Gangplank Tucson Featured in Tucson Weekly

Not quite sure what Gangplank Tucson does for the community or how we got started?  Check out my TQ&A interview with Mari Herreras inside the Tucson Weekly.  The article focuses on the answers to the following questions: :

  • What is Gangplank and where is it located?
  • How did I get involved with Gangplank?
  • What’s the connection between Bookmans and Gangplank?
  • How did Gangplank come to Tucson?
  • What type of events take place at Gangplank Tucson?

For the answers to these questions and to learn more information about Gangplank Tucson’s origination, read the full interview at Tucson Weekly.

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Tips for better framing in e-mail communications

Tired of being asked for more context from your boss or co-workers?

I had a situation a few days ago where an co-worker sends me a quick instant message on the computer.  “Should I set these two items to be dependent on each other?”  he asked.  A few hours prior we had been working on a project together, but the question didn’t really seem relevant to that.  I sat there for a few moments puzzled, staring at the screen.  Finally, I gave up on trying to put the mental puzzle together and asked “What in the world are you talking about?”

You hear over and over again in business that you must be sure to “frame things up” well so that you don’t lose your audience.  Unfortunately, we see this day in and day out, people assuming that the other person they are communicating with is psychic or knows exactly what happens to be on their computer screen.

I thought rather than just complaining about it, I’d put together some quick tips to possibly help others with framing things a little better using e-mail.  If this proves useful then I will probably write up tips for phone and presentation framing.

  1. Before you write a single word, think about ONE thing that you want the recipient to do as a result of this email.
  2. If this email requires action on the part of the recipient then include that in the subject.  This ensures that the reader can see immediately what they need to do.
  3. Start the email by reiterating your requested action
  4. Next, provide some framing around what you were doing and why it is you need the requested action.

Here are a few general tips:

  1. Keep it short – If you need to have a conversation then pick up the phone, don’t send an e-mail.
  2. Review before sending – re-read the entire message again from beginning to end, check your spelling, and verify clarity.

Please let me know what you think in the comments section below.

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5 Simple Steps To Your Dream Job

Have you been in your position for a while and are ready to move? Maybe you feel stalled out in your current role and want to move up or are just looking for a change. My goal with this post is to give some tips for those of you looking to move around and have a stable position currently.


Your first step in this process is to figure out what your next job is.  I personally would take a blue sky approach to this task and really think about your dream job.  Don’t hold back!  Come up with a handful of jobs that you might be interested in doing.

Conduct Interviews

Once you’ve nailed down a handful of dream jobs you need to start conducting informational interviews with potential employers.  The point of these interviews are for you to learn about how different jobs are treated at a potential employer.

I would recommend using your friends & family as well as social media networks like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to quickly identify people that are working in your dream jobs.  When you are connecting to them you’ll want to make it very clear that you aspire to work in that role and would like to learn from them about it

There are many good resources on the internet for how to conduct an “Informational Interview” which I would recommend reading through before starting.  You don’t have to make this into a big deal.  You’re simply trying to learn from them and see if the “dream job” is all it’s cracked up to be.

Choose a Position

Now that you’ve learned all about your dream job inside different organizations your next step is to choose one.  Think long and hard about what you’ve learned and which one will be the best fit for you.  You’ve already made some in-roads with people at these organizations so you’re one step closer!

You should now start assessing gaps in your skills.  You need to identify key areas where you are lacking so you can either address them using your current position or be sure to re-work your resume to cover these gaps effectively.


In many cases your dream job will not be available and you’ll need to monitor job boards like HotJobs and Monster to see when your dream job pops up.  Luckily you’ve already refined the search so it should be pretty easy to allow these sites to do the work for you.  This will ensure that you don’t end up with a slew of garbage jobs in your email box every morning.


Now that your dream job is available you should again tap into your social networks and gather some initial information about the job.  I would recommend using everything you’re able to find out about the job to ensure that you’re able to customize your resume to the position as well as nail the interview.
As you can see it just takes a little connection building, research and friendly talking to be able to nail your dream job!

Have you had success with processes like this in your career already?

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July Monsoon Sunset Panoramics

Wow, this year has been incredible for sunsets in Tucson!  I can’t remember a year where there were so many incredible photo opportunities.  I’m thinking that next year I should just put all of my shots into a single blog post as it will probably be more visually powerful.

Here are a couple more that I took with my iPhone 4 and Panorama.


Taken right behind my house

Taken from the Rillito bridge (Alvernon & River)

Taken from my driveway facing due East!

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