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Why Coming Second Will Help Ensure You Win- Every Time

I have always believed to succeed in business, ‘being first’ would be a bloody good place to start. But I was wrong. The fact is, coming second, or even third, is critical to succeeding in business and often, in life. Here’s why.

Malcolm Gladwell spoke about it at the Cannes Creativity Festival in June 2011: how innovators often are not the ones who end up commercializing their innovations. Rather, someone else sees it, tweaks it, refines it, popularizes it, and makes a fortune out of it. Think “Steve Jobs , the mouse, icons and stealing Xerox’s great ideas…” Jobs stole the ideas and made them great. He made a fortune out of this.

I liked the concept, but did not really understand the point, until I read this great quote from an Australian rugby union legend, John Eales, who said:

Eight Proven Steps On How To Deliver A World Class Result- Every Time

We just staged our annual STW Kick Off conference for our 400 most senior leaders. The feedback was amazing. “The most inspiring, impressive conference day of my career.” “Better than TED, better than Cannes.” We were overwhelmed with the impact. How had we pulled off such a triumph? The secret is this.

In planning our 2012 conference, CEO Mike set precise goals: “The 2012 conference needs to be an inspiring and insightful ideas-rich forum that gives our leaders deep value. It needs to demonstrate the power and influence of STW, and our clear leadership position. There is going to be a lot of salary sitting in that room so we had better make it worth their while. It needs to be world class.”

It was what the team did in that first hour that ensured the success of this event. It’s a tip proven to ensure an outstanding result every time, whenever you have a major goal to achieve. Here it is.

Your business will fail in 2012 unless you do this

This will shock you. To succeed in business in 2012 and beyond, you have to do something dramatically different. Do this, and grow. Don’t do it, and die. Seriously- this is serious. It’s all about the ‘X Factor’. Here’s why, and here’s what to do about it.

The three traditional ‘must haves’ for businesses and individuals to succeed today are no longer enough. And in 2012, with the acceleration of change everywhere, this will be more true than ever before. To succeed, we now must also have one extra, all powerful attribute without which we will not reach our full potential. This is what it is, and how to get it.

At a conference in the Hunter Valley near Sydney, the dinner speaker knocked our socks off. First- because he looked about 12 years old (he was in fact in his mid 20s). Secondly- because of a competitive strategy and reality he shared with us that has been front of mind for me ever since. Here’s the story.

Why putting yourself out of business is smart

The most dangerous threat to the success of our businesses and careers is a great last result. It breeds complacency. FATAL! We have to relentlessly work to improve: or we will be overtaken and will soon fade into history. Here’s why, and how to do it.

Never rest on your laurels. John Chambers, a great Cisco CEO, famously said: “Stay paranoid.” David Ogilvy talked about “Divine discontent.”

Remember this- we are only as good as our next result.

To grow successful, thriving and sustainable careers and businesses, we have to remain ‘divinely discontent’ and ‘paranoid’ about our capabilities, our edge, and our competitors. Here’s two great ways to do it.

Why eating frogs are the key to success

I read once that eating a frog every morning would help me achieve more. I tried it. It’s not pleasant, but it sure as heck works. Here’s why.

Apologies to the Firebrand blog followers who heard a version of this story a few weeks ago. It’s such a valuable tip that I wanted to share it with the 2,500 Wrestling Possums subscribers who might not have.

If anyone ever asked my view on the key to success in business, my answer I fear would disappoint.

It’s this one habit that has helped me stay one step ahead and get the opportunities that have come my way. And it’s a habit which might leave you under whelmed. So be it. Here it is.

Why I have the best job in the world – and you can too!

This could be the most valuable Wrestling Possums post I will ever write. It might shape your career, or change your path forever. It will help tell you whether you have, or could make your current job, the best job in the world. Or if it’s time to move on. It’s a must read, and please- pass it on to those you care about.

We have one shot at our careers. Making sure the roles we give our talents and energies to are in turn giving us what we need to thrive, be fulfilled, happy and realise our full potential is vital.

A new role seems like a chance for a fresh start, and a step up. But is it? Or can you actually improve key ingredients of your current role to make it right for you at this stage of your career.

There are five key criteria which make up the ideal job for me. Have a look at each. Score each out of ten. I consider a 7/10 or above an ideal score for each criteria. Give it a go. Does your score add up to 35/50 or above?