Tag Archives | steve jobs

The Three Vital Ingredients To Fast-Tracking Career Success

The most common question I am asked by the most ambitious, impatient emerging talent is this: “How do I fast-track building a successful career?” I tell them. And they really don’t like the answer. Do you?

The answer to building career success is simple. Well, in my view anyway. Let’s see if you agree. I share this perspective from a knowledge bank of 30 years of ‘in the trenches’ experience, of hiring, mentoring, and coaching thousands, of building, buying, merging and closing businesses, and of farewelling many under-achievers.

Here’s my view. Every single ‘successful’ person I have seen who has climbed rapidly up the corporate ladder has had these three attributes in spades. You must have all three. Two is not enough. Have a read, and then score yourself out of 10 against how you’re tracking right now against each (10/10 being ‘brilliantly’… 1/10 ‘an unmitigated disaster’). Here they are:

How To Keep Strong When The Pressure Is On

I gave a presentation yesterday to a room of colleagues. I got to a slide I’d presented a thousand times, and yet its message struck me hard- as if I was hearing it for the first time. It was a message of hope, and of resilience. Here it is.

Our lives and roles can’t always be a bowl of cherries- sometimes the pressure builds, tensions rise, relationships get tested, issues complicate. Constant pressure depletes energy – it pulls you down, clouds judgement. You can feel trapped in the relentlessness of it all. The fun goes. It becomes a grind. We can become, quite simply, unhappy- right there deep inside. Know what I mean?

And it was on slide 17 of my presentation on how to be more effective and efficient every day that I was reminded of this great piece of advice. Here it is, and how I have used it to lift my spirits. Maybe it can help you do the same when you are feeling the pinch. Here’s that message from slide 17:

What Steve Jobs, Picasso and Sir Stamford Raffles Had In Common- And I Stole It!

Jogging by the river in Singapore last week, I stumbled upon the statue of the ‘founder’ of Singapore Sir Stamford Raffles, being freshly painted. It reminded me of something I stole from him once- and something I want you to steal from me. Seriously. Here it is. Take it.

Some dispute that Sir (Thomas) Stamford Raffles actually founded Singapore, but it’s a moot point. He had a vision for what this small fishing port could become, set the path, and went on to achieve much in his short life. He died aged 46.

But here’s the thing- most of Raffles’ ideas were not his own. Neither, according to the recent biography “Raffles and The Golden Opportunity”, were his ‘discoveries and his enthusiasms.’ You see- Raffles had a crystal ball apparently, and could see what built the success of both Pablo Picasso and Steve Jobs. Quite simply, Raffles built his success on one critical habit.

How To Have Outstanding Innovation Sessions and Brainstorms

I’ve always been intrigued by the Steve Jobs quote: “You know great design when you want to lick it.” But how the heck do you design great products, or great ideas that will revolutionize your own business, or that of a client? I just attended a session on innovation which gave me the answer. It’s a short read. And invaluable.

Some of the best thinking and work within STW is coming from our superb group of branding and design agencies. So when our training company, Phuel, told me about their latest licensed simulation: Design Thinker, I was immediately intrigued. This session gives participants live practice in the skills of design thinking, and was developed in partnership with Experience Point and IDEO, probably the most famous innovation design business in the world. So we immediately signed up our leaders to attend the course, and were not disappointed. Here’s what we discovered.

What The Therapist Told Me That Changed My Life

I went to therapy for five years in the mid 1990s. The issues were complex- deep insecurities, lack of self love, low self-esteem. It was a terrible burden that was ruining my life. Then, one day, my therapist gave me the clue to shedding the darkness. It’s a great insight for business too. Here is what she said.

I recently read a blog post on ‘The Top Five Regrets’ people on their death beds have expressed, as reported by a nurse who helped care for thousands of people as they approached their final moments.

It was when reading the Number One Regret that I was reminded of the insight my therapist had given me almost 20 years ago- an insight that helped me regain my life and my future. Here’s what the therapist told me, here’s also that death bed Number One Regret, and here’s what the lesson is for business and for life

The most important lesson from the life of Steve Jobs (why we need nutters, pirates and positive deviants to succeed)

The most important lesson from the life of Steve Jobs for those of us in professional services and consulting worlds is not what you’d expect. Yet for me, it is what I’ll always remember Jobs for, more than anything else. Here it is.

University of Pennsylvania president Amy Gutmann wrote: “The challenge of leadership is not to fit in. It’s to have combined passion with purpose, and the most inspiring and successful leaders, I think, don’t fit in.”

Steve Jobs did not fit in. His legacy endorses my recent guest post for Firebrand Talent’s blogs entitled:” Why We Need Nutters, Pirates, and Positive Deviants To Succeed.”

As a tribute to Steve Jobs-and with apologies to dual Possums/Firebrand Talent subscribers, here is that story. It’s my favourite.