Season of uncertainty for shellfishermen

Season of uncertainty for shellfishermen (January 15, 2007)

“Welcome to ”As the Oyster Turns,” the continuing saga of the beloved bivalve and the people who can’t live without them. When last we met, warm weather was flooding the flats, mostly a good thing. But could danger lurk behind the balmy days?”

Having hoped to do some clamming this weekend, but deciding not to out of laziness, I realize it’s been a while since this blog has held up its tagline’s promise of talking about clamming strategies. Today’s Cape Cod Times has an interesting article that talks about the practice of “pitting” oysters — removing them from their beds where they can be damaged by extremely low winter temperatures and the scouring action of winter ice — and parking them in a basement storage area where they can sit out the winter, dormant, out of water. I did not know that.

Not an issue this year, as this looks like the winter that isn’t.

One year anniversary

Today is the one-year anniversary of me and Lenovo. As John Lennon sang, “..and what have you done? Another year over and a new one just begun.”

I tend to take start-date anniversaries seriously. October 11, 1988 was my start-date at Forbes and every year my editor, Bill Baldwin, would sit me down with all the stories I had written in the previous 26 issues, and let me know where I stood and what I should work on.

At McKinsey start-dates weren’t important. The entire firm went into introspection mode twice a year in July and December.

Anyway, if I had to list the ten professional milestones of 2006 for me, in roughly chronological order:

  1. Assimilation: Lowell Bryan at McKinsey told me, “No one is fully effective for six months.” I don’t know when exactly I began to feel comfortable in my own skin, but the first few months were predictably confusing as I learned Lenovo’s acronyms and internal vocabulary.
  2. Metrics: I brought in Omniture SiteCatalyst to measure our online marketing.
  3. Blogs: I launched the first corporate blog. It would have been sooner, but I was out of action due to the Memorial Day Bicycle Incident.
  4. Proactive Support: I started an informal blog monitoring and service/fulfillment support program with Mark Hopkins.
  5. Interactive advertising: we shifted dramatically towards a “direct” model of advertising, using metrics to back up the expense to revenue ratios.
  6. Viral: some good viral was produced (not by me), but I think I can take credit for changing some attitudes about the role of viral.
  7. Quality of Life: recovering from the Bicycle Incident put the long-distance commute between Cape Cod and North Carolina to the test. I think I have achieved equilibrium.
  8. Big Idea: not to jinx it, but I think I am succeeding in selling the big one for 2007.
  9. IT: we’ve brought in some new thinking to the types of systems needed to support a world-class interactive marketing group. These should bear fruit this year.
  10. Influence: slowly but surely I’ve built my network and have a much better idea today about who does what, etc. than I did in January 2006.

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