Give them a Why

 

He who has a why to live can bear almost any how” – Freidrich Nietzsche

Whilst a dramatic statement, its meaning is concerned with; if you have a purpose to life and it is important to you then overcoming obstacles and suffering to achieve will undoubtedly prove worthwhile.  It is could also suggest the means in many cases will justify the ends.

Those who have a firm understanding of why they are here will in the end always figure out a way of accomplishing their goals.

I cannot say I agree, the means will justify the ends, for me I think the WHY is also about the way in which you go about making your accomplishment come about. The WHY therefore is concerned with the end goal personal to you but also the effect you have and the impression you leave.  The WHY is personal and as creatures that want to be liked, loved and remembered it is important to keep this in mind when seeking to accomplish. Personal accomplishment in an accepted group, team, social environment therefore is the most positive of outcomes.

As a leader you are responsible for assigning tasks and duties to others and in the context of your organisation you must so then give your team and people a WHY to work toward and a belief that it can happen and that they will benefit accordingly.

Philip Dawson MBA

 

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The Government Aid Business

Government Aid is a Business, the Government Aid Business is concerned with giving aid that meets national requirements for furtherment of national interests (or so you would think).

What it is NOT is charitable aid in the sense that you or I understand as giving people in need the money and resources they probably desperately need.

What it IS therefore is a way a government can say to its people is that it is giving to needy causes internationally. This is probably not true.

Here’s how I think it works in outline;

A nation, normally an African nation but it doesn’t have to be but they are mostly the victims in this sort of set-up, well this nation has an economy that needs help and bolstering. Now to set the context; most modern African nations are a result of European colonial ambitions about 150 – 200 years ago but after the second world war became ungovernable. However, by this point most European nations had largely taken what they wanted in raw materials from these countries and basically given nothing back save for installing a few local despots to run the place on behalf of the Europeans. There was a move toward self-government and the Europeans didn’t need the headache of doing a proper job of hand over so just gave these new nations (and installed despots) independence without any real effort at helping them adjust to their new reality.

The new nations as they found themselves had no educations system, no health care system, little in the way of legal system but a centralised government system based in the previous European overlords system and as it soon came to be Big-Man Politics (a system of dictatorship based on the betterment of a very small number of people at the expense of the many). So most new nations found themselves with a nation of uneducated and rural peoples, no recognisable industrial or logistical structures in place often times some level of civil strife or war. Basically during the 1950’s and 60’s the Europeans allowed independence to sweep through these new nations with nothing in the way of recognisable assistance in running the newly free countries.

So that’s the fertile ground on which was built the calamities to come; nations of uneducated tribal peoples, no recognisable support from the previous colonial powers and then to top it off an East/West Cold War which was acted out through regional conflicts. So yes you’ve probably worked it out, the civil wars in these new nations were supported by Cold War adversaries. The Cold War adversaries gave massive inter-governmental loans to the new nations who spent the money on armaments, that’s right, NOT food, NOT agriculture, NOT health care, NOT education but guns and rockets and then proceeded to go to war with each other.

So to summarise; a new nation heavily in debt, no way of paying it back, devastated by war, a needy populace with no idea of how to function in the contemporary world of the day. And mostly governed by dictators who treated their newly found nation as a means for personal gain. Most ordinary people’s lives became effectively worthless and inescapable.

And this is how the Government Aid Business works to the advantage of the nation giving the aid;

The needy nation has massive debts, it’s politically unstable, rogue elements use cross border terror tactics for very localised gain, there is no way of controlling health problems from crossing borders and the debt mountain built up over years is never going to be repaid. Not a pretty picture this is it?

So the rich nation, the one doing the giving decides that they want to look good and in some way gain favour with the needy nation. After all the needy nation probably still has some raw materials to be mined or bought on the cheap so the rich nation decides to give some aid.

