Thursday, December 30, 2010

First Step Is Always Difficult

When you were a child your parents didn't teach you how to run, right.  They just taught you how to stand up and taught how to take first step.  I think that was the most challenging part in our JOURNEY from standing up, walking and running.

We form our dreams full of running sequences flowing and following one after another.  And that is what makes it all difficult for us to even pursue them.  We cannot figure out and break down our dreams in to small small chunks of achievable steps.  Which in turn leads to first steps.  What prevents us is that first step.

We just need to take that one step, to get started.  And that is the big step in getting a momentum started.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Goals For New Year

2010 has been a great year for me both professionally and personally.  In the early 2010 I wrote a post on, "Why new year resolutions don't matter but goals do matter".  And the motivation behind it was I made a two page full of goals for year 2010.  I made some 24 goals to hit in the year 2010.   My wife would even have thought at one point that this guy has no focus and there is no chance he is going to finish all of them.  To keep my subconscious mind focus on my goals I still have them posted in front of my desktop, so that I see it everyday.

Wow ! ambitious it might sound at first but let me tell you that all the top priorities were completed and some were 25% completed.  One of my goals was to write at least 250 blog posts in year 2010 and as a regular reader you can easily figure out that I was able to do it.  Yeah !

Some Goals didn't made any sense to me after two months or so.  After six months I laughed at myself.  But I was not ashamed of myself.  I still make it a point to write down even the wackiest of them.  Because I don't know which one will work out in my best interest.  What is my long term goal and what are my operational priorities I don't know ahead of time so I tend to write them all.  I will filter them later.   Even I knew that I cannot do them all so my wife was right.

One strikingly amazing outcome of my writing goals was that I spotted some trends.  I was able to see which way I am headed.  I was able to see trends in which I see my passion exists.  I have outlined goals for year 2011 and now they are in one page reduced to half, just 12 of them.  I plan to complete most of them.  Next year writing more than 250 blog posts is definitely a goal but also doing something radically different with it is my wish.

I figured out that if we try to push our limits all the time while writing our goals we will eventually reach to a point where something amazing will happen and something which you couldn't have achieved otherwise.  I also figured out that we have to embrace change so it is OK if we feel to change our goals, majors, passion and even our ideology.

Some emerging themes I want to focus in the next year are : How to do things faster?  How to touch more and more people?  How to do more with less?  How to achieve growth in a sustainable way?

If you haven't tried writing your goals out then I urge you to experiment this with me for one year.  It is both challenging and fun.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Two Sides Of The Same Coin

Pay close attention to these two arguments below.

1.)  I don't write because I have to, I write because I want to.

2.) I don't write because I want to, I write because I have to.

In both the cases, I can make compelling arguments in such a way that both will be correct.  I have read many bloggers who believe in either of these philosophies and still they do equally good.  So what is the deal here and What I am trying to pitch with it?

It is the same world, same 24 hours given to everyone of us.  Situations happen to everyone of us.  Both Good and Bad.  It is up to us how we take them.  And ultimately we are responsible for our own happiness and miseries.  How we want to see the coin is what matters.

You can turn your adversaries into opportunities and opportunities into adversaries.    In the former case wisdom will come quicker and delayed in the latter case.

Thousands of TV channels are broad casted on Television today and it is quite likely that when you turn it on, you will be able to find a program of your interest.  The world out there is opening up.  And there are thousands of opportunities created everyday.  How come most of them are not able to spot them?  How come many people are able to see only one side of the coin?

 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Happiness

Christmas ! What a wonderful time to be with family and friends !  Some people were not able to meet their family and friends during Christmas.  They will be sad.  How simple it is to figure out that we are Happy when connected with people and sad when left alone.

We correlate our most important events in life as the most happiest moments.  For example, Marriage, Graduation, Engagement and so on are considered to be happiest ones.  On those days we are together.  There are lots of people around us.  We feel the strength of our connection.  We will be Happier on our wedding day than standing on Time Square during New Year's Eve, because we will be surrounded by strangers in the later case. 

