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9 Killer Rules of Entrepreneurship

The word entrepreneurship gained enough importance after the late 20th century, the laptop in front of, the smartphone in your pocket and perhaps the spectacles which you are wearing now are none but the result of entrepreneurship.
Business profits and economy booms when entrepreneurs in any society increases in numbers. The list of Forbes and Fortune 500 were once also named as start-ups. Guys, now after viewing such examples, you might be thinking about business and entrepreneurship, what is the main difference? Alright, there is a very thin line that fabricates both concepts from each other. Entrepreneurship does not essentially requires financial assistance, rather it’s basically founded on the basis of one idea that then sells on the basis of its unique selling proposition. Although idea uniqueness is important but there are some other features too that shape any entrepreneur venture. Some of these are discussed below;

Rule#1 Value your Time

Idea comes very often, but success is when you fully execute it quickly. Execution is although time consuming but here, strategic planning plays an important role in the success of your venture. Todays top CEO’s like Richard Branson, a great motivational speaker mentions his success of running Virgin successfully to Time management, he often says “Time is latent meaning of Dollars”.

Rule#2 Fail Once, Twice and Often

Well, you might be surprised as why I am encouraging you to fail big times? Right, folks what if I say failure doesn’t matter, fear from failure is what we call the root cause for any absolute Failure. Every idea sounds absurd initially, but you are the one who can make sour grapes into juicy Mangoes. Microsoft, Dell, HP, 3M and Virgin, all were once an idea, people like you with greater self-confidence and self-control make their dream into such luscious reality.

Rule#3 Invest in “You”

Remember, a great CEO must be a successful leader too. One cannot go without each, both concepts go side by side. Therefore, if you are aiming to start any venture, you must first explore “You”. Skills like leadership, critical thinking and problem management are the first and most important skill set an entrepreneur must pursue his venture with. Taking coaching’s, guidance and online tutoring helps you polishing your strengths better which can further then be translated into better revenues and satisfied customers.

Rule#4 Outsource weaknesses

In smarter world, outsourcing is one way to get things done in minimum time and with maximum efficiency. So, if you are lacking any skills and your customer is a keen needy one, Outsource your skills.

Rule#5 Don’t Afraid to ask for help

It’s normal if you stuck somewhere, Internet is one blessing that has made our life easier. Take help from business gurus, join specific business forums and get free help from professionals.

Rule#6 Speak Up to the World

The world don’t know specifically what are you doing. In order to get recognized, you have to speak up and show your skills to the audience. Making online presence is one easy tip to come into limelight. A website is what your identity in the online world, so always make one and promote it through social media.

Rule#7 Take Financial Assistance in the end

As mentioned earlier, don’t worry about money because entrepreneurship is all about efficiency, taking minimum resources into account to get maximum output. The 7thrule of entrepreneurship is, seek financial assistance in last and focus on more channels which are less expensive and can generate greater revenues.

Rule#8 Market only your strengths

Its relatively smart point for an entrepreneur to be proud of his strengths only. In the world of tough competition, focus more on niches because it doesn’t matter how much services can you provide, but in how many you excel is the real game of marketing.

Rule#9 treat your competitors as your role models.

This point is the most important one. Since, it’s the last rule, the crux of entrepreneurship lies in believing yourself as well as in your competitors too. Wake up every day with a new dream and a specific goal, keep a keen eye over the activities of your competitors too and try to apply those positive points in your life too.
Source: 9 Killer Rules of entrepreneurship

Begin the Leadership Journey Here
How to Develop Analytical Skills
Use Proactive Approach to avoid mishaps
How to Build Trust to Empower Professional and personal Relations
Only Hard Work Will Guarantee My Professional Growth? No?
How to Reduce the Gap Between Potential and Performance?
10 Tips to Manage Your Emails Effectively
9 Tips to Make Effective Decisions
Leadership Vision – The Critical Personality Trait
6 Techniques to Develop Empathic Skills

Story: The Balloons Seller

A man who made living selling balloons at a fair. He had all colors of balloons, including red, yellow, blue, and green. Whenever business was slow, he would release a helium-filled balloon into the air and when the children saw it go up, they all wanted to buy one. They would come up to him, buy a balloon and his sales would go up again. He continued this process all day. One day, he felt someone tugging at his jacket. He turned around and saw a little boy who asked, "If you release a black balloon, would that also fly?" Moved by the boy's concern, the man replied with empathy, "Son, it is not the color of the balloon; it is what is inside that makes it go up."

