Carl Setzer My mission in life | Make cool dreams reality | Embrace the awesome Sat, 16 Sep 2017 05:34:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Carl Setzer 32 32 116922051 Within Fears Sat, 16 Sep 2017 05:34:43 +0000 This night’s emotion

As I seek tranquility

Buried within fears

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Walking Through A Suburban Evening Fri, 15 Sep 2017 04:44:22 +0000 20170914_2019081611483105

I walked under street lights
The cooler air brings darkness earlier
Looking up, between
Orangey/Yellow globes
Through the furry firs
Upwards amidst these
Bright blue and white ghosts
Of my childhood
Where I would
Drift through the cosmos
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Feeling Hopeful Fri, 15 Sep 2017 00:56:04 +0000 Read More ...]]> My son just introduced me to this video by the British group “Bars and Melody“: Hopeful. The guys sing/rap quite well, but I find the anti-bullying message of this song powerful. It looks like this is a key part of their identity, which I fully support.

Now, it’s important to note, this video is from 2014. They have a pretty cool story of rising up via Britain’s Got Talent, getting a recording contract, and making a way via the arts through one of the new arts delivery channels.

Anyway, enjoy the video and let me know what you think in the comments.

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The Lies of Impostor Syndrome Thu, 14 Sep 2017 14:57:05 +0000 Read More ...]]> I love this one by Jorge Cham of PhD comics.

Reminds me of all the times that I’ve had anxiety attacks when asked to push outside of my boundaries. So, a few things to remember:

  • Prof. Jones has plenty invested in the success of his students/team. And a good leader will see things in you that you can’t see. And such a leader won’t let you sit mired in fear and insecurity, but push you past your self-imposed boundaries.
  • Mentors like the above are one of the most crucial elements to pushing past mediocrity into greatness.
  • Impostor Syndrome = LIES!!!

Alrighty, back to your regularly scheduled Thursday.

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Oh, YouTube Red, so close, yet so far Thu, 14 Sep 2017 05:08:28 +0000 Read More ...]]> I’ve been hoping for YouTube to make upgrading to Red family plans easier for a few months. Imagine my delight to read this, then:


So I scurried over and clicked the “Upgrade Now” button, and…well…nope:

I thought myself so clever, setting up my family on a Google Apps “Standard Edition” (ancient predecessor for G Suite) back in the stone age (they stopped supporting it in 2012). It’s been nice having the family email accounts all together and under my administration (“Dad…I forgot my password…again…”). So, no Red Family plan for us…for now, at least. I suppose I can use an independent gmail account to do this. I wonder if I can share with a G Suite account from a personal account? Hmmm…

Anyway, I’m annoyed. Not angry, not going to abandon the Googleverse just yet. But, well, “harumph”!



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The Cure’s “A Forest” and the Evolution of a Band Sat, 09 Sep 2017 20:25:06 +0000 Read More ...]]> I’ve heard this song countless times. Today, Youtube popped this up in the recommended list and I happily listened. Seeing other versions in the sidebar from 1979, 1981, and 1992 made me wonder about how different each one sounded. I enjoyed witnessing the evolution of Robert Smith’s personal style as well.

Below is the 1979 version, which has a more traditional punk vibe (it says something that I can say “traditional” and “punk” without any sense of irony).

This one is from 1981. Not a huge transition, but I notice a less punk style and something that becomes much more recognized as The Cure.


By 1992, we have a clearly distinctive style that is The Cure, and not confusable with anyone else.


Thanks for giving a few minutes of your journey through the vast wasteland that is the internet. Let me know what you think in the comments, and give me a share, if you’re so led.

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Summer’s Moving To Fall Tue, 29 Aug 2017 13:50:56 +0000

Summer’s moving to fall
Teachers brewing coffee
Preparing classrooms

My wife awake before me, coffee ground, french press timed. Classroom preparations, lesson planning and coordination, so much effort this last week before school starts back up. 

Forget the thermometer, this shows the season’s change. 

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An Element Of Efficiency: Slowing Down To Speed Up Mon, 28 Aug 2017 17:21:17 +0000 Read More ...]]> Eienstein Quote.jpg

With all the work I’ve done studying organization and productivity systems, a common element: taking time to thoughtfully consider actions. In today’s day-and-age, it’s easy to get caught up in stimulus:response, on reactive reactions. Or, as the adage goes, “running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off”.

Taking time to:

  • Determine the scope of the problem
  • It’s nature
  • What really is the causality
  • Reviewing our priorities

These are all critical to developing the correct solution for a particular challenge. There are always multiple responses and actions one can take. Knowing which one corrects the situation without creating a worse one requires considering all these elements.

