Understanding the gravity of the (business) situation

Gravity is generated by objects that have mass.   The greater the mass, the stronger the pull of gravity.  The stronger the pull, the more it influences everything within it's reach.  We float weightlessly when there is no gravity.   We are like immovable boulders when there is a lot gravity. The longer a business is around the more likely it is to accumulate mass.  The mass accumulates in the form of people, processes, culture, habits, inventory, customers, etc.  As mass accumulates, so does … [Read more...]

Perfect is a myth… A simple way to overcome it

I said, "Quality is overrated."   Richard's jaw dropped.  This was heresy to a man of German heritage like Richard.  I took time to explain.  If we wait for perfection to get something out the door, we can wait a long time.  A working prototype comes before the good enough product.  Focus on getting to "It works ... enough"  before striving for perfection. Ernest Hemingway said "The first draft of anything is sh!t." The first draft of anything is a draft completed.  It is a completed piece of … [Read more...]

How to Keep Cool in the Texas heat

It's getting hot in Texas. The temps are in the high 90s by June.  It happens every year.   At the same time of year people start complaining about the weather.  Here's a question I heard last week:   "Can you believe it's so hot!?"   Yes.  I believe it.  It happens every year.  It's Texas.  It's supposed to be hot. I learned to get used to the Texas heat.  I had a theory: Exercise in the peak heat and I'll feel more comfortable when at rest in the heat.  I tested it.  I started jogging in … [Read more...]

WTF! If you don’t show it, they don’t know it.

Jen was standing in my arms crying.  She sobbed, "It was so beautiful.  I couldn't imagine it just going to just anybody on Craigslist." My wife, Jen and I are expecting twins.  We've been amazed at the outpouring of support from others.  Friends have showered us with what was once part of their journey of having babies.  We're so grateful that our friends and acquaintances are so generous in spirit (I apologize for Thank You notes that you haven't seen yet). We were offered a crib.  The … [Read more...]

WTF! Communicate Effectively…

A few weeks ago, I forwarded a Harvard Business Review "Management Tip of the Day" to a friend.    The tip was about ensuring effective communication.  Effective communication often means successful execution.  Poor communication often translates into poor execution.  Effective communication costs a little extra time.  Poor communication costs a lot of money. My friend is gifted at boiling things down to their most essential parts.  He's mastered Einstein's ideal:  make everything as simple … [Read more...]

Move the Heat Around

To light a fire, light kindling in different places.  This increases the likelihood that the fire will catch.  As a fire is lighting, we may reposition the heat.   We move the kindling around to expand the reach of the heat. A quick review - Fire requires heat, oxygen and fuel.  Your message is the heat.  The visibility of the message is your oxygen.  People are your fuel.  Your kindling is your Innovators and Early Adopters.  Identify who they are.  Light them with your message. Want to … [Read more...]

Should I Kindle?

Have you ever tried to light a log on fire without kindling?  I've made this mistake.  It's hard to light a log on fire without kindling.  I'd light some paper.  The paper goes below the log.  The paper burns out before the log catches.  At best, I char the outside of the log. Want a toasty, roaring fire?  Lighting a fire requires layers.  This is why people who are good with fire use progressively larger fuel elements to get a fire going.  Lighting paper is easy.  The paper can light twigs.  … [Read more...]

Smoke on the Water… Fire in the Sky

I was sitting near the fire pit. I was excited to start the fire. An hour later I was frustrated. We had wood. Lots of it. But it was not in the condition to light. We struggled to light anything. After 45 minutes of fighting smoke, we gave up. It takes fuel, oxygen and heat to start a fire. The fuel must be the right kind for the job. It must be in the right condition. Not all fuel is in the right condition to light. When the wood is wet, we get smoke. When the gasoline is … [Read more...]

Set People on Fire!

Basics of fire science tells us we need three things to start a fire: Fuel    (Ex.- Wood, Gasoline, Alcohol, etc.) Oxygen Heat You need all three to create a chain reaction. People are our fuel source;  our message is our heat; visibility is our oxygen Without people to ignite, you just have a bunch of hot air. … [Read more...]

Where do you want to go today?

Do you feel lost? What's your destination? If we decide where we want to go, we are more likely to go there. If we choose nowhere for our destination, we're likely go there, too. Do you want to go somewhere in life? Pick a place. Go. Take the risk, one step at a time. Don't worry about being wrong or right.  You can change your mind … Related articles Stop Dreaming and Start Doing (inc.com) … [Read more...]