The same thing applies to our lives. It is what is inside that count. The thing inside of us that makes us go up is our attitude.

A study attributed to Harvard University found that when a person gets a job, 85% of the time it is because of their attitude, and only 15% of the time because of how smart they are and how many facts and figures they know. Surprisingly, almost 100% of education dollars go to teach facts and figures which account for only 15% of success in work!

Are you a lovable person? A Quick Check

1. Do you keep a record of wrong doings of your friend?
2. Are you jealous about your neighbors fortune?
3. Are you proud of your social status?
4. Do you rejoice at the misfortune of the people you don't like?
5. Are you getting irritated often?

If "YES" - your heart is dry. You are not lovable :)
You need to clean these impurities from your heart so that it becomes crystal clear. Once done you will automatically become a lovable person.
Winners Vs Losers
Wise Quotes from the book "Lift me Up" by Ron Kaufman
Worries & Prayers
Worry Creates More Problems
You Are the Result of yourself – Straight Forward Lines
You Are The Results Of Yourself
Your Guide to Never Feeling Tired Again
Your Life is Your Balance Sheet
The Ultimate Guide to Stress Management
 75 Questions to ask yourself for assessment

How to Work with a Boss You Hate

A worth reading article even if you are not an over sensitive employee. Lot of things to learn from this write up. Courtesy LifeHacker

  By Alan Henry
Sometimes we have the pleasure of working with a manager we really like and respect, and who respects us too. Other times, the relationship isn't so great, and we have to deal with someone we can barely tolerate. Still, with the job market being what it is, you don't want to just quit every time you work for someone you don't get along with. Here's how to grow a thicker skin at the office and learn to deal with a boss you may not want to see every morning.

Is Your Boss a Bad Person or Just a Bad Manager?
 The first thing you need to figure out is whether your boss is a bad manager or a bad person. The former implies that he doesn't give you the direction, priorities, and guidance you need to succeed at your job. The latter is a highly subjective way of saying the two of you don't see eye-to-eye for personal reasons. If your boss is just a bad manager, you can functionally compensate for their issues with planning and structure. If your issue with your boss is one of personality, your job will require some perspective-checking on your part. Still, there are ways through both problems, but you're not going to make any headway at all if you're not clear on which issue you're facing.

Find Out If You're Part of the Problem
Here's a question you probably don't want to ask yourself: are you the problem here? Remember, everyone's the hero of their own story, and everyone believes they're the party in the right. Your manager is no different. Step back for a moment and ask yourself if you're contributing to the poor relationship.
On Careers notes that many frustrated employees may just be oversensitive to the criticisms and natural flow of their workplace. For example, if you're caught up in the tone or approach your boss uses to discuss things, you miss the message underneath. If you're simply reacting to your boss instead of responding to the issues they bring up, you're probably letting your emotional responses get the better of you.

We've discussed how to take criticism like a champ and without getting worked up over the tone or delivery. Focus on the message, and in this case the work, instead of your boss's personality. Try to separate your emotional response from the things that irritate you, and give your boss clear but professional feedback when they do things that make you uncomfortable. You're both adults, you can act like it. Choose your battles wisely, and understand that you both have to work together.

Differentiate "Like" and "Respect"
In the military, you don't get to choose your boss. You don't even get to just quit when you run up against someone you don't really like working for. You have to adapt, adjust, and find a way to figure out your differences and move on. Granted, working in a corporate IT department or helping customers on the sales floor isn't the same as being in the service, but you can take a few cues from our friends in uniform. Remember, you're not at work to make friends. It can be great to make friends at work, and you should try if you can, but you need to separate whether you like your boss from whether you can learn to respect their position.

We're not glossing over how difficult this can be. When polled its readers asking what traits made someone a "bad boss," most of them had common refrains: their boss didn't respect them, or had never earned their respect. Their boss wasn't qualified to do their jobs, much less manage them. Their boss was terrible at communicating, or setting expectations or priorities. These are all difficult to overcome, but getting past them starts with at least respecting the fact that they're your manager. That doesn't mean accepting everything they do, or even respecting them as a person, but it does mean accepting and understanding that you have to work with this person somehow. The rest is small stuff you can work through.

What You Can Do By Yourself to Cope
Even if your job sucks, that doesn't mean you can't fix it. Let's start with ways you can manage yourself. Whether your issues with your boss are personal or professional, you can benefit from some simple coping mechanisms that will help you deal with a bad boss on your own.