I call the Happiness from being connected as Christmas Happiness.  The more and better we are connected with people(real and valuable connections) the more happier we are.  We can create this Christmas Happiness everyday if we are willing to go out of our comfort zone and build some real and lasting relationships with people around us. 

Imagine a place where you walk in and everybody knows you instantly.  Imagine Times Square on New Year's Eve where everyone present there knows you.  How great the feeling would be?  More Connections = Happiness. 

There is a great saying in Gujarati (Native Language of Gujarat State in India), "Odkhaan e ek prakaar ni Khaan Chhe".  Which means that "Connection is like a Gold mine".   To me it is a Gold mine of Happiness.

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Sexiest Fashion Show On Earth

If you are attracted by the title of the post and coming to read this then I guess you will be disappointed.  But the idea behind this post is very fascinating and great.  I feel this gives a whole new dimension to what we are doing in the business world today and what we should be doing.

First of all if you haven't seen the latest Victoria's Secret fashion show then go on Youtube and see it.  And I don't mean it by any sense of vulgarity.  It is a spectacular show by all operations, marketing and management means.  Articles after articles and case studies can be done on just how they execute the whole show.  It is marvelous.

Needless to say if you see some leading fashion designers' shows then you will see the planning and preparation behind it.  But guess what, who is the show stealer in this all process, "Not the model, Not the Person, Not the product".    It is the "Idea".  The Idea of newness.  What the heck next year's show will look like? How the models will be dressed? Who will come next? Will anything go wrong on the stage? Will I miss it?  There is this curiosity within all of us to find out something new.

So here is the deal.  We all are in the Fashion Business.  We all are building products and businesses that are not an end in itself.  It is a continuous process of improvement and releasing the next version of your product. It will be the next fashion.  Did Apple create a fashion for smart phones?  Hell yeah.  Did Facebook created a fashion to stay connected with people?  Are they able to maintain it.  Facebook launched lots of features this year.   People were eager to find out how their new profile would look like.

We have to run our businesses like a Fashion Show.  Our next product should be a Fashion.  The next version of our software should be launched with such planning and preparation.  We cannot shell out all our creativity in one product(Apple could have done all the features in their Ipad in the very first iteration, but they didn't).  Always remain hungry and don't satisfy everybody.  Is it possible to write everything I want to write in one blog post?  No I cannot.  One blog post has to end and the next blog post has to come.   If there is nothing new you will not come back to read right.

Our mentality is shaped hugely by what we think and what surrounds us daily.  We are in a creative business economy.  We have to think like artists and fashion designers.  We need to be experimental, we need to be satisfied with what we can do in a moment.  After all in one fashion season only one Fashion Show can be done. Next year there will be new products, new models and new people to watch.  Some people could afford it this year, some will be able to afford it next year.

So do you run your business like the Sexiest Fashion Show on Earth?  Are your products Sexy?  Are they able to create a desire?  Is it something for which I will save money? Is it something for which I will wait?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Happiness Guide

"We take different paths in life to achieve the same goal in life - Happiness" - Tony Hsieh CEO - Zappos.

There are millions of people out there who are just waiting, waiting and waiting.  Waiting for that one day when their dreams will be fulfilled and they feel that they will be Happy.  Tony says in his book(Delivering Happiness),  that when people's dreams are fulfilled they figure out that their Happiness is often short lived.  So if Happiness is short lived then why we create such false hopes in our mind that Happiness is not in the near future.  It will only come if we do this.  It will only come if we have enough money.

We don't have to wait for that one day in order to be Happy.  In one shot you can decide whether you want to be Happy or Miserable.  It is your decision.  And you have to take it.   If you start asking people what makes them Happy, you will find interesting answers.  I will leave that up to you as an exercise.  However from Tony's Book I thought can we write down few things that we can do to be Happy.  90% of our situations are under our control and 10% which is natural and bound to happen are not under our control.  With the two things below I think we can be 100% Happy.

