Adonis Diaries

Archive for August 9th, 2012

Bits and pieces from Seth

I discovered that I can take half a dozen of the short posts of Seth and rearrange them for a longer coherent article. This time it is your task to tell the story from the four bits and pieces.

It’s a long story

The long stories are the good ones. About how you found that great job, or discovered this amazing partner or managed to get that innovation approved.

If long stories are so great, how come we spend all our lives working for the short ones? The very act of seeking out the shortcut… And the quick win might very well be the reason you don’t have enough successful long stories to share.

Unanimous is not an option

When you do important work (work that changes things and work that matters…), it’s inconceivable that the change you’re trying to make will be met with complete approval.

Trying to please everyone will water down your efforts, frustrate your forward motion and ultimately fail.

The balancing act is to work to please precisely the right people, and just enough of them, to get your best work out the door.

Shun the non-believers.

(The Long initial sessions of discussion before any project might be an opportunity to week out the non-believers?)

It’s not all in your head

But part of it is.

We spend an enormous amount of time trying to get the world to align with the vision we have for what will make us happy or successful.

Whatever “it” is, figuring out how to deal with the noise in your head is probably faster and cheaper than changing the outside world. Not easier, though, merely more important.

The false choice of mediocrity

Too often, we’re presented with choices that don’t please us. We can pick one lousy alternative or the other. And too often, we pick one.

I was struck by Apple’s choice to put a glass screen on the original iPhone. Just six weeks before it was announced, Steve Jobs decided he wanted a scratchproof glass screen.

The thing is, this wasn’t an option. It wasn’t possible, reliable, feasible or appropriately priced. It couldn’t be done with certainty, and almost any other organization would have taken it off the list of appropriate choices.

It was unreasonable.

And that’s the key. Remarkable work is always not on the list, because if it was, it would be commonplace, not remarkable.

The theater of the mind

Theatermind

The most effective marketing story isn’t the one you tell to someone in your audience, it’s the one the person tells himself.

Consider this no parking sign. Instead of stating the fine, the signmaker states the range of the fine. At this point, it’s up to the observer to have a conversation with himself. “Well, maybe I’ll just get a $50 fine. Hmmm, why would that happen? With my luck, it’ll be the maximum… I’ll just park somewhere else.”

It’s not an announcement, it’s an invitation to a little internal drama.

Too often, we don’t give people a chance to fill in the blanks.

What’s your average speed?

My car informs me that I’ve been averaging 26 mph over the last month. Much lower than I would have guessed.

It’s low not because we don’t drive on the highway, it’s low because there’s also a lot of time spent sitting still in traffic and at lights.

When we remember our journey and our work, the highlights are the fast parts, the thrilling moments, the peaks (and the valleys).

It seems, though, that we spend most of our time in preparation, or circling, or considering.

Probably worth investing some effort into my performance there, and enjoying those parts as well.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

August 2012
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