A place to put random occurrences in my life...

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Is it better to take a big bite from a small pie, or a small bite from a bigger pie?

fig.-5

Every once in a while, I find myself contemplating the idea of focus versus diversification... the question can be applied to large companies, nascent startups or even personal aspects of life, including family and friends.

In the case of family and friends, the question may be one of whether it's better to spend a lot of time with a few very close friends, deepening the bonds and relationships, while likely just having cursory relationships with other friends, or is it better to spread the wealth and have moderately deep relationships with a lot more friends. In a large company, a decision may be made to double down on an existing business and grow it, or to take a chance and use that same investment (time, energy, PR, money) in the pursuit of four or five other businesses. These questions are answered every day, but there are pros and cons to both approaches.

For the entrepreneur, perhaps more so than in my other examples, there is also the notion of risk/reward that has to play a role. Working at a larger organization, and getting paid a nice salary isn't likely to result in a big payout - but there's something to be said for a measure of stability - and the aforementioned nice salary. Going off an a completely new venture is sure to be more exciting, and can also be more rewarding at the end (with a ton of hard work and a bit of luck), but the most likely result is more experience - and experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted.

A more intricate question for the entrepreneur is whether to pursue one new venture wholeheartedly or to divide his time up and pursue a few somewhat related but diversified opportunities at the same time. Pursuing one idea gives you clarity of focus and can make the pie bigger at the end - assuming you've chosen which venture to pursue properly. Pursuing multiple fronts is likely to be more exciting and adventurous as there is always going to be something new, but it removes the focus - and any one success is likely going to result in a smaller piece of the pie as there would likely be more people involved.

No answers yet, but will definitely continue to ponder this for a bit...



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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

We're having a girl!

A few weeks back, Thien and I went to the doctor for the usual tests at 18 weeks, and to find out if we were having a girl or a boy. Although the technician doing the ultrasound was very thorough, she couldn't really tell us based on the position of the baby and the fact that we were a bit early in the process. I think she said something like "I think I see a girl part" - but upon further questioning, she relented and said that she just wasn't sure.

Thien and I were ecstatic to "find out" that we were having a girl, but we found that we couldn't communicate that out to our friends and family - we ended up just saying that "we think" that we were having a girl. And this lack of confidence got depressing fast.

Thien set us up for a session at the Ultrasound Experience in San Marcos and we went last week. It truly was an experience - Thien was giddy the entire time seeing our baby in her womb, up on a 100" display. This was dubbed an "Early Peek" and not only were we able to see our baby, but we (or rather the technician) were able to confirm that we are in fact having a baby girl!

Presenting baby girl Benitt for the very first time, in full 4D glory:


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Stuck on week 5

About six months ago, I started using a Robert Ulrey's Podcast based on the Cool Running's Couch to 5K program. The podcast and program are based on a 9 week schedule of continually escalating runs, geared to get couch potatoes (like myself) able to fairly easily run a 5K distance - the equivalent of just over 3 miles.

In reality, I can run 3 miles and have often run in excess of 5 miles - but this effort is a struggle for me - and I took up this approach as a way to get more consistency for myself in an attempt to "easily" run a 3 mile distance without much effort. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, for a while I seem to have gotten stuck on the 5th week. Maybe it was the halfway point and the runs were starting to get more difficult or perhaps it was my move from LA to San Diego. Whatever the reason, I had definitely stopped making progress.

The good news is that I think I'm finally back on track. The big change for me was deciding to do outdoor runs by my house, instead of having to go to the gym. Apparently, the time and hassle involved in actually going to the gym was a major roadblock for me. For the past week or so, I've woken up, put on my shorts, and just started running. I'm now two thirds of the way done with week 7, and I'm confident that I'll get all the way through to week 9 in the next couple of weeks. And I get an added benefit of becoming more familiar with my new neighborhood.

The trick for me will be to maintain the runs once I'm done with this 9 week podcast. Any suggestions for other running podcasts that I can use for coaching and motivation once I'm done?

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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

24 Hour - As long as it's not 5:30

For only the second time since I moved to Carlsbad, I finally managed to make it to the gym. Unfortunately, in my haste to actually get to the gym, I didn't think through the logistics of going at 5:30pm. Long story short, if your gym is 24 Hour Fitness, don't go during prime time! Thien and I showed up and there were people already backed up, waiting for cardio equipment. There were a few weight benches available here and there, but overall it was a bit of a mess.

Thien and I managed to hang around for about 20 minutes or so until we decided to give it up. Since I was already in my gym clothes, I decided to jog home - with a hedge. I told Thien to go home, take a shower, and then come back and meet me - just in case I was piled up in a corner somewhere unable to make it all the way home.

This was my first outdoor jog in about six months. It started out rough - right out of the gate there was an uphill slope, which combined with a the still hot sun and my extreme lack of fitness definitely slowed me down. It wasn't until the 2.4 mile point that I finally felt some energy kick in - that's when I hit my stride. All in all, 4.7 miles in 42 minutes before Thien came to my rescue - and I was only 1.5 miles away from home - although most of that up a steep slope.

Anyway, lesson learned. If I want to go for a jog - I should just go outside. And if I want to go to the gym, I've gotta plan a bit better!
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