It’s so easy, especially in today’s hyper-sped world, to lose sight of the time necessary. The urge to “do something NOW” is so powerful, and it often creates more damage than solution.

Our progress moves faster when we aren’t spending time repairing damage our inattention to details creates.

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Seth Godin’s: The Toxic Antidote To Goodwill Mon, 28 Aug 2017 05:55:24 +0000 Read More ...]]> I’ve long admired Seth Godin’s writings and blog posts. Today’s post got me thinking, since it covers situations I’ve needed to respond to, and on many different sides.

The toxic antidote to goodwill

Seth points out:

“Anyone who has done the math will tell you that word of mouth is the most efficient way to gain trust, spread the word and grow.

And yet…

It only takes a moment to destroy. Only a few sentences, a heartless broken promise, a lack of empathy, and it’s gone. Not only that, but the lost connection can easily lead to lawsuits.”

I’ve had team members act this way, seen my leaders act this way, and, most importantly, received this attitude many times: “It’s not my fault. I did a perfect job. Tough luck.”

It destroys connection. Word of mouth now will work against you. In today’s highly connected world, these sorts of slip-ups can go viral and bring you a great deal of negative attention. And, sorry, I don’t buy the “any attention is good attention”.

When I was at Starbucks, I was part of the Corporate Social Responsibility team. Environmental issues, business practices, and corporate charitable giving were key components of our work (though that’s not all inclusive). When asked once, what value we brought to the company, my reply was “being allowed to stay in business”. More and more people are expecting companies to live ethically (within a range of definitions of “ethical”, of course). Considering such things as communities protesting the building of Wal-Marts, it’s clear, to me, that companies are going to face expectations of behavior that they ignore at their existential peril. And expecting to wait 5 years before acting is probably the most fatal of all thoughts.

Over the years, I’ve had Milton Friedman’s statement “a business’ responsibility is to maximize shareholder value” presented to me many, many times. Though I my eyes roll at that (I’m firmly buy into the Triple Bottom Line engagement model),  I find the response of “what time period are we talking about?” to be the best. “Maximized shareholder value” for today? This minute only? Should the future ability to operate be sacrificed for maximized profits for the next earnings report? How many times has Wall Street rewarded such short-term thinking? Massive layoffs create a super strong quarter? Exciting! Except now the company can’t scale, or, sometimes, can’t even meet their current business flow. Considering the long-term detriment for such short-term decisions needs to be rewarded.

One additional thought with all this: the power of the individual. Sure, I can post a nasty critique of <insert evil company> on <Twitter/Facebook/Instagram> and get thousands/millions of views, have the “contact us” section of your website crash, and your phones ringing incessantly for days. But there’s the other side of this. The power of the empowered employee who chooses to engage, and solve problems. Sadly, it won’t be as powerful. It would be great to see “Oh My God, <company x>, your <employee name here> did <awesome thing> and our lives are so much better” end up with 1.5 million likes and RTs. But that won’t happen without a significant cultural shift. But that pushes you in the right direction. And if you don’t have a huge global presence, that’s the gold. Might actually be the only gold. Which, once tarnished, is so terribly hard to get back. You might not be able to make that investment in time/money/energy to repair before your company fails.


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Food for Thought: Anil Dash’s “The Year I Didn’t Retweet Men” Wed, 23 Aug 2017 18:34:58 +0000 Read More ...]]> I’d forgotten about Anil’s post to Medium a “little ways back”, so I was able to look with fresh eyes.

“The Year I Didn’t Retweet Men”

I really appreciate his efforts to amplify responsibly. And have tried, over the years, to take the same idea to heart. I may not have Anil’s reach, but I have a significant online following. Significant enough that I feel a certain responsibility to use my platform justly.

I like how his efforts changed:

  1. the nature of his online interactions
  2. the flavor of his feed
  3. and how it changed his perceptions about the world
  4. made his experience on Twitter happier

Though not a fan of the whole “resolution” thing, and since it’s August, seems kinda silly anyway, I like the idea of making purposeful decisions.

I intend to be much more thoughtful about what I share. I have tried to avoid the meme-du-jour, and things everyone else is doing. I also have avoided any hate-retweeting. Our world has enough rage, including the things that drive me towards rage. I have been trying to focus on the positive, yet avoiding a Pollyannaish approach. Positive and effective efforts, change, thoughts: that’s what I try to amplify.

So, doubling down on this. Thanks, Anil, for the reminder and motivation.

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