April 9, 2008

News & Opinion: ChangeThis: Issue 45

By: 800-CEO-READ @ 7:20 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

We have some interesting and counterintuitive advice this month. David Rendall advises us to flaunt our weaknesses, Barry Moltz tells us to temper our ambition, and Robert Rosen believes that we can, and should, use our anxiety to become better leaders. We also have Francis Wade weighing in on time management, suggesting we rid ourselves of the fancy PDA devices and gadgets until we have a grasp on the 7 basic skills needed to manage them. And, in the middle of it all, David Meerman Scott delivers a great tract on viral marketing, or "how word-of-mouse spreads your ideas for free." More information and many links below.
Strive for Minimal Achievement, by Barry J. Moltz
"Failure is valuable only when we realize it is a normal part of the business process even when there always isn't something to learn. So it does not hold us back.
The real fear and pressure in this whole process is not brought on by our competitors or other outside people. It mostly originates within us. The biggest fear we have is that someone in our position would have done better than us, made better decisions than us and would have built it faster and more profitably than we did. We believe that that we should be in a different place than where we are right now, and that we would be, if only we had made better decisions. Nonsense.
In our business life, in order to move forward, past the fear, past the failure, yes past the success, we actually need to just let go. Letting go is the key to gaining true business confidence. Not by holding onto what people have taught you are the keys to success. Not by looking for the 7 steps. You need to let go of the idea that there is always something to learn from failure or that you can always build and duplicate your success. Get ready for your next great success by letting go and bouncing."
The Freak Factor: Discovering Uniqueness by Flaunting Weakness, by David Rendall
"My experience as an individual, consultant, parent and leader indicates that efforts to fix weaknesses are ineffective. Furthermore, I believe that the goal of being well-rounded is both undesirable and impossible to attain. The purpose of this manifesto is to explain why I believe this and to offer a better alternative.
These examples from my life illustrate the three primary lessons of this manifesto.
1. There is nothing wrong with you. Weaknesses are important clues to your strengths.
2. You find success when you find the right fit. You need to match your unique characteristics to situations that reward those qualities.
3. Your weaknesses make you different. They make you a freak and it's good to be a freak."
The New Rules of Viral Marketing: How Word-of-Mouse Spreads Your Ideas for Free, by David Meerman Scott
"You and I are incredibly lucky.
For decades, the only way to spread our ideas was to buy expensive advertising or beg the media to write (or broadcast) about our products and services. But now our organizations have a tremendous opportunity to publish great content online--content that people want to consume and that they are eager to share with their friends, family, and colleagues.
Word-of-mouse is the single most empowering tool available to marketers today. I wrote this e-book so you can take advantage of the power of viral marketing too. In it, I share ideas that will help you create your own viral marketing strategies and campaigns."
The New Time Management: Simply Focus on the Fundamentals, and Toss Away the Tips, by Francis Wade
"As working professionals across the world, we all want the same things when it comes to time management. We want to feel a certain peace of mind that comes from knowing that our affairs are in order and that we've not forgotten something that might jump up later to give us a nasty surprise.
We also want to get as much as we can out of life, and to maximize the time we have to be alive. We share the belief that this time is limited, and we want to spend it in ways that are in line with our values and commitments.
And we all face the same problem of having only 24 hours in the day."
It's Time to Evolve: Leading with Just Enough Anxiety in the 21st Century, by Robert Rosen
"In Prehistoric times, saber-toothed tigers and other wild animals tried to make primitive man their meal, before he made a meal out of them. Out of this anxiety-ridden society, a built-in coping mechanism was burned into our genes--the fight or flight response. In today's business world, leaders face a modern-day breed of saber-toothed tigers; burnout, corporate takeovers, diminishing finances, and other anxiety-producing events threaten our well-being and the survival of our companies every day.
When it comes to managing our anxiety, it's time to evolve. Anxiety is as much a fact of life today as it was for our ancestors. How we use it makes all the difference. If we let it overwhelm us, it will turn to panic. If we deny or run from it, we will become complacent. But if we use anxiety in a positive way, we will turn it into a powerful force in our lives. We will uncover the hidden driver of business success."