1.)  Connectedness
Like it or not, we like being liked, appreciated and being a Star.  That Stardom can only come if we are connected.  As human beings we are afraid of loneliness.  We are scared because everyday something crazy goes off.  We are worried about what will happen next.  What will I do if so and so happens?  If we are connected then we feel safe.  If I don't call my parents for one week I get scared, I start thinking so many things.  So I call and stay in touch with them.  I feel safe.

We also tend to make good decisions if we are connected with our network.  We don't want to miss opportunities and left alone dumb.  We also want to be perceived as smart.  Connectedness also gives us lots of benefits as it is equivalent to Networking.

2.) Progress
We want to be the next Rock Star in our respected fields of profession.  Also side by side we want to pursue our other activities, like Become Healthy, Learn Guitar, Learn Swimming and so on.  If we don't do anything after coming home then we get disappointed, "Oh I couldn't do this".  We are also afraid of an unseen truth of life, "Death".  We fear that what if I couldn't do this before I die.  If you are young, you might not fear about death but you might say that I want to do all this before I get married or get a job or have kids.

If we are not able to do anything then we get upset and the result is equal to, "Not Happy".   So the lesson here is, break down everything that you want to do in life into small small chunks.  Plan it in small parts ok.  Whatever you want to do.  Start doing it.  Since small is do-able you will make progress.  You will feel that you are doing something that will fulfill your goal.  One step in the right direction.

We create gigantic goals in front of our minds that we cannot do it and cannot make progress in that direction.        Jim Collins says about the flywheel effect in his book, "Good to Great", that Great companies didn't become great in one day.  Their flywheel didn't gained momentum instantly.  It was done turn by turn.  Once you make progress in small parts it will gain momentum and one day you will say finally, "I can finally run a Half Marathon" or "I could play one Beatles song on Guitar".

If we could be what we always wanted now then we can be Happy.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Networking Tip: Volunteer


If you see a place where people are volunteering you will find that they are doing it because of money.  If they were doing it for money then their common sense would have told them way before about the economics of it.  These people are there because they want to give back something.  They want to be a part of the community, which means that they are open for networking.  The doors are open.  These guys are easily approachable and are happy go lucky kind of people.  They have left their egos way back to give back.

We had a paper in business school on "What makes an organization a learning organization?"  One of the things it mentioned was that the leaders of great organizations were always involved in some kind of organizations - mostly nonprofit.  Not to mention they were lifelong leaders.  So if you go to volunteer at an event or do any kind of service project for any organization then any guesses whom you will find there?  Leaders.  Trust me, try it out.  Bonding is lasting and you will make some great friends.  And as I always say, don't go there for the sake of networking but go for the sake of friendship.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Blogging: When In Doubt, Don't Post

Bloggers are creative.  They are creative and hence they can come up with many ideas instantly.  I don't know about all of them but at least I can relate to myself.

I think of many ideas that could be potential blog posts.  Some times I get so excited about an idea that I feel this is it. I have to write on it.  After writing few lines on it, I tend to loose interest.  I have even written some posts which now reading back I feel that I shouldn't have written them.  But that is the learning process after all.  Any ways, the best way to tackle such creative sparks (where we are unsure about the idea) is to save the idea and write them later.

I have more than 60 drafts of blog posts pending which I thought were great ideas but now I cannot find more thoughts to write on it.  So I just save them.  Whenever I feel that they are ready to go out, I post them.  

The best way to judge whether a creative blog post or idea is really great is to give it a time test.  If you feel that you are unsure about whether this idea is a great blog post or not, then just stop and don't post it.  Read it again and again.   After few more days come again.  Can you still read it at one stretch?  Does it excite you as much as you thought initially?  If it does go ahead and launch.

