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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Follow Through

When learning the long jump, I was taught the jump wasn’t complete until I was out of the pit. That kept me from falling backward and losing total distance.

In golf, I get more distance when I exaggerate the follow-through at the end of my swing. The ball also goes in the direction I want.

This month, I was working with a team putting together some documentation. I set a delivery date. The customer picked a later delivery date, which some of my team-mates took as permission to extend their schedules.

Then the customer suddenly moved the date forward, giving 24 hour notice before the new, shortened delivery date. One of my teammates burped about the rush, and I observed if we had kept to our original schedule, we would have been fine.

That brought back memories of doing a lot of proposals, where some teams routinely had to pull “all-nighters” to deliver on time. I built a schedule so my teams would finish a week early, which let us take some leisurely time for a final check, applying If I Only Knew Then What I Know Now. We had an excellent win percentage with record low histrionics.

When I’m designing sales programs, I want the average player to achieve their weekly activity goal by Wednesday. There’s a week or two of, “You mean I can just go home?” followed by a practice where we execute some interesting ideas in the last two days of each week and often end up creating another week’s worth of production.

I don’t know where Finish Late In A Scrambling Panic comes from, but my experience is that neither the customers nor the providers profit from it.

What’s your story?

The Capital Technology Management Hub Startup Challenge is Tuesday, November 8, 6 pm at George Mason University. At this event, audience rules! We need audience, start-ups, interested parties. Come investigate Sales Lab’s new business! See the future up close and personal.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Last Call

I was reading some old notes about why to celebrate failure, a slippery subject, maybe a mental game.

Then I realized that if I don’t announce my failures, it’s harder to move on.

Can’t have a breakthrough, without declaring the breakdown.

Otherwise I spend all my focus grieving, hanging on to a mental closetful of busted attempts.

Burn the suckers. Light ’em on fire and dance in the light.

Start something new in the morning.

Wotcher think?

The Capital Technology Management Hub Startup Challenge is Tuesday, November 8, 6pm at GMU. At this event, audience rules! We need audience, startups, interested parties. Come evaluate my new business! Come see the future up close and personal.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


One advantage of posting to the internet is the huge audience. Somebody seems to find value in most anything.

What you post is how you are experienced, your electronic personality.

A second advantage is the ability to comment, to add to the discussion. Commenting is a developed skill, a habit. You get better the more you try.

Comments add different points to the original idea, and often reinforce the author’s idea.

Comments take can take the initial post in a whole new direction. When Jack Gates posted The New Normal, we were working to define a radically changed economy and how to use it.

Jack was picked up by over a dozen outlets and received almost a hundred comments. One group got quite active debating the meaning of the word “normal.” I suspect the later commenters weren’t even reading Jack’s post. They were developing a strong riff from the comments.

Not all the comments I get make sense to me, but often spark further comments and passionate debate. Once you let an idea go into the world, you can’t control how it develops. You can experience power beyond your own work.

David Sloan Wilson, the evolutionist, has done some studies that show that the perception of beauty and social rank are based on behavior that moves the species forward, not necessarily specific individuals.

The first thesis of The Cluetrain Manifesto, the book that started social media, is “All markets are conversations,” meaning more than one way. Television was the one way medium.

Develop your thinking in the big arena. Comment early and often.