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Image from Unsplash.com by Brooke Lark: https://unsplash.com/photos/nMffL1zjbw4

The following is an excerpt from an online course I’ve launched with my business partner Ellis Fitch at EdifyContent.com.

How many times do you hear people say, “I found the perfect job!” Think about that sentiment. It’s a “me first” mentality. Being a job applicant is not a “me first” situation. It’s a “please hire me” situation. If your cover letter looks like this: “Dear Hiring Manager, This is the perfect job for me and here’s why,” all showing is that you have no idea what you’re talking about.

Hiring managers don’t give a rodent’s behind about whether the job is perfect for you. They’re not trying to solve YOUR problem. They’re hoping you can be the perfect person to solve THEIR problem. …


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Man holding his head in his hands: Image from unsplash.com, Felipe Pleaquim https://unsplash.com/@felipepelaquim

This is a cross-post from the Edify Content blog, where I’ll be posting content more regularly regarding our new online course, Get Hired During Covid. It’s only $10 right now, but we have been giving it away to those in need. Just email us at hello@edifycontent.com.

There’s a social stigma for being unemployed. America has a very work-first mentality, and we tend to collectively classify our friends, family, and professional network peers as “unemployed” or “employed.”

There’s this really perverse “hustle culture” all over social media. This stuff is the modern equivalent of the billboard and magazine cover supermodels we saw everywhere in the 1990s. You may have heard of concepts like “body shaming,” and hustle culture is the equivalent of employment shaming. …


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Several people have told me how helpful it was to attend Phoenix Staff, Inc.’s recent webinar. They said Allen and I helped them re-think their approach to job-hunting. Maybe it can help you, too.

Phoenix Staff kindly invited me to speak at their Banding Together webinar series. This one was aptly called Discover Your Cluelessness. The webinar was recorded and is available on YouTube.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYjRuQ3_GlM

It was a great conversation. Here are the timestamps for the topics we discussed:


The first dynamic web application I ever wrote was a content management system to store intellectual property data. This was when I was an intern at Danny Hillis’ think tank, Applied Minds, back in 2003. There were no established content management systems back then and WordPress was brand-spankin’ new as a blogging engine.

Under the guidance of Applied Minds’ Director of Intellectual Property, Dr. Mark Duttweiler, I learned about two technologies that completely blew my mind: PHP and MySQL. Mark taught me how to use PHP to turn static HTML (which I’d been writing since 1995) into dynamic web pages with parameters, calculations, and database interactions. He also taught me the basics of SQL database queries. (The closest thing to a database I’d ever used was FileMaker.) …


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Danny Hillis, my college friend Ray, James Sarrett (now with Applied Invention), me, Tommy Smith (also now with Applied Invention).

I had the utmost privilege of working for (and living with) inventor and computer science pioneer, Dr. Danny Hillis, for a summer internship at his company Applied Minds in 2003. Danny is a fascinating person and you may have seen a couple of his TED talks. Because of my time with him, I ended up spending a couple of days with Bill Joy (co-founder of Sun Microsystems and author of the vi text editor), having dinner with Jeff Bezos, dinner with Peter Gabriel, and watching Danny (and his fellow geniuses) solve really, really complex problems.

Applied Minds was a company out of the future. It’s been described as “Willy Wonka-esque” by Boing Boing. They used multi-camera, auto-switching, high-definition, cross-country videoconferencing before it was available on the internet. They had prototype parts for Danny’s 10,000-year clock all over the office. My desk sat between Alan Kay (inventor of the graphical user interface, object-oriented programming, and the laptop computer) and Story Musgrave (a space shuttle astronaut with six academic degrees who fixed the Hubble telescope with his own hands). Working at Applied Minds taught me three…


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A friend and I were comparing our YouTube metrics and I realized how difficult it is to find honest, humble articles about this stuff. Most of what I find is like, “In about two years, I grew to a million followers.” For most of us “normies” who don’t want to do YouTube for a living, these articles/videos can be discouraging. So, I thought I’d share a little about my relatively modest YouTube adventure.

Below are screenshots from YouTube Analytics as to how things look for my Make Weird Music channel right now (7.25K subscribers). …


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Team Topologies is an important book for software leaders at product companies with multiple interacting teams. First, it provides a visual language that articulates team structures and interaction models that are fundamental to software design. Second, it comes from a place of real experience coupled with tons of research (there’s a 15-page bibliography written in text that is very small). Third, it verbalizes all sorts of thoughts that software leaders know to be true, but can’t easily put into words. …


“Fear disguised as humility.” Self promotion is the worst! Isn’t there a BETTER WAY?
“Fear disguised as humility.” Self promotion is the worst! Isn’t there a BETTER WAY?

A few weeks ago, I received a welcome slap in the face from one of my mentors. He was asking me about my approach to promoting my new book, Clueless at The Work: Advice from a Corporate Tyrant. The conversation went something like this:

SV (mentor): How’s the book going? Has it been successful?

AG (me): Yeah, it’s probably sold 10 times more copies than I ever expected. It’s weird because it’s done well even though I feel really uncomfortable promoting it and sounding like I’m bragging.

SV: What are you talking about?

AG: Like, why should I go out telling the world about my book? It’s something I enjoyed making and the journey was the most enjoyable part.


After I released my first book, Clueless at The Work: Advice from a Corporate Tyrant, all sorts of people came out of the woodwork asking me the same questions:

  • Why did you write a book?
  • How long did it take you to write the book?
  • How did you get published?
  • Can you help me finish my book?
  • Should I self-publish?
  • Who did the artwork?

So, I thought I’d answer some of these questions for anyone who’s curious.

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When my company threw a surprise book signing for me.

Why did I write a book?

My friend Andy and I have had so many conversations over the years about management. In early May 2019, we put a Google Doc together threatening to write a book together. It started in secret so our wives wouldn’t get angry with us for taking on “yet another project.” I initially put a bunch of chapter titles in the doc. Andy added some of his own chapter ideas. More importantly, he added a lot of comments and questions for me. …


I lost a lot of weight. I lost over 50 pounds, alright? And I’m f@#$ing starving. […] They have all these diets. “You can eat all day on this diet! Plus you can snack!” NO YOU F@#$ING CAN’T! You can’t eat all day and snack also! You are going to continue to gain weight!! YOU CAN’T EAT ALL DAY LONG! — Kevin Meaney (start at 4:13 in the video)

Hearing Kevin Meaney scream on stage about weight loss had me in tears with laughter and left me with a sobering truth: You can’t eat all day and lose weight. I remember watching his YouTube video in January 2019. …

About

Anthony Garone

Author of “Clueless at The Work” and founder of Make Weird Music. I write about management, music, and technology. Mesa, AZ, USA.

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