Too often we get a little information about something and let society or the organization we are part of make decisions for us. Because everyone else is doing marketing on Facebook your business should as well. Because everyone else gets promoted after 1 year on the job you should get promoted or leave to another company. Because…
Building a company, building a team, building a program, building a process, building a product is entirely different from seeing a company, team, program, process, product through to completion. Seeing it through to completion tells you the difference you made in others and ultimately how successful it was.
The home builder rarely knows if they built a house the occupants like or not. The kitchen might be too small, the floors do not last and the basement was poorly designed. The builders move on but the people who live in the house see it through.
Hot shot people start at companies with new ideas, new software and new ways of operating. They are building something. Some know what they are building and sadly some lose sight of what they are building. They build and build then leave without seeing what they built to completion. The hot shot artists think their 1 year building project is enough and move onto some other place they can build their “something” and bring their new ideas, software and ways of operating.
What are you building? Have you looked back to see how it played out? Is anyone using your ideas, software or ways of operating? OR was it all smoke, illusions and bags full of worries. What you build should be what you see through. You fail, you learn. You succeed, you learn.
The sales reps who pitches his idea 100 times then finally wins is seeing it through to completion and has developed the trait of grit. The good artists go through an experimental process to continue to get feedback to learn and learn then boom….the musician gets her hit, the artist gets his masterpiece and the writer gets her book sold. Each artist sees their work through to completion. Experimenting + Failing + Winning = Grit.
Many people could be given all the money and resources to build something and still fail to see it through. They get seduced into building their image and fame as the product that is being built instead of something lasting that will add value to all around them.
The ones working on adding value do not care and will never care who gets the credit for what. They care about seeing it through and are never satisfied with the final product.
What are you building? How long will it take? What is your plan to see it through?
One of the most likely ways to fail at doing something is to do something. Doing something or doing nothing. Both choices can lead you to trouble or lead you to joy and both choices are an action.
When you reflect on your day it will be hard to say you did nothing. Many people think they have to go somewhere, join something, change something, hire someone, make something, destroy something or create something. They think about taking action to say they did something. Few people think about doing nothing.
In baseball – You can swing the bat which can lead to a hit or strike out OR do nothing and not swing the bat which can lead to a walk or strike out. Doing nothing can be a good choice. Save your swings for later.
Nothing is a good choice at times and doing something is a good choice at times. Many times we do nothing when we should do something and many times we do something when should do nothing. Look at billboard advertisements and ads. They all want you to do something. Take action – buy this or that or change what you are doing. Do something.
Your work is to think through your decisions and be oblivious to what a billboard advertisement says you should do. Your decisions create your life in front of you each day and each one of these decisions is about doing something or nothing. Never let anyone make you think you have to do something. It is your choice to do nothing or to do something and both choices are normal actions.
Many failures have are because people believe they have to do something. Ponder this…
83% of company acquisitions fail. Why do companies still do them? They could nothing.
90% of start-ups fail. Why do people keep starting companies? They could nothing.
One in five hires are bad hires. Why do people keep hiring? They could nothing.
70% of all change initiatives within companies fail. Why do companies try to change? They could do nothing.
More diets fail than succeed, about half of marriages fail and the numbers are higher for subsequent marriages, and more than 50% of sales reps fail to achieve their quota. The pursuits to get skinny, find love, be happy and make money could be avoided by doing nothing.
Doing nothing is not easy to do because you have to not care that you are not doing something. Your decision to do something has a better chance of failing than succeeding. You have to care more about doing nothing than doing something. What you are doing? Who you are becoming? Who are you doing something with? Basic but important questions you should ask yourself at least once per month but consider doing nothing too.
The decisions you are making behind your laptop, phone and in person is what you are becoming. You are becoming someone by doing nothing or doing something.
I have to leave now because I have something to do which could also mean that I plan to do nothing.
“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.” – Marcus Aurelius We can think what we want but always know it is your thoughts that make your life. Marcus Aurelius was a philosopher and Roman Emperor from 161 to 180 AD. Aurelius lived though many of his own children’s deaths,…
The ability to change without the reason for change takes discipline beyond the average person. Many people change because they have a catastrophe occur in their life (illness, death, major body change, life change etc.). In business, this shows up with some shift in their business that makes them start their own business or new job. The change is like an illusion they perceive as true.
In 2008 – former Paypal exec, David Sacks, founded a company called, Yammer. After about four years, Microsoft bought his company for $1.2b.
What do you think made him think he could start a tech company and sell it for $1.2b? Do you think that was his plan or was it an illusion he thought to be true? What was his reason for changing? From Paypal exec to start-up, Yammer. Hmmmm.
But what about the people who do not experience a major sudden change? The people who experience a gradual change of something over years and later realize that experience gave them the confidence to do something on their own. Some businesses start like a gradual illusion and eventually become real.
Think about the changes you need to make but there has been no compelling event in your life that has made you make a change. Many people come home from work, watch TV, eat food then veg out until bed time. Life is good so why should they change?
Work on your trade, art, game, skill or craft. Watch kids do what they love to do – play. They turn anything into play. Their trade is their play and the unintended consequence is them learning something by using their wildly imaginative minds. They are serious about playing like it is their main trade in life. It actually is.
When people play they become more curious and this creates change because they start thinking about doing something different and eventually do something different. Being curious is being open to the other side of the book shelf. The different authors, the other people’s perspectives and the other side of the table. Play around with different books, authors, and people. See what they do to pass the days and nights.
