I just found the perfect end-of-the-year-holiday-reading. And the best, it is for free. So if you are reading this (and thus have an internet connection), there is no reason why you shouldn’t go to either to Seth Godin’s blog or to Scribd (easy to use version) to download your holiday treat. You will find more than seventy important thinkers (most from the US though) sharing what is most important at this time. Each person is sharing his or her vision on one page to make you think, to inspire, to share, and to reflect about what is most important for you at this moment.
I must confess I have only flipped through the 80 pages, stopping here and there when something caught my attention, but I will surely read the thing entirely. For once I might even print this out (double sided and black/white on recycled paper of course) to make side notes on the plane to holiday with family. My current favorites are “Excellence” (page 20), giving an overview on what is necessary to achieve excellence; and “Strength” (page 20), highlighting that you don’t have to know everything. You just have to focus on what you do best and partner with the people that can complement you on what you can’t do so well. Sounds like a good start for a new post, so more to come in the very near future.
Then, I have made the experience, if I read everything first, I tend to get unsure about what my initial ideas were. So I will take Seth’s idea of writing down very quickly what I think matters most today, just taking my own background and without doing any additional research for now. Though I might do so later.
Doing thing right from the very start. If necessary, plan an extra day to be sure that everything which needs to be done beforehand is actually done correctly. Find out the needs of the stakeholders before you start writing/programming/planning. Meet with people and talk about what you want to do. They might give you good feedback, interesting points to take into account. By explaining your project you will find out where you are glossing over potential problems. When you can explain the project and pitch it to somebody outside the industry, then you know enough to make it into something good. Don’t underestimate writing down your ideas. It will clear your head and you might want to get back to where you came from when something doesn’t work out as planned. Do not get lost in planning, but allocate at least the necessary resources before starting. Lots of frustration can be spared if you know what you can rely on. And last, but not least: take criticism serious, but not personal. Quality also depends on the person who is evaluating it. Thrive for the best from the beginning, without wanting to please everybody.