Business 101: Be More Systematic w/ Solutions

Today’s lesson is an extension of the previous topic.  You see, sometimes our multitude of options doesn’t involve various brands or businesses.  We could have an established business, brand, product, or service.  Or we may not have anything that is firmly developed but we know exactly what we want and our locked in.  So locked in, that when problems arise, we are willing to try every idea at once to succeed.  Every idea is considered valid and every person that wants to help is welcome.  But that “give it all you got” method of solving a problem in my opinion isn’t the best.  We must look at problems like a science experiment where you have a control group and the non-control group where several variables are adjusted to observe results.  If we change too much at once it makes it harder to know what the root cause is.  Additionally, we maybe miss how some of the changed variables intertwine and impact each other.  So, like an experiment I would recommend making a change, observing the result, debriefing, and deciding what the next course of action should be.  How fast or slow you work thru each solution is dependent on your timeline.  If you leave enough observing time between changes to fairly evaluate the results you can go as fast as you want.  Systematically working thru solving a problem is a tried-and-true method to bring life to potential solutions.

FIRE RANT: Rachel Nichols Diversity Rant Drama

Everyone has been talking about the leaked video of Rachel Nichols complaining about ESPN suggesting she give up her 2020 NBA Finals hosting gig to Maria Taylor, a black woman.  The rant is really an audio of conversation Rachel was having with a colleague while accidentally leaving the recording button on.  A lot of the things Rachel said were actually true.  ESPN doesn’t have the best diversity record as they’ve had several high-profile minorities like Jemele Hill, Michael Smith, Cari Champion, and I’m sure there are more that have left the company under less than great circumstances the past several years.  It’s also understandable that a person wouldn’t want to lose their job opportunity for a lesser role to anyone without factoring race into the equation.  As my Economics of Discrimination class taught me, people in general are naturally jealous.  Most people think every opportunity is owed to them and when they don’t get it or get it taken away, they look for reasons beyond themselves for why the undesired result happened.  Sometimes the quickest excuse outside yourself is gender, race, age, and or sexual orientation.  I think people will rarely admit someone was simply better than them and if they do that won’t be the first conclusion they come to.  Basically, what I’m saying is everyone is up in arms about someone being mad that their boss is trying to take their preferred job away and give it to someone else.  Hourly employees in unions get mad when someone does their job.  People get made when jobs get outsourced overseas.  Aaron Rodgers of Green Bay Packers has been angry for two years about possibly losing his job eventually to 2nd year quarterback Jordan Love that was drafted in 2020. Why are we slamming Rachel for not wanting to happily give up her sports reporting gig?  How many of us have said worse than what Rachel Nichols has said behind closed doors to family, friends, and even co-workers?  I know I have.  If Maria weren’t black and we were talking about a white woman would this be news?  If it were black male or white man, we probably still here about it as click bait.  Again, I’m sure ESPN has diversity opportunities just like any fortune 500 company, mom and pop shop, sports team, government, police department, and local bodega.  Why are we focused on this when we got sketchily inspected buildings collapsing on folks, hurricanes, disengaged government leaders, and global pandemic is beyond me.

If I Ruled the World – Low Tolerance Drinking and Driving Policy: Breathalyzers for All Vehicles

When opportunity that never seems to be addressed in society is the punishment and ramifications for driving while drunk.  There are too many stories of people drinking while driving, murdering others, and forever impacting innocent lives.  Additionally, we all know people personally that have driven drunk in high school, college, and as adults and were blessed to have nothing happen to them or anyone else.  Heck, we probably have even done it ourselves.  The law doesn’t seem to deter people enough from this dangerous behavior.  Its rare that person can get pulled over for drunk driving and lose their license forever even when they have killed someone.  Therefore, we continue to leave the results of drinking and driving up to roll of the dice.  If I ruled the world, I would enforce a new low tolerance policy for drinking and driving.  If someone were caught drinking and driving, they would lose their license for 3 years.  If they were caught a 2nd time, they would be imprisoned for 10 years minimum.  If they were caught a 3rd time, they would get imprisoned 25 years minimum.  If any of the offenses injured another party, they would automatically get at least the 10 years minimum.  If anyone of their offenses kills anyone, they would automatically get 25 years minimum in prison.  I feel I could implement something like this because I would mandate that all vehicles have breathalyzers installed in them.  This would require someone to have their alcohol level within the legal limit to start the car.  Additionally, anytime someone would stop the car for more than let’s 15 seconds they would have to breathe into the breathalyzer again to continue driving.  Therefore, someone would have to find some elaborate way to game the system to drive while drunk.  If they managed to be guilty of this action with this technology implemented on all vehicles the person deserves the harsher punishment.