When you are in doubt then don't publish your blog post immediately, give it some time.  Let the idea grow in itself.  Let it take shape.  Just think what would happen if you are about to write a book.  Many draft versions and many revisions has to be done before it is published.  I think it won't hurt to do the same with blog posts.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Word Of Mouth Will Always Win

I think the whole Idea of marketing these days is getting blurred.  We are on the verge of exploding marketing channels.  As days pass by marketing channels are going to increase and mass is going to fragment exponentially.  And marketing is going to be tougher and tougher.  And no wonder even in this space big marketers will win.  

According to me, the word "Social Media" is not appropriate, because it makes you think only few selected channels where you have to market your brand.  I believe in the word, "Social Marketing".  That 's it.  Which makes you think from the base, like how can we market a brand socially v/s on social media.  When you want your brand to be recognized socially, what you will do?  What spreads socially?  Word of Mouth?  If yes then how is word of mouth generated?  Through a great service or a product.  When you go deeper and ask how and why of everything it will boil down to only one aspect. 

Focus on building something remarkable and great, that people desperately want, can't live without.  And allow the product do all the talking and have a presence where people can just connect.  Finally simply listen, listen, listen to followers.  

I don't go to Chipotle because they are marketing on Facebook.  I like their Food.  Even if they stopped marketing on all the channels still they will win.  Word of Mouth.  And do you know when people talk with each other (and spread word of mouth) when they are are in groups.  These groups hang out at different places.  Social Media just creates a medium where word of mouth is amplified. 

Why I Won't Consider Outsourcing Social Media?

A friend of mine who owns local business asked me if he can outsource social media.  He wanted to outsource marketing his own brand using Facebook and twitter to a third party.  "Stop" I said.  I told him few reasons why he should not consider outsourcing his social media to another company.

1.) Emotional Connection
Social Media sites like Facebook and Twitter are great and excellent ways to promote your brand.  But what if somebody who doesn't know what its like connecting with real people.  Social media is not just a place where numbers increase.  It is not about spamming people to join my facebook page or follow our brand on twitter.  It is about doing the hard emotional labor of connecting with people at an emotional level.  To go out and do something that your followers care.

You might argue that is it like a third party can't connect with people?  It is not like that.  There has to be an emotional connection with your brand.  Your people in the company know more about your company culture than anybody else.  The culture is felt within a company.  How can a company market your brand (On Social Media) when they are already having 10 different clients?

2.) Real Time Updates
In social media you are updating statuses and launching deals in real time.  You could be doing while you are on a bus or while walking.  Fans and Followers can ask questions all the time.  You have to keep up with them.  Hire a person even to do that if your company can afford.  In my earlier post I argued that social media is about transparency and responsiveness.  How fast you can respond to your followers and fans, matters.

3.) Leadership
Third and by far the greatest factor: Leadership.  To run a successful social media campaign you have act like a leader.  When we say leadership it is hugely misinterpreted by lots of people.  Leadership is not equal to "I am the boss" attitude.  It is not equal to a person standing on a stage giving lectures.  It is about being a person who can lead with vision and conviction.  It is about being a person who is responsive and responsible.  Can you expect that from a third party?  How can a third party motivate and inspire hundreds of people at the same time?  

4.) Never Outsource Your Core Competency
Will Facebook give contract to a third party to build their website?  Will Microsoft give contract to somebody else to write windows and word?  Will Walmart give up their IT department to third party?  No way.  Right.  It is like that.  Social Media is your core competency.  If you can build a brand within people and if you are able to connect with them like no body else can connect then it is your core-competency.  Can you connect with Fans of Gary Vee like Gary Vee?  Can you connect and build a brand for Seth Godin?

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Vision Quote

"I am  not a Man on a Mission, I am a Man on a Vision" - Anonymous

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

End Of Office Culture?

Lets' take most modern companies and start-ups.  You do not see a walled empire where people are found in offices.  You see lots of people working together with each other in one large room.  There are large steel pillars and high roofs. 

People get fascinated when they have a personal office.  But office culture of staying and working within walls is bad.  And also it is fading away. 

