Family First!

How I work from home

To successfully work from home, I follow some simple rules allowing me to stay focused and productive.

Notifications

  1. Silence all acustical notifications
  2. Disallow all optical notifications

Work, Meetings and Time-Boxings

  1. Make a To-Do-List and work accordingly
  2. Don’t be frustrated if you don’t get all tasks done from your list – review them, schedule them for the next day, adjust
  3. Don’t do back-to-back-meetings
  4. Keep time-boxings for meetings
  5. Turn your camera on and focus on the meeting
  6. Take notes

Breaks

  1. Take regular breaks (like 5mins every hour)
  2. Allow yourself to get distracted once in a while, don’t punish yourself for it – in the end, we’re all humans, aren’t we?
  3. Get outside, when the weather allows for it, walk around, enjoy the nature

Infrastructure

  1. Invest in your infrastructure – if not already present, buy a good monitor, a good keyboard and perhaps (although currently overpriced as hell) a good webcam
  2. Invest in your meeting equipment – if not already present, buy a comfy headset, don’t use in-ears for longer meetings
  3. Invest in your interactive equipment – buy a good keyboard and a good mouse
  4. Invest in your working zone – get a good desk and a professional chair

Family-Life

Family first
  1. If your significant other is working from home as well, then use separate rooms, if possible
  2. If your kids are at home, then don’t punish them for being kids – just take the time for them, involve them, give them tasks if necessary, introduce them, wrap your day around them
  3. Take your time for your family

I try to work and live according to these rules. To me, this works out.

Hope, it does for you as well.

Prepared for a longer stay at home

The past days, I was re-activating and refitting my old iMac, allowing me to work on a big screen. In parallel, I also moved some other equipment, such as an additional monitor, a professional microphone, a way more comfortable chair and a bigger desk to my new workplace.

My workplace

I have to say, I’m quite happy with this arrangement. It allows for professional work, and I still have some room left. I need to do something in regard to the blank wall behind, but that is an additional step.

Cool. I’m settled! 🙂

Living Home-Office

To me, being trapped at home is quite a new experience. I am used to work remotely for the past 15 years, so no issue with that, but now that I am forced to work from home (a stationary location), my Laptop might not be my best companion anymore, at least for the foreseeable future. So I figured, I had to change something…

My approach to working from home is to use my old 2009 iMac (which I understood to be some hobby project to me) as my main computer, at least as long as raw power is not required. I therefore executed some minor upgrades: I moved it into my “new” workspace at home, added an SSD, changed the graphics card, connected a professional webcam. Today I will replace the desk with bigger one and add 32 GB of RAM. And then I’ll be fine working here the next months. 🙂

My old iMac is my main work computer 🙂

And, BTW: I love having 27 inches. I wished my laptop would have this screen size. 🙂

A symbol of freedom

To me, things as the channel tunnel are signs of freedom and peace. We should never forget how the world looked like 75 years ago.

Having this in mind, I enjoy doing business as a German in each European county, regardless of being a member of EU or not. And especially I enjoy doing business and meeting awesome people in the UK, where I’ll stay until sunday.

#europe #peace #business #ceo #cloud #cloudnative #cloudexcellence

Over and out for Twitter

I have to admit: I was a Twitter-fanatic back then. I used it for 10 years now, but for the past couple of years, Twitter got more and more irrelevant to me personally, so I mainly utilized it for sharing business-announcements and the likes.

Twitter Logo taken from Wikipedia

That could have continued for the next ten years, but there is a different aspect in Twitter disturbing me: The discussion culture, or better: The lack of any discussion culture.

Discussions vs. Shouting

I was raised with a culture of asking and discussing. That was something, I liked in the Newsgroups in the 90s and in many, many forums. It was a matter of respect, allowing others to make their point and to hear their arguments – and discussing them, attacking the arguments (not the person) and always knowing there’s a person on the other end. That gave things a personal aspect, there was room for irony, jokes and even friendships growing from there.

I learned a lot from this. It widened my horizon. It allowed me to grow.

With Twitter, this is different.

Twitter is not a place for discussion or for learning from other people’s arguments. Twitter is for shouting out, for sharing something without caring about any others, since there is no such things as threads, moderation and a common sense, as you have (or had) with other platforms. It is about being the loudest, mobilizing people, shortening things to just headlines. It is about black and white – and nothing in-between. There is no room for personal aspects, for irony or jokes, since pretty much everything is dragged out onto the public. There is no humanity anymore, there are Twitter-bots and a loud, cheering crowd.

That changed discussion culture in our society: We have a US-president, who’s making politics by using Twitter. We have shitstorms. We have right-winged parties just pushing and hating – and communities, that behave the same.

Perhaps I’m too old for that

I don’t want to be part of that game anymore.