Business 101: Reset, Focus

Sometimes as business minded people we get caught up in trying to do too much.  There was a time I was so caught up in creating brands that I was constantly hiring someone to design the next logo and color scheme.  Furthermore, I used those menial tasks to keep me from focusing on progress that really mattered.  I often found that I sometimes had to fall back and decide what brands or initiatives were going to be the priority for that season.  Time is not infinite so we have to find ways to squeeze what we can out of it.  If you have 5 different business ideas, you can’t make them all excel equally at once.  I recommend identifying what factors are most critical for you at that time.  For example, are you trying to help people, make money, build a grass roots brand, or network now?  If helping people is most critical then pushing your business that’s tied to a product line isn’t your top priority.  If generating income to provide for yourself and others is more pressing than upkeeping and pouring marketing into a religious website that doesn’t provide product or service is placed on back burner.  Building a brand from grass roots probably means you are open to hiring someone to assist in managing social media and website content.  Or if you want to network, then you are likely dedicating several hours a week to attending meetups and trying new things.  In short, when you strip down your layers of priorities and create hierarchy on what you want or need you reset back to the basics.  A more singular focus helps you stay on task and align your energy and actions with your priorities.

FIRE RANT: The Complicated Case of Sha’ Carri Richardson

So, I believe that even if you aren’t a big sports fan that you have probably heard of budding Olympian sprinter, Sha’Carri Richardson.  You know, the 21-year-old that just qualified for women’s 100M for the Tokyo Olympics a few weeks back.  Well, she tested positive for marijuana and has now been suspended for a month, so she has been removed from competing in at least 1 event later this month.  Unlike most athletes, Sha’Carri has quickly owned up to the decision to smoke the weed and said that she used the drug to help her cope with getting over the death of her mother.  So naturally, there are folks outraged that something like weed that is now legalized like in many places across the USA is something that’s holding an athlete back from competing.  Though, I must add that the NFL has a similar policy that has derailed and suspended players like wide receiver, Josh Gordon, and defensive end, Randy Gregory, multiple times.  Therefore, the policy isn’t a secret and I’m sure there’s probably other sports at professional, collegiate, and lower that have rules in place against using drugs.  My take is that Richardson chose to violate the policy and knew the consequences.  Therefore, I’m not among the folks complaining that “the man” is trying to hold her back.  Regardless of her reason for the actions, she admitted she was guilty.  At our jobs and or society if we broke a rule, we likely would be held accountable if we were caught.  Sports shouldn’t be treated any different, its privilege to play a game not some God-given right.  In the end, Richardson may still get to compete in the Tokyo Olympics in another event and maybe even still medal unless she violates policy again.  So maybe both sides of the argument still get their desired result.

If I Ruled the World – Parity with Criminal Sentencing – Part II: Federal Regulation

Part one of this handled parity in sentencing from a state standpoint.  We will assume that we are now after the initial 3-year directive and all states have complied mainly because they don’t want to lose federal funding.  However, I believe this initiative can be refined further.  The federal government would review the new state sentencing guidelines and have 2 years to come up with a universal maximum for each criminal offense that each state must not exceed.  Once this is established the states would have 2 years to update sentencing as needed to stay within the parameters.  Again, any state that doesn’t abide by this will lose some federal funding.  Additionally, states that are repeat offenders would have their percentage penalty doubled with the occurrences tally not resetting for 10 years.  So, for example, if in 2027 a state didn’t comply and fell sure 3%, in 2028 complied, and in 2029 fell short 3% again they would be penalized a total of 6% (3% x 2) in federal funding.  This is to deter states from thinking they can avoid the double luxury penalty by complying every other year.