Here is a sweet story.

When companies  are found, they are usually found by few individuals working in one room.  It works out  great for them.  No need to take appointment to talk.  No breach of privacy, as there is no privacy.  No layers of bureaucracy as everyone is at the same level.  Sounds great right.  Yes.  It is great because things work out faster this way.

When companies scale they add up weight to their balloon and the balloon starts coming down.  More departments, more offices, more bureaucratic layers and more need for privacy.  Things go slow and super slow, ultimately leading to crash.

Eventually those companies halt their progress, are taken over by another firm, declare bankruptcy and so on....

A major focus of companies these days is doing things faster.  Because in an internet world, it all depends on who gets there first.  So how they can do things faster?  They started to become more transparent and become more connected.  They started eliminating offices. 

Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook doesn't have an office.  Tony Hsieh of Zappos doesn't have any office.  By the way these are fastest growing companies.  Did I missed Groupon? 

If you see pictures of Facebook offices, you will see people working in a large rooms, which aren't rooms they are halls without any walls and higher ceilings.  It gives you a feel of connectedness and a sense of being a part of something bigger than the self. 

More and more companies are adopting the "No-Office" culture where all work, build, and celebrate together under one roof.  

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Build Something Great

There are a thousand billion opportunities out there for you to create and build something.  Previously there were non existent.

The big brother who created these opportunities, "The Internet".  If you are still underestimating the power of internet then just look at companies which are build within last 5 years not 10, not 15 only last 5 years.  Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, Groupon.

They are changing the face of an entire generation.  If people think now it cannot be done, it is not like that.  Value can be created any time.  Building something that people can't live without is worth billions.  And it is done every year and faster than ever before.  It just depends when people choose to wake up.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Higher Purpose In Life

Have a higher purpose in life than the self.  Profits follow (higher) purpose.  Organizations with higher purpose made more money than those who just concentrated on profits.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Social Media: Transparency And Responsiveness

Focusing too much to come up with a good social media strategy I think is a waste of time.  I feel a company which is transparent and truly responsive has a great social media presence.  And if companies can focus on being transparent and responsive then they can build a great brand using social media.

Transparency
If you want to have a presence on twitter then really you will have to tweet it up.  Which is not limited to using twitter but you will have to give updates to followers every now and then.  This leads to opening a window into company culture.  The more you tweet up personal and relevant information about the company the more followers will follow up.  If you are truly transparent then over time you will realize value.  The bigger the window    , the bigger the presence and engagement.

Responsiveness
Social media is demanding.  If you cannot back it up with reps answering tweets or email or complains then you shouldn't think on going heavy into this.  Customers want to be heard and they also want to engage into conversations.  Many times customers would also want to give you valuable suggestions., but what if there is no one to listen.  Customer engagement is highest if there is someone at the receiving end.  Social media is very vibrant and agile.  If customers or followers get angry or companies often do mistakes then "Buzz" is amplified these days using social media.  Always it is not the problem that is the problem, but the response to the problem is the problem.

    

Friday, December 10, 2010

The Good And The Bad

There are good people and there are bad people.   I don't understand any other adjective that better describes people in this world.   When you add vocabulary to describe people you become judgmental about your own behavior to other person.

You will meet both kinds of people where ever you go.  We can be good and become somebody's good.  And if we become bad then other person will ignore us as bad and we will do our own bad.

Why should somebody's bad behavior affect our behavior?  Remember this, if everybody in this world just reacted then there would have been bad all over.  And clearly we could notice.

Clearly that's not the case.  There are good people doing their natural act of goodness and that is making this world a place to live in.  Just be good to others and good will prevail.

We have been trained to believe something only when we see it.  So we quickly believe that people are bad because the reaction is visible.  For example if I slap somebody then the reaction is visual, audible and also disturbing if I get slapped in return.  And we believe that bad people are there.  And so everyone is like that.  