But the aid given comes with strings, strings that are not easy to break. The aid given must be spent in such a way that targets set by the rich nation are met. How does this work in practice? Let us say a target is set for production of a certain kind of cash crop and the only way it can be met is to stop growing a food crop and replace with the cash crop. But, the land is not suitable so the aid money is spent on fertilisers to make the cash crop grow but also poison the land for use growing food crops in the future. Aid granted, cash crop grown, cash crop sold but now the needy nation has to import food by spending the money from the cash crop.

Genius, make the needy nation even more needy.

Aid actually makes the needy nation poorer!

Yes that’s right by giving aid rich governments (our governments) make poor countries even poorer.

  1. Rich nations encourage new (poor) nations to take on debt to finance war
  2. The debt is spent with rich countries who sell arms to the new nations; rich nations get richer
  3. The new (poor) nations now have debt interest payments to make; rich nations get richer
  4. Debt interest payments mean even less social investment; the poor nation gets poorer
  5. Rich nations give aid with strings attached; the poor nations get a short-term gain
  6. The short-term gain runs out and the poor nations abilities are reduced still further; the rich nations get richer

This is the Government Aid Business as it presently stands. It’s complicated further by the any number of NGO’s each with their own agenda but basically following the patterns set by government aid.

Now a few years ago there was the Drop the Debt movement and a lot of fine words were spoken by some very prominent politicians of the day. I may be wrong, but my feeling is that the debt is still there by and large. That actually government aid is being used to in part alleviate the interest payments, but the debt remains. So here in the UK we hear of 0.7% GDP being used for International Development.

My guess is that the development is along the lines of how the UK can profit further from these very needy nations with no thought for nation building and the need of the people therein.

I know this blog post is possibly going some way off business best practice and self-fulfilment but think this through. If we honestly want to practice best practice then we must extend this to all people from wherever they may come and whatever religion they may or may not observe, and without question whatever their skin colour, male or female. And the Government Aid Business is just one area that could be massively improved allowing for greater business opportunity for all.

The Government Aid Business is a dirty business and could be done so much better.

I propose an 8 point plan that;

  1. The debt is wiped completely, no debt, no debt interest, all gone
  2. That Government Aid is doubled, yes we can afford it
  3. That it is given directly to the applicant nation state governments to spend as they will, no strings attached
  4. That it is all monitored by the IMF, but not managed by them just reported on
  5. That technical help is offered but this help is not paid for from the aid given but is additional with in-country training part of the deal
  6. That investment is the key with an emphasis on education and health care (in the longer-term the rest will take care of itself)
  7. That key markets are stripped of trade barriers (coffee, bananas, tea, sugar…)
  8. That fair prices are paid to the producers and this is enshrined in contracts for supply and monitored by the IMF

I think this plan may in a couple of generations mean that the Government Aid Business is really only concerned with natural disasters.

Thanks as always for reading this post. If you have any comments positive or negative, I’ll be happy to respond.

