Posts tagged management
action is everything

I've been trekking across the Western half of the US this past week and I've learned a few valuable lessons - 1) Action is everything and 2) A working air conditioner is invaluable in triple digit heat. But back to the first valuable lesson.

There is a lot of talk in this world. People selling, hard selling, up selling their ether. People committing, complaining, asking and advising. And yet, very few are actually doing. Very few are developing and delivering on those commitments. We often hear, "No Guts, No Glory" and that statement has acquired a meaning of pushing the limit and going full-out or bust. Perhaps that's accurate. But here's the thing - at the heart of "No Guts, No Glory" is accomplishment. It's action. We seem to forget that fairly often.

So as not to mince words, let me say it bluntly - talk is cheap. It always has been and it likely always will be. Authentically accomplishing something of merit, that is the heart of action.

It's everything.


critical vs. credible

In marketing, we often hear that the key to success is acquiring a critical mass. It's a mythical creature, frankly. Critical mass breaks down like this: your cause acquires followers and then one day - out of the blue - one follower just sets you over the invisible mark and your cause becomes something greater. It becomes a movement.

Said acquisition is a critical mass.

A few months back, at South By South West, I had the opportunity to hear Scott Belsky - of Behance and 99U fame. Scott briefly touched on the difference between critical and credible mass.

I must admit up until that point, I had not thought there was a difference. Yet since that encounter, perhaps particularly because of my work in developing the SF72 platform, I've thought a lot about the difference between critical and credible.

If critical is about sheer numbers to tip the scale towards movement than credible is about the depth of the follower to tip the scale. Not all followers, supporters and friends are created equal. Ask any politician and they will tell you there are certain types of people you need to make a campaign successful - the people who will evangelize on your behalf are worth more than the typical follower.

Quality is worth more than quantity - always has been, likely always will be.

the new leadership

Hell, there are no rules here – we’re trying to accomplish something.

- Thomas A. Edison

I grew up in a family-owned and operated business and the standing rule was - you do not socialize with the employees. You may you can care about them, you may even save their life, but there is a line between employee and employer. Now, growing up it was clear to me why that rule existed, but I'm starting to believe that rule is now outmoded.

In the modern workplace, where art is regularly created, relationships matter. First, what is art and how is it a workplace speciality? I subscribe hook, line and sinker to Seth Godin's view: "Art isn't only a painting. Art is anything that's creative, passionate, and personal. And great art resonates with the viewer, not only with the creator." (from Lynchpin) And here's the thing, one cannot accomplish this type of art in the modern workplace without a connection to the team, to the greater whole.

The question then becomes, how does one balance the line between management and the modern workplace, between management and art? Is management in the traditional sense even needed? Or is the desire to become an artist, each in his or her own right, enough to propel the workplace, its art and the social connections tied to it, forward?

I'm learning more and more that connection matters. And in order to make great art (a desire I believe many possess) one must nurture the connections, social or otherwise, we have. As Edison noted, there are no rules when progress is the point.