Big Bear with Laurel and Scott and Kristin

The Programming CEO

A CEO who knows how to program has superpowers over those CEO’s who don’t. The fundamental job of every CEO of a company with over a couple of dozen employees is to structure the company so that it runs efficiently and well. A lot of this is building systems and processes so that your employees know what to do and your customers know what to expect and for you to make sure that quality stays high. A CEO who can program can build customized tools for his or her own business that can help it leapfrog the competition. That is what I am trying to do with Coalition.

“Carrion Comfort” Review

I just finished reading “Carrion Comfort” by Dan Simmons today. I really enjoyed it! This was a great recommendation from my rock climbing friend Max. It’s a fascinating horror story built around essentially a cabal of mind control vampires. The concept sounds cheesy, but the execution was really good. The big thing Mr. Simmons did in this book was to really bring the victims to life. In most movies or books, the victims are usually one dimensional. Mr. Simmons really made you care and think about each person that was harmed by the antagonists of the story.

Powerful New SEO Tool

I have built an incredibly powerful new SEO tool that brings high rankings quickly. I am beginning rolling it out to my customers. I am happy to talk to anyone interested in using it, but each person must sign my strict NDA.

Thanksgiving with Laurels Family 2016

Thanksgiving 2016

Ill play your game…

I am thankful for my awesome wife Laurel, Jordan working with me, Justin and Josh being great brothers, Bestemor and Grandpa having raised me right and still having good health, the rest of my family, my successful business -Coalition Technologies, great friends, Rocket League, programming, books, fun TV shows like Westworld, rock climbing, trips, my good health, and all of the other things in my wonderful life.

Make Managers, Directors & Shareholders Liable

For many years, cigarette companies fraudulently hid evidence that smoking causes a myriad of health issues. Cigarette company managers directly hid the evidence their research teams found, cigarette company boards of directors knew and hid the same information. Enormous human suffering and pain has been knowingly caused by these people. Why did they do it? The managers and directors received huge salaries and bonuses for many years and retired fat and happy.

Is this an isolated incident?

No. The exact same pattern has played out over and over again. Before the 2007 financial crisis, real estate agents, mortgage managers, and bank directors knowingly got people into homes they could not afford then took enormous multi-million dollar bonuses each year.  When the house of cards collapsed, these people kept their ill-gotten gains.

The same thing continues to happen all the time in many businesses ranging from Wells Fargo’s fake accounts, Exxon’s half century of hiding climate change information, Comcast & TWC’s payments to landlords and cities for exclusive monopolies, Volkswagen’s falsifying of environmental data from their diesel cars, and many other areas.

This is a systemic problem that needs a systemic solution.

The reason that these issues have been happening and will continue is that corporate managers, boards of directors, and shareholders can collect enormous financial wins while taking risks with other peoples lives that they will not be held accountable for.

How do we stop systemic abuses like those perpetrated by cigarette company managers, bankers scamming the system for big bonuses, and oil companies hiding climate change research?

Make managers, directors, and shareholders PERSONALLY liable for their actions when in their positions for twenty years. If they commit unethical or illegal acts today, then when they are discovered in ten years we can sue them and take their salary and bonuses back that they had illegitimately earned. Do not allow companies to buy insurance companies to cover this risk. If people are afraid personally, they will not make the business decisions that put someone else’s life below their own personal gains.

Some people have argued that shareholders should not be liable for decisions of boards of directors or managers they can’t directly control. My suggestion is that they can and should be liable so that they seize this control and enforce strict standards on their boards of director and managers.

Others have argued that managers and employees should not be responsible for decisions made higher up. The same argument was made at the Nuremberg trials that the concentration camp guards were just following orders or didn’t really know what was going on. Those people put their own financial / career well being over the very lives of others. If you are asked to do something unethical or if your company is doing something harmful to the world, then you should be obligated to quit and find a better place to work. You should not be able to keep financial gains that you obtained at the expense of other people.

To summarize, make these changes to our law and you will see a lot of the extremely harmful abuses by businesses disappear overnight:

  1. Make company managers, boards of directors, and shareholders directly and personally liable for unethical decisions and actions of their company.
  2. Do not allow companies to buy insurance policies that protect individual managers or directors or shareholders from the effects of unethical behavior.

Tribe

I would really like to build a community of people who get along well and live a bit more like our tribal ancestors.

Our modern society glorifies individualism and encourages isolation from others. Laurel and I’s closest family member is a 45 minute drive away and most are hours away. Our closest friend is 15 minutes away and most are much further.

Social isolation is a major cause of depression for many people. Humans are not meant to live alone without company… we need those we love around us every day.

I have fixed this issue for myself by building a routine where I call a family member or friend every single day. I typically do it during my morning and evening ten minute commutes to work. I think a lot of other people haven’t done something like this though and live in loneliness and isolation and depression.

For awhile now I have been talking to people about the possibility of a “commune” – probably not the right word given the connotations associated with it from the FCLDS, hippies, and other nuts. I think I will call it “tribe”… this is a more attractive term.

The basics of my idea is that I would like to organize a group of family and friends to live within walking distance of one another… this could be in the same apartment building in a city, or in a suburban neighborhood, or something like that.

My brother’s wife’s family actually already do this. They have several adult daughters and their parents each with their own house in the same neighborhood. This works really well for them as they have built in babysitting they can trust and friends and help when they need it.

The biggest challenge I have with this in Los Angeles is the expense of real estate. Another major issue is that people have jobs in different areas of the city and this could create long commutes for some people. A few of my friends are business owners and could possibly do it with me, but they have already purchased homes thus committing themselves to the locations they are now.

I have thought of moving back to Washington to do this there. I could live fairly close to two of my brothers and also my grandparents. The challenge there is that it would be more difficult to run Coalition. I would also need to live in the very uninteresting town of Puyallup rather than a metropolitan city like Seattle.

I do think it will be important to join or build a tribe though soon. I just need to find ways to make it work.

Operations Management

I have spent most of the last four years working in Operations Management for Coalition. Basically, I am trying to make sure that all of the promises we make to our clients are fulfilled. The single biggest area for me for a long time was recruiting. Recruiting continues to be a major time commitment for me most workdays. I also am building tools to help support our teams workflows and make sure that the right items get worked on for each client. For my business, having excellent team members who are well trained and understand what priorities need to be worked on is pretty much the whole of what I am responsible to deliver.

Laurel is a Unicorn!