Understand what stress does to you and how to fight it. If your boss stresses you out and makes you angry, you might benefit from simple office-friendly stress relief tricks like meditation, deep breathing for 10 seconds, or taking a walk to calm yourself before responding. If your boss is right in front of you and you're getting angry, try to intercept your emotional response and let them know you'll respond appropriately later. Whatever you do, separate the content of the message from its delivery. Focusing on the former is useful; focusing on the latter is a recipe for trouble.

Keep a work diary or a paper trail of interactions with them. If your boss is sexist, racist, or makes you uncomfortable at work, a work diary can be a great tool if you need to report them to someone higher up, but in this case we'd suggest using it as catharsis. Writing down how you feel and how your interactions with your boss makes you stressed out goes a long way towards helping you cope. You can keep your thoughts private, enjoy the benefits of getting it all out, and go back to work.

Find a mentor, or another manager you can look up to. A mentor, even a manager in another department, can often help you understand your boss's pressures and challenges in a non-threatening way. They may be willing to level with you in a way your boss isn't. Plus, while you may not be able to tell them everything, the whole point of having a mentor is to help you learn, grow, and develop your skills—which include working with difficult people.

Draw bright lines between your work and your life. Get a hobby outside of work. Exercise. We discussed how bad bosses can follow you home, and some of the best coping mechanisms you can muster are the ones that force you to remember and enjoy what you're working those long hours for in the first place. Spend time with family and loved ones, and make sure to fiercely protect your personal time away from work. Set your boundaries, and go to bat for them when you have to. Keep your relationship with your boss in its little box until you have to deal with it and enjoy living your life.

All of these coping mechanisms are things you can do for yourself to help improve your mindset. We're not getting into the "It's not fair that I have to learn to cope while my boss can continue being a jerk battle. Like we said, we're all adults here, and we're all professionals. The moment you get stuck in that bean-counting mindset where "why should I have to do anything," it's over. We don't always get to choose who we work with—sometimes you just have to suck it up and work with what's in your power to change.

What You Can Do With Your Boss to Repair Your Relationship
 Now that you have some tools to work on yourself, it's time to work on your boss and peel back some of those layers that you hate. With luck, you'll find something you can work with. Here are some suggestions to help.

1-    Get closer to your boss. If your boss's problem is that they don't communicate, or set priorities or expectations for the work they assign you, get in good and close with them. Meet with them regularly—even offer to schedule the meetings yourself—to discuss those priorities and the things you're working on. Yes, those meetings could result in even more work, but wouldn't you rather get it every Wednesday at 3pm when you're talking work anyway than on Friday at 4pm when it's due before the end of the day? Plus, setting a time where you can talk about work gives you the opportunity to push back and ask your boss what can come off your plate to make room for the new stuff you have to do.

2-   Learn to "manage up" and give constructive criticism without sounding like a jerk. Like we mentioned earlier, you and your boss are both adults and you're both professionals. Unless your boss is both a bad manager and a bad person, they'll understand a little constructive criticism from time to time, especially if you deliver it properly. Let them know what about their behavior and demeanor is getting under your skin. Come armed with suggestions that might improve your relationship too—telling them you hate when they talk to you isn't helpful. Asking them to pull you aside to talk privately when they have a concern or asking them "What can I/we do to make this work better," is helpful.

3-   Work with your boss's skills and on his/her priorities. The fact is that the most qualified people for a job don't always get it. Sometimes a manager is brought in from another department because they're owed a favor, or because the company couldn't find someone to fill a role. Sometimes you'll have an engineer leading a team of project managers, or vice versa. Get familiar with your boss's background and see how you can relate on common ground. While you're at it, find out what their priorities for your team are, and who your boss works hardest for. That should give you some insight on what you should be paying attention to and who's projects are most important to your boss. A surefire way to take the heat off is to work on your boss's priorities first.

4-   Don't just be an employee, be your boss' assistant. Use your one-on-one time with your manager to discuss upcoming priorities as well. Don't leave any excuse for you to not know what your boss is working on, or what rumors or rumblings your boss may be privy to that will have an effect on your workload. We're big fans of the weekly review. Bring your boss in on it as well, or schedule one just for the two of you. If you have a small team, suggest to your boss that you all spend a short time each week clarifying priorities and talking about what's on everyone's shared plates. Doing so will get your boss communicating with you in a group setting, and take some of the sting out of their poor managerial skills.

