>>> Note: I'll be on vacation next week, so there won't be a newsletter. See you again in two weeks!
Tyler from Less Annoying Business here. Here's what's new:
Set realistic customer service expectations [Blog post]
Two weeks ago, I wrote about how the best customer service is delivered during normal business hours. This week, I wanted to share an easy trick for how to get customers on board with this approach.
Interview on the Mixergy podcast [Podcast]
I was interviewed on Mixergy, which is kind of a big deal for me because it's one of the resources I used for inspiration and advice when I was just getting started as an entrepreneur.
Throwing things at the wall to see what sticks [Podcast]
This week, we discuss whether or not Rick can cut out some of the complexity from his business now that he knows what's working and what's not.
What I've been working on
I'm the main designer at Less Annoying CRM, but the developers have been working on a lot of projects that don't involve much design (e.g. improving performance, building a new API, etc.). As a result, I've gone most of this year without doing much design work. That's starting to change.
The devs are about to dive into a bunch of new features that will involve meaningful UI (user interface) improvements. That means two things for me:
- I've been designing a lot more recently so I can stay ahead of the developers. This is much more creative work than the other things I've been working on (management mostly) and it's both exhausting and extremely rewarding. I love this work.
- I want to become a better designer. I especially want to learn more about visual design because that's a weakness of mine. I joined the waiting list for ShiftNudge, and I bought Tailwind UI in the hopes that I can get some inspiration from that.
Also, as noted at the top of this email, I won't be working next week. I'm doing a staycation here in St. Louis, and I'll try to unplug as much as possible. As a result, there won't be a newsletter next weekend, but I'll be back the following week.
Good stuff on the internet
The CEO of No [Article]
This is a really interesting article about some things Andrew Wilkinson does to keep his work life sane and balanced. I enjoyed that the article gets deep into his specific tactics rather than just sharing generic concepts.
At the same time, I'm conflicted. When extremely successful people explain how they have calm lives, it almost always comes down to delegation. But what never gets addressed is: What about the lives of the people you delegate to? In this article, Andrew says that he's basically unproductive every afternoon. Would he be ok with his employees saying the same thing?
Don't get me wrong, I fully understand that Andrew owns the business and can do whatever he wants. I'm not sure there's really any way around the reality that people who own things hold a disproportionate amount of power (this applies to businesses, real estate, etc.). But there are so many thought leaders talking about delegation, hiring virtual assistants, the 4-hour work week, etc. and I wish these conversations would acknowledge that none of these approaches are actually "calm", they're just shifting the stress to someone else. There's a whole different set of things that can be done to make a business calm for everyone at the business (e.g. async communication, accepting lower profit margins, hiring more people so that no one needs to be overworked, etc.)