Who are you, and what do you do?
My name is Desi Rodriguez, but my friends call me Desi Lu. I am an entrepreneur that began her career right here at the University of Montana. I have started several businesses and have moved across the country since my time at the Univerisity of Montana.
What is one habit of yours that helps you be productive?
I drink tea every morning and every night to help me keep focused. I find that too much caffeine hurts productivity in the long run. I think that people become dependant on it and after a while, less productivity ensues. I also don’t watch TV. So much time is wasted on this form of media when in reality one can spend much more time on activities that are better for the mind and soul. (not to mention the pocketbook)
What is your morning routine and how does it help you get the most out of your day?
I wake up, make tea, shower, then brush my teeth. I always have a small breakfast. That is probably the most important part of my daily routine. Eating a small breakfast gives me the energy to face the day. Then I head out to the office to get work going.
In the last few years, what lifestyle, habit or behavior change has had the biggest positive impact on your life?
This is going to sound a little silly, but getting married changed my life for the better. Before I was always focused on the short term, whether that was a boyfriend or a job. After I got married I began to see the big picture. Where was I headed to? Getting married completely changed my lifestyle. I began to take up healthy alternatives to eating, working out, company, friends, and especially work. I will say that it is not something that anyone should rush into, but it did have a profound impact on my life choices.
When you feel unfocused, what do you do?
When I feel unfocused I take an hour or even two to get myself refocused. I will go for a walk, go to the store, just get out of the office or the house. A person in motion tends to stay in motion. The second I realize that I’m not doing my best work I’m out the door. When I was working under other businesspeople I wasn’t allowed to do this and my work showed that.
What is one piece of software or a web service that you get immense value out of? How do you use it?
So many web sites and services have aided me. From Grammarly to Linkedin. I have gotten lots of use out of my online services. I actually learned French from Rosetta Stone. (although not perfectly). From getting connections to learning a language or correcting my grammar, Web services are something I would recommend everyone try.
What is the one book you recommend most often and why?
The Count of Monty Cristo. It’s not necessarily a book that one would get the most use out of in a business sense, but one I think everyone should read. It’s a tale from the distant past, that can have many moral implications today. What comes around goes around.
What advice would you give a smart and ambitious recent college graduate? What advice should they ignore?
I can’t stand giving advice to a large audience of people. I can say only this. “Try it, whatever opportunities come your way, try it. If it turns out to be bad, quit it. Say yes and you will succeed.”.
Ignore your professors, get off the beaten trail and find something new, say no to them, their ways are the past. Look to the future.
What is your favorite quote, one you aim to live by?
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
― Maya Angelou
My professional E-mail. That’s the only way I communicate professionally.