Develop Killer Vision

Develop Killer Vision

The people who make the biggest differences in organizations have killer vision. Vision is valuable because it gives you the confidence to know an obstacle can be overcome, and you can see the path forward more quickly than everyone else. Killer vision is a way of thinking that gets you organized and exhilarated.  It’s the difference between the people who get it and the people who don’t.

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Have a Dead-End Job? You’re a Dead-End Person

Have a Dead-End Job? You’re a Dead-End Person

All jobs, regardless of prospects for upward mobility, serve as a vehicle for you to become a rock star, to lead your peers, and create value through disruptive change. The moment you believe you are in a dead-end job, you believe that the only value you can derive from it is your paycheck and that this will never change. If you believe this, then you can’t rock, lead or disrupt. You’re a dead-end person.

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Eliminate Your Own Job

Eliminate Your Own Job

On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for every job drops to zero. There are people and companies out there designing substitutes for what you do, and they are going to succeed at some point. The situation is ever more urgent because innovation cycles are getting shorter.

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Recognizing Mediocrity and Rising Above It

Recognizing Mediocrity and Rising Above It

Most people have good ideas, but only a very small percentage of these ever sniff execution at all, much less participate meaningfully. This is because most management structures enable mediocrity by providing employees with boxes to check, grading them on that box-checking and then believing things are going great.

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The Age of Individual Contribution and the Decline of Middle Management

The Age of Individual Contribution and the Decline of Middle Management

Great companies are becoming much flatter, and this trend will accelerate over the next 20 years. Promotion through the ranks won’t involve managing an ever greater number of people; instead it will mean an ever greater amount of accountability for an organization’s success.

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The Confidence to Disrupt

The Confidence to Disrupt

For ideas to become real, support from others is imperative. Disruptive innovations directly affect a number of stakeholders, in some cases across multiple companies. These stakeholders include not only executives and customers, but peers in other departments and frontline employees. All of these people care greatly for the continuity of their processes and outputs, and they are not going to support an idea that threatens to harm them. They need to see confidence to take on the change risk. 

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Templates are For Losers

Templates are For Losers

The danger with templates isn’t what you think it is – sure, your customer may notice that you used the same clip art as a competitor, or you may forget to find & replace another customer name with theirs. Those things are embarrassing, but the real danger is that you don’t have a vision for what you are trying to achieve. With no vision, you cannot create valuable change design, so you fill in a template with as much unique data as you can muster just so you at least appear competent.

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Individual Contributors (Should) Make the Best Innovators

Individual Contributors (Should) Make the Best Innovators

How can a mid-market or big company be as good at quickly innovating as a great start-up? By putting more empowerment back in the hands of individual contributors. To understand why this works and how to achieve it, it’s important to understand the make up of start up employees. Start up employees are:

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How to Read

How to Read

Experts and pontificators are not there to give you an instruction manual on how to be good at your job, but this is how they tend to be used by their readers. Most of the time normal people who are “well read” find a few authors they totally agree with and relate to and stick to them. They attempt to directly implement the things they’ve read into their job function. This is the wrong way to read because it develops critical thinking very slowly.

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The Enemy of Innovation is Quality

The Enemy of Innovation is Quality

Employees and suppliers tend to self-assess their value based on quality levels. In other words, the number of times out of 100 the output was delivered correctly. If the target quality level is met or exceeded consistently then there tends to be a false sense of security about value. The truth is, your quality can be 100% every day and your value can be low. It can even be zero.

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Your Single Greatest Asset: Overcoming Obstacles

Your Single Greatest Asset: Overcoming Obstacles

A study published by Expert Choice shows that when it comes to finding the top project managers in the world (the ones who really have to make sure execution is flawless and manage $100 million+ budgets effectively),  senior executives are looking for one quality above all others: the ability to overcome obstacles.

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Rock Star Output: Draw It

Rock Star Output: Draw It

A picture is not worth a thousand words. It’s worth negative a thousand words. Wait…huh?

When it comes to conveying concepts, written words have negative value, so when you reduce them you come out ahead. If a picture were worth one thousand words, no one would want it.

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