Engage14 Cayman Islands – Day 1 Recap

Always an outstanding event, Engage14, the luxury wedding summit, is even more of everything this year.  I first attended an Engage conference in 2009 and it was a game changer for me.  I met incredibly motivating people who would shape my entrepreneurial thinking over the next several years.  2014 is the first Engage conference held in Cayman for three years, and is an opportunity to learn from the superstars of the industry, to network with the forward thinking, and to brag on Cayman a bit.

Rather than verbatim reporting, my recap series will be short key takeaways of the speakers and events each day.  Read on.

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Fall In Love With Writing (Again)

This is not my normal ‘type’ of post.  It’s not really a review either.  It is more of an ‘homage’ to good design and hard work.  Read on.

About two years ago I put a tiny bit of funding into a Kickstarter project being developed by John Saddington.  (By the way, if you want a textbook on how to run a Kickstarter study the blog posts on that Kickstarter link I just shared).  Pressgram was John’s attempt to allow users to tell beautiful stories through photography, but without having to give up any rights or confer any third-party ownership.  It was a gorgeous app, but to be fair, it was an ambitious project that was always going to have a hard time against the big boys in the room.  Pressgram has now closed down, but I have the t-shirt to prove I was there.

Desk, a publishing app for OS X is what has occupied John’s time since the last project (aside from Ironyard, speaking engagements, family, etc.).  3,146 hours to be exact, over the past year.

The result?  Simplicity.  Elegance.  Beauty.  Technical accomplishment (full formatting, HTML / Markdown / media capability baked in).  Desk is a product that will encourage you to start blogging, or, perhaps, get you to start writing again.

Newly Minted Teenager

My house is on lockdown.  My daughter just became a teenager.  Only the latter of these comments is true, but thinking of the years ahead perhaps a lockdown may not be the worst of ideas.  Then again, I think things are probably going to be OK.

Taylor Celebrates

I have been secretly dreading this day, and I think deep down most dads feel the same way.  Turning 13 really is a number that signifies change in a way that no other age does.

Change from the little girl who wanted to dance on your feet at parties into a young lady with a mischievous streak that now takes great joy in tickling my tummy.

Amateur Versus Professional

Lately there have been a number of instances in my personal and professional life that have left me pondering this question. Was the person I just dealt with an amateur or a professional? I don’t mean are they professional as in highly educated, or amateur as in doing something in their spare time. I’m talking about one masquerading as the other. Read on (and my apology in advance if this sounds a bit like a rant).

Bus Sotp (c) Ross Parry

Bus Sotp (c) Ross Parry

I’m a firm believer in entrepreneurial spirit.  On the other hand I am also a realist.  Just because you are an incredible carpenter does not mean you are going to be able to open an incredible carpentry company.  A magnificent cook is often well served continuing to cook for friends in their home and not heeding the advice of those same friends who say, “you know, you really ought to open a restaurant.”

I can’t tell you how many stores I have been into lately that seem to have no clue whatsoever.  The joke is clearly on me and the rest of the people who allow such a business to continue in operation.  How else could a business that says they open at 9 stay in business when in fact they really mean, 9 ish… sometime between 9 and 9:30.  Why would I expect that a question on availability of a certain size be met with anything other than, “I don’t know.”