Article: 100% Renewable Cities—Is Your Mayor Smarter Than A 5th Grader?

After reading the linked article from Hart Energy, I was left with this question.
 
What’s worse.  
 
A) One who doesn’t believe climate change is real or thinks it is a problem that needs to be solved? 
B) One who believes climate change is real and needs to be solved – but has no idea how to actually solve it?  
C) or, B + pretends like they do know how to solve it.
 
You pick.  
 
If you pick (A), at least (A) isn’t going to waste what some say could be over $100 trillion* (with a t) by the end of the century and improve nothing.  Waste is a crime because that $100 trillion could be put to real use helping real people.  
 
There is a lot in the article everybody should think about (especially if you care about climate change).  
 
The author of the article doesn’t come across as anti renewables but more anti dumb.  He has written what appear to be many thoughtful books on what good approaches to solving climate change could look like.  
 
 
A few gems from the  leaders where I live (gems – who I’m guessing are sincere):  
 
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter pledged their cities to 100 percent renewables by 2030. Major wind system build-outs during the last five years boosted Minnesota to the eighth-leading wind energy state in the US. Renewables now provide about 27% of the state’s electricity. But Minnesota residents are paying for it. Over the last nine years, Minnesota power prices increased 34%, compared to the US average price rise of 7%.
 
I’m thinking they don’t get that when energy costs go up 34% for working people – it is real money.  
 
*I would cite those or better numbers if they weren’t all over the place – which kind of proves my point.  If anybody had a real solution with a real price – all of the supporters would agree and promote that number.  There is no agreement even out there as to what the costs or benefits would be.  If there is agreement out there someone should point it out more clearly.  
 
As a side…  Wanna know what poor people around the world want the UN to spent $100 trillion on?  
 
Watch Cool It by Bjorn Lomborg and see what kids in third world countries think us rich countries should be spending our money on to help them (think – water, schools, medicine). 
 
Better yet.  Watch Lomborg’s TED Talk on global priorities that should be bigger than climate change.
 

Good Enough to Win?

 

 

Read this last week in the “The Hard Things About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers

I’ve heard about this book for a while, read a lot of other books by people close to Ben Horowitz, but for some reason never felt moved to read this one. Thinking about it – it was probably because on the surface his story seemed to be an easy one. Got hired at Netscape, Great (Best) friends with Marc Andreessen, CEO at Loudcloud, Sell to HP, Partner at Andreessen-Horowitz. Easy life.

So wrong. And that assumption violated something I know deeply. In life, business, sports, war – whatever… it never does us any good to compare our insides with other people’s outsides. We don’t know their struggles or challenges – we only see what we see. Never enough information.

It reminds me of a greeting card I have been carrying in my bag for almost 20 years. It’s a photo group of people underneath a sign that reads “never touched by the human hand” and the quote by Mark Twain below says… “there was net yet an uninteresting life. Such a thing is an impossibility. Inside the dullest exterior there is a dram, a comedy and a tragedy.”

 

I carry that card to remind me that whoever I’m dealing with – we all have our story.

Ben Horowitz’ journey was a lot harder than I thought – and this week, that made the fight a little bit easier in my world.

Turn Around CEO’s Advice… Winners focus, losers spray

Jim Norrod, Executive Chairman of Liquid Pistol and former CEO of BigBelly Solar, addressed the Smaller Business Association of New England at the group’s monthly meeting on January 15, 2013. He presents a 3 part strategy which he has used to perform turnarounds resulting in liquidity events totaling over $1 billion to investors.

It takes a cooperative Board, a committed management team, and the correct plan. Jim’s theme in these difficult assignments: Winners focus, losers spray.

 

Jim Norrod, The Road to Liquidity from SBANE.org on Vimeo.

 

This presentation, like all of SBANE’s Massachusetts Breakfast Series presentations, was recorded and edited by Davideo Company, of Framingham, MA.

Opportunity Looks A lot Like Hard Work

Don’t know how cool my kids are going to think Ashton Kutcher is after I keep reminding them what he said about hard work.  But this is a great message.

Who knew?

 

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Seth Godin is my Zig Ziglar

For me, over the last 5 years… Seth Godin has been my Zig Ziglar. He hasn’t taught me how to sell, but how to over come the fear and or resistance of what it takes to be or try to be great.

