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Universal Cents Posts

Quote – Proverb – Predictions

It is difficult to make predictions, especially about the future.

Danish Proverb

From a personal life perspective, this quote reminds me to enjoy the moment and take advantage of happiness. At work, it means always having contingency plans, and when those blow-up, an ability to pivot.

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Fast

Being slow is a vