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My New England Adventure to Meet the TimTech Nerds – Part One.

Timeline: New England, Monday November 7, 2011.

new england tree 118

I had set my alarm clock for 6.30am. Well, come to think about it, that is not strictly true. Only three sentences into this into this article and already I am having to correct a little white lie.

I don’t use alarm clocks any more and have not done so for many years. My “alarm clock” is my iPhone. I love the fact that this thin, flat little metal-and-glass rectangle turns into whatever I want it to be at the touch of a finger.

This morning it was to be an alarm clock, but as usual in circumstances like this, it wasn’t needed.
Circumstances like this? Well, I mean those times when I am about to set off on an exciting adventure…in this case four days in New England.

I had woken up early, it was still dark and I had no idea of the time so I groped around blindly for my watch, a device which doubles up as an iPhone and which in 59 minutes time would be my alarm clock.

I spent much of those 59 minutes thinking about what I might do during the four days ahead. Some people, when visiting a new location, will make detailed plans in advance setting out what they will do from hour to hour but that is not my style.

All I knew for certain was that when Amtrak’s Northeast Regional Service 170 pulled into Providence, Rhode Island, at 11.46am I was to look out for TimTech’s Justin Ledvina.

I had a reservation on the 8.30am train from Penn Station and I had two subway trains to catch in order to get there. I would take the Manhattan-bound 7 local service to the end of the line at Times Square and then change to the 1, 2, or 3 southbound service to Penn Station just one stop away.

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I like the New York metro service, it is like the London Underground, except more efficient and much, much cheaper.

Subway train in Manhattan

Subway train in Manhattan

I arrived early enough to get some breakfast at the station but with literally dozens of food outlets vying for my custom which one was I to choose?

Everyone else knew exactly what they wanted for breakfast, where to get it and they ordered their meals with practiced efficiency.

I, on the other hand, provided some early morning comic relief, for the regular commuters. I would wander into a store, check the menu, wander out again, check the menu at the next store, join a line for service, change my mind again, join a line at another store and still not know what I wanted to eat.

food at Penn Station

food at Penn Station

In the end I grabbed a turkey and Swiss cheese sandwich and an iced coffee to eat on the train.
I also purchased two newspapers and a paperback novel and boarded my train with two minutes to spare.

Different people have different routines for long train journeys; some must have music constantly playing on an iPod or similar device, others develop an almost irrational urge to shout into their mobile phones (“I’m on the train. I said I’m on the train. Yes the train. Sorry I can’t hear you we went through a tunnel. Yes the reception is bad. I think it is because I am on the train…”)  but I like to read, look out of the window and then read some more.

I managed to get some work done, look out of the window and read both the papers during the journey and when I arrived Justin was waiting for me at the station.

Leaving Manhattan on the Amtrak Train

View from a train...leaving Manhattan on the Boston-bound Amtrak service.

We grabbed a sandwich for lunch, had a quick tour of the neighborhood and then went to Justin’s house to do some work.

It came as no surprise to me to learn that Justin is exactly the same in real life as he is in front of the camera on TELive and T3, if perhaps a little less pixellated when he moves.

I mean the guy is literally the same. There are no “airs and graces” for the camera; no quick switch to teaching talk or marketer mode and this is so refreshing to see.

Justin often speaks about how small his office is and he is correct; if it was a car the salesman would no doubt describe it as ‘functional and compact.’

When I visited, Justin had a three monitor workstation array in front of him and there was a large whiteboard on the wall immediately to the left of his desk. At the top, written in black marker pen and underlined in red was Justin’s personal mission statement.

Justin mission statement

Justin

If you want to find out more about Justin’s mission statement and why he has one, then he has recently made a video about it on his blog.

Shortly after I arrived I was allowed to listen in on a Skype video conference call with other members of the TimTech team where plans for the week ahead were being discussed.

One of the things I love about TimTech is that it just seems to flow so naturally. There is not this stuffy system where official memos are sent around and instructions handed down from on high.

Instead everyone knows their strengths, everyone knows the part they play in the development of the company and they just get on with it.

