“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done as the things I have done. Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things.”
These days there’s not a lot of call for plain talking. So I actively practice my ‘exec-speak’.
I make sure low hanging fruit gets cherry picked when deep diving and blue skying outside the box. I don’t get on my high horse or try to flog it when it’s dead like a bull in a china shop; and I certainly don’t look it in the mouth in case it tries to bite the hand that feeds it.
I try to push the envelope with my wheels in motion, and my plates spinning as I get the inside track on the ground floor with my irons in the fire and my ducks in a row, they’re certainly hatched so I’ll be counting them, but in more than one basket, if you catch my drift?
Adept at the full court press, I come out swinging, with the gloves off and my fingers in the pies. When it’s the bottom of the ninth and you’re on a sticky wicket, about to strike out or hit for six, I’m not going to be pulling any punches or throwing towels in.
There’s an elephant in the room but I know how to eat it. If you need a shark who can roll up his sleeves like a fox rather than an ostrich, who fights his corner and gets a hole in one before it all goes to the dogs, then this lone wolf is your 800lb gorilla.
So reach out soon, and we can take this offline. After all, throwing the baby out with the stones in a glass house won’t gather much moss. You have to make sure it washes its face before you cut its nose off. I’m not one to walk on eggshells like everything is peaches and gravy, but I will make lemonade.
I’m green lighting this grey area before we all see red.
At the end of the day, it’s not my first rodeo.
This message was sent to me today:
Find your love.
- Spend your life working at it.
- Trust your instincts.
- Ignore doubters.
- Chase the work, not the money. The money will come.
- Use your ideas to push this world forward.
- Don’t let your ideas down: Execute well.
- Work with great people. They are not always the easiest.
- There are no short cuts. Do the work.
- Great coffee helps.
I don’t know who originally wrote it but it seems to me very good advice; and great coffee really does help.
One of my favourite quotes is:
“There are people who make things happen,
there are people who watch things happen,
and there are people who wonder what happened.
To be successful, you need to be a person who makes things happen.”
It was said by the U.S. astronaut James Lovell, from Apollo 13 fame and also the first man to fly to the moon twice.
I’ll take advice from a guy with that track record. I always keep it in mind. Even when I know in a particular situation I may be waiting for something to happen, it gives me the hunger to want to get in there and make it happen; and it makes me fear being that person who ever wonders what happened.