After Hours
After Hours
May 6, 2020
Earnings Reports from Apple and Facebook, and Warning Signs for Uber and Lyft
31 min

Youngme Moon, Felix Oberholzer-Gee, and Mihir Desai debate what they’ve learned from first quarter earnings reports from Apple, Facebook, and others. They also discuss warning signs for Uber and Lyft, and share their thoughts about the recession.

Recent picks, and recommended reading/websites:

Listeners are invited to join our mailing list by signing up here: After Hours Sign-Up. You can visit our website at HarvardAfterHours.com. You can email your comments and ideas for future episodes to: harvardafterhours@gmail.com. You can follow Youngme and Mihir on Twitter at: @YoungmeMoon and @DesaiMihirA.

Secret Leaders
Secret Leaders
Dan Murray-Serter, Rich Martell
Atomic Habits - Little things can transform your life
If you've not read Atomic Habits by James Clear, we urge you to stop what you’re doing and go and get it. It's one of those books that once you've read it, you start to think about how those ideas can change your reality. “The book’s been out almost two years now and has sold over two million copies. And for me, the most gratifying thing is that the ideas are useful. The best thing is to see people using them to build better habits in their own life or to break habits that they've been struggling with for a while.” While James is not the father of thinking about habits, he is an expert on the subject, having built up a newsletter around the topic years before launching his bestselling book. “I'm not the smartest person, I'm not the fastest person, I’m not the first person to talk about this stuff. But I want to do it in a way that's useful.” By doing this, he's simply a master of demonstrating what best practice looks like and how that impact can impact your future, which above anything else, makes him a person you might want to listen to. “A habit is a behaviour that's tied to a particular context. And what you start to realise is that you cannot have a behaviour outside of an environment. They all happen within a certain context. Any time the environment changes in a big way, behaviour changes in a big way.” So for everything you need to know about habits and how they can help you be the best version of yourself, don’t miss out on this truly insightful and illuminating episode. We chat about: * Why habits are universally timeless * How Uber was founded on users’ habits * What a habit is * How COVID has changed our habits * Bad habits that leaders should avoid * Important habits for startups to avoid Links: * Atomic Habits * 3-2-1 newsletter * The Outsiders - William Thorndyke Want to receive our podcast on a weekly basis? Subscribe to our newsletter!
44 min
Resourceful Designer
Resourceful Designer
Mark Des Cotes
Cloud Sync vs Cloud Backup - RD238
Do you know when to use Cloud Backup vs Cloud Sync? You know how important it is to backup your computer. Should the unforeseen happen, your backup is all that stands between you getting back to work after a short delay or having to explain to your clients how you’ve lost everything you’ve designed for them and have to start over. In the old days of computing, a backup consisted of storing files on floppy disks. Then we graduated to things like Zip drives or Jaz drives. Then CDs and DVDs became the preferred method for backing up files. Depending on your organization's size, and of course, your budget, you could also back up to digital tape. These were the easily transportable backup methods—the ones you could take with you or store safely off-site. You also needed to back up to external hard drives. Expensive, bulky things that were great for backing up your entire computer, but you needed a couple of them for a true backup solution. Constantly swapping them with one backing up in-house while the other was safely stored off-site. Things have come a long way since those days. The price of hard drives has come way down, making backup much more affordable. And you can now store hundreds of thousands of files on a drive smaller in size than a stick of gum. So there’s no excuse for not having a backup solution in place. Out of these methods, the one flaw in most backup strategies has always been the off-site backup. Most people start with the best intentions. Moving a fresh backup off-site every day. Then, as time went by and nothing catastrophic happened, those daily off-site backups became weekly backups, and then monthly backups, until you had to check a calendar to figure out when the last backup was made. Whether your backup was daily, weekly, monthly or more didn’t make much difference... until your main system failed you. Boy, oh, boy, did it make a difference then. It’s bad enough if you lost a day's worth of work, but to lose a whole week or more? That’s catastrophic. For anyone around computers in the 90s and early 2000s, you’ve heard the horror stories of crashed computers without backups. Hopefully, those stories were not about you. Introducing The Cloud And then The Cloud was born. The mysterious digital cloud. A place... somewhere, where you can store your files safely, offsite, without having to take a hard drive or disks anywhere. Ok, that’s enough of a history lesson. It’s 2020 as I'm typing this, and I’m hoping you've heard of the cloud and how to use it to back up your files. But just in case, the cloud is simply a group of computers somewhere in the world, managed by some company. These groups of computers are also known as data centres. When you sign up for a cloud syncing or cloud backup service, you are in effect renting storage space in one of these data centres. Sorry if I ruined your idea of The Cloud being a magical storage space floating around in the sky. Even though cloud sync and cloud backup use similar data centers, they are different in how they function. There’s a common misconception that they’re the same thing, but they’re not. In fact, if you want to go by today’s standard backup practices, you should be using both sync and backup. If you’re not, you may be compromising your backup strategy. The difference between Cloud Sync and Cloud