Monday, April 28, 2014

Five pursuits that turn possibility into reality

This weeks sparkenation.

Long ago I developed five pursuits that help me to turn possibility into reality.  I recommend them to you.

1. Pursue Insight:  Insight is precious, information is not.

2. Pursue Wisdom: Knowing something and not applying it is being clever.  Knowing something and applying it successfully is being wise.

3. Pursue Being Attractive:  Jim Rohn said “Success is not something you pursue; success is something you attract by the person you become.”

4. Pursue Principles:  There are laws in life.  We simply have to follow them.  The great law is the law of the farm.  We must find the fertile ground, plough it, seed it, nurture it, and then we get a harvest.  The harvest is an outcome, the rest are processes.  The trick is to focus on the processes and detach from outcomes.

5. Pursue Purpose with Passion:  We all have a specific reason for being alive today.  We must be crystal clear on our purpose and pursue it with everything we’ve got.

Be the difference you want to see in the world.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Using the STEPPS Model to Make Your Ideas Contagious

In his book "Contagious", Jonah Berger describes six factors that make an idea more contagious - in other words, more likely for people to share it with their friends and network. The six factors are: Social Currency, Triggers, Emotion, Public, Practical Value and Stories.

In this short video, I show you how to use these six factors to make your products, services, ideas and messages more shareable:

Monday, April 21, 2014

The great things that happen when you know where you’re going

This weeks sparkenation.

This is a great post by my friend Keith Abraham.

Pay great attention to the quote at the end and then get going.

Be the difference you want to see in the world.

Monday, April 14, 2014

If others don't see you as you want to be, you need to change

This weeks Sparkenation.

I laughed out loud when I received below from a colleague (original source unknown)

Then I cried.

If others don't see you as you want to be, you need to change.

Be the difference you want to see in the world.

More sparkenations.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Kick Start Your Online Authority - Share and Share Alike

Build Your Authority By Sharing Other People's MaterialParadoxically, one of the best ways to position yourself as an authority is to share insights and wisdom from others. Your audience will appreciate you taking the time to selectively share what's relevant to them. The Internet makes it easier than ever before, and if you know where to look, you'll have an endless supply of high-quality material you can use - easily and legally.

Here are five tips for doing this efficiently and effectively.

1. Be a lifelong learner.

You can't share what you can't see! So you have to first adopt the mindset of a lifelong learner, and constantly expose yourself to new material in your area of expertise. This is not just for sharing with others, of course, but also because the world is changing so fast that your current knowledge soon becomes obsolete. So you need to keep learning.

2. Find the best sources.

Be selective about where you get your knowledge. Look for reliable high-quality sources in your area of expertise. They might be certain YouTube channels, specific bloggers, selected podcasts, a few e-mail newsletters, Google Alerts for important keywords, and some other very specific sources of information.

Ideally, you want sources you can subscribe to, so the material is delivered to you automatically. Otherwise it will become inconvenient to keep getting new material.

3. Process it efficiently.

Even after being selective, you'll still get too much material to handle. So figure out the best way to process it efficiently.

For example, I like listening to audio more than watching video, for two reasons:

  1. I can listen to it while doing other things, such as exercising and driving.
  2. My podcast player lets me play it at double speed, so I get through it twice as fast!

Your mileage may vary, so choose what's right for you. For example, one of my friends prefers watching the TED talks (rather than listening to the audio-only version) because he travels a lot, so can watch them on long flights.

4. Discard ruthlessly.

Remember that you're helping your followers by sharing only what is most relevant to them. So don't share everything that comes your way - or even most of it. Be ruthless in deciding what not to share, keeping in mind that what you do choose to share reflects on you and your reputation.

For example, I probably share about 1 in every 20 or 30 things. Of the others, I discard at least 80% of them because they aren't relevant to me. Of the few that are left, they are only relevant to me (but not to my followers), so I don't share them either.

5. Share it quickly.

When you find something worth sharing, share it! Don't just file it away for future use in a workshop, keynote presentation, book chapter, or blog post. You can do all of those things as well, but first send it out to all your social networks. There are software tools to help you manage this process, so you can distribute it to multiple platforms, and space out the delivery over time. But the main principle is to get it out of your world and into theirs.