Philip

The Lizard Brain

The Lizard Brain
I’ve been watching Seth Godin on YouTube recently, he’s up there with Tom Peters for being a thought leader for business, leadership and strategy in my opinion and I write this blog post from listening to and reflecting on some of the stuff I’ve recently watched.
Back in 1954 the limbic cortex was described by neuroanatomists as the seat of emotion; satisfaction, fear, anger and the need to reproduce. It’s the most primitive part of the brain and is so named as ‘The Lizard Brain’ and it’s about all a lizard needs as a brain to function; fight, flight, fear, freezing-up and fornication…. And Seth Godin riffs about this part of the brain really well.
The Lizard Brain is really powerful and controls much more of what we do and how we feel than we could possibly give it credit for. Behaviours become ‘unexplained’ when governed by the Lizard Brain, they’re reactions to situations rather than fully thought trough ideas and thoughts. The point is that we are ALL prone to irrational behaviour which in a workplace where value adding activity goes on can be (very) destructive to the process.
The thing is this; the Lizard Brain stops us doing what we know to be the right thing. Think about it, how many times have you said to yourself you’d like to lose a bit of weight or get a bit fitter, plenty times I guess? But then you go and eat too much cake or drink a bit more wine than you intended. What caused you to do this irrational thing? The Lizard Brain of course. It stops us doing those things we know are just the right thing to do, it gets in the way of functioning in the world today.
Right, so that explains irrational behaviour but how else does the Lizard Brain get in the way. Well, normally about the time you’re ready to launch a project or ship new product, that’s when. It comes along and says you should have a meeting, talk about this thing you’re about to do or finally commit to.
The symptoms; late meetings, middle of the road products, rationalized service… yes these are symptomatic of the Lizard Brain kicking in and getting you to compromise on service, and experience.
You know because you spent months on the design of the product or service that its good, that it’s probably going to be special, remarkable even but then comes along that Lizard Brain thing and stops you in your tracks. You have to be honest about it, after all the effort are you honestly going to ignore the obvious and compromise. Most of us do, but you don’t have to.
Your job as a leader is to figure out how you can ignore it, how are you going to deliver that outstanding product or service, on-time and on budget?
In the end it comes down to being brave, knowing you have a great product or service and going for it. But not just you going for it, your whole team has too as well.
Thanks for reading, please post an comments’ or questions and I’ll respond or answer as best I can.
Philip

Value Creation; What’s Freakin’ Hot and What’s Freakin’ Not!

Its essential to understand that not all products and service you can offer will be relevant to your customer. Some products and services are essential to the value proposition you make and some are just nice to have add-ons.

Products & Services;

These are the things you offer and do for your customers and you put in your shop window (so to speak). Its the full bundle of everything you do to help your customers satisfy either functional, social or emotional needs. However, you have to understand right from the off that products and services don’t actually create value of themselves, they do this when in context and in relation to a specific customer need.

Types of Products & Service;

  1. Physical; Manufactured Products, Goods you sell
  2. Intangible; These are services such as after-sales support…
  3. Digital; These are products and services such as downloads or an on-line recommendation service
  4. Financial; This is investments, insurances and services that assist in purchasing products

WHAT’S FREAKIN’ HOT

Products and services create value when targeted at a specific customer segment. When you do this you will filter your offering to only include those products and services that are relevant to the specific customer segment.

The offering will address needs of the segment and be communicated in simple straightforward language; “Will Save You Time”… But it is so important to make your offer relevant to the needs not the niggles.

You also have to realise that your offer will not meet every single need or want. You will have to make a clear choice on what you offer and how you communicate this offer targeting those needs you understand to be the most pressing for your customers.

Do this and you create value.

WHAT’S FREAKIN’ NOT

Listing all of your products and services is not good. In fact it’s decidedly bad to do this. You essentially are handing over your business to your customer and asking them to decide what is valuable to them. Of course you’re going to have to ask some questions to find out what they want but then you target your offering.

By listing everything you do you are adding to the customers pains by asking them to spend their time filtering what you do for you. This will be seen as a waste of time and wont get done. You don’t therefore add value and don’t make a sale either.

If you have filtered but got this wrong and you make an inappropriate offer, same thing. You haven’t added value and you have wasted time. Again no sale made.

What you have to keep in mind is that people, all people, you, me and everybody else as well are governed by what we see as our needs. Our needs are defined as;

  1. We’re hungry; give me food and water
  2. We’re scared; I need some place to hide and feel safe
  3. We’re angry; you better watch out pal cos I’m gonna get you
  4. We’re horny; no explanation needed

These are the basic emotions we all have to deal with and govern a lot of our behaviour including what we value. Satisfaction, Fear, Anger, & Reproduction.  So what we offer is going to have to be framed as meeting one of these four basic needs, the rest is just tinsel.

As ever, thanks for reading and if you have anything to say or you have a question please post in the comments section and I’ll get back to you.

Philip

Is Blogging Writing?

Is Blogging Writing?

I’ve been a blogger for the last 3 years and haven’t looked back since starting.

