Tag Archives: blog

One Year Old

I can’t believe it.  Improve With Me celebrated its first birthday on 12/06/08.  I have learned a lot while blogging and appreciate all of my readers and those who have linked to my site from theirs.  I thank every one of you who stop by to check out my little blog.

This year has been fun since I have been learning more about lean and strengthening my project management skills.  I always approach learning as though I would need to teach someone what I am being taught.  Sharing my learnings with all of you has been a joy.

Here are my top three viewed posts:

Here is my least viewed post:

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100 Posts!

Wow – I can’t believe this blog has 100 posts!  It has taken me about 7 months to hit this landmark but I have loved it.

I began this blog while interviewing for my Lean Data Consultant position and it has been fun capturing my thoughts and ideas during my training.  It is neat that I hit 100 posts at the same time as I begin in a value stream (realignment is later this month).  I hope to bring back my project management thoughts and how they relate to Lean projects during this next phase of my life.

I want to thank all of my readers from the bottom of my heart.  Just seeing that people are reading this keeps me going.  I also want to thank all of the blogs that have added my site as a link on theirs. 

If you are considering a blog for yourself, I highly encourage it.  It is a lot of fun and gives you an opportunity to reflect.  Everybody has a unique perspective and I would love to read your site!

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Filed under Improve With Lean, Project Management

Why You Should Use Google Reader

Ever have somebody share WAYYY too much information (TMI) with you?  The internet is getting to the point of TMI also.

There are a lot of authors and sites I enjoy reading regularly.  Bloggers in my field (Project Mgt and Lean) provide a great community and help with my professional development.  There are writers who inspire me to post an article to add my perspective on a topic.  The trouble is – who has time to visit sites frequently anymore? 

Google Reader has helped me increase my productivity and unleashed my ability to keep up on many sites.  I am able to focus on my projects and not get sidetracked looking for updates or trying to remember that one site I really liked a couple months ago but can’t find it in my favorites.

I popped all of my favorite RSS feeds into “Add subscription” and now I can see site updates quickly.  I can read about 45 sites in about 10-15 minutes a day.  I use three folders to separate work-related sites, personal interest pages, and sites that I only read when time permits (low, low priority).  I set my preferences to open on my work-related sites folder.

The following keyboard shortcuts quickly separate the articles I want to read from the ones I wish to skip (there are more but this is what I use):

  • j/k: next/previous item – Marks the post as read once I am done with it and goes to the next article
  • s: star item – Highlights a post I want to read again or more thoroughly
  • v: view original – Quickly opens up the native blog in a new window
  • <Shift> + s: share item – I do this to capture posts I think my readers will find interesting.  This is found at My Shared RSS under Discovered Posts
  • <Shift> + a: mark all as read – I use this primarily for my low, low priority folder because I know I won’t worry if I missed anything

If you run a site, you should use the reader to your advantage.  I think more and more people will be using this (or something similar).  If your site doesn’t have an RSS feed, the chances of people keeping up with you may dwindle.  You can easily add a button to your posts so visitors can subscribe to your content.  I use this whenever I find an interesting site.

I was finally inspired to use the reader after reading Tim Ferriss’ post 12 Filtering Tips for Better Information in Half the Time: RSS, Del.icio.us and StumbleUpon.  There is more advice in the article.

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Filed under Communication, Improve With Lean, Learn Leadership, Personal Development, Productivity, Project Management