- Don’t sell a product that can be purchased cheaper at Amazon
- Generate joy, don’t just satisfy a need for a commodity
- Don’t build a fortress of secrets, bet on open
- Unless there’s a differentiating business reason, use off the shelf software and cheap cloud storage
- Tell a story, erect a mythology, walk the walk
- And if I am allowed to add: Do something that makes you proud
–Cultural shifts create long terms evolutionary changes. Cultural shifts, changes in habits, technologies that slowly obsolete a product or a system are the ones that change our lives. Watch for shifts in systems and processes and expectations. That’s what makes change, not big events.
Don’t worry about what happened yesterday (or five minutes ago). Focus on what happened ten years ago and think about what you can do that will make a huge impact in six months. The breaking news mindset isn’t just annoying, it may be distracting you from what really matters. As the world gets faster, it turns out that the glacial changes of years and decades are become more important, not less.
–You might leave money on the table if you reward people for being loyal (and don’t make them shop around each time). I think it’s money well spent, because loyalty is worth more than a little more margin. If you train your partners to shop around, expect them to shop around.
A lot of entrepreneurs get an MBA because they are afraid to go out into world without one. They are seeking the reassurance a credential will bring them, even though the cost is huge and there’s no data to indicate that they’ll be more successful as an entrepreneur as a result.
We pay the fear tax every time we spend time or money seeking reassurance. We pay it twice when the act of seeking that reassurance actually makes us more anxious, not less. We pay the tax when we cover our butt instead of doing the right thing, and we pay the tax when we take away someone’s dignity because we’re afraid.
–Find inspiration, instead of it finding you: One approach to innovation and brainstorming is to wait for the muse to appear, to hope that it alights on your shoulder, to be ready to write down whatever comes to you. This plays into our fears. After all, if you’re not inspired, it’s not your fault.
The other is to seek it out, will it to appear, train it to arrive on time and on command. This challenges fear and announces that you’ve abandoned the resistance. Once you dedicate yourself to this cycle, you will make a difference
Some days, even the best dentist doesn’t feel like being a dentist. And a lifeguard might not feel like being a lifeguard.
Fortunately, they have appointments, commitments and jobs. They have to show up. They have to start doing the work. And most of the time, this jump start is sufficient to get them over the hump, and then they go back to being in the zone and doing their best work.
Momentum is incredibly useful to someone who has to overcome fear, dig in deep and ship. Momentum gives you a reason to overcome your fear and do your art, because there are outside forces and obligations that keep you moving. Without them, you’d probably stumble and fall.
And yet…And yet many of us fear too much momentum. We look at a project launch or a job or another new commitment as something that might get out of control. It’s one thing to be a folk singer playing to a hundred people a night in a coffeehouse, but what if the momentum builds and you become a star? A rock star? With an entourage and appearances and higher than high expectations for your next work. That’s a lot of momentum, no?
Deep down, this potential for an overwhelming response alerts the lizard brain and we hold back. We’re afraid of being part of something that feels like it might be too big for us.
Hint: it probably isn’t.
–This applies to individuals as much as it does to companies
Companies that refuse to break small promises have a much easier time keeping big promises. And they earn a reputation, one that makes their handshake worth more.
Given that expectation and trust are just about all we have left to sell, it seems to me that little lies and small promises are at the very heart of the matter. And they’re a simple choice, nothing requiring an MBA or a spreadsheet.
It all depends on what you want to stand for.
–Don’t sell the solution. Sell the problem.
–Corporations don’t have a conscience, people do: That means that every time you say, “It’s just my job,” or “My department has a policy,” or “All I do is work here,” what you’ve done is abdicated responsibility–to no one.
–You can get a lot done if you just take more responsbility instead. It’s often offered, rarely taken
–Have each member of the team announce what they’re afraid of. Things that might fail and things that might work
Last but not the least this might explain how I came to write that post on karma:
The smart marketer throws away bias and stops cheering for one outcome over another and instead quietly takes notes on herself. Notes start shallow, but if you push, you can get deeper, stripping away layers of previously unexamined instinct. You can test those notes, see if they occur in other people when you vary the inputs. And it’s this series of notes and tests that give you insight on how to share your next idea.
This is a post from the series on what I have learnt from Seth Godin. You can find the rest of the posts here: