Archive for April, 2011

There was considerable amount of discussion last week about Apple iPhone and Google Androids tracking the whereabouts of users. It made me think about my use of Foursquare and Facebook Places and how I post my whereabouts for all to see! I totally agree with what Ken Colburn said on My Fox Phoenix  regarding the situation. He said the line of privacy is between “when we decide to put the information out there and when someone else decides to gather the information on our behalf.”

Computer Explorers corporate office is northwest of Houston. Just 30 minutes from downtown. First time visitors are always surprised by our location and the beautiful 100 acre setting at Northwest Forest Conference Center. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am that I don’t have to drive through the downtown traffic. One of the first things I do when I arrive at work is checkin on Foursquare. I love to compete for the title of Mayor with Lorri Wyndham, Charmayne Redd and Cheryl Phillip!

Here is a quick video of my drive down Kwik Kopy Lane. Forgive the sound of the wind and the bouncing of the camera when I drive over the speed bumps in my convertible!

I have written about our culture of fun and how much I respect and enjoy working with the COMPUTER EXPLORERS corporate team. I have not described our offices and the close proximity we are to each other. Here is a quick tour of our offices.

Please come visit us at 12715 Telge Road, Cypress, TX 77355. I would love to give you a complete tour of the facility. If you checkin on Foursquare there is a free gift waiting for you!.

Bud Hadfield

On Monday April 11th Bud Hadfield, a franchising legend died at the age of 87. A friend, a mentor and a leader.

I bet you didn’t know that in 1993, the Texas Senate declared Bud Hadfield Day due to his contributions to Texas citizens and involvement with civic groups and schools.

Maybe you didn’t know that in 2003 Bud was inducted into the Entrepreneur Hall of Fame along with Bill Gates, Fred DeLuca and Mary Kay Ash.

You might not have been aware that Bud often met politicians and celebrities. As you walk toward his office, the hallways are filled with framed photographs of Bud with Ronald Regan, George W. Bush, Muhammad Ali, Chuck Norris, and Alan Sheppard to name a few. On my first visit with Bud I remember feeling very intimidated by the photographs. That anxiety didn’t last long. As soon as I sat down in front of Bud he immediately put me at ease with his uncanny ability to make me feel very important. In fact, Bud made everyone feel important.

Cyndee Perkins posted “The Road Not Taken Would Not Have Taken Us Here.” At the end she asks “What if Bud had not wanted to invest in the future? Invest in children? Invest in technology? We in COMPUTER EXPLORERS are grateful that the man who didn’t want to use a computer supported and nurtured us, and took us where we are today!”

Bud gave me an opportunity to grow as an individual and a leader, but he made me work for it. We didn’t always get along but those are the times I learned the most. He challenged me and enjoyed sparring–sometimes with the intention from the very beginning to approve my request! If we couldn’t come to an agreement, we would decide to continue the conversation another day and moved on to discussing our families.

A friend, David Handler, collected words of wisdom from Bud. His list is called “Franchising and other lessons from Bud.” There are a total of 106! Many I will always remember and some I have intentionally forgotten.

Here are my favorite top 15:

  1. When you have good people, don’t stand in front of them. Stand behind them.
  2. If you let it go, it will run away from you.
  3. Nothing is routine. We have an ongoing responsibility.
  4. Focus on the future. Plan ahead, not back.
  5. Do for them what they won’t do or can’t do for themselves.
  6. We’ve got to do the impossible now and then.
  7. It’s not the end result that matters. It’s what you did to help them get there.
  8. Never go into business that’s easy to go into.
  9. The most important call we get is from an owner with a problem. The second most important is a potential owner.
  10. When the mouse plays with the elephant, the mouse gets bigger.
  11. Sometimes we have to realize competitors are people too.
  12. Be an asset to their lives, not another problem.
  13. Don’t get your exercise from jumping to conclusions.
  14. Never create an expectation that can’t be met.
  15. There are some people in life you don’t want to like you.

Bud was someone everyone liked and whom you wanted to like you!

He will be missed but his lessons will live on.

Who Lives In Your Batcave?

Actual Batcave

We have a saying  that our IT  team hides in the batcave. They work behind a secure door that very few know the combination to open. In order to be heard, you must knock loudly over the hum of the servers. They rarely come out. Why bother since most of their work can be taken care of sitting in front of their computers. When they do emerge from the batcave they are seen texting as they quickly rush to a technology crisis.

You would think that as President & CEO of a technology education franchise I would have very few technology challenges. You would think. When technology does challenge me I view it as a crisis. I’ve always said my laptop is my left hand and my smartphone is my right. Without one of them I simply can’t function. Sad but so very true.

I didn’t have an epic technology crisis this week but there were challenges. I was able to work around each challenge.  The IT batcave dwellers came to my rescue before my challenges turned into a crisis.

I know who lives in our batcave. Cassidy, Norm and Josh work extremely hard to keep our technology functioning. They are IT professionals, dedicated, hard working and have a wonderful sense of humor.

Cassidy, Norm and Josh

Who lives in your batcave and have you thanked them lately?