Monday, July 31, 2017

Need Momentum?

Suits, the legal drama now in its 7th season, is well known for its witty quotes by Harvey Specter and Mike Ross, both of which are main characters on the series. Following are some of Harvey's sayings that even me and you can utilize when you need to drum up some momentum!

1.  Sometimes good guys gotta do bad things to make the bad guys pay.
2.  It's not bragging if it's true.
3.  What are your choices when someone puts a gun to your head?  You take the gun, or you pull out a bigger one.  Or, you call their bluff.  Or, you do any one of a hundred and forty six other things.
4.  They think you care, they'll walk all over you.
5.  The ends don't justify the means until it's your ass on the line.
6.  Sorry I can't hear you over the sound of how awesome I am.
7.  Ever loved someone so much, you would do anything for them?  Yeah, well make that someone yourself and do whatever the hell you want.
8.  You always have a choice.
9.  Loyalty is a two-way street.  If I'm asking for it from you, then you're getting it from me.
10.  I refuse to answer that on the grounds that I don't want to.
11.  That's the difference between you and me, you wanna lose small, I wanna win big!
12.  Winners don't make excuses when the other side plays the game!
13.  I don't get lucky.  I make my own luck.
14.  Anyone can do my job, but no one can be me.
15.  I don't take meetings, I set them, and my respect isn't demanded, it's earned.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Who Won?

Leading up to this year’s NBA draft, many around the league have been wondering where Paul George (“PG13″), a forward who has spent his entire career with the Indiana Pacers, will end up given his recently stated intentions that he prefers to play for his childhood favorite team, the Los Angeles Lakers.  PG13 becomes a free agent after the 2017-18 season ends.  Having grown up in Palmdale, PG13 is familiar with southern California and would love nothing more than to reunite with his childhood dream team.  Several sources who are close to PG13 have indicated his intentions to come back to Los Angeles next year, regardless of which team he is traded to.  So which team won the 1-year rental fight?  The Oklahoma City Thunder, which shed Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis, were the winners here, as they really didn’t give up too many assets and instead they get PG13, a proven veteran All-Star who averaged 23.7 points and 6.6 rebound during the 2016-17 season.
PG13 was coveted by many teams but the fact that he made his feelings well known that he wants to be a Laker put off many teams, but those who felt they didn't need to give up too much in exchange for 1-year (at a minimum), was enough.  In addition, whichever team traded for him would end up with his bird rights and allow them the opportunity to offer a max deal next year.
So who is the real winner here?  I tend to think the Lakers  were smart not to give up assets to acquire PG13 because they feel they are confident they will get him next year in free agency and they’ll be a far better, deeper team when they do.  The Thunder will likely not make it to the Western Conference finals, even with PG13, making it much more likely he bolts from OKC to Los Angeles.   Only time will tell.

Saturday, June 17, 2017


Recently, I was requested by INSPIRERY to do an interview about my career and my story. It was a fun experience.  Check it out!  Here's a snippet:
"Born in Fresno, California in August of 1977, Bronson Quon was the youngest of two sons belonging to the Quon family.  When he was 7 years of age, the Quon family relocated to Visalia to support the family grocery business.  From an early age, Bronson started taking Shotokan karate lessons along with his brother and earned his black belt when he was 14.  An avid sports fan, Bronson also played track and football in high school.  It was through his experience in sports where he learned teamwork, commitment, and focus.  After graduating from high school, Bronson studied business administration with an emphasis in Accounting at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo.  He was fortunate to have experienced internships at two Fortune 500 companies prior to kickstarting his career in public accounting in southern California.  The exposure to a mix of public and private businesses in various industries, as well as earning his CPA license in the state of California, helped provide a well-rounded background and eventually, Bronson went into the private industry where he has served in various financial management positions in electronic payments, real estate property tax and software-as-a-service (SAAS) in the auto industry.  The collection of industries, employers, and experiences in the business world have helped shape Bronson who he is today.  Along the way, there were both good and bad decisions, successes and failures, mistakes and emotions.  During this time, Bronson married the love of his life and has two beautiful daughters.  If there is anything Bronson has learned, it’s that family is everything.  Happy wife equals happy life, so no matter how difficult or challenging work is, the one constant in one’s life will be family.  If family is disturbed, the entire work/life balance will be disrupted."

Other interviews in the past include:

Saturday, June 3, 2017

How Good was KD?