How can YOU use this idea?

I hope this inspires you to find and share more. Your followers really do appreciate somebody else doing their reading for them, and it also enhances your image and reputation in their eyes.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Why are so many otherwise smart people dumb when it comes to leading other people?

This weeks sparkenation.

One of the great maverick thinkers of my lifetime is Tom Peters. 

I love Tom's manifestos. My favourites are 'Presentation Excellence' and 'People (REALLY) First!'

I laugh and cry every I read page 4 of 'People (REALLY) First'.

I got ridiculed by many just 14 years ago for the title of my first book Increasing Profits Without Hurting People Many thought is was an oxymoron! Only fools ridicule me now.

When it comes to how you see, treat, and lead people are you as wise as you can be?

Be the difference you want to see in the world.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The greatest challenge we must all overcome

The greatest challenge facing humanity is outdated thinking and therefore flawed actions.

What do you believe?

Many leaders still see people as cogs in a giant machine for example. I named this BS.

Adding to the toxicity about people are outdated ideas about strategy, change, performance improvement, and leadership and management just to name a few.

What no longer works in your world that you are hanging on to?

Where could you let go the status quo?

My heroes are mavericks – rebels, radicals, dissenters, disrupters, heretics, non-conformists, contrarians, the label doesn’t matter. I admire mavericks who go outside the box and make the world a better place as a consequence. I am particularly passionate about maverick thinking and action that leads to radical transformation of the way we work because much of the way we work, if we are honest, isn’t working.

What do you believe?

Albert Einstein made the following observation:
“We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them”

In a great book ‘The Philosopher and The Wolf’ Mark Rowlands says:
“Humans are the animals that believe the stories they tell about themselves.”

What stories are you telling yourself about yourself?
And are they moving you forward or holding you back?

Everywhere you look there are warnings about the problems that our thinking, and particularly our attachment to our thoughts, can cause us.

Here are some of my favourite insights:

“The only thing that keeps us down and keeps us stuck is our thoughts”
John Kehoe

“Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”
Steve Jobs

“To paraphrase several sages: Nobody can think and hit someone at the same time.”
Susan Sontag

“Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably the reason so few engage in it.”
Henry Ford

“Every faction conditions its members to think and act a certain way. And most people do it. For most people, it's not hard to learn, to find a pattern of thought that works and stay that way. But our minds move in a dozen different directions. We can't be confined to one way of thinking, and that terrifies our leaders. It means we can't be controlled. And it means that no matter what they do, we will always cause trouble for them.”
Veronica Roth

“You may believe that you are responsible for what you do, but not for what you think. The truth is that you are responsible for what you think, because it is only at this level that you can exercise choice. What you do comes from what you think. ”
Marianne Williamson

“A thought is harmless unless we believe it. It’s not our thoughts, but our attachment to our thoughts, that causes suffering. Attaching to a thought means believing that it’s true, without inquiring. A belief is a thought that we’ve been attaching to, often for years.”
Byron Katie

"Begin challenging your own assumptions.  Your assumptions are your windows on the world.  Scrub them off every once in awhile, or the light won't come in."
Alan Alda

"Thinking is what a great many people think they are doing when they are merely rearranging their prejudices."
William James

Here’s the thing.  If you are achieving what you want in your life and work my educated guess is that your intentions, feelings, and thoughts are in alignment and your behaviour matches.

Of course if you are not achieving what you really want in your life, either your thinking is stopping you and/or your intentions and feelings are out of alignment with your thinking and therefore your actions are betraying you.

Wherever the status quo no longer serves you, it’s time to change what’s normal.  Changing your thinking is a great place to start.

Is it time for you to think like a maverick?

“Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become your character.
And watch your character, for it becomes your destiny."

To solve all your problems in your life and work, to overcome your challenges, first change or modify how you think about them and then make sure your intentions and emotions are in alignment, then take action in sync with your intentions, feelings, and thinking.

Be the difference you want to see in the world.

“If you correct your mind, the rest of your life will fall into place.”
Lao Tzu