5-   Solve problems and propose solutions as a way to get revenge. It's often said that living well is the best revenge, so flip the problem on its head and kill your boss with kindness and productivity. If your boss makes you upset, treat them like a bully: Don't give them the satisfaction of a reaction—instead give them exactly what they're supposed to want in their role: a solution to the issue they've brought up. Solve your work problems, take credit for them, and then let them know the good work you've done (make sure to do it in that order so they can't steal your thunder.) Take the initiative, and make yourself appear to be your boss's peer to your colleagues and customers, not their subordinate. The best way to do this, of course, is to do great work. Let your bad boss transform you into a better employee.

6-   If the problem with your boss is that they're a bad manager, sometimes using personal leverage and common ground to get around their managerial problems is the best way for you—and for them—to succeed. After all, part of working for someone is to help cover their butt—if you prove to your boss that you're interested in doing this, they'll be more willing to work with you. If the problem is personal, sometimes getting close enough so you grow on one another is the key to breaking the wall between you. Working on the same priorities towards a common goal can melt even the thickest ice. Remember, you're on the same team here.

If All Else Fails, You Know What To Do
 If nothing else works, quit. Sometimes all of the common ground, shared priorities, coping mechanisms, and de-stressing techniques can't heal the rift between you and a bad boss. That said, don't just quit at the first sign. It's easy to say "your boss sucks, get out of there" when you're good at being employed, or if you're someone who's already employed talking to someone who loves their job but hates their manager. Sometimes it's worth it to try and work it out, and working it out takes effort and time. Give it a try first.

If that doesn't work though, it might be time to look for something else. If you love your company, see if you can find another opening in-house you can transfer to. That comes with its own risks, but it may be worth doing to stay where you love the work. Otherwise, make a graceful exit. Granted, there's no guarantee that you won't wind up in a new job with a new boss you hate, so plan carefully and make sure to check yourself before doing anything rash. Worst case, maybe you're just not cut out to work for someone else, and you should consider working for yourself or starting your own business. In both cases, you get to work for yourself, and if you boss still sucks after that, you have a real problem.

100 Rules for Good Managers

Lessons Learned as Compiled by Jerry Madden , Associate Director of the Flight Projects Directorate at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center: (Jerry collected these gems of wisdom over a number of years from various unidentifiable sources. They have been edited by Rod Stewart of Mobile Data Services in Huntsville, Alabama.). January 1, 1995. Updated July 9, 1996.

The Project Manager 
Rule #1: A project manager should visit everyone who is building anything for his project at least once, should know all the managers on his project (both government and contractor), and know the integration team members. People like to know that the project manager is interested in their work and the best proof is for the manager to visit them and see first hand what they are doing.

Rule #2: A project manager must know what motivates the project contractors (i.e., their award system, their fiscal system, their policies, and their company culture).

Rule #3: Management principles still are the same. It is just that the tools have changed. You still find the right people to do the work and get out of the way so they can do it.

Rule #4: Whoever you deal with, deal fairly. Space is not a big playing field. You may be surprised how often you have to work with the same people. Better they respect you than carry a grudge.

Rule #5: Vicious, dispicable, or thoroughly disliked persons, gentlemen, and ladies can be project managers. Lost souls, procrastinators, and wishywashies can not.

Rule #6: A comfortable project manager is one waiting for his next assignment or one on the verge of failure. Security is not normal to project management.

Rule #7: One problem new managers face is that everyone wants to solve their problems. Old managers were told by senior management—"solve your own darn problems, that is what we hired you to do."

Rule #8: Running fast does not take the place of thinking for yourself. You must take time to smell the roses. For your work, you must take time to understand the consequences of your actions.

Rule #9: The boss may not know how to do the work but he has to know what he wants. The boss had better find out what he expects and wants if he doesn't know. A blind leader tends to go in circles.

Rule #10: Not all successful managers are competent and not all failed managers are incompetent. Luck still plays a part in success or failure but luck favors the competent hard working manager.

Rule #11: Never try to get even for some slight by anyone on the project. It is not good form and it puts you on the same level as the other person and, besides, probably ends up hurting the project getting done.

Rule #12: Don't get too egotistical so that you can't change your position, especially if your personnel tell you that you are wrong. You should cultivate an attitude on the project where your personnel know they can tell you of wrong decisions.

Rule #13: A manager who is his own systems engineer or financial manager is one who will probably try to do open heart surgery on himself.

Rule #14: Most managers succeed on the strength and skill of their staff.