This past Wednesday night, the Golden State Warriors took Game 1 of the Finals by sticking it to the Cleveland Cavaliers.  When King James was asked what stood out about the Warriors in Game 1, his response was "KD".  My gosh, how good was KD in Game 1?  A stat line read 38 points, 8 assists and 8 rebounds when it was all said and done.  Now, there have for sure been better performances in NBA history in the Finals.  But we all know, for those who watched, that KD was on fire.  He relished the moment and made mincemeat of any opposing player.  He drove and dunked.  He fired from 3 point range.  He completed an alley oop.  He took a charge from Lebron.  He ignored Rihanna yelling "brick".  He was everywhere and he helped the Warriors take advantage of home court.  KD has a lot to prove given his offseason transition from OKC.  Whether you agreed with his move or not, winning seems to solve a lot of problems, like shutting the haters up.  The Warriors likely would have been in the same position they're in now without KD, but I have to admit that they're a lot stronger and confident with him in the lineup.  If I was Lebron, I'd be a bit shaken from Game 1, especially with a potential 5th Final's defeat looming.  There's only been 1 game so let's not count out the Cavaliers just yet.  If history is an indicator of future performance, there's a lot of basketball left to play.  And it's going to be fun!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Ownership and Employee Empowerment

I read a recent article about rethinking how you manage that really piqued my interest.  When there are issues to be resolved and decisions to be made in the workplace, it takes a certain level of effort to get the job done.  I’ve been on both sides of the equation here — as an employee who has reported to a superior and as a manager with direct reports.  And because of this, I know that there can be different solutions taken that arrive at the same answer.  However, some solutions may be more or less efficient or effective than others.  Knowing how to effectively communicate, either employee to boss or vice versa, is important here.  The key to resolution is ownership — if one feels they are vested in the project or the issue at hand, they’ll take on responsibility and see the task to completion.  On the flip side, if there are always questions but no proposed solutions, or if one’s solutions are always discounted, there can be no real ownership.   It’s all about the appropriate level of employee empowerment!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

How Would You Answer Them?

A recent article about Apple’s interview questions was really interesting which got me thinking — as a manager, I’ve never been asked questions like this before during an interview.  I ask the typical questions about who you are, where you’ve been and what are you up to now.  I’ll usually ask a few questions to make the interviewee think, such as what is your favorite excel formula and why?  Or ask them to describe a situation that had conflict and see how they resolved it.  But it dawned on me that there is a whole other creative way to glean information from a candidate and Apple seems to have it down pat.   There are some pretty challenging questions in this article.  How would you answer them?
Following are some of them:

“A man calls in and has an older computer that is essentially a brick. What do you do?” — Apple Care At-Home Consultant candidate

“Are you smart?” — Build Engineer candidate

“Have you ever disagreed with a manager’s decision, and how did you approach the disagreement? Give a specific example and explain how you rectified this disagreement, what the final outcome was, and how that individual would describe you today.” — Software Engineer candidate

“You put a glass of water on a record turntable and begin slowly increasing the speed. What happens first — does the glass slide off, tip over, or does the water splash out?” — Mechanical Engineer candidate

“Tell me something that you have done in your life which you are particularly proud of.” — Software Engineering Manager candidate

“Are you creative? What’s something creative that you can think of?” — Software Engineer candidate

“Describe a humbling experience.” — Apple Retail Specialist candidate

“What’s more important, fixing the customer’s problem or creating a good customer experience?” — Apple At Home Advisor candidate

“Why did Apple change its name from Apple Computers Incorporated to Apple Inc.?” — Specialist candidate

“You seem pretty positive, what types of things bring you down?” — Family Room Specialist candidate

“Show me (role play) how you would show a customer you’re willing to help them by only using your voice.” — College At-Home Advisor candidate

“What brings you here today?” — Software Engineer candidate

“Given an iTunes type of app that pulls down lots of images that get stale over time, what strategy would you use to flush disused images over time?” — Software Engineer candidate

“If you’re given a jar with a mix of fair and unfair coins, and you pull one out and flip it 3 times, and get the specific sequence heads heads tails, what are the chances that you pulled out a fair or an unfair coin?” — Lead Analyst candidate

“What was your best day in the last 4 years? What was your worst?” — Engineering Project Manager candidate

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Niners Draft Review!