From this interview…

No for now

  • The people you are calling on….
    • do not owe you a meeting,
    • they do not owe you an answer,
    • they do not owe you one minute of their time.
  • Crafting a perfect pitch letter to get their attention? Not a lot of faith in that approach
  • Rejection from people that care about you isn’t a bad thing
    • It is a message
    • not a message message of giving up,
    • but a message that you just told them a story that didn’t resonate (I like that word) with them that today.
  • They are saying…
    • do not bother me tomorrow with the same story,
    • you will not be able to badger me into doing business with you
    • but what you could do is
      • tell me a different story
      • about a different problem
      • on a different day….
      • because if you treated me ethically the first time, why wouldn’t I want to listen to you a second time.
  • AND… don’t try and get best customer first. Get them last!! start with the ones that are more likely to listen to the story carefully.
  • Because in the end, the best customers just want to know that all the other people have already said yes.

zig ziglar…

…do not become a wandering generality… instead figure out how to be a meaningful specific.

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a pep talk, or a path that leads to awesome…

a pep talk from kid president, a 9-year-old who was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta (or “Brittle Bone Syndrome”), but isn’t letting it keep him from being awesome…..

….stop being boring – boring is easy…..

….it’s time to do something……

…..the road less traveled – HURTS – not cool robert frost!!!!

…..i want to be on the path that leads to awesome…..

…….we have work to do – we can cry about it, or we can dance about it……..

……we were made to be awesome…..

….so get to it.

need some encouragement?  start by encouraging others.

watch kid president’s story on youtube

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sushi, comedy, baseball…. and practice.

Great read by Jeff Weiner on what practice, patience, making sushi,  Jerry Seinfeld and New York Yankee’s Ichiro Suzuki all have to do with each other.

Jeff Weiner article… From Seinfeld to Sushi: How to Master Your Doman

New York Times article on Jerry Seinfeld… Jerry Seinfeld Intends to Die Standing Up.

From the Wiener read…  Jiro Ono, the 86-year old master sushi chef and subject of the highly acclaimed documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi has been preparing sushi for over 70 years; Seinfeld has been a stand-up comic for over 35 years. Both are widely considered to be among the best in the world at what they do, and yet listening to them, one comes away with the impression they will never be satisfied. They are constantly practicing, honing their work, and seeking to improve.

As Jiro describes it: “All I want to do is make better sushi. I do the same thing over and over, improving bit by bit. There is always a yearning to achieve more. I’ll continue to climb to reach the top but no one knows where the top is.”

From the Seinfeld read…..

“Seinfeld will nurse a single joke for years, amending, abridging and reworking it incrementally, to get the thing just so. “It’s similar to calligraphy or samurai,” he says. “I want to make cricket cages. You know those Japanese cricket cages? Tiny, with the doors? That’s it for me: solitude and precision, refining a tiny thing for the sake of it.”

and on Ichiro Suzuki, the lean Yankees outfielder… “This is the guy I relate to more than any athlete,” Seinfeld said. “His precision, incredible precision. Look at his body type — he’s made the most of what he has. He’s the hardest guy to get out. He’s fast. And he’s old.”

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Books I read in 2012

Felt like I watched too much tv this year…. But looking back, I actually got a fair amount of reading in as well.

What I read in 2012…..

Steve Jobs, by Walter Issacson

 Peak, by Chip Conley

        

  What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, by Laura Vanderkam

 

Feeling is the Secret, by Neville Goodard

The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo, by Stieg Larsson

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, by Donald Miller

 The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, by Patrick Lencioni

The Five Temptations of a CEO, by Patrick Lencioni

        

 The Amatuer, by Edward Klein

        

 Venture Deals, by Brad Feld

And What’s on my list for 2013…….

        

Raising Cain, by Dan Kindlon

       

Enjoy Every Sandwich, by Lee Lipsenthal

         

Think Like a Futurist, by Cecily Sommers

          

Autobiography of a Yogi, by Paramahansa Yogananda

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, by Robert Pirsig (Again – read in the 90s)

Quiet – The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain

        

168 Hours, by Laura Venderkam

        

Who’s the Fairest of Them ALL?, by Steven Moore

        

The Advantage, by Patrick Lencioni

For 2013, maybe a little less American Idol and more time for reading, or not....

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