Blog Archives

How I Work

The elearning community’s Curator-in-Chief David Kelly recently created his own version of Lifehacker’s How I Work series and challenged others to do the same. Great idea, Dave! Here’s more than you ever cared to know about me.

Tampa, FL

Current gig
Senior Technical Writer at Healthesystems

Current mobile device
Samsung Galaxy Nexus (I’m the only Android person so far?)
The “New” iPad (which is no longer new)

Current computer
Work: Dell Blahblah Something laptop running Windows 7
Home: Self-built computer dual-booting Snow Leopard and Windows 8 (Yup, it’s a Hackintosh)

One word that best describes how you work
Craftsmanlike (a terribly awkward word, I know)

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without?
OneNote, Kindle, Doggcatcher, Nike+ Running, Tasker, Dropbox, Twitter, Google Maps, and Goodreads.

What’s your workspace like?
Rather uninteresting, I’m afraid. Gray cubicle walls and random papers lying all over the place. Aside from the books, the only “flair” I have is stuff given away during company fun days (hence the lei), and Master Yoda presiding over my shelf.


What’s your best time-saving trick?
Lists (see below).

What’s your favorite to-do list manager?
OneNote is my jam. The ability to tag and search makes it incredibly powerful. It also functions a bit like my second brain, where I can write copious notes and sketch out wacky new ideas that I may not reference until months later. It’s really amazing, and I’m a bit of an evangelist for it at work.

The post-it note pad and white board also get used for lists when I require physical media, or when I’m in a panic.

Besides your phone and computer, what gadget can’t you live without?
My running shoes. Do they count as gadgets? Considering all the technology that goes into them, I’ll say yes. I picked up running a year ago as way to get in shape, but I’ve come to enjoy it for what it is. For decompressing from the day or just exploring the neighborhood, there’s nothing better.

What everyday thing are you better at than anyone else?
Looking back at some of my answers, I think it’s writing sentences that feature parentheses.

What do you listen to while you work?
I listen to a lot of podcasts, usually The Morning Stream or anything from the TWiT network while at work. When I need to focus on writing or some other task, I like instrumental music. Some of my favorites are Broke for Free, The Mercury Program, and Little People. The Downtempo Electronica and Dubstep Pandora stations also get a bit of play now and then.

Are you more of an introvert or extrovert?
Introvert for sure. I’m not the most outgoing of people, but I can be pretty relaxed around those I’m comfortable with. Meetings can be a challenge, but I’ve learned ways to adapt and leverage my introverted tendencies to my advantage. I try to always compose some thoughts prior to any meeting, and if I have the time I’ll actually create something (a detailed plan or hasty sketch of an idea) beforehand. Even if the meeting drives things in a completely different direction, the simple act of creating helps me consolidate my scattered thoughts.

What’s your sleep routine like?
The standard 6-9 hours a night, usually more towards the low end of that range. It all depends on how cranky my cat is, though.

Fill in the blank. I’d love to see ______ answer these same questions.
You! If you haven’t already. I find most famous people I admire have done this or something similar. Seriously. Type “a day in the life {name}” or “how i work {name}” into Google and there’s a pretty good chance you’ll find an answer.

This is how I found answers from Elon Musk, Gina Trapani, and Neil Gaiman.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
If your job isn’t letting you do the work you want to do, do it yourself.