The San Francisco 49ers have had an interesting yet fantastic offseason.  Just when we thought there was no way the 49ers could have four head coaches over the last four years, they go out and sign offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan from the Atlanta Falcons, shortly after signing on a new GM in former safety John Lynch.  Generally, rookie GM’s find it challenging in all aspects during their first campaign at the helm, but this year’s draft has proved otherwise.  Coming off of their worst season in NFL history where they went 2-14, the 49ers earned the #2 pick in this year’s NFL draft.  Held over the last 3 days, following is the list of final picks:
What is most interesting is the wheeling and dealing that occurred right out of the gate.  After the Cleveland Browns selected Myles Garrett at #1, the Chicago Bears traded their #3 pick for the Niners’ #2 pick, as well as for pick 67 in Round 3 and pick 111 in Round 4.  On top of that, the Niners received a 2018 third-round pick.  Interestingly, the Browns selected Mitch Trubisky, quarterback from North Carolina, leaving Solomon Thomas, DT from Stanford, as the #3 pick for the Niners!  Solomon Thomas was who they wanted to begin with, so the Niners started off the draft with a bang and a steal!

Shortly thereafter, the Niners traded their 34th pick (Round 2) and their 111th pick that they just acquired, to Seattle, in order to draft arguably the best LB in the draft in Alabama’s Reuben Foster.  When the smoke had cleared, the Niners had just drafted two of the top 3 players on their board.  Remarkable!

Can’t wait for the season to start – go Niners!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Specializing in the Impossible

"Hope Arises" was the name and topic of this past Sunday's sermon at Shepherd Church in Porter Ranch, as we celebrated Easter, the resurrection of Jesus Christ, our Lord and savior, who sacrificed his life so that are sins could be forgiven.
Many things seem impossible in the midst of chaos and in many respects, they really are.  Whether one is dealing with a broken marriage, infidelity, financial or legal troubles, disease or sickness, there is one thing that has withstood the test of time -- and that is hope.  While every man dies because of father time, those who believe that God raised Jesus Christ from the dead will live eternal life.  How do we know this?  Because, the resurrection proves this, and it says so in the bible.
This tells us that with God, "all things are possible".  Pastor Dudley tells us that God specializes in the impossible.  All he asks us is to Confess and Repent, Believe in Him and through baptism, we may live a new life.   Our past will be forgiven and our future will be secured.  Isn't that something -- that is hope and salvation in its purest form.
Happy Easter to all...

See Bronson Quon and more!

Saturday, April 1, 2017

SF Giants Set to Start the 2017 Season!

With the 2017 MLB season about to kickstart on April 2, there is a lot of excitement about the San Francisco Giants this year.  The Giants, who one three World Series titles in the last 6 years (2010, 2012 and 2014), are striving to overcome the even year and win an odd year for the first time in San Francisco history.  The Giants lost to the eventual World Series champs, the Chicago Cubs, in last year's playoffs.
Following is the projected lineup this year:
Denart Span (OF)
Brandon Belt (1B)
Buster Posey (C)
Hunter Pence (OF)
Brandon Crawford (SS)
Eduardo Nunez (3B)
Joe Panik (2B)
Jarrett Parker (OF)

Madison Bumgarner
Johnny Cueto
Jeff Samardzija
Matt Moore
Matt Cain
Go Giants!!!  The Giants should be better than last year as they signed a formidable closer (Mark Melancon), which was the biggest weakness on the Giants.  Too many games did they lose in the final few innings and now that they've fortified the pen, they should be in good shape.  The only glaring weakness on the Giants is their outfield.  If they can avoid injuries to key starters, they'll be average at best.  But never count out any team that has manager Bruce Bochy at the helm.
sfgiants logo

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Good Luck, Fortune and Prosperity

On my first day of work at a recent job, my Wife had an indoor money tree delivered to my office.  To me, it was a symbol of a new beginning -- a new chapter in life.  The tree itself is a Malabar chestnut (Pachira acquatica), and many people believe that it will bring good luck, fortune and prosperity.  Typically, the tree has five trunks that are braided together, and the size of the tree will generally depend on its age and the size of its pot.  If taken care of properly, the tree will often sprout new stems of leaves that unfold into five leave stems.
Below is my tree -- received in 2012 (on left) and now 2017 (on right), you can see how much it has grown.

