Deliver at all costs

delivery
Photo: npr.com

Not delivering is the worst thing you can do. It gives me a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach.

Sometimes we stall and delay because we’re afraid of showing people our work or being judged on the quality.

But the results are secondary, really. And the benefit of hindsight means we can improve, optimise and learn for next time.

If Amazon delayed delivering a book you ordered because they thought you might just return it, or write a bad review, you’d be mad.

So, let’s keep our commitments. Even if it’s the worst thing you’ve ever done, ship it. Press send. Turn up. Apply.

Then learn from it. Doing nothing is worse than doing something badly.

Pick your own career

This post originally appeared on medium.com.

There’s a trend emerging in the dialogue of my generation of recent graduates and it’s terribly depressing. It consists of blaming previous generations and taking zero personal responsibility.

We blame the system for educating more and more people and, by extension, a greater supply of graduates for a limited number of jobs.

We complain that debt and recruiters conspire to make our lives hell.While these things may be true, they are muttered while playing video games, eating burgers and doing absolutely nothing to change the situation.

An alternative.

Quietly, without fuss, a group of young people are doing something completely different and succeeding.

I’m talking about everyday 20-somethings who, despite the system, actually get jobs. With or without qualifications they manage to overcome the conspiracies and land incredible jobs in amazing organisations.

How?

They ignore the excuses and take control of their careers. They develop skills that are in demand, quickly and cheaply. They test ideas, interview techniques, applications, networks and through pure perseverance they succeed. Continue reading “Pick your own career”

Why there’s no such thing as neutral.

Neutral is negativeThe problem with neutral messages (ignored by your audience) is that they aren’t actually neutral.

Every time we interrupt someone’s day with our message we are asking for permission. Permission to get inside their head and prove that we have something to offer them.

Too many times we fail to offer anything of value. And each time we fail, we don’t just get another free go. We lose some, if not all, of the influence we once had.

It could be that our target is too big (not targeted) or, more likely, the idea sucks.

When I watch a mediocre TV ad, I not only ignore it’s message, I actively detest the brand forever. “What a waste of time,” I think to myself.

Your audience does the same. Whenever we interrupt a colleague with useless news or complain about trivial frustrations we lose the permission to do it next time and the opportunity is lost.

Communication is not a right, it’s a privilege we can’t afford to waste.