Saturday, December 19, 2015

Randomness, Leverage & Networking

In a recent conversation with a young entrepreneur I was asked about the word(s) I would recommend that he study.  I came up with three in a minute or so.

Randomness: Accepting the brutal reality of knowing your influence on events may be outdone by forces beyond your control.  This knowledge requires stoic resolution to accept that despite your best efforts the goal will not be achieved.  But: progress may just as likely be favored by these same random forces.  Roll with it.

Leverage: To make progress quickly with little or no power you need to create an amplifier.  Look for them - they are a gift of nature the way a natural amphitheater allows a voice to be heard 100 yards away.  Usually you need to trade risk for reward the way mechanics converts velocity for power. Entrepreneurship is the craft of leveraging ideas into movements.

Networking: All success flows from the impact of ideas on people.  People tend to share ideas within their tribes - social networks. The goal of an entrepreneur is to spread an idea among tribes using the natural tendency of the members of that tribe to communicate.  The influence of an entrepreneur is thus leveraged by the interconnections within these networks.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Another Rotary Invocation - December 2015

Rotary invocation 12/1/2015

The world seems to be coming apart at the seams.  Every day brings stories about violence, corruption, disharmony and polarization.

The news media gets paid to bring stories like these into our living rooms and to the front page of our newspapers.  Mobile consumers have this unhappiness delivered continuously to their devices a dozen or more times a day.  Bad news today travels even faster than it did when my mom warned me fifty years ago that bad news travels fast.

With this tsunami of tragedy, even the most hopeful soul could feel down by the end of the day.

Today is December 1st.  The beginning of the Holiday Season celebrated around the world by three great religions and over half the Earth’s population.  A time of joy and hope we need throughout the year but especially now.

If you are person of faith, you have these happy holidays to celebrate.

Christians celebrate Christmas – the birthday of Jesus
Jews celebrate Hanukkah – the Festival of Lights and Feast of Dedication
Muslims celebrate Mawlid an-Nabi – the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad

I propose that rather than wait for January 1st to make a new year’s resolution, you make one right now to seek out and find good news every.  It will make you more optimistic, creative and energetic; even less stressful.  Doctors say it will improve your immune system!  Think of the impact on your love life!

And when you hear about polarization between peoples or politicians, I want you to think about this kind of polarization - North Polar-ization!  We can all agree that this time of year is enjoyed most by children who dream happy thoughts of gifts and giving.  We should pay more attention to them than the news.