Archive for August, 2021

What It Takes

Speak up.  Your ideas can’t see daylight unless others know about them.

Be wrong. When you’re wrong, you sharpen the rightness.

Be right. When you’re right in the face of wrongness, everyone wins, except for you.

Stand tall. Stand behind your decisions, but you can’t be responsible for their outcome.

Be truthful, but not hurtful.

Be overwhelmed.  This is difficult.

Give it away. When things go well, delegate credit to the up-and-coming.  They’ll remember.

Support others. When someone’s in the bucket, pull them out. They’ll remember.

Pay it forward. A kind soul gave it to you, and it’s time to give it to someone else. They’ll remember.

Say “thank you.” And mean it.

Be quiet. When things are on the right track, there’s no need to derail.

Take the heat. When there’s a mistake, own it so the young don’t have to. They’ll remember.

Make room for others. Nothing blocks their growth like your career aspirations.

Say nothing negative, unless you can’t. And if you must, say it in private.

Praise publicly, loudly, and often.

Set up others for success. And when accused of doing so, plead ignorance.

Share your frustrations, but sparingly. Done skillfully, it’s a compliment.

Be human.  People will notice.

“Uncomfortable Fisher” by DaveFayram is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

If you “don’t know,” you’re doing it right.

If you know how to do it, it’s because you’ve done it before. You may feel comfortable with your knowledge, but you shouldn’t.  You should feel deeply uncomfortable with your comfort. You’re not trying hard enough, and your learning rate is zero.

Seek out “don’t know.”

If you don’t know how to do it, acknowledge you don’t know, and then go figure it out.  Be afraid, but go figure it out.  You’ll make mistakes, but without mistakes, there can be no learning.

No mistakes, no learning.  That’s a rule.

If you’re getting pressure to do what you did last time because you’re good at it, well, you’re your own worst enemy.  There may be good profits from a repeat performance, but there is no personal growth.

Why not find someone with “don’t know” mind and teach them?

Find someone worthy of your time and attention and teach them how. The company gets the profits, an important person gets a new skill, and you get the satisfaction of helping someone grow.

No learning, no growth.  That’s a rule.

No teaching, no learning.  That’s a rule, too.

If you know what to do, it’s because you have a static mindset.  The world has changed, but you haven’t.  You’re walking an old cowpath.  It’s time to try something new.

Seek out “don’t know” mind.

If you don’t know what to do, it’s because you recognize that the old way won’t cut it.  You know have a forcing function to follow.  Follow your fear.

No fear, no growth. That’s a rule.

Embrace the “don’t know” mind. It will help you find and follow your fear.  And don’t shun your fear because it’s a leading indicator of novelty, learning, and growth.

“O OUTRO LADO DO MEDO É A LIBERDADE (The Other Side of the Fear is the Freedom)” by jonycunha is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Innovation In Reverse

Innovation is a result of accumulated knowledge acquired over decades that is made manifest with mundane means.

It can be helpful to understand the required mindset by working things backward.

If you want innovation, solve new problems.

If you want to solve new problems, wall off design space responsible for success.

Block the team from reusing the same old recipe for success so there will be discomfort.

Without discomfort, there can be no innovation.  Seek it out.

Prohibit solutions that live in familiar design space to demand the product or service do new things.

When the product or service must do new things, new lines of customer goodness must be created.

To create new lines of customer goodness, you’ve got to look at new facets of the customers’ lives.

To look at new facets of the customers’ lives, look more broadly at the jobs customers want to do.

You can ask customers what new jobs they want to do, but they won’t be able to tell you.

When you want to understand which new jobs will change the game, watch the work.

When you watch the work, watch more than the work. Watch everything.

When you come back to the office with new jobs that will disrupt the industry, you will be misunderstood for at least a year.

Misunderstanding is a precursor to innovation.  Seek it out.

Misunderstanding blocks support for new work, but at least you’ll know you’re on to something.

When you get no support for the new work, do it anyway.

Rinse and repeat, as needed.

“Backwards Spinner” by darkday. is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Success Strangles

Success demands people do what they did last time.

Success blocks fun.

Success walls off all things new.

Success has a half-life that is shortened by doubling down.

Success eats novelty for breakfast.

Success wants to scale, even when it’s time to obsolete itself.

Success doesn’t get caught from behind, it gets disrupted from the bottom.

Success fuels the Innovator’s Dilemma.

Success has a short attention span.

Success scuttles things that could reinvent the industry.

Success frustrates those who know it’s impermanent.

Success breeds standard work.

Success creates fear around making mistakes.

Success loves a best practice, even after it has matured into bad practice.

Success doesn’t like people with new ideas.

Success strangles.

Success breeds success, right up until the wheels fall off.

Success is the antidote to success.

“20204-roots strangle bricks” by oliver.dodd is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Mike Shipulski Mike Shipulski
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