However goodness act is not reactionary.  Most of the time, people will remember your goodness once your are gone or even after we are dead.  This make it hard for anyone to prove someone that Goodness exists in this world.  

Let's not try to beget goodness.  Let's give it.  Let's not try to balance this equation.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Learning New Skills

It never hurts to learn new skills.  If you think how it is going to help you then you are falling in the trap which most people do.

As Steve Jobs said in his Standford commencement speech, "You cannot connect the dots by looking forward, You can only connect them by looking backwards". Some skills which you never thought would help you, are helping you right now.  If you had thought this way then,  perhaps you won't have done it.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Have You Heard Of Founder's Syndrome?

A Good company with a great founder achieves great success.  As soon as the founder leaves the company, the company growth and success take a downward path.  All that company achieved was due to that founder.  Personality traits of the founder can be easily seen in the company's culture.  This is what is founders' syndrome. 

I experienced this last year when I was president of organization.  All my laziness I could literally see in my organization.  When I was active, work was getting done and when I was not active, work didn't get done.  Over time you discover how to overcome those pitfalls and how to manage people on the basis of principles and not self directed visions.

Founder's syndrome can be overcome if we can focus on building something great and building a great future, where we all want to be.  We can be cured of founders' syndrome if we have the right people on the bus.  

Even in family we can see traits of founder's syndrome.  If one person is wrong we can see the whole family repeating the same mistakes.  Some families are able to come out of it and they are able to create a better future.  As a founder do we have control over this syndrome.  Yes we do have.  We can gift an organization with a vision for the future which is great and simultaneously makes sense.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Thoughts On Social Media

Too much of Buzz is around these days about Social Media.  And it is going to increase.

Every other company is try to get a piece of the pie.  Everybody needs more and more subscribers and fans over night.  This is going crazy.  Whom to follow and whom to not, is really a question of enjoyable and thought provoking moments.

Even if you owned Facebook, realizing value from your fan base is still a challenge.  Not everyone liking your brand is liking it for the same reason and still buying from you.  Getting engagement from users is the biggest challenge.

Motivating a fan who is in a different country to take action is the power of social media if used right.  Social media is exploited and also used responsibly.

Social media if used with responsibility then companies can experience true power of their campaigns.  Not to miss this point, there is also lot of faking going on in this scope.  A truly successful media company is the one which is able to fake it and manipulatable.

The number of users on a network is of little value since there are many accounts created by marketing companies for their clients.  Is it after all the end numbers of fans on your site, that really matters?  If yes then why not create your own social network.  

Great companies will use social media only if it aligns with their hedgehog concept[1].  If not then they will not.  If it aligns with their hedgehog concept then they will be pioneers in the implementation of social media.

[1]- Hedgehog concept initially introduced by Jim Collins in his book - Good to Great.  Click here for more

Monday, December 06, 2010

Win Win Situation

Inside an organization, there is no zero sum game.  If you win, I loose it is not like that.  If I am learning a new technology and if others in the organization cannot benefit from it then it is not going any further.  Of course you will argue that what is a big deal in teaching a new technology to others.  Right.  It is not a big deal.  

But what about leadership skills.  Who will teach and mentor others on leadership?  If you have to work everyday with people who do not understand what you are saying, isn't it a nightmare for you to work with them.    You want people who are like you.  The work place would be a much better place then.

It is not about who is going forward, which department is ahead and better than others.  It is about whether departments are learning from each other.  It is about if we are able to grow together.  If you want to make this world a better place to live then you have to go beyond the self.  If we have to reduce green house gases then one organization or one company cannot.  We have to grow together and learn from each other.

Lets take an example here.  If you sell quality products and if you want the world to know about what a quality product is then you have to educate others about quality.  You cannot keep the knowledge within yourself. If you take Toyota then their quality standards are adopted all over the world.  If they would have kept those principles within themselves then it would not have been possible to see some innovations.