Initial Work 
Rule #15: The seeds of problems are laid down early. Initial planning is the most vital part of a project. The review of most failed projects or project problems indicate the disasters were well planned to happen from the start.

Rule #16: Cooperative efforts require good communications and early warning systems. A project manager should try to keep his partners aware of what is going on and should be the one who tells them first of any rumor or actual changes in plan. The partners should be consulted before things are put in final form, even if they only have a small piece of the action. A project manager who blindsides his partners will be treated in kind and will be considered a person of no integrity.

Rule #17: Talk is not cheap; but the best way to understand a personnel or technical problem is to talk to the right people. Lack of talk at the right levels is deadly.

Rule #18: Most international meetings are held in English. This is a foreign language to most participants such as Americans, Germans, Italians, etc. It is important to have adequate discussions so that there are no misinterpretations of what is said.

Rule #19: You cannot be ignorant of the language of the area you manage or with that of areas with which you interface. Education is a must for the modern manager. There are simple courses available to learn computerese, communicationese and all the rest of the modern "ese's" of the world. You can't manage if you don't understand what is being said or written.

Rule #20: You cannot watch everything. What you can watch is the people. They have to know you will not accept a poor job.

Rule #21: We have developed a set of people whose self interest is more paramount than the work or at least it appears so to older managers. It appears to the older managers that the newer ones are more interested in form than in substance. The question is are old managers right or just old? Consider both viewpoints.

Rule #22: A good technician, quality inspector, and straw boss are more important in obtaining a good product than all the paper and reviews.

Rule #23: The source of most problems is people, but darned if they will admit it. Know the people working on your project to know what the real weak spots are.

Rule #24: One must pay close attention to workaholics—if they get going in the wrong direction, they can do a lot of damage in a short time. It is possible to overload them and cause premature burnout but hard to determine if the load is too much, since much of it is self generated. It is important to make sure such people take enough time off and that the workload does not exceed 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 times what is normal.

Rule #25: Always try to negotiate your internal support at the lowest level. What you want is the support of the person doing the work, and the closer you can get to him in negotiations the better.

Rule #26: If you have someone who doesn't look, ask, and analyze; ask them to transfer.

Rule #27: Personal time is very important. You must be careful as a manager that you realize the value of other people's time (i.e., the work you hand out and meetings should be necessary). You must, where possible, shield your staff from unnecessary work (i.e., some requests should be ignored or a refusal sent to the requestor).

Rule #28: People who monitor work and don't help get it done never seem to know exactly what is going on (being involved is the key to excellence).

Rule #29: There is no greater motivation than giving a good person his piece of the puzzle to control, but a pat on the back or an award helps.

Rule #30: It is mainly the incompetent that don't like to show off their work.

Rule #31: There are rare times when only one man can do the job. These are in technical areas that are more art and skill than normal. Cherish these people, but get their work done as soon as possible. Getting the work done by someone else takes two or three times longer and the product is normally below standard.

Rule #32: People have reasons for doing things the way they do them. Most people want to do a good job and, if they don't, the problem is they probably don't know how or exactly what is expected.

Rule #33: If you have a problem that requires additional people to solve, you should approach putting people on like a cook who has under-salted the food.

Reviews and Reports 
Rule #34: NASA has established a set of reviewers and a set of reviews. Once firmly established, the system will fight to stay alive, so make the most of it. Try to find a way for the reviews to work for you.

Rule #35: The number of reviews is increasing but the knowledge transfer remains the same; therefore, all your charts and presentation material should be constructed with this fact in mind. This means you should be able to construct a set of slides that only needs to be shuffled from presentation to presentation.

Rule #36: Hide nothing from the reviewers. Their reputation and yours is on the line. Expose all the warts and pimples. Don't offer excuses—just state facts.

Rule #37: External reviews are scheduled at the worst possible time, therefore, keep an up-to-date set of business and technical data so that you can rapidly respond. Not having up-to-date data should be cause for dismissal.

Rule #38: Never undercut your staff in public (i.e., In public meetings, don't reverse decisions on work that you have given them to do). Even if you direct a change, never take the responsibility for implementing away from your staff.

Rule #39: Reviews are for the reviewed an not the reviewer. The review is a failure if the reviewed learn nothing from it.

Rule #40: A working meeting has about six people attending. Meetings larger than this are for information transfer (management science has shown that, in a group greater than twelve, some are wasting their time).

