Archive | Share The Love

21 January 2010 ~ 0 Comments

dot joining

dot joining

In life it’s only possible to join the dots backwards. You only know what’s happened, not what will happen.

The bigger businesses grow, the more they try to join the dots forward. Over planning prior to any work starting. Risk mitigation that overshadows desire for positive outcome. Processes that guarantee shit-in-shit-out, but in a predictable fashion. Bureaucracy outweighs creativity and innovation (real innovation, not the big business marketing bullcrap use of the term).

Am I saying that all businesses should be small business? Absolutely not. However, the smaller the company the more the essence of the people will shine through.

Regardless of how big the business is: instead of applying processes and excessive planning to minimize the role of people in achieving the desired result, you must trust everyone on your tour bus. Let them play their part in the performance.

If everyone knows what the result needs to be AND knows what their part in the band is (which is even more important to an individual than knowing what the result needs to be), the band will figure out together how to reach the end point.

A process well applied will give you a result. A bland result. A result that is easy to ignore. Six Sigma gives you a black belt in dull and average widget making. Try to join the dots forward before anything has even started and this is what you will end up with. Predictability kills character.

Side note: Far Eastern vehicle manufacturers applied six-sigma like methods decades ago but now are marketing driven instead of pure process focussed. Lexus, Toyota Prius and Honda listened to the crowd instead of singing whatever they wanted to (ala Ford, GM).

Let a group of people who know how to reach the end point as individuals in a team have at it and the end result will be remarkable. It will have character, applied learning, a unique personality and be a composite of the qualities of the people who cared enough to create what fulfilled (and more than likely exceeded) what was hoped for.

After the event the band will join the dots backwards and learn from what happened. Figure out the great things to repeat them and the bad things to correct them. There’s so little ego involved that doing this is easy and obvious.

If you don’t have people you can trust to do all this, you will need lots of process. It’s easier and far more comfortable to achieve with processes. However, the result will never be remarkable. Never attract attention. Never have fans. Never make a difference to others.

In the words of Todd Henry from Accidental Creative: “Cover bands don’t change the world. Don’t be a cover band”.

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10 January 2010 ~ 0 Comments

first impressions

first impressions

A person makes their mind up about you in the first ten seconds of meeting. Maybe nine seconds, or 30 seconds. It really depends on which book you’ve read on the subject of first impressions as to how long the impression time prediction is.

It’s all face value. Eye contact, stance, hand gestures, facial expression, tone of voice, the words the voice delivers, clothes being worn, personal hygiene… so many ancillary factors that a brain takes in at lightning speed to work out like/dislike, friend/foe, go/no-go.

Often it doesn’t matter what your brain thinks first time around. You may be in a situation where you have to work with or accommodate this person, regardless of what your brain may have calculated as being the like/dislike score.

Face value is fun and a surprisingly huge amount of life’s decisions are based on that alone.

Do you want to know how to really find out if someone is a good, decent person or if they’re a complete asshole? Easy.

Take them to a restaurant or anywhere where someone has to attend to your demands as part of the experience.

If the person you’re with is curt, abrupt, rude, dismissive, condescending, unappreciative, ill-mannered, insolent or in any way disrespectful to the server – then you are dealing with an idiot. Yes, even if the server is not 100% great. Especially if the server is not 100% great.

They may be good looking with fantastic teeth and a voice that would warm the hearts of orphans, but if they treat a waitress like a piece of shit – then they are, indeed, an asshole.

The waitress test: the best personality test.

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07 January 2010 ~ 0 Comments

resources

resources

It makes no sense to me when the words “people” and “resources” are used interchangeably.

People are not resources. They are people. People use resources to get what they need done.

Meetings rooms, tools, web servers, lights, floor space, Flipcams, benefits package, project management, reports, paper, ink, microphones, video cameras, administrative time, fuel, computers, paper, copiers, postage, cellphones and data packages.

All are consumption based resources.

Positive emotion is the single greatest constructive resource you can have. To succeed; use this resource the most.

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20 December 2009 ~ 0 Comments

the when-we’s

the when-we’s

It’s hard not to dislike someone who constantly talks about their last job.

“When we worked on xyz project, we did this like this and that like that” etc.

They’re only talking about then because they have nothing to brag or get excited about with what they’re doing now.

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18 December 2009 ~ 0 Comments

free balloons

free balloons

When it comes to choosing a restaurant to go to for dinner, my kids almost always choose Red Robin as their ‘dinner shop’ of choice.

Is the mac n cheese served there beyond compare to any of the surrounding establishments? C’mon, it’s mac n frikkin’ cheese. Hardly gourmet.

Do the staff perform somersaults in the aisles and present puppet shows while they eat? They’re friendly staff, but aren’t most restaurant servers? They’ve tips to earn.

The big Red Robin wandering around on some weeknights freaks the hell out of the kids, so it’s not that either.

When all is done, bill is paid and we’re heading out both kids get to choose which color balloon they want. The lady at the front desk fills it with helium and off we go home.

The entire choice to visit and eat and spend money at Red Robin is based on the free balloons.

What are your free balloons?

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15 December 2009 ~ 0 Comments

thank you

thank you

Days ago I met Gary Vaynerchuk; wine guy and pretty damn successful entrepreneur. All that he is in his online persona is everything he is in real life.

However there’s one facet of his personality that’s near impossible to capture in a blog or video, and it’s something I so rarely see “in the wild”.

Every person who lined up to meet him, he thanked them. He looked them in the eyes and genuinely thanked them. You felt like this guy actually gave a shit that you bought his book and the fact that you did that has made his life better. He came across as humbled that every individual was there and it exuded as really meaning something positive to him.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is how it’s done. (Carefully watch the body language and amount of eye contact)

As those lined up made their way to him, Gary didn’t refuse a single request. Have a photo taken. Say “crush it” into a Flipcam. Sign books to anyone you want. Listen to personal experiences. Absorb praise and criticisms (there was some of that too). And then he humbly and genuinely thanked the person, shook their hand and carried on.

Pay attention to your fans. Thank the hell outta them when they do something for you, and mean it. Give a crap that someone did something because of you.

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12 December 2009 ~ 0 Comments

talk

talk

Email is a tool for conveyance of electronic data, not communication. Voices: they are for communication.

Don’t email. Instead pick up the phone or pull yourself up and walk to the person.

A conversation is worth a thousand emails.

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10 December 2009 ~ 0 Comments

public service announcement

public service announcement

Anything captured in electronic format is open and will be read by anyone.

The Powerpoint presentation deck will be seen by your competition.
The email you wrote to someone in confidence has at least been bcc’ed. Most likely forwarded with disclaimer “wasn’t me” preface.
The insider document, if it’s juicy enough, will make its way to wikileaks.org. If it’s not that interesting, highly likely your competitor will eventually get to read it.

Not one piece of this is bad.

Use it. Tell others what YOU want them to know. There are no electronic secrets.

Even better – be genuine and you ALL of the time. A lie means you have to remember even more stuff than you already do.

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