TONE SETTING SUNDAY – Week of 7/12/21

I challenge you all to make at least 4 non-routine goals for the upcoming week and reference them daily.  Use them to guide your actions when you have free time.  These are my goals for the week of 7/12/21.⁠

There will be 4 goals this week.  I will decide on the mobile app upgrades that will happen on the Fantasy Block App.  Daily I will complete my core routine.  Furthermore, I will give God 7 minutes of undivided attention each day.  Lastly, I will write and record God and You Podcast Episode #20.

Bizzy Jimme

FIRE RANT: Nightmare NBA Finals Matchup?

I must admit that I’m relieved to see two unique teams compete in the NBA Finals for the 2020-2021 Championship.  However, a lot of folks have be groaning the whole playoffs as front running teams that have more universal appeal like the Lakers, Knicks, Heat, etc. have been getting eliminated.  I’m losing zero sleep over Lebron and Lakers not being in NBA Finals.  I believe that even without Anthony Davis the Lakers still had better roster than the Phoenix Suns and made excuses for not defeating them with an injured Chris Paul.  I’m also delighted to see that the New Jersey Nets weren’t able to buy a championship with their 3 headed monster of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden.  The Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks are both really good teams and earned the opportunity.  There shouldn’t be an asterisk next to the championship.  Just like people didn’t feel compelled to put an asterisk next to the Lakers’ bubble championship last season.  If Suns win, I believe it would be the first championship for the team and for “Point God”, Chris Paul.  If Bucks win if would be a great story as well of smaller market superstar like Giannis Antetokounmpo staying with the team he was drafted by and leading them to championship without leaving elsewhere to create a super team.  That’s something folks like Lebron James and Kevin Durant can’t claim.  So again, zero problem with Suns vs Bucks for NBA championship this year and I will be viewing.

If I Ruled the World – Parity with Criminal Sentencing – Part I: State Regulation

There’s a lot of talk about how the legalization of marijuana has changed the world.  Something that was once viewed as negative has now become legal in a lot of areas.  People have even built businesses and livelihoods off something that others are in prison for.  I’ve never used marijuana in my life or any drug for that matter, but I don’t think that its right for Alvin to be serving prison time for a quantity of marijuana that Michael is selling everyday legally in his cannabis shop.  It doesn’t make sense nor is it fair.  Additionally, this article isn’t just about marijuana sentencing let’s look at sentencing for everything across the board.  Whether someone is in jail for drugs, theft, murder, white collar crimes, and anything else you can think of, perpetrators of all ethnicities and ages should have a sentence within 10% of each other.  I know that something like that probably can’t be done overnight.  So, I would give each state 3 years to have parity in the sentencing within their state regardless of city, county, race, age, and gender.  States that don’t have 100% adherence to this will lose federal funding for every percent they are below 100.  Additionally, the state must have 100% of previous cases updated with new sentencing standard within that same 3 years.  The standards for these cases would be based on either the most lenient sentencing or an average of the most lenient versus most extreme sentencing depending on the offense.  For example, maybe theft would be based on lenient judgements while murder would be middle point average.  Once a baseline is decided by state government its locked in for at least 5 years.  Lastly, anyone that would now no longer be in violation of something that is now legal would be released from prison immediately within that time frame.  So, in summary if I ruled the world, I would create parity in criminal sentencing regardless of city, county, race, age, and gender.  I would allow each state to take on the initiative within their state.  They would have 3 years to have all sentencing within 10% of each other for any punishment they give out.  Any people that should be free based on a crime they committed that is now legal would be released within that 3-years.  Any state that doesn’t comply would lose funding.  They really isn’t any excuse on why sentencing is different between people of various races, ages, genders, or cities.  We’re all human beings and we need to start treating everyone as such.

Business 101: Don’t Be Afraid to Pull the Plug

Today’s tip kind of piggy backs off the previous one.  If we know when we expected results than it gives us a clearer view on when it’s time to move on from lack of progress.  We shouldn’t continue investing labor, time, and monetary resources into a plan that isn’t working.  Even if the folks we are working with are good people and trying hard results are results!  A manager at work once told me that you can’t confuse progress with success.  Just because you are slowly improving with your initiative doesn’t mean it’s acceptable to continue to underperform.  The sooner that we can cut our losses and scrape a non-value-added course action, we are able to regroup and reload the next strategy.  Hopefully, we can take what we learned and be better for it.