Without warning, Tim asked me how many miles I had flown from the UK to be in the US. He doesn’t tend to do ‘hello’ or ‘goodbye’ a lot but, instead, will often just start talking when he has something to say.

I guessed that it was “about 3,500 miles” but, to be honest, I wasn’t keeping track of the distance on the flight over.

It seems that Tim didn’t like my guesstimate and came back a few moments later to tell me it was actually 3,460 miles. I had no idea why he wanted to know and he didn’t tell me.

I got to find out a few hours later when I checked my email to discover that Tim had sent out this email to the TimTech mailing list:

Patrick Griffin's here email

I felt very honored to have been asked to take part in the seminar and it was touching to see that the email had been sent out mentioning me in it.

Justin had an idea for this evening’s T3 seminar and it was to ask people the question “Why are you here?”

We thought it would be an idea to just talk around that topic to come up with some ideas for the evening seminar but first Justin said it was time for coffee.

He disappeared for a while and returned with a small, rectangular cardboard box which had once contained sachets of cat food but which was now filled with individual servings of different flavored coffees.

The label on the box said something like: “whitefish and tuna dinner, liver and chicken dinner, savory salmon feast” so I put my hand in and hoped for the best.

I can drink virtually any flavor of coffee but I was hoping that liver and chicken was not really going to be one of the options.

coffee

I think I ended up with hazelnut flavor coffee, it was delicious and there was not even a hint of tuna dinner anywhere to be found.

In the next hour or so – and flowing from just that one question – we batted ideas back and forth just based on that one simple question.

I took notes in the big pink notebook I had bought specially for the occasion and that discussion we had just had, formed the basis for the T3 show which was to follow.

my notebook

 

Like I said earlier, I felt so honored to have been asked to co-host the show with Justin and I was determined not to let him down but I kept thinking:

‘What if I can’t think of anything to say when we go live?’

After all it was then only about six months since I had signed up to CTP and now here I was in the home office of the CEO of TimTech preparing to co-host their live flagship weekly T3 training program.

We did not produce a script or decide who was going to say this or that – instead Justin made me another coffee from the cat food selection box – and we delivered the training in the form of a conversation between the two of us.

It was a great show with up to 96 people in the room, a mix of regulars and some new faces.

Well when I say it was a great show what I mean is that we received great feedback from people who were in the room. Actually my recollection is that I had been speaking with Justin for about ten minutes but when we looked at the time, the entire hour had nearly passed.

Earlier Justin had squeezed a camera and tripod in to the space between the main monitor and the back wall to record the show but we were both a little disappointed to learn that it had stopped filming after just five minutes.

After the show I was on a real high. It is a great feeling to feel passionate about something and to be able to communicate that passion to others.

It is what I want to do.

After the show Justin drove me back to my hotel and I was still on such a high that I just wanted to get back into the TELive room and see if the show was still going on.

Luckily it was so I listened to it to the end and then spent the next couple of hours working on my blog, responding to that day’s emails and checking Twitter.

It was great to see so many tweets from people who enjoyed the show. Here are just a couple of them:

T3 tweet

T3 tweet 1

When I checked in to the hotel I noticed that it had a pool but something told me that on this trip I would have no chance to find any time for swimming…and I was right.

Tomorrow I was going to meet Larry and Tim. It was to be another memorable, fun-filled and action-packed day, but for now it was already into the small hours of Tuesday morning and time to get a few hours sleep.

Next week: I will tell you what happened when I met two more of the TimTech team but, until then, please feel free to leave a comment and let me know what you think of the story so far.

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17 Responses to My New England Adventure to Meet the TimTech Nerds – Part One.