Backup. Cloud Sync. In essence, Cloud Sync are services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive and many others who work by designating specific areas of your hard drives such as a single folder or a group of folders and “synchronizing” the contents of those folders to their data center. This syncing service allows you to access your files from different locations and using different devices. Let's say you save a design file to your sync folder on your iMac. That file becomes available to you on your laptop's sync folder, making it easy to show clients while visiting their office. While with the client, you can make changes to the file, knowing those changes will sync and be available on your iMac once you return. If you need to get a 3rd party contractor involved, such as a copywriter, share the synced file with them, and any changes they make will be reflected on your file as well. As long as the file is in the sync folder, it can be opened, worked on and saved from anywhere. What’s important to note is that only files stored in the synced folder are accessible from everywhere. If it’s an Adobe InDesign file, InDesign needs to be installed on your iMac, your laptop and on any third party’s computer who needs to access the file. However, things like fonts and any digital assets used by the file stored in the synced folder are not available from everywhere. If you forget to put it in your sync folder, it won’t get synced. Most syncing services charge you based on the amount of data you store with them. If you need more room, they always offer a bigger and more expensive tier you could purchase. One of the downsides of cloud sync services is that should something happen to the file on one device, it happens everywhere. For example, say the copywriter accidentally deletes the file. It’s deleted on your computer as well. Depending on what level you are paying for, some syncing services offer a version history feature, so you can go back and recover a file that was accidentally deleted up to a certain point. One more thing to note. Should your computer be compromised with a virus or get hacked and the synced folder on your computer be affected, having your files synced to the cloud won't help because they will also be affected. Cloud Backup. A Cloud Backup service, such as Backblaze or Carbonite, works in the background. In most cases, once you set it up, you don’t even realize it’s there. It monitors everything on your computer and backs up any new or changed data it finds to the cloud. Usually, you pay one fee for unlimited cloud backup storage space. There’s no tiered pricing. Most cloud backup solutions offer version history, so if a file on your computer gets corrupted, or if after working on it for a while, you decide you liked the previous version instead, you can access an earlier version from the backup. It’s very similar to Apple’s Time Machine or other similar services, but it’s in the cloud. Because Cloud Backup is automated, there’s no need to put your files into a dedicated syncing folder. Your entire computer is backed up, so you know that everything is protected, your files, applications, fonts, everything. Unlike Cloud Sync, you are not working directly on the files in the cloud. Any changes you make to a local file are not automatically reflected on your other devices unless you are also storing them in a Cloud Sync folder. You can still share cloud backup files with someone else, but once downloaded, any changes they make to the file will not show up on your end. Cloud backup is there to protect you should something happen to your computer, and not just should something happen to certain dedicated files and folders. Best-case scenario The best-case scenario is you use both a Cloud Sync and a Cloud Backup solution. That’s what I do. I use both Dropbox to house files I need to access from multiple devices or share with others. And I use Backblaze to make sure everything on my computer is safely backed up to the cloud. Recovering your data from Cloud Sync or Cloud Backup. Should you need to recover your cloud data, there are some differences to note between the two services. Retrieving all your files from Cloud Sync can be cumbersome and take a long time, especially if you pay and use one of the higher tiers. It could take several days to download everything, and you better have unlimited internet, or else you’ll be paying an arm and a leg for overage fees. A Cloud Backup service such as Backblaze also allows you to download your files over the internet, but Backblaze has a servic…
24 min
Design Thinking 101
Design Thinking 101
Dawan Stanford
Teams, Sprints, Prototyping, and Better Meetings with Douglas Ferguson — DT101 E59
Douglas Ferguson is the founder of Voltage Control, a workshop agency on a mission to rid the world of horrible meetings. We talk about teams, design sprints, prototyping, and creating meetings that matter. Show Summary As a coder during the 90s tech bubble, Douglas discovered that he loved working as part cross-functional teams often found in startup companies, and wearing different hats as needed during a project. When the Agile Manifesto came out in early 2001, Douglas realized that a lot of its principles were things he and his teams had already been doing. He began combining Agile and Lean methodologies to find ways teams can work together better. Douglas’ company, Voltage Control, focuses on helping teams learn how to better collaborate. During our conversation, we talk about the hallmarks of a well-functioning team, Douglas’ work with organizations using design sprints and prototyping, and how Douglas’ new book, Magical Meetings, is helping us all be able to have better, more meaningful and productive meetings. Listen in to learn more about: * The traits of a well-functioning team * How prototyping can help an organization * The ins and outs of design sprints * The two questions to ask when designing the test for a prototype * Douglas’ new book, Magical Meetings * How to have better meetings, no matter what industry you’re in * Adapting to the new virtual meeting space Our Guest’s Bio