Notes from a conversation with Isaac Ezer and Andrew Louis

Isaac and Andrew dropped by for tea and a wonderful conversation yesterday. =) Here are some rough notes from our conversation.
  • Experiments with outsourcing: Andrew had been interested in trying out something like that, but he hasn't yet taken the plunge. I told them a few stories about things that work and a few things that don't work so well, and I shared some tips on how to get started. (Start small. Be prepared to learn. Think of it as an iterative process.) Isaac might find it really useful to have an assistant manage his social calendar the next time that he's in town for two weeks.
  • The importance of managing energy, both in terms of when you do work and who you hang out with. Happy people bring a whole lot to your life, while unhappy people cost energy. Friends are important. =)
  • Andrew told us how he works the equivalent of three days a week and spends the rest of the time attending events and living life. As a result, he gets to enjoy lots of opportunities just because he's around. =)
  • Small talk as a game: Isaac and Andrew encouraged me to keep trying it, and shared that it's something you can practice and get good at.
  • Personal contact relationship management: I described the system I have in Emacs and how I've been trying to find web-based equivalents (Google Contacts, LinkedIn, and Batchbook still don't quite measure up). Isaac suspects there might be a business opportunity in there.
  • Culture: Isaac shared stories from Japan and Korea
  • Critical Mass: Andrew told us about the Critical Mass event last FRiday.
  • Personal finance: Andrew asked me if I bought the I Will Teach You to Be Rich book. I told him that personal finance books typically don't address my situation, and we talked about what's next (creating opportunities, enjoying life, and so on.)
  • Facebook: Andrew finds Facebook to be really useful for asking questions, although he doesn't like it when people send him Facebook messages instead of e-mailing.
  • LifeCamp: We should have another one, with speakers this time. That would be cool! =)
  • Music: Isaac played a couple of pieces for us, hooray! He's got a gig next weekend. Looking forward to it.
  • Entrepreneurship: Tokyo and Toronto
  • Swing dancing: good stuff, and not a bad filter for finding friends; the power of niche interests
... and lots of other good stuff, too.

Three people, three hours of conversation, and plenty of good things learned and shared. Looking forward to our next conversation!