FINNA Project; this blog is the latest version of my blogging history and this blog if you read through it broadly speaking is concerned with business, management, leadership and business strategy.  These are the things that interest me most in a business & work environment and can make the most impact so far as I’m concerned on the relative success of a commercial operation.

I’ve also had blogs of a more general life-style nature where I express my personal opinions, not necessarily a good idea for generating commercial interest but a great way of getting things off your chest and perhaps getting, in some cases at least, really useful and helpful advice on how to handle and deal with awkward situations through the feed-back channels.

customers want what blogging stuff

The question however is does blogging qualify as writing?

I suppose in a simple and plain way of answering, it quite obviously is writing, the blogger writes as a process, they create content. But most people think of writing as something often way more substantial than a blog post.  My blog posts are typically in the 500 – 700 word count region (648 in this blog post) and so would not qualify even by my somewhat lax standards as writing as such.

None-the-less, taken as a whole can a blog qualify as writing?

Well my answer to this question is a resounding YES! Yes it does and yes it can.

Okay so why do I really blog?

FINNA Project is all about giving back for me. Giving back (or paying forward if you like) to anybody who might find some form of advantage from what I write. I draw in part on my MBA studies, so the content should at least pass muster on a business management/leadership platform you’d think.  I know I think it’s okay when I read it back over and so I’m more than happy to put my name to what I’ve written in my blog.

I’m about to launch a new blog on www.jarofgoodness.com which will also be the website for my new business. The new business will be an e-retailer providing great tasting products in a jar to the discerning customer looking for the ease and convenience of great products sourced from across Europe delivered direct to their door either as a one-off purchase or through an agreed monthly delivery service.

The blog part of this business will be a life-style type blog giving really useful general information about the products that Jar of Goodness can provide including recipes, advice about the health benefits of the products, news and information about the places the products originate from and news about Jar of Goodness activities.

Supporting this blog will be a Twitter & Facebook feed and other social media content. Essentially the social media feeds will drive people to the blog which gives really great and interesting information or content to use the correct term about the products that Jar of Goodness support and supply.  In turn I expect the blog to drive people into being interested enough to make a purchase. From that point on the blog is there to reinforce the customer experience and to encourage the customer to become a longer-term subscriber to a monthly delivery of fantastic products.

As for if I class this as writing, well, I do.

Following FINNA Project and the more specific www.jarofgoodness.com blog there will be a book about the process of leadership and how this fits with running a business and launching a small business as well.

As with the blog I think the book may well drive people into the blog and eventually onto making purchases.

Is Blogging Writing? Yes

Is Blogging Important in business? Yes and growing in importance!

Do I think that people should blog? Yes, everyone should have a blog.

Thanks for reading.

Philip

Can you pass the marshmallow test?

The Marshmallow Test

About 40 years ago there was a study done about children who couldn’t resist marshmallows and cookies; a test of will-power if you like which follows through into adulthood.

The research done by Walter Mischel at Stanford University was conducted on 4-year olds to show the importance of impulse control and delayed gratification for academic, emotional and social success.

Mischel put marshmallows in front of a room full of 4-year olds telling them they could have one marshmallow now, but if they could wait just 5-minutes they could have two.  He told them he was leaving for a short while and if you can wait till I return you can eat two.

Of course some children greedily grabbed a marshmallow and ate it.  Others waited, some had to cover their eyes in order not to see the tempting treat and one child even licked the table around one of the marshmallows.

Michel followed the group and found that 14-years later that the ‘grabbers’ suffered from lower esteem and were viewed buy others as suborn, prone to envy and easily frustrated.  They engaged in the process of ‘scoring points’ and short term gain strategies. Those who waited coped much better with complex and potentially frustrating situations.  They were more self-assured and assertive, more trustworthy and dependable and showed greater academic achievement.

whats-your-marshmallow-The-Marshmallow-Test

The moral of the story is that if we can find it within ourselves to wait the better the rewards will be.

