F’ing awesome: Let’s Meet: How to Prevent Big Companies from Wasting Your Startup’s Time http://t.co/UnzguoZH1J via @hunterwalk
— elizabeth brooks (@elizabrooks) October 15, 2014
No Cameras Allowed
See “No Cameras Allowed” by Marcus Haney (the dude who did “Connaroo – How Broke Kids Do Bonnaroo”). It captures the essence of the live music experience. Like Ferris Bueller at a festival. This is the original trailer before MTV picked up rights. If it disappears off the interwebs, let me know 😉
Respond and care
Two underrated actions/abilities that will take you very far in business, just as in life: responsiveness and caring.
Did you let someone know you heard them?
And does it matter to you that there’s a problem to be solved?
Say yes to both.
Creativity is a product of the desire to be helpful
“Creativity is a product of the desire to be helpful: help make it better, help make it faster, help make it more beautiful, help make it simpler.” – Cary Paik, architect
This is one of the most beautiful, and to me accurate, definitions of creativity I’ve ever come across.
Full video on creativity and business from the incredible C2MTL conference:
Cover photo courtesy of Sid Lee.
You can’t create if you’re focused on survival
One of the principles of microfinance is that, by extending credit, microlenders allow people to get out of a bare-survival relationship with moneylenders: a situation where subsistence is all that’s achievable. This blocks entrepreneurship. Extending credit allows the “breathing room” for a human being to actually start a business and grow it. This is why organizations like Kiva are so powerful in effecting change.
Too often people in business box themselves into a survival situation. In a highly political and challenged corporate environment, many times the only way to survive is not to stick your head above the waves. Do what’s expected; please the right people; and when the next round of cuts comes you will be ‘safe”. (This, by the way, being one of the worst definitions of “safe” I have ever heard.)
In a survival situation there is no room for creation. Career survivalists don’t make great things. Disruption could get them in trouble. They huddle in the bunker waiting for the loud noises to stop.
Don’t be a survivalist when you have the precious privilege and freedom to create change.
The biggest currency there is today
Your data is (are, depending on your grammatical preference) your personal information – the biggest currency there is today; control it, own it, and even find a way to profit by it. Everybody else does.
Is it more important to trust or to be trusted?
Yesterday I was puzzling out a tough problem and I called two close friends to help me work it through – which they did.
It was a really nice feeling to know I could call on these resources and that I could trust in what I would receive, and feeling that emotion yet again when the problem was lessened reinforced my trust.
Later that night, one of my friends called me for help on a knotty professional problem of her own. Being able to help, and being trusted in my ability to contribute, meant so much more to me than any help I had gotten earlier.
This applies to brands, products, and services as well as to people and resources. We place a lot of value in having systems around us that we can trust. But we must place an even great value on being trustworthy, and valuable, in the minds and hearts of others.
The mobile chasm
Having been intensely steeped over the past year in advertising-based digital brand businesses, I have been walking two companies through this.
The mobile chasm is simply this:
Any native digital media brand (read: a company that began as a website or group of websites, and that sells advertising as its primary revenue stream) is now obviously faced with an audience move to the mobile platform. Audiences are rushing to consume content on mobile much more swiftly than advertisers are moving to BUY ads on mobile. (This isn’t “the Facebook mobile problem”, which is that Facebook’s mobile product is not ideally set-up as an ad vehicle; this is a problem for anyone with a well-trafficked web property whose users are moving to mobile.)
No matter how amazing your mobile offering (site or app) and your ability to offer mobile ad choices of many kinds – your audience is moving to this platform faster than your revenue.
How do you focus on mobile as a necessary priority while nurturing the old-school Interwebs place where people are still spending most of their digital media money?
And even more sleepless-night-creating: how do you handle the period soon to come when your users are hugely mobile and media buyers have still not quite caught on? A huge chunk of the media buying community is still busy moving dollars to online from other media. Mobile is barely a twinkle in their eye.
With luck, it’ll be a brief period, because advertisers do follow audiences, but there is going to be catch-up time.
Are you ready for the chasm?
Photo by Doug Brown. Creative Commons.
Why are you afraid to be creative?
Why are you afraid to be creative?
I hear from friends and colleagues all the time that they don’t feel supported in the world or in business as creative individuals.
Look around you. Creativity is exploding.
Tumblr is past SIXTEEN BILLION pageviews per month and growing. Tumblr is about nothing but creativity.
Instagram has eighty million users and over four billion photos shared.
DeviantArt has two and a half billion pageviews per month and is in or nearly in (depending on whom you go to for stats) the top 100 websites in the US. DeviantArt is definitively about sharing and accessing creative work.
Kickstarter is everywhere and is full of people supporting the highly creative passion projects of complete strangers.
Trust it. There’s something going on.
Open it up
Ideas are an inexhaustible resource. Some people prefer to keep their ideas close to the vest, in fear that they will be stolen. Most ideas benefit from the sunlight of sharing. An idea that passes through the hands of a few smart, creative thinkers is bound to be made all the better for it.