Rule #41: The amount of reviews and reports are proportional to management's understanding (i.e., the less management knows or understands the activities, the more they require reviews and reports). It is necessary in this type of environment to make sure that data is presented so that the average person, slightly familiar with activities, can understand it. Keeping the data simple and clear never insults anyone's intelligence.

Rule #42: Managers who rely only on the paperwork to do the reporting of activities are known failures.

Rule #43: Documentation does not take the place of knowledge. There is a great difference in what is supposed to be, what is thought to have happened, and reality. Documents are normally a static picture in time that get outdated rapidly.

Rule #44: Just because you give monthly reports, don't think that you can abbreviate anything in a yearly report. If management understood the monthlies, they wouldn't need a yearly.

Rule #45: Abbreviations are getting to be a pain. Each project now has a few thousand. This calls on senior management to know hundreds. Use them sparingly in presentations unless your objective is to confuse.

Rule #46: Remember, it is often easier to do foolish paperwork that to fight the need for it. Fight only if it is a global issue which will save much future work.

Contractors and Contracting 
Rule #47: A project manager is not the monitor of the contractor's work but is to be the driver. In award fee situations, the government personnel should be making every effort possible to make sure the contractor gets a high score (i.e., be on schedule and produce good work). Contractors don't fail, NASA does and that is why one must be proactive in support. This is also why a low score damages the government project manager as much as the contractor's manager because it means that he is not getting the job done.

Rule #48: Award fee is a good tool that puts discipline both on the contractor and the government. The score given represents the status of the project as well as the management skills of both parties. The project management measurement system (pms) should be used to verify the scores. Consistent poor scores require senior management intervention to determine the reason. Consistent good scores which are consistent with pms reflect a well-run project, but if these scores are not consistent with the pms, senior management must take action to find out why.

Rule #49: Morale of the contractor's personnel is important to a government manager. Just as you don't want to buy a car built by disgruntled employees, you don't want to buy flight hardware developed by under- motivated people. You should take an active role in motivating all personnel on the project.

Rule #50: Being friendly with a contractor is fine—being a friend of a contractor is dangerous to your objectivity.

Rule #51: Remember, your contractor has a tendency to have a one-on-one interface with your staff. Every member of your staff costs you at least one person on the contract per year.

Rule #52: Contractors tend to size up the government counterparts and staff their part of the project accordingly. If they think yours are clunkers, they will take their poorer people to put on your project.

Rule #53: Contractors respond well to the customer that pays attention to what they are doing but not too well to the customer that continually second-guesses their activity. The basic rule is a customer is always right but the cost will escalate if a customer always has things done his way instead of how the contractor planned on doing it. The ground rule is: never change a contractor's plans unless they are flawed or too costly (i.e., the old saying that better is the enemy of good).

Rule #54: There'is only one solution to a weak project manager in industry—get rid of him fast. The main job of a project manager in industry is to keep the customer happy. Make sure the one working with you knows that it is not flattery but on-schedule, on-cost, and a good product that makes you happy.

Engineers and Scientists 
Rule #55: Over-engineering is common. Engineers like puzzles and mazes. Try to make them keep their designs simple.

Rule #56: The first sign of trouble comes from the schedule or the cost curve. Engineers are the last to know they are in trouble. Engineers are born optimists.

Rule #57: The project has many resources within itself. There probably are five or ten system engineers considering all the contractors and instrument developers. This is a powerful resource that can be used to attack problems.

Rule #58: Many managers, just because they have the scientists under contract on their project, forget that the scientists are their customers and many times have easier access to top management than the managers do.

Rule #59: Most scientists are rational unless you endanger their chance to do their experiment. They will work with you if they believe you are telling them the truth. This includes reducing their own plans.

Rule #60: In the space business, there is no such thing as previously flown hardware. The people who build the next unit probably never saw the previous unit. There are probably minor changes (perhaps even major changes); the operational environment has probably changed; the people who check the unit out in most cases will not understand the unit or the test equipment.

Rule #61: Most equipment works as built, not as the designer planned. This is due to layout of the design, poor understanding on the designer's part, or poor understanding of component specifications.

Computers and Software 
Rule #62: Not using modern techniques, like computer systems, is a great mistake, but forgetting that the computer simulates thinking is a still greater mistake.

Rule #63: Software has now taken on all the parameters of hardware (i.e., requirement creep, high percentage of flight mission cost, need for quality control, need for validation procedures, etc.). It has the added feature that it is hard as blazes to determine it is not flawed. Get the basic system working first and then add the bells and whistles. Never throw away a version that works even if you have all the confidence in the world that the newer version works. It is necessary to have contingency plans for software.