If we go and grow together then we can create value which is better than a zero sum game.  When we create value then we all win.  You can always win by fooling a customer.  You have create value or give value to your customers.  We cannot cheat a customer.  A business can win if the customers are happy.  And in this world we all win if we all are happy.  Of course not all are happy right now and not everybody is wining.  We need to start creating more and more value in this world.

It is as simple as, "I only win if you win".  

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Did You Noticed This?

In the video below, which showcases new form of advertising, the art they are showcasing is appealing.  Not only that they are innovating in how to display this kind of messages.  When your car is passing by it is difficult to concentrate but when you are waiting at a signal this a spectacular.  You can even decide whether you want to stop by the advertising restaurant or not.

They filled a gap when you were doing nothing but just waiting at the signal.  This gap is not filled by technology. It was an idea that took off.   Advertising is powered by ideas.


Saturday, December 04, 2010

Great Blogs Are Not Built By One Big Shot

Great Blog such as Seth Godin's Blog, TechCrunch and BoingBoing were not transformed into great blogs in just one big shot.  Big Shot means one big blog post, one guest appearance, one guest post or by using a great platform.  Those great blogs gained momentum step by step using one simple formula, "Keep Shipping, Continuous Improvement,  Great Leadership and Thinking Differently".

Keep Shipping
All the great blogs if you see, they are still shelling out their creativity at regular intervals from the time they launched.  They never gave up and always challenged their status quo to ship their posts.  Once you build up an audience, they need the meat to consume.  If you don't provide it somebody else will provide it.  And as a result the birds will fly away.

Continuous Improvement
With each blog post they improved and pushed their boundaries.  They have shown improvement in the way they market their blogs, way they use their technology and the platform, way they engage their audience.  Their user growth is a proof of them improving.

Great Leadership
It is a philosophy in they believed in.  If you are in charge of writing an article then you are responsible for leading a tribe of people who are interested in reading about that topic.  You have to show stewardship.  They show them the direction.  And after all social media is about leadership.

Thinking Differently
If you felt that some of their blog posts you didn't liked then were trying something different to experiment.  Everybody thinks different but few think differently.  Of course we are not the same people so our minds are different and we think different.  But the way we think, the way we ask questions to hidden problems makes a difference.  

Friday, December 03, 2010

Innovation

It is not about knowing how the technology works but it is about knowing what can be done with what you have. Exploiting the gaps and exploring new ways to do old things.  Within few years everything would be re imagined and recreated by engineers and leaders around the world.  There is tremendous opportunity lying around us if we  are willing to do something different.  Go to KhoslaVentures.com and see how their different portfolio companies are innovating.

It is about imagination.  If you can imagine and lead, you can build your own future.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Networking Tip


Most Important Networking Tip:  Keeping track of your conversations with your networking friends or business partners.

You meet me today and we talk on "what are you working on?"  We just talked causally about life and business and other important things.  After a month of so we again catch up and we don't want to start all over again.  And you might meet some person after long time.  It is difficult to remember what he/she said then.

Ideally you want to start the conversation from where you left.  So that it is smooth and both parties feel comfortable.  Business deals get so comfortable when you know that other person knows you and they care for you.

Do you know one secret?  You will not ask your childhood friend about his name.  Or even what he is working on.  You remember it.  After all he is your friend.  That is how networking is supposed to be.  How come we cannot co-relate networking with friendship?

For real, I will tell you one truth.  I hate word, "Networking".  But if it wasn't for word "networking" you won't be even reading this post at all.  Networking never made sense to me and so I tried to find out more about it.  The more I tried to find out about it, the more I got interested into the science behind it.

And the science is this.  Treat it like friendship.  For example, Friendship is about taking your friends or going out with your friends for lunch or dinner.  Go do it with networking.  Friendship is about sharing your great personal moments with your friends.   Go do it with networking.  It is about being personal and real.   Why you should imitate someone which you are not?

Take everything from friendship and apply it to networking.  Do everything to your business partners or networking mentors that you would do with your friends.  It is about building great relationships.