“Finally writing makes you smarter. Our working memories are incredibly limited. Writing opens a canvas that can allow you to form more complex thoughts, allowing you to understand harder ideas and solve tougher problems.” – writes Scott H Young author of the Book Ultralearning.
This is nothing new. And there are variations of this that we all read over the years. It is hard to say No – to friends demanding time, to that extra bit of work you think you should finish before going to bed, to watching that movie that you really are not liking, , eating that muffin that you thought you would like but – well – not that much. You get the drift. And then there are bigger ones – No to refined sugar, No to binge watching TV (and eating junk food while at it) No to a boss who insists you need to work late to prove you are with it.
Multitasking is a rage in Founders Land and those who don’t do it seems to be tame unambitious lot. Bragging about the 25 things we are doing simultaneously and sleeping 4 hours or less seems to get a lot of ink and attention. However it rarely works. And it is rarely true.
When you look for ideas to increase productivity you find a lot of instructions, some contradictory. Most not very easy to follow through. Andrew Quinn listed 13 ideas you can implement right away. As a sales professional or as a founder tasked with sales, remember a 1% improvement every day can compound to a huge change by EOY.
Larry Page and Sergey Brin stepped down from their executive roles at Alphabet the parent company of Google. Like their now legendary letter to prospective shareholders in their S-1 filing in 2004, this one is worth a read for all founders.
At work, in life, what makes for a lasting relationship the bedrock for happy productive associations? When you interview a new potential coworker what is likely to indicate that this person will not be a jerk. What personal friendships worked and why did they work? Which ones failed and why?
I have been pondering about it for a while. We know we need to talk to target customers as soon as we can, but we don’t. We know we need to track key metrics – but we don’t. We know we need to reach out to mentors and founders who have been there and done that – we don’t. We know we need to engage with the press and basically invest in marketing (time, not necessarily money) but we don’t.
Alexis Conran hosted the show ‘The Real Hustle’ on BBC where he and his team ran elaborate scams on people. In this hugely entertaining TEDXBerlin talk he presents the 5 tactics used by conmen to fool us. Well the crux is that we mostly fool ourselves. Politicians, businesses and folks who want to sell their story to us routinely use these 5 tactics to get us to do what they want. People believing fake news spread by politicians or got into Bernie Madoff’s elaborate scams – eventually fall prey to the same techniques. When we are building our businesses how many times are we fooling ourselves?
If you look around enough is being shared about the importance of story telling as part of your communication strategy. As an individual whether we are telling stories to our children, our spouse – our friends or colleagues or to our customers, this is one skill that we need to hone. And so that we are clear, although it is sounds like selling – it is not. Great story telling aids selling but not the other way around.