Rule #64: Knowledge is often revised by simulations or testing, but computer models have hidden flaws not the least of which is poor input data.

Rule #65: In olden times, engineers had hands-on experience, technicians understood how the electronics worked and what it was supposed to do, and layout technicians knew too—but today only the computer knows for sure and it's not talking.

Senior Management, Program Offices, and Above 
Rule #66: Don't assume you know why senior management has done something. If you feel you need to know, ask. You get some amazing answers that will astonish you.

Rule #67: Know your management—some like a good joke, others only like a joke if they tell it.

Rule #68: Remember the boss has the right to make decisions. Even if you think they are wrong, tell the boss what you think but if he still wants it done his way; do it his way and do your best to make sure the outcome is successful.

Rule #69: Never ask management to make a decision that you can make. Assume you have the authority to make decisions unless you know there is a document that states unequivocally that you can't.

Rule #70: You and the Program Manager should work as a team. The Program Manager is your advocate at NASA HQ and must be tied into the decision makers and should aid your efforts to be tied in also.

Rule #71: Know who the decision makers on the program are. It may be someone outside who has the ear of Congress or the Administrator, or the Associate Administrator, or one of the scientists—someone in the chain of command—whoever they are. Try to get a line of communication to them on a formal or informal basis.

Program Planning, Budgeting, and Estimating 
Rule #72: Today one must push the state of the art, be within budget, take risks, not fail, and be on time. Strangely, all these are consistent as long as the ground rules such as funding profile and schedule are established up front and maintained.

Rule #73: Most of yesteryear's projects overran because of poor estimates and not because of mistakes. Getting better estimates will not lower costs but will improve NASA's business reputation. Actually, there is a high probability that getting better estimates will increase costs and assure a higher profit to industry unless the fee is reduced to reflect lower risk on the part of industry. A better reputation is necessary in the present environment.

Rule #74: All problems are solvable in time, so make sure you have enough schedule contingency—if you don't, the next project manager that takes your place will.

Rule #75: The old NASA pushed the limits of technology and science; therefore, it did not worry about requirements creep or overruns. The new NASA has to work as if all projects are fixed price; therefore, requirement creep has become a deadly sin.

Rule #76: Know the resources of your center and, if possible, other centers. Other centers, if they have the resources , are normally happy to help. It is always surprising how much good help one can get by just asking.

Rule #77: Other than budget information prior to the President's submittal to Congress, there is probably no secret information on a project—so don't treat anything like it is secret. Everyone does better if they can see the whole picture so don't hide any of it from anyone.

Rule #78: NASA programs compete for budget funds—they do not compete with each other (i.e., you never attack any other program or NASA work with the idea that you should get their funding). Sell what you have on its own merit.

Rule #79: Next year is always the year with adequate funding and schedule. Next year arrives on the 50th year of your career.

The Customer 
Rule #80: Remember who the customer is and what his objectives are (i.e., check with him when you go to change anything of significance).

NASA Management Instructions 
Rule #81: NASA Management Instructions were written by another NASA employee like you; therefore, challenge them if they don't make sense. It is possible another NASA employee will rewrite them or waive them for you.

Rule #82: Wrong decisions made early can be recovered from. Right decisions made late cannot correct them.

Rule #83: Sometimes the best thing to do is nothing. It is also occasionally the best help you can give. Just listening is all that is needed on many occasions. You may be the boss, but if you constantly have to solve someone's problems, you are working for him.

Rule #84: Never make a decision from a cartoon. Look at the actual hardware or what real information is available such as layouts. Too much time is wasted by people trying to cure a cartoon whose function is to explain the principle.

Professional Ethics and Integrity 
Rule #85: Integrity means your subordinates trust you.

Rule #86: In the rush to get things done, it's always important to remember who you work for. Blindsiding the boss will not be to your benefit in the long run.

Project Management and Teamwork 
Rule #87: Projects require teamwork to succeed. Remember, most teams have a coach and not a boss, but the coach still has to call some of the plays.

Rule #88: Never assume someone knows something or has done something unless you have asked them; even the obvious is overlooked or ignored on occasion, especially in a high stress activity.

Rule #89: Whoever said beggars can't be choosers doesn't understand project management, although many times it is better to trust to luck than to get poor support.

Rule #90: A puzzle is hard to discern from just one piece; so don't be surprised if team members deprived of information reach the wrong conclusion.

