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Your reputation has as much impact on your life as what you actually do. Early assumptions about you are sticky and are difficult to change. The single best way to maintain your reputation is to do things you're proud of. Gaming goes only so far. In a connection economy, what other people think about you, their expectations of you, the promises they believe you make—this is your brand.
A six-year-old who throws a tantrum and refuses to go to school is escalating into the urgent. Going to school every day is important. Mollifying an angry customer is urgent, building systems and promises that keep customers from getting angry is important. Killing the bugs in the kitchen is urgent, putting in weatherstripping to keep them out for the long haul is important ...
The race to the bottom is unforgiving and relentless. I ordered some straw hats for a small party. The shipper sent them in a plastic bag, with no box, because it was cheaper. Of course, they were crushed and worthless. I wrote a note to the company's customer service address, but they merely sent an autoreply, because it was cheaper. And they don't answer the phone...
Joi Ito and Jeff Howe have a new book called Whiplash. Joi's the head of MIT's Media Lab and an extraordinary thinker. Jeff brings the ideas and the lessons of the Lab to life. This is a big think, well worth a deep dive. The Knowledge, Steve Pressfield's new book, is put together like a Swiss watch. Every single word, every scene...
In his day job, The Wizard of Oz sold hokum. Patent medicines guaranteed to cure what ailed you. And none of them worked. Deep within each of us is the yearning for the pill, the neck crack, the organizational re-do that will fix everything. Sometimes, it even happens. Sometimes, once in a very rare while, there actually is a stone in our shoe, easy to remove.
Deliberate, focused, generous, confident, thoughtful, these are all good things. Being pushy isn't. Imagine you had a check for $100,000 made out to someone else. Someone you don't know but can reach out to. How hard would it be for you to cajole this person to take the check from you and cash it? We call someone pushy when they are trying harder for forward motion than we are.
It really ought to be called the core list, because it's fundamentally misunderstood as something in the background, an afterthought. The backlist is the stuff you sell long after you've forgotten all the drama that went into making it. Book publishers make more than 90% of their profit from books they published more than six months ago.
The best way to build a brand that matters, a story that spreads, an impact that we remember, is to understand a simple but painful trade-off: If you want to stand for something, You can't stand for everything. "Anyone can be our customer and we will get you what you want..." is almost impossible to pull off. So is, ...
Organic chemistry doesn't care if you believe in it. Neither does the War of 1812. Truth is real, it's measurable and it happened. Truth is not in the eye of the beholder. There are facts that don't change if the observer doesn't believe: The age of the Eiffel Tower. The temperature in Death Valley. The number of people in the elevator.
Fear, loneliness, anger, shame & hunger. They drive us. They divide us. They take us away from our work, our mission, our ability to make a difference. And yet, sometimes, they fuel our motion, leading to growth and connection. When a variety of FLASH shows up, it almost never calls itself by name. Instead, it lashes out. It criticizes what we’ve made or done.
Imagine a supermarket (or any store, for that matter), where the items are arranged by price. At one end is the salt and the chewing gum, and at the other end are mops and steaks. We always think about the cost of an item before we buy it, but we don't buy it because of what it costs. If you find yourself acting like you sell a commodity, saying, "this is category X and the ...
Hobson's choice is no choice at all. Take what's offered, or walk away. Occam's razor is a rule of thumb: the simplest explanation is often the best one. Wheeler's which teaches us that the answer to "one egg or two?" is usually 'one', while th ...
"You can have any color car you want as long as it's black." Henry Ford made cars in black because black paint dried four hours faster than any other color. That fast drying meant that the line worked faster, which made them cheaper. Just as important, he didn't have stockouts--with only one color, the color you wanted was the color he had.
Seth Godin's riffs on marketing, respect, and the ways ideas spread.