Douglas is an entrepreneur and human-centered technologist with over 20 years of experience. He is president of Voltage Control, an Austin-based workshop agency that specializes in Design Sprints and innovation workshops. Prior to Voltage Control, Douglas held CTO positions at numerous Austin startups, where he led product and engineering teams using agile, lean, and human-centered design principles. While CTO at Twyla, Douglas worked directly with Google Ventures running Design Sprints and now brings this experience and process to companies everywhere. Show Highlights [01:36] Douglas talks about how he got into design and his focus on teams and teamwork. [03:57] Launching Voltage Control to help teams work better together. [04:30] How a well-functioning team evolves. [05:05] The importance of trust between team members. [05:36] Douglas connects the Gallup’s Q12 survey to team trust. [08:06] How Douglas introduces teams to prototyping. [08:51] Creating a vision document of how the team might use prototyping. [09:23] Why Douglas needs to understand the shared values of a team. [11:01] Two tactics Douglas uses to help teams come to a shared understanding. [14:30] Douglas defines prototyping. [14:43] Douglas shares one of his favorite examples of prototyping: the five pound weight. [17:16] Prototypes help teams separate the problem space from the solution space. [18:50] How Douglas facilitates team prototyping. [19:41] The two components of a design sprint. [20:10] The importance of the question “What is the test we need to run?” when designing a prototype. [20:30] The Riskiest Assumption Test (RAT). [22:00] The two questions Douglas asks after deciding on the prototype test. [22:57] Setting expectations for a design sprint and avoiding the “design sprint slump.” [23:44] A design sprint is only the beginning of the work. [24:30] Why it’s important for an organization’s leadership to understand what design sprints can and can’t do. [25:00] Prototyping is intended to give insights and understanding of the problem space to provide direction for the work to come. [26:55] Leadership must understand there is more work to do after the design sprint. [28:49] Design sprints as design research. [29:46] Douglas talks about “branding” the design sprint. [31:11] How Douglas is gathering facilitation techniques and tools from different industries and applying them to help us all improve our meetings. [33:22] Douglas’ new book, Magical Meetings. [34:03] How meeting participants can help the meeting facilitator. [35:10] Magical Meetings offers action steps and principles anyone can use to improve their meetings. [36:11] Douglas offers his thoughts on remote work and virtual meetings, and COVID-19 is changin his work. [37:53] Advice for those holding virtual workshops and meetings. [38:45] Intentionally designing virtual experiences. [40:35] Two virtual tools Douglas recommends for those creating online experiences. [42:21] Where to find out more about Douglas and his work. Links Douglas on LinkedIn Douglas on The Future Shapers Douglas' posts on Medium What is design thinking? Bringing Design Thinking into Technology Voltage Control Beyond the Prototype Inside Innovation - Inside Outside podcast with Douglas Beyond the Prototype - Techblog Writer UK podcast episode with Douglas Gallup’s Q12 Survey Loom screencasting tool Session Lab workshop planning tool Other Design Thinking 101 Episodes You Might Like Stakeholder-Centered Design, Design Thinking in Large Organizations, and Critique for Design Teams with Jean-Louis Racine — DT01 E3 Teaching Yourself Design Thinking + Innovating in Government with Amy J. Wilson — DT101 E19 Designing Your Team + Teams in Design Education + Coaching Design Teams with Mary Sherwin and David Sherwin — DT101 E49 ________________ Thank you for listening to the show and looking at the show notes. Send your questions, suggestions, and guest ideas to Dawan and the Fluid Hive team. Cheers ~ Dawan Fluid Hive’s Ask Like a Designer — Monthly articles with design ideas, methods, frameworks, templates, and a question-fueled approach to design-driven innovation. Discover new ways to learn, lead and apply design-driven innovation. Free Download — Design Driven Innovation: Avoid Innovation Traps with These 9 Steps Innovation Smart Start Webinar — Take your innovation projects from frantic to focused!
44 min
Digital HR Leaders with David Green
Digital HR Leaders with David Green
David Green
48. How to Democratise People Analytics to Drive Agile Decision Making (Interview with Daniel West)
My guest on this episode of the podcast is Daniel West. His 20 years of experience in HR Leadership roles at data-driven companies like Uber and Apple have taught him how analytics can drive business performance, improve customer outcomes and enrich employee experience and culture. Daniel is now the founder and CEO of Panalyt and the technology his firm provides is helping organisations bring together and democratise their people and business data and enrich it further with external and social capital data to drive decision-making. In our conversation, Daniel and I take a deep dive into organisational network analysis and how social capital data can be linked to performance, engagement, sales and innovation. We also discuss: * The level of analytical skills required by HR professionals and what we can learn from our counterparts in Marketing * The impact of democratising data across business stakeholders and how this drives more agile decision making and improved business outcomes * The critical role of ethics and trust in People Analytics * A great example of how a Japanese company had to virtually onboard over 200 new starters due to the pandemic and used People Analytics to help that effort * What HR can do to prepare their organisation for an increase in remote and hybrid working This episode is a must listen for anyone interested or involved in People Analytics, Employee Experience and Social Capital. Support for this podcast is brought to you by Panalyt. To learn more, visit https://www.panalyt.com.
43 min
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