How can we use this information in our everyday business lives?

You will meet people sometimes in higher positions, sometime not, who reach for the quick wins (all the time).  These people will usually prove themselves to be unreliable and possibly even untrustworthy.  We’ve all met them, we’ve all worked with them and sometimes we still do.

These people can be toxic to your business, regardless of their status and position and you are best advised to be aware of and wary of them.  If on the other hand you are actually one of these people then you can take heart and act to avoid the mistakes of your youth.  Information and knowledge is the key here.  Be aware of yourself and your impulses, don’t put yourself in harm’s (temptations) way and if unavoidable then you must try really hard, really, really, really hard not to do the thing that will lead to your making rash and ill thought through decisions, submitting to your temptations.

By controlling your impulses you will make better and more significant decisions for the longer term.  You may move yourself into the bracket of those who do not envy, do not get easily frustrated and who are not so stubborn.  You may with practice change your character for the better (for all).

Its been a pleasure to share my thoughts and thanks to all those who read my post’s.

For more information and insights you can also see what I have to say and share on;

Twitter; @dawson1965

Read about me; about.me/pdawson

Philip

Be Bold; Business Promotion Plan

Be Bold & Promote Your Business

Okay, we’re all familiar with the idea of promotion = more sales I’m sure. But many won’t actually get involved in it; fear I guess is at the heart of why they don’t or won’t but the questions to ask yourself are;

Do I actually want my business to do well? To attract more customers? To keep the customers we’ve got?

The answer should be yes. If not you’re reading the wrong blog post here, you should be spending time looking for a new job someplace else.

In most cases people are working within a larger organisation and it’ll have a specialist function called the sales and marketing department or some other equally scintillating title. These are the people your business relies on to get those new customers coming through the door and spending some money on your products and services. But what about if you have your own small business? Who does it then?

The answer is; YOU!

Yes, that’s right you do it, it’s down to you and you alone to do that marketing stuff, nobody else. And unless you have that killer product or service that nobody else offers and everybody knows you are the only go-to person on the planet for it you are going to have to get stuck in to promoting what your company does.

So here’s the plan;

Daily

Post one – three items per day on social media and make sure the posts are helpful to your customer’s needs. If you get a question try to give a constructive answer and then touch base with those you’ve tried to help to see how it went.

You need one or maybe two metrics only; no more than that.

share learn

Weekly

Ask for help or joint promotions form companies that can help you like a key supplier. Make absolutely certain that you help them too.

Maintain communications with all prospects until they convert to a customer or really say they don’t want your product or service.

At the Very Least Monthly

Check with existing customers that you are delivering value and they are still happy. The right question to ask is “Is there anything else I can do for you?”

If you have an upcoming event or contest or product launch communicate this specifically to your customers, prospects and followers.

Every Now and Then

Have a look at your own business to try to find the opportunities that you’re missing and turning them into active projects.

Always have something on the go, something you’re working towards rather than reacting to things as they appear.

Follow this (simple) plan and new prospects should convert into sales.

Thanks for reading.

Philip

Its Time to Invest

Investment is usually expensive; not really!

Ask most business owners and managers about investment and they’ll tell you it’s an expensive business investing in the business.  I can see their point if you only think in terms of the financial cost now, the up-front kind of cost, and not the long-term benefit it brings.

But think about this for a moment, if we didn’t invest in the facilities we use, the people we employ, the levels of expectation and the cultural goals of getting along with each other and customers alike where do you think we’d be? Not in business I speculate.

Investment in facilities, in transport systems, in communications systems; the way we move stuff and ideas from place to place, this is the starting point. And let me tell you one thing in absolute certainty; investment in the infrastructure of moving stuff and ideas ALWAYS pays off. No exceptions, 100% of the time it pays off.  It may take more time than you’d like or first expect, but honestly it pays off.