In our day jobs, many people spend time thinking about what someone else in their office should do instead of being happy playing in their world. They fail to create their own illusion they believe to be true. When your work is over it will be an illusion that you will never get back so you might as well make it a fun illusion with your mind and imagination. You will never get your work back and your job is one of the most temporary things you will ever do.
We have the ability to change. No matter how big or small the reason for change is. What illusion are you working on today? What side jobs are your illusion? How can you change it up for tomorrow?
These days – your work can last as long as your Snapchat story, 24 hours…
A couple weeks ago during a business trip to Seattle, I changed things up a bit and presented RACI with Oumar Traore (HireVue Global Talent Manager) on the Snapchat. Tune in below. Beyond Snap filters – my “responsibility” with Snap is to add value to you or someone’s life. Isn’t that what we are all shooting for?
Many people are into Snapchat these days. HR pros are jumping on Snap to figure out how they get value out of the platform. Reference Snapchats about the SHRM DC 2016 conference this past week.
All that said – you can be different on Snapchat with your same old boring presentations. See what I did below with a presentation on RACI. For those that do not know, RACI is a way to assign Responsibility and Accountability to work activities. A boring but effective concept that I had 60 people watch on the Snap.
My work, on the other hand, should always be centered on creating value. You can do whatever you want on Snap and people do but think about the value you create, the work you do that no one else can do. That is the real reason we would tune into your Snapchat story.
We have a new day every 24 hours and as luck has it so does your Snap story. Forget what happened yesterday. Start a new story today.
PS – Snap me here – ‘benmartinezj’ AND Thx for being a baller – Oumar.
The other day I had a talk with an ambitious businessman. He was all about helping other people in their careers but left little room to help himself. He felt cheated. Mr. Ambitious needs to take his own medicine. He should identify his leadership list and most important behaviors, then help himself. If he can’t help himself, he can’t help others.
You are responsible for getting yourself out of bed and developing yourself. Your company, religious organization, boss, executive team, board of directors, neighbors, friends, and family want you to grow but it is not their job to develop your behaviors. Nobody at work is responsible for you to become more competent. That is 110% your job to figure it out. Take your medicine.
I laugh when I hear the HR pro working on the “Performance Management” methods or “Development Plans” for the entire company. The company is paying people to perform. Yes, they want you to become better and the good companies will pay for you to get more skillful and competent – but it still comes down to you choosing to get off your A#@ and behave better in your trade. No excuses. Nobody owes you anything. Hahaha…
Fill out your prescription. You owe yourself your own medicine.
The term hustle is often used to describe someone with an ability to get things done with minimal resources. Many people think -hustling is “appearing busy” or “walking fast in the office” or “thinking while someone is speaking, instead of listening”. These people are not hustlers…
When I think of a hustler, I think of Mr. Miyagi from Karate Kid Part I. Mr. Miyagi acted low key but could play like a ninja. One of his best hustle moves was the scene when he tricked the Karate tournament organizer into lending him a black belt for “Daniel son”. Mr. Miyagi knew he had to hustle at the moment and he didn’t think twice about hustling his way into a tournament that he knew he had the skills to belong.
Good hustlers are confident they can get what they want without following the normal procedures. They do not need to follow someone else’s shoes. Mr. Miyagi knew “Daniel son” was black belt status but didn’t need some organization to confirm it. Hustlers…they are too good to be ignored and too low key to see.
Think of all the hustlers in your profession. Many of them do not have the fancy certifications, degrees and so on. They just hustle hard.
Have a good Friday. Hustle hard. Enjoy the 31 second Mr. Miyagi scene below (email subscribers click through)…
“We eat our dog food at LeadIQ. Dog food can be gross. Ours is not. We know our customer’s pains.” – Mei Siauw
If you were to look at a sales reps open tabs on their browser, you would see 38 open tabs on their browser because they spend so much time copying and pasting data from LinkedIn, Salesforce (or other CRM), spreadsheets and then pasting the data into some sales prospect list. Huge pain in the @#% and inefficient. Meet Mei Siauw. Her company, LeadIQ, makes the work of prospect lists and leads much easier.
Mei founded LeadIQ in the way all good companies start, serendipity. She was working with her Co-Founder on a different start-up to form her own prospect list because they needed to find customers. Her job was to find customers and she realized how difficult and painful this can be. This discovery of how painful it was to find and organize leads lead her to find LeadIQ. She quickly realized all companies have this problem – finding and organizing leads so the company can grow revenue.
Enough of my rambles. There is more to her story and success of life on Episode #19 of Secret Tech Sauce. Mei can tell it better than me…
Click below to enjoy the show (email subscribers click through)…
Happy Thursday. Thursday is the best day for many people because they are excited for Friday. Friday is not the best day because they realize on Friday they are trained like a hamster who works in a maze filled with prima donnas, bureaucracy, and business people who view life with tunnel vision. They only live for the weekends. Thursdays…
For some people, they work at a company that allows them to wear jeans on Friday. Some people call this “Jeans Friday”. The freedom to wear jeans on Friday makes their Thursday even better because they are excited to wear jeans for Friday. Can you wear jeans or do you have to wear a suit today?
Break the rules. Wear dress pants on Friday, T-Shirts on Monday, type a letter in Baskerville font, call a candidate’s bluff, work in a vacant office and take the stairs instead of the elevator. Yeah…get f@#$ing crazy in corporate America baby. Live Sunday through Saturday.
The next time you catch yourself excited on a Thursday, re-adjust for the next week (Friday to Thursday). Own it. It is your mess to clean-up. Change anything you see fit and act accordingly. Each week is short, but the short weeks add up and become your long life.
Have a good Thursday.