This is a page from my book, “A Survival Guide for New Consultants”

It takes a team

“Things derive their being and nature by mutual dependence,
and are nothing in themselves.”


I mentioned earlier that when you’re building a business, you should hire well, and this is true across every aspect of your business. A “secret” that I stumbled onto when I started Mission Data is that you have to be strong everywhere: Marketing, sales, accounting, the service you provide, and you even need to have a good lawyer.

Hire well alvin August 1, 2017 - 12:04pm

“I thought you were a blind dog, but I see you are a keen-eyed lion.”

Zen Master Seung Sahn

One of the most valuable lessons I learned when I created Mission Data was to hire well. Phrases like this have become more popular recently when people learned of the Steve Jobs quote, “A players hire A players, and B players hire C players,” and other similar quotes. Guy Kawasaki, who was there during the early Apple days, expanded on this quote with his own thoughts:

Friday, November 12, 2004 alvin July 30, 2017 - 2:56pm

Some times things work out so badly all you can do is laugh. After talking to the local programmer/project-manager I mentioned earlier, we finally had a chance to hire him, and it was a disaster. He had been a lead engineer with a dot-com company that went bust, and while he was reluctant to work as a consultant, he also needed the income, so we brought him on as a contractor before making him a full-time employee.

Large fire in Nederland, Colorado alvin July 9, 2016 - 5:09pm

There’s a large fire — currently 100 330 600 acres — in the area around Nederland, Colorado, which is just west of Boulder.

This image comes from this twitter page, and up to the minute news is on twitter under the #nedfire hashtag.

Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow alvin May 31, 2016 - 12:35pm

When I work at home I usually turn on the tv in the afternoon to hear some background noise, and I just noticed that there’s an episode of the Medium tv series named Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow. I didn’t know what that referred to, so I just looked it up, and it refers to a cow that legend says started the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

Wildfire warnings in southern Alaska alvin May 14, 2014 - 10:39am

Sadly there are wildfire warnings in southern Alaska. It may not look like much on that picture, but that red area is probably larger than states like Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Iowa, and Missouri -- combined. Photo from this tweet.

Fires in the mountains near Boulder, Colorado alvin October 7, 2012 - 1:49pm

Fires in the mountains near Boulder, Colorado, summer of 2012.


What an employer looks for in an employee

This article is now part of my new eBook, which is only $2.99 on

You want me to do what? A Survival Guide for New Consultants

I hope you enjoy my book, and more than that, I hope it helps you have a very profitable and rewarding career.