Rule #91: Remember, the President, Congress, OMB, NASA HQ, senior center management, and your customers all have jobs to do. All you have to do is keep them all happy.

Treating and Avoiding Failures 
Rule #92: In case of a failure:

    * a) Make a timeline of events and include everything that is known.
    * b) Put down known facts. Check every theory against them.
    * c) Don't beat the data until it confesses (i.e., know when to stop trying to force-fit a scenario).
    * d) Do not arrive at a conclusion too fast. Make sure any deviation from normal is explained. Remember the wrong conclusion is prologue to the next failure.
    * e) Know when to stop. 

Rule #93: Things that fail are lessons learned for the future. Occasionally things go right: these are also lessons learned. Try to duplicate that which works.

Rule #94: Mistakes are all right but failure is not. Failure is just a mistake you can't recover from; therefore, try to create contingency plans and alternate approaches for the items or plans that have high risk.

Rule #95: History is prologue. There has not been a project yet that has not had a parts problem despite all the qualification and testing done on parts. Time and being prepared to react are the only safeguards.

Rule #96: Experience may be fine but testing is better. Knowing something will work never takes the place of proving that it will.

Rule #97: Don't be afraid to fail or you will not succeed, but always work at your skill to recover. Part of that skill is knowing who can help.

Rule #98: One of the advantages of NASA in the early days was the fact that everyone knew that the facts we were absolutely sure of could be wrong.

Rule #99: Redundancy in hardware can be a fiction. We are adept at building things to be identical so that if one fails, the other will also fail. Make sure all hardware is treated in a build as if it were one of a kind and needed for mission success.

Rule #100: Never make excuses; instead, present plans of actions to be taken. 


Story: The Necklace

in - on 1/19/2014 12:51:00 PM - 1 comment

by Ahmed
The cheerful little girl with bouncy golden curls was almost five. Waiting with her mother at the checkout stand, she saw them, a circle of glistening white pearls in a pink foil box.

"Oh mommy please, Mommy. Can I have them? Please, Mommy, please?"
Quickly the mother checked the back of the little foil box and then looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl's upturned face.

"A dollar ninety-five. That's almost $2.00. If you really want them, I'll think of some extra chores for you and in no time you can save enough money to buy them for yourself. Your birthday's only a week away and you might get another crisp dollar bill from Grandma."

As soon as Jenny got home, she emptied her penny bank and counted out 17 pennies. After dinner, she did more than her share of chores and she went to the neighbor and asked Mrs. McJames if she could pick dandelions for ten cents. On her birthday, Grandma did give her another new dollar bill and at last she had enough money to buy the necklace.

Jenny loved her pearls. They made her feel dressed up and grown up. She wore them everywhere, Sunday school, kindergarten, even to bed. The only time she took them off was when she went swimming or had a bubble bath. Mother said if they got wet, they might turn her neck green.

Jenny had a very loving daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night as he finished the story, he asked Jenny, "Do you love me?"
"Oh yes, daddy. You know that I love you."
"Then give me your pearls."
"Oh, daddy, not my pearls. But you can have Princess, the white horse from my collection, the one with the pink tail. Remember, daddy? The one you gave me. She's my very favorite."
"That's okay, Honey, daddy loves you. Good night." And he brushed her cheek with a kiss.
About a week later, after the story time, Jenny's daddy asked again, "Do you love me?"
"Daddy, you know I love you."
"Then give me your pearls."

"Oh Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my baby doll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper."

"That's okay. Sleep well. God bless you, little one. Daddy loves you."

And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss.
A few nights later when her daddy came in, Jenny was sitting on her bed with her legs crossed Indian style.

As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek. "What is it, Jenny? What's the matter?"

Jenny didn't say anything but lifted her little hand up to her daddy. And when she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver, she finally said, "Here, daddy; this is for you."

With tears gathering in his own eyes, Jenny's daddy reached out with one hand to take the dime store necklace, and with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a blue velvet case with a strand of genuine pearls and gave them to Jenny.

He had them all the time… He was just waiting for her to give up the dime-store stuff so he could give her the genuine treasure.

So it is, with God. He is waiting for us to give up the cheap things in our lives so that he can give us beautiful treasures.

Are you holding onto things that God wants you to let go of?
Are you holding on to harmful or unnecessary partners, relationships, habits and activities that you have come so attached to that it seems impossible to let go? Sometimes it is so hard to see what is in the other hand but do believe this one thing.

God will never take away something without giving you something better in its place.