  1. Justin Ledvina
    Twitter:
    UNITED STATES
    January 14, 2012 at 7:14 am #

    This comment had to be long even though all I wanted to tell Blain I was FIRST!
    Justin Ledvina thinks you may like this post too..You Can’t Change Me, But….My Profile

    • Patrick Griffin
      Twitter:
      UNITED KINGDOM
      January 14, 2012 at 7:27 am #

      Well done Justin.
      As Blain found to his cost I have set the comments up so there is a minimum word count.
      You just scraped by with your comment here!
      Good that you are first though as you are featured quite prominently in the post.
      Expect more of the same this time next week.
      …and the week after too.
      Patrick Griffin thinks you may like this post too..Friday Newsletter: January 13, 2012.My Profile

  2. Rob P. Cruisin
    Twitter:
    AUSTRALIA
    January 14, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    G’day Patrick,

    Great read and it sounds like you enjoyed the adventure.

    Looking forward to the next installment.

    Rob

    Yikes I left Comment :)

  3. Sergio Felix
    Twitter:
    MEXICO
    January 14, 2012 at 7:52 am #

    Hey Patrick,

    Well I’m just happy to say that I was in this T3 conference from start to end and I can say I enjoyed it a LOT.

    Certainly a very fun and entertaining day at T3 Live I remember you guys were wearking black and you looked really young.

    I can tell right away that I guess this was the exact moment when I thought you were going to make it big, so natural on camera yet so passionate.

    I loved your interaction with Justin and the audience, I can only wish this could repeat again any time soon.

    Sergio
    Sergio Felix thinks you may like this post too..Turn The PageMy Profile

    • Patrick Griffin
      Twitter:
      UNITED KINGDOM
      January 15, 2012 at 2:07 pm #

      Hi Sergio,
      Yes I remember that you were at that conference and I remember I was very happy to see you there also.
      If the TimTech guys ever let me back into New England it would be great to do it again some time.
      It is amazing that we covered so much ground in the four days I was there that it took me three super long blog posts to write about it all.
      I guess we both go for the super long posts these days eh?
      Take care and talk soon.
      P.
      Patrick Griffin thinks you may like this post too..Friday Newsletter: January 13, 2012.My Profile

  4. Jocelyn Jones
    Twitter:
    UNITED STATES
    January 14, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

    Hey Patrick! LOL I still am laughing about your description of the cat food and the coffee and the way you described it! I could just picture it. OMG, too funny! You really do have such a wonderful way of describing things so the reader can visualize your story as they are reading it. I think it is ABSOLUTELY wonderful that you had the opportunity to make the trip and am honored that you are sharing your experience with us! Have an AWESOME Weekend! :)
    Jocelyn Jones thinks you may like this post too..ATTENTION! Get 680+Personal Growth and Business Building Products, Services & Memberships Absolutely FREE!My Profile

  5. Kent Faver
    Twitter:
    UNITED STATES
    January 14, 2012 at 5:50 pm #

    Very inspiring thoughts Patrick. You have a true gift – felt like I was along for a wonderful journey. Thanks!
    Kent Faver thinks you may like this post too..List Building – What is the Truth?My Profile

  6. Catherine White
    Twitter:
    UNITED STATES
    January 14, 2012 at 11:30 pm #

    I’m looking forward to next weeks follow up story.
    It seems you had quite and adventure in the ole USA.
    Thank you for taking us along on your journey in to Tim Tech land.
    Catherine White thinks you may like this post too..One Week In, Now What?My Profile

  7. Larry Dame 3
    Twitter:
    UNITED STATES
    January 14, 2012 at 11:51 pm #

    Patrick great blog post. We did love having you live at t3 as you did add alot to it. The catfood box was great as well. Cannot wait for the part two of this story
    Larry Dame 3 thinks you may like this post too..K Cups from One Cup with Larry “the Timtech Support Guy”My Profile

  8. Paul Caraway UNITED STATES January 20, 2012 at 9:08 am #

    Thank you for sharing an inside and personal perspective on your trip to visit with members of the TimTech team. Many times we think that people reach a certain level or goal in life making them untouchable. Then we realize / discover they are just like we are in many ways. Like minded people is the best way to describe that common thread. You have a gift in writing your stories and adventures in this case! Thank you for sharing them in your blog. It is refreshing and entertaining to see your posts!

    Thank you,
    Paul Caraway
    More Power To You!