The Finish Line

There’s a reason it’s called the finish LINE and not the finish area.

It’s a clearly defined marker, unambiguous and immovable. You’re either finished or you’re not. Like a light switch is either on or off, there is no “almost finished”. 

As entrepreneurs, we define our own finish lines, set the route and the pace.  Still we can never be certain that we’re close to the line. We know the path is rarely straight and the curves are things unplanned. 

The key is to never slow when you see the finish line on the horizon. To sprint through first base. And once you’re there, don’t waste time on a victory dance because the next leg of your race has already begun.

Trying and Succeeding

When did people begin exaggerating the difference between trying and succeeding?

Creating a wedge between honest effort and the hopeful result.

The growing viewpoint that something is not worth doing unless one knows he can succeed in the endeavor, wrongly measures “success” only by the intended result.

It fails to recognize effort and growth as the successes they are, and it doesn’t allot for the doors we unlock, unexpectedly, along the way.

When a set goal is not reached, we need to ask ourselves “was this worth the effort even though I didn’t succeed in the way I hoped and planned?”

The point is not the answer to this question but realizing that this is always a question worth asking.

Redeye Flights Life Lesson

In planning, it sounds amazing. I board a flight close to midnight, fall asleep like any other night, and wake up on another part of the globe. Teleportation. Perfect.

Only… things don’t always work that way, do they?

Instead, sometimes you can’t sleep in the plane and by 3pm the next day you’re wandering a foreign city like a zombie, or falling asleep in meetings, in cabs, on subway trains.

Life lesson reminder : If something seems too good to be true… it probably is.

But I’ll keep taking those chances.

And I’ll keep taking those redeyes.

Meeting’s Canceled 

The relative convenience of a meeting time has a direct inverse correlation to how much notice you should give someone if you plan to cancel or alter it.

For example, if you schedule a meeting with your team for 11am and you realize at 10:30 that the meeting is unnecessary or not possible for whatever reason… if you scratch it, everyone’s probably fine. They might even be happy. It’s the first half of a work day. Surprise, they just scored an empty 30 minute block to fill with other work, or an early lunch. This is especially ok if the meeting was just scheduled this morning or yesterday. If it’s been on the books for a week, it sucks a little because attendees have had to take it into consideration when building out their schedules.

On the other side, let’s say you schedule a call for midnight (it happens in startup life – probably more often than we’d like). Now, unless you’re a college freshman, that is not a “convenient” time. So, if you realize you’re going to have to cancel or push that midnight call, you better tell the other members before they throw off their circadian rhythm or set an alarm to wake up in the middle of the night. Canceling at 11:50pm is worse than having the call as scheduled even if you know you can’t hope to accomplish more than an item or two. This same thing applies to a 6am mtg.

Time is our most valuable resource. Respect others’ time and they will respect you as a person. Don’t, and they won’t. And they shouldn’t.

Great TED – The Social Animal

I had about a 20 minute drive to make last night, so I decided to cue up a TED talk on my iPhone and see if I could multitask transportation and enlightenment. I succeeded. Or rather, David Brooks, columnist for the New York Times succeeded with his compelling talk about human nature and our conscious awareness.

There are several comedic and interesting sound bites worth sharing, but he delivers a summation in the middle of his talk that struck a chord with me.Watch 1916: The Irish Rebellion (2016) Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

“…. for centuries we’ve inherited a view of human nature based on the notion that we’re divided selves. That reason is separated from the emotions, and that society progresses to extent that reason can suppress the passions. And it’s lead to a view of human nature that we’re rational rational individuals who respond in straight-forward ways to incentives. and it’s lead to ways of seeing the world where people try to use the assumptions of physics to measure how human behavior is… and it’s produced a great amputation. a shallow view of human nature. we’re really good at talking about material things, but we’re really bad at talking about emotions. we’re really good at talking about skills and safety and health, but we’re really bad at talking about character.”

Though the talk and Mr. Brooks are politically focused, and though his party views are conservative (he’s been quoted as saying “I was a liberal before coming to my senses”), the meat of his TED Talk is a social and psychological commentary on our subconscious perception, interactions, and ultimately, how those things effect our views of others and of society and societal issues at large.

Important stuff to be aware of, think about, and develop a perspective on.


Social Media Checklist

Are you and your company ready to get actively involved in social media? It’s not really an action item decided in the boardroom… it’s a conscious mindset shift about how you work, and even about what exactly ‘work’ is. Here’s a checklist to see if you’re ready:

• Are you prepared to make changes to your company’s culture and reinvent the use of office time?

• Are you ready to be open about two-way dialogue instead of the one-way dialogue we’re all used to?

• Are you willing to listen, understand, and possibly grant what your audience is seeking from you online?

• Are you willing to experiment and be patient when results don’t happen overnight?

• Are you committed to keeping your site, blog, and profiles updated with fresh content?

• Are you willing to be authentic about both the good and the bad in your organization?

• Do you have the “relationships first, business second” mentality?

If most of those are yes’s… you’re ready and able. What are you doing still on my blog page? Go update your own. And when you do, link to your Facebook and twitter accounts. Then field any positive or negative reactions with constructive dialogue and genuine engagement acheter viagra a paris. Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

If you have issues with some of those questions on the checklist, that’s ok and probably “normal” at this time. Though pervasive, social media is still pretty new and only broadly understood. Maybe it’s Greek to you, or maybe you just don’t yet believe that SM can build recognition, trust, and revenue for your business. If thats the case, I’d strongly recommend checking out case studies on people and business similar to you who have found success or failure with social media efforts. You may be a person or a business culture that needs proof and a hard ROI before trying anything new. Look to others experience for that.

**Above checklist derived from snippets of Mirna Bard’s ‘The Start of a Great Shift’ chapter in Robert Fine’s ‘The Big Book of Social Media’

3 Bits of Secret Sauce from SXSX

I just arrived back from four long days at the 2011 South by Southwest conference in Austin, TX. Aside from learning that late nights on 6th Street and Iron Works BBQ will put a damper on your exercise schedule, I can break down my takeaway into three fragmented nuggets of media gold:

1. Digital media and marketing can no longer be viewed as a segment of your brands marketing plan, it IS your marketing plan. “Traditional marketing” methods may still be required to insure your minimum daily impressions or to reach a specific target demo, but this is now the outlier. The classic mediums may have reach guarantee, but by the sheer existence of circulation numbers, they lack hope for scalability. When it comes to content mediums, the rule has become the exception.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

2. is blowing up for a reason. How influential is your perspective, your persona, your social identity on the web? To be more clear, how important is your online mojo to you… and how important is it to marketers and brands? I cant answer for you but I can tell you the marketers reply is VERY IMPORTANT. Influence quotients make it possible to pointedly target the elusive and most desirable customer segment, influencers. And as social media monetizes, this will become all the more vital.

3. Social Media, specifically lbs and mobile web, really is the wild west right now. A handful of folks got in early enough and developed powerful brand partnerships that let their initiatives automatically scale, but even those guys are still usually throwing spaghetti at walls. Some of the digital world/real world convergence blows my mind, and some causes me to wonder about either my own sanity or that of the participating public. I mean, how long can people go on collecting imaginary badges and purchasing digital in-game items before they realize they could be exerting that energy and spending those dollars on their own REAL LIVES? I have to think, not long.

Nugget #4 about SXSW would be GO! I think everyone who’s even remotely interested in or actively consuming interactive media, film, or music should experience sxsw. It’s a flight and a few days for a ton of perspective on today and the foreseeable future.