Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Upcoming Podcast Appearance?

My Wednesday morning started out a little different than normal. I was interviewed for an upcoming podcast about Brooklyn real estate (the podcast hasn't officially launched yet, so I don't have any links yet). It was interesting to talk to the host for a bit about Brooklyn and New York City and how some things have changed over the years. Our discussion brought me back to my earlier career as an attorney and even some memories of when I first moved to New York in the 1990's.

The changes in New York City over the past 20 years alone are astounding if you look back at old posts or articles about the New York of the 1990's. Throw in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, and the rise of smart phones and the apps that we all use to manage our day to day life, and life today would be almost unrecognizable to someone from 20 years ago.

I'm looking forward to listening to the final production and the feedback that comes from the listeners.

Friday, April 21, 2017

The I.R.S. Will Use Private Debt Collectors?

The New York Times has a story today about the I.R.S. beginning to use outside private debt collection companies to collect on overdue tax payments. This immediately raises significant concerns that the most vulnerable tax payers could be quickly targeted through this system.

For years I have worked with individuals who have been targeted by pay day loan companies and fake debt collectors who have purchased information from the pay day loan companies to use to try to scam individuals. Now, armed with the knowledge that private debt collectors are going to be used by the I.R.S., these scammers will have a whole new angle to prey upon people with their scams.

The optimists in Washington will hope that these private debt collectors will not violate any laws or rules and will be effective in collecting these debts, which the article estimates to be at $138 billion. It probably helps us all if the government is able to collect on money that it is properly owed, but this sort of system will create a whole new type of scam to prey upon people.

Going forward, it will be even more important for people to verify that the debt collector who is on the phone is really collecting an authentic debt...


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

All's Quiet on the Social Media Front?

It seems like things have been pretty quiet across the social media front for me recently, but that's more a result of all of the extra things that have been popping up with my new office that have been taking up a lot more of my time than I anticipated.

In the middle of all of this, I saw a great post from Seth Godin about Avoiding the good/great chasm. It's a short post, but it hits home about the importance of spending time on the things you really need to spend time on. His opening example about Twitter is a good example:

You can be good at Twitter in about five minutes a day. Spending ten minutes doesn't make you twice as good... in fact, there's probably little measurable improvement. To be great at Twitter might take five hours of daily effort.
All the time in between five minutes and five hours is wasted. You're in a chasm with no measurable benefits.

Often I find that my clients, and, admittedly, me as well, are spending a lot of extra time on things that don't really add a lot of value to what we are working on. To truly make that extra work pay off (i.e. getting to the "Great"), we would have to dedicate far more time than we have. So instead, we try to find ways to make things more productive and less time consuming. We don't always need to be the absolute best at everything, but can get much farther by being the best at our core businesses or products to really get ahead.
If you haven't signed up for Seth's email list, I suggest you go do it now. It's one of the emails I look forward to reading each morning.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Finally Settled Into my New Office

It seems like it has taken forever, but I'm finally situated in my new office. Three days of moving my files and things into the office have kept me busy, and I can now be found at:

6800 France Avenue South, Suite 190
Edina, Minnesota 55435

My phone number is still the same, (612) 294-6982, and of course my email is the same as it always has been.

Looking forward to seeing clients in my new office...