Ten Commandments – #1: Talk to a client or prospective client at least once every day

It’s easy for days to pass focused on internal meetings and tasks. Perhaps you get busy with a presentation or report. But each day you don’t talk to (and, more importantly, listen to) a customer is a day you are not market relevant. Clients and customers pay the bills.

Talking means in-person (preferred) or by phone. E-mail and IM do not count.

The One Big Rule

Don’t be an a**hole.

A**holes suck. Despite the somewhat Machiavellian nature of some my “rules” that will follow, if you do one thing, follow this “one big rule” and ignore everything else. Note: Neither jerk nor arrogant bastard are acceptable alternatives to a**hole.

Robert’s Rules of Work – Why I started to write these down

As I’ve gone through my career so far, I’ve noticed there are some are some rules that can make one more effective, happy, and successful at work. I can’t say I follow these all perfectly. I regularly break many of them and some of them are born out of things I know I don’t do well on very consistent basis.

Most of these were built based on my time in consulting, but I think they have applicability across the business world, and can be used within the work world more broadly. Maybe some will be helpful for life more generally. Where something is very consulting specific, I’ll try “translate” the rule for wider applicability. Some of are really specific to particular business situations. Some are very high-level and more observations about life at large.

As a self-described “hick from Maine” it’s taken me a decade of working and living in both Silicon Valley and New York City to figure these out — I’ve often suspected I was missing a secret guide that everyone else had been handed along the way. I’m sure anyone reading these will have issues with some and strongly disagree with a couple, but I hope that as a whole you find them useful. Here goes…