. Let’s say a company gets sued and the judge asks for all of their communications. Can they provide those if they happen, say on Twitter? No. How about Exchange? Yes.
3. They need to know these services will stay up. Twitter being down for a few hours? It’s a pain in the behind for everyone, but totally unacceptable inside big companies. IT departments get fired if stuff like that happens.
4. They need integration into their other systems. Chris showed me what happens when someone calls his desk phone. The phone call gets routed to his Windows Mobile smart phone and shows up on his desktop’s screen at same time. If he doesn’t answer it, the call goes back into voice mail, but the voice mail shows up as email in Outlook. That requires systems to talk to each other, something that doesn’t happen on, say, Gmail.

Anyway, today we’re interviewing Ismael Ghalimi, founder-producer of the Office 2.0 conference and keeper of the definitive database of Office 2.0 apps on our show. I’ll definitely ask him how Office 2.0 (er, Silicon Valley’s newest shiny work tools) are measuring up with Microsoft’s. You can watch that interview live and then participate in our “after show party” where Ismael will take more of your questions in our chat room.

Working on something new

Yesterday I visited Adobe to get a look at their new office suite. Buzzword is such a cool app, I got a demo of that on my cell phone.

That prepared me for today, when FastCompanyTV launches WorkFastTV. We’re broadcasting live at 10 a.m. Pacific Time today. We’re partnering with Revision 3 (they are directing and filming the show in the Revision 3 studios in San Francisco, CA) which I’m very excited about.

SAP is sponsoring the show, which will focus on how our work is changing thanks to the Internet. Our first guest is someone special: the guy who runs PARC (Palo Alto Research Center, formerly known as Xerox PARC). This is the lab where a ton of what we use today to get our work done was invented. Microsoft Word, for instance, has its roots in this lab. So does ethernet. Object Oriented programming. Laser printers and Adobe’s page description language which lets you print stuff out. And much more was invented here.

The show will explore the trends that are changing our work and will try to give you some real, practical, hands-on stuff to improve your productivity. Coming up in the next few weeks will be David Allen who wrote the book on getting things done, for instance. Also we’ll have the guy who runs the Office 2.0 conference, one of the top executives at Google, one of the top executives at Bestbuy who’ll tell us about how they are using wikis and other tools to save tons of money and get things done better for their customers. And much more. Plus you’ll get to see us live and be interactive with us.

We’ll be taking your questions that you leave here, over on the live chat (we’ll be back up on my Kyte channel with a live webcam and chat) and after the 30-minute show we’ll have Marc answer YOUR questions over on the channel. We’ve been taking your questions on FriendFeed and Twitter too.

Anyway, gotta go and get ready, see you on the Internet today.

The world of work undergoing huge changes

Adobe tonight announced an Office Suite largely focused around a new version of Acrobat. TechCrunch has a good post on the new stuff that just shipped.

Look at what Eric Rice just told us: “I just went to and played with Adobe’s online office suite. Holy crap. That ConnectNow is the greatest thing I’ve ever seen.”

Or, look at what Jim Stanger just said “Yep! Folks at the office are gonna like this, no doubt. I love it when these services help me be the Big Damn Hero!”

This is an important announcement, but don’t miss the bigger thing that’s going on.

The way we all work together is seeing HUGE changes and the changes are coming from all over, not from one place or once company the way that the changes did in the 1980s where stuff designed at Xerox PARC became the Macintosh and Microsoft Word (that was designed at Xerox, go back and look it up). In the 1990s the world of work was controlled largely by Microsoft after its Office Suite became THE WAY we all worked together (and still largely is).

But the changes that are going on now?

Well, for that, you have to try some of the stuff on the Office 2.0 database or you have to see how the workplace itself is changing thanks to movements like coworking. Not to mention that mobile devices are making work much different. Everytime a plane I’m on lands I see that revolution up front and close as people switch on iPhones and Blackberries to get back in touch with their coworkers. Real-time web services like Twitter, Facebook, Plaxo, Pownce, Jaiku, and LinkedIn are having even other changes on how we work.

My email is showing me that, for many of you, these changes have already happened. But when I look at what people are doing in airports I see that most business people have no clue about any of these changes. For them we’re living in the future and they don’t even know it yet.

Soon people just won’t put up with a Word Processor that costs hundreds of dollars and isn’t collaborative. They won’t put up with a presentation program that can’t deal with photos from Flickr. They won’t handle a sales database that doesn’t run in the Web browser.

So, congratulations Adobe for pushing us further into this new world of work. What a week this will be.

More on this topic on Thursday when we start a new show on the future of work on Who is the first guest? The guy who runs the PARC lab today for Xerox. Who is the second guest? The guy who does the Office 2.0 database linked to above. And you.