This tree is important to me and He is very temperamental.  I once put Him outside in the sun for an hour, thinking He would enjoy some sunlight.  When I revisited the tree, I realized each of His leaves that were directly exposed to the sun were burnt to the crisp.  He didn't like the sun.  I felt so guilty - I know exactly how He felt -- the same way I feel after laying out for an hour without sunblock.  It took a week for all of His leaves to fall off, only to sprout new ones over the next month.
We fumigated our house for termites one weekend and left all of our indoor plants with a neighbor.  When we picked Him up a week later, he had clearly been over-watered and was unhappy, by the look of His droopy leaves.
We've grown older together.  I now know He only likes indirect light and prefers to drink once a week.  Other than that, we pretty much leave Him alone.  I don't bother Him and He doesn't bother me.  But I am thankful for His presence.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Wrong or Right Side?

Have you ever been on the wrong side of an argument?  Well if you're like most people, the answer is yes.  Don't get upset or emotional as it will only make matters worse. Identify the weakness or gap in your argument and figure out how to make it better so you'll end up on the right side next time!  Losing is tough and is never fun, but when you do lose, try to spin a positive out of it.  If you do that, then you haven't really lost because you've just learned from your mistake.
"Don't raise your voice.  Improve your argument."
-Harvey Specter, Suits

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

SF 49ers are in for a busy 2017!

The San Francisco 49ers have had a busy offseason.  After finishing 2-14 (with their only 2 wins coming against the LA Rams), the 49ers fired head coach Chip Kelly after only one season.  They also fired General Manager Trent Baalke.  A tumultuous season indeed, especially after watching then-backup QB Colin Kaepernick sit during the national anthem, motivated by alleged oppression against black people and other non-white races.  Because of their terrible record, the 49ers secured themselves the #2 pick in the draft.  It remains to be seen if they will select a QB or not (i.e. Mitch Trubisky*, QB, North Carolina; or Deshaun Watson*, QB, Clemson).  The 49ers also poached the offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, from the Atlanta Falcons and made him the 4th new head coach for the Niners in the last 4 years!  At the same time, they also hired new General Manager, John Lynch.  
Following are some of the key pickups so far this free agent offseason:
Veteran additions
–QB Brian Hoyer (UFA, Chicago) 2 years/$12M, $4M signing bonus. 2017 cap: $5.5M
–QB Matt Barkley (UFA, Chicago) 2 years, $4M, $500,000 signing bonus. 2017 cap: $1.95M
–FB Kyle Juszczyk (UFA, Baltimore) 4 years, $21M, $5M signing bonus. 2017 cap: $3.4M
–WR Pierre Garçon (UFA, Washington) 5 years/$47.5M, $12M signing bonus. 2017 cap: $6.425M
–WR Marquise Goodwin (UFA, Buffalo) 2 years/$6M, $2.5M signing bonus. 2017 cap: $3.25M
–WR Aldrick Robinson (UFA, Atlanta) 2 years/$4M, $300,000 signing bonus. 2017 cap: $1.7M
–TE Logan Paulsen (UFA, Chicago) 1 year, $1M, $125,000 signing bonus: 2017 cap: $1M
–K Robbie Gould (UFA, N.Y. Giants) 2 years/$4M, $500,000 signing bonus. 2017 cap: $1.75M
–LB Malcolm Smith (UFA, Oakland) 5 years/$26.5M, $11.5M fully guaranteed. 2017 cap: $3.684M
–LB Brock Coyle (non-tendered RFA, Seattle) 2 years
–DB Don Jones (UFA, Houston) 2 years
–DT Earl Mitchell (UFA, cut by Miami): 4 years/$16 million, $5.5 million in first year. 2017 cap: $2.9M
–CB K’Waun Williams (UFA, cut by Cleveland): 1 year/$690,000, $75,000 signing bonus. 2017 cap: $690,000

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Hope and New Beginnings

This weekend was the grand opening of Shepherd’s new sanctuary in Porter Ranch and I have to admit that the facility is awesome! Only He could have provided this and it is through Him and his presence that the House of the Lord shines.  Truly we are blessed for his sacrifice and his provision, as well as for the wonderful and beautiful building that He has built.  Today we “lift up Jesus” and pray for not only our friends and family, but for those less fortunate throughout the world.  May those that are sad and depressed, unhappy and lonely, hungry or sad share a feeling of hope today and in 2017 and onward, and that they may have an opportunity to meet and know You.  Only through You can our sins be forgiven and that we may live an eternal life.  Seek and attain the peace you’ve always dreamed of because it is real, and it will never be real unless you give up control.