Perhaps I’m too old, perhaps I’m too conservative, perhaps I’m too naive – but I usually expect people to get in touch instead of just starting shitstorms, I expect people to express their questions, criticism and concerns towards me before mobilizing masses. And I don’t see that happening anymore with Twitter. Because it is so easy to just attack instead of asking or instead of discussing (and accepting other points of view). Black-White is always easier than Colors and Shades.

That is not the way I want to be involved in discussions. That is not the way I want to operate. That is not what defines me. That is not what reflects me, my ideas, my wishes and expectations.

Bye, bye

Therefore: Farewell, Twitter. We’re going different paths, I do not want to be part of the shouting crowd anymore. There are more important things in life than Twitter and a culture of obsession and being loud. I doubt reaching the right people here with the right messages. My company will perhaps remain with Twitter, but I’ll quit that chapter for me.

Now.

Feels good to me.

Go and vote!

In September 1939, World War II began, causing a minimum of 60mio casualties. Just six years before that, in January 1933, the last free elections were held in Germany – allowing the Nazis to take over and to start their match towards total war.

European Flag, picture taken from https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Europe

When there is one thing to take away from that, it is to do the right thing: Go, and cast your vote at the European Elections this Sunday.

There is no sense in remaining at home or in trying to utilize the internet for any kind of outrage or hoping something will change without standing up for it: That will not change anything, because that does not matter in the end, that’s just noise.

Just go and vote, since the moment of truth is at the elections and if you want to convince people of your opinion, reach out to them and talk to them. One by one.

Vote on Sunday!

Life at Cloudibility (XIV):What makes us unique and why is worth fighting for it

logo_cloudibility_rgb_transparent_square_smallTL’DR:

Cloudibility is about mindset and culture, about respect and values. We will ensure it stays that way, we will focus on these aspects and will emphasize them even more, even if it might imply some pains. Because, it is worth it. We are worth it.

The long text:

At Cloudibility, we strive to be special. We try to live a different kind of mentality compared to more traditional corporations. We try to work in cross-functional, self-organized teams and with an “If it’s not there, then let’s build it”-attitude. Approaches like “we always did it that way” or “I am the boss and tell you what to do” are not part of our mindset.

But, what is our mindset instead?

Well, our mindset is the mindset of a Startup. We’re active minds. We want to create, shape and solve, instead of griping and moaning. We understand not everything might be in place or working out to our satisfaction – but we don’t see this as an issue, instead we try to set up and create the missing parts on our own, we try to iterate and deliver.

We value the freedom of every individual to learn, to understand and to improve – but we understand this freedom not as something which ends in itself, but something which can only be lived when we also work hard to ensure our stability as a company.

We love our customers, since they allow us to earn our well-deserved money – but we don’t fear them or simply do what they want us to do, instead we’re striving to support them the best we can and with the best outcome possible for them. Supporting our customers is way more than simply accepting tasks – it is about understanding our customer’s needs, seeing issues and solving them, even proactively and perhaps even without ever getting honored for doing so. It is not about sitting in meetings and simply being present, it is about ownership, acting and delivering results.

We love our colleagues and we love working with them, not against them. We’re not trying to “lead” them by expressing negative narratives or by imposing any kind of male dominance, instead we try find solutions and try to convince our fellow team members with arguments. Collaboration, not dominance, is the key for us – even if the better argument might not be our own argument.

It is also about the way we express ourselves – not aggressively or loud, instead being open and respectful to and with each other.

There are many more things that make up for the Cloudibility mentality, have a look at our Leadership Principles and understand them the way they are meant: As principles, to be weighted and prioritized against each other ever and ever again, in each and every situation we are confronted with – not every principle will be applicable to every situation, but it should give you something to think about and to act upon. And try to understand their implications when being lived.

And realize: We insist of living them.

What does this imply?

Cloudibility is very much about mindset, reflection and culture. It is about the way we want to interact, about the way we want to execute our daily business and about the way we want to see ourselves. Since we are growing, it becomes very important to stick to our convictions, to act instead of trying to react, to save ourselves from becoming a more traditional, hierarchically organized and executing company. Because, that’s not what we are and that’s not what we want to be in the future.

We believe in a more modern, agile and active approach to things. We believe in the power of teams instead of embracing those egoistic problem-solvers to be found quite often. We believe in a more substantial, more social, more ecological and more human approach of work and interacting, without being weak or exploitable or allowing others to weaken or exploit us.

And we will grow even more in the next months to come.

And that’s why we emphasize on culture and mindset. That’s why we feel like living and understanding our Leadership Priniciples is that substantial. And that’s why we favour mindset and culture over technical skills and existing expertise.

We are Cloudibility, and we will continue to be it!

Promised.