Getting the right stuff in the correct amount to the right location at the right time, sounds simple enough. But, it’s so easy to get it wrong and this wastes time, it wastes money, and it wastes effort of your staff. Result; more cost (passed on to the customer) more time taken (and time once used is gone for ever). Such a waste.

Getting the right ideas and information to the right person in the format that they can use efficiently and effectively. Again sounds easy enough but get this wrong and guess what? Yes waste, wasted time, wasted money and wasted effort. Result; your project goes to the bottom of the priority pile, if you can’t be bothered to get it right then why should the person who you want to work on the idea?

Time-to-Invest

Okay so what should we do about this?

Give yourself the right infrastructure. If you don’t have it then build it or buy it or rent it. Better floors, appropriately sized machinery, managed and maintained equipment. Or the right speed of internet connection, enough wifi hotspots, the right kind of computers and software. All of these things will cost money for sure but if you don’t build, buy or rent then you aren’t investing in your business and you will very soon go out of business.

Education, Expectation and Culture; these too need investment of sorts.

What’s better than working with someone who knows what they’re doing and why and they do it in a positive way? The answer of course is we’d all like to work with people like that, and we can if we invest.

Training and learning are really important. Some of this can be done within the company but a lot must be done by outside agencies.  Academic learning is often frowned on by some as if it should have all been done before the person entered the workplace, well it should never stop if appropriate for this kind of learning.  Those who are trained and competent will almost always have a level of expectation of themselves and those they are working with.  Again investment is needed only for this aspect, its time that’s required. And time inevitably cost’s money.

Training, learning and expectation will give rise to a shift in culture which should be positive. Culture will dictate how your business performs and interacts with customers. Culture contributes to values and values to the quality of product and service.

So, tell me now that investment is expensive and you will find very quickly that it isn’t.

Not to invest is not to care. Not to care means you will go out of business.

Pointers on how investment should be handled;

Keep it centralised, the overall strategy must be served by and through the investment. This is not something you’d want to leave to chance so that you suffer strategic shift, that’s not an experience you necessarily want.

When you invest things get better. No exceptions. You have to invest across the board though so if you want staff to engage in digital marketing for example you need the right IT equipment, the right software, enough appropriate information, people either hired for the job or trained to do the job who all know what is to be achieved, by when and who’s responsible and what they get out of it for their efforts.

That’s investment and it isn’t expensive, it’s just not cheap. Investment of this kind pays off.

Thanks for reading.

Philip

The Future is NOW; 8 ways to bootstrap a business

As an entrepreneur sooner or later you’ll have to make decisions about how you’re going to fund things, normally one of the very first decisions actually.  The implications can be massively significant to your business now and in the future.

no-money-bootstrap

As someone who has started my own business and worked with-in a business that’s got outside funding I know the difference.  I believe bootstrapping is the best option.  It won’t be glamorous and it will be hard work and it won’t be easy but it will make you a better and stronger business and these are the reasons why;

  1. Less Outside Influence; to raise outside investment means you’re going to attract attention to yourself and your business, it goes with the territory.  This can be very glamorous and exciting when its happening, during the courtship period just before a deal is done.  But your secret will be out and what may appear to be small and insignificant demands for change may be made to get the deal done.  These never turn out to be insignificant!  The advantage of bootstrapping is that you can stay below the radar which may make all the difference when negotiating with customers and avoiding or out manoeuvring the competition.
  2. Creative Freedom; Very similar this point to the less outside influence point but I think that it’s worth saying that the freedom that an entrepreneur has when managing a project is priceless.  By bootstrapping a company, using your own funds without the stifling accountability of an investor who is only interested in protecting their financial investment you keep your freedom and retain control over your project, your product, your business.
  3. Faster Progress; less cash = less time to get your business off the ground. This will be a massive motivator to get your product to market.  It may not be perfect but hey, you can always launch version 2.0 when you’re ready and then you can market that as an improvement.  Outside investment will dull the need for speed giving you a comfortable cushion adding months to your perfect launch.
  4. Better (Way Better) Products & Services; limited cash and time will mean you will have the pressure of getting your products or service as right as they can be first time.  Every penny/cent spent must make a return, to do this you are going to have to pay very close attention to your customers’ needs by being as right as you can.  The nett result is great products and services and a great brand.
  5. High(er) Rewards; as the founder and only owner of a company being bootstrapped you will take the rewards undiluted.  You retain control, you retain equity.  By doing this you will be motivated for success; if the company succeeds so do you and at the highest multiple of reward.
  6. Better Margins of Profit; staying lean means profit and value will be at its highest.  It’s a simple fact that companies with low overheads enjoy larger profit margins.  The longer term view of this is that if an exit is being considered that profit margins are used as a multiple for valuation and higher margins means bigger pay-outs.
  7. Smaller = Vigilance; less start-up capital means you are forced into being careful about your assumptions before you choose to scale.  Small means you understand much more intimately your products and services and your customers’ reactions and needs.  And if you make a mistake (all entrepreneurs make mistakes) its smaller in scale and much easier to clear up.
  8. Being Smart; it’s your money so you will be cautious.  You will never be as careful with someone else’s money as you are with your own.  Bootstrapping will make you wiser, make you a better manager, incentivize you and force you to grow your business from a position of understanding customers and markets.  Learning how you can do more with less (a key of the 21st Century business world) is one of if not the most important skill of an entrepreneur.

Each and every entrepreneur will be different and have a different, or even unique product or service.  But the one constant of entrepreneurship is the ability to execute effectively.  Bootstrapping makes you powerful, intelligent and vigilant providing you with a fulfilling and challenging way of executing you new business.

As always, thanks for reading.

Philip

FAIL FAST!

If things seem under control, then you’re just not going fast enough” Mario Andretti

A story about the secret of success;

A man approached J. P. Morgan, held up an envelope and said “Sir, in my hand I hold the guaranteed formula for success which I will gladly sell to you for $25,000

Sir” J. P. Morgan replied “I do not know what is in the envelop, however if you show me and I like it I give you my word as a gentleman that I will pay you what you ask.

The man agreed to the terms, and handed over the envelop. J. P. Morgan opened the envelop, pulled out a single piece of paper folded along the center, unfolded it and silently read what was written, then placed it back in the envelop and handed it back. J. P. Morgan then promptly paid the man what he had asked, $25,000.

The formula;

  • Every morning write a list of things that need to be done that day
  • Do them!

Ever noticed that “What the hell” is always the right decision? Anon.

In business the idea of failure is almost always, not quite always, but is frowned upon. Failure is a dirty word, failure is to be avoided. Should this be so? Should this be acceptable? Ever?

I do not believe so!

I’ll repeat;

I DO NOT BELIEVE SO!

FAIL THEN LEARN, FAIL FAST THEN LEAR FASTER

Failing is human, it’s just natural, and it’s how babies learn to walk and talk, and do things. If it’s good enough after 13 billion years of creative planetary perfection then it sure is good enough for me.

If you’re not living on the edge, then you’re taking up too much room” Reverend and the Makers.

You, your team, your business… live fast, experiment, take risks, learn how to not do stuff, but more importantly learn how to do stuff. The imperative has to be doing, doing it now, doing stuff differently, doing stuff wrong, doing stuff right… this is the imperative. Being at the edge of your knowledge and experience is where you’re going to find your limits and then some.

Make a list, then go and do the stuff on the list. It’s a simple enough concept that even a first grader can get this idea. The to-do list is one of the most important things to have on your desk, on your tablet, on your laptop, on your desk top and on your desk. Make a list, then go and do the stuff on the list.

Be fast, unplanned is planned. Doing things is strategy. Making errors is natural so make the most of those errors because an error is just an opportunity to learn how not to do things like that again in the future. You can now strike that version off your list of how to do stuff and add it to the list of how not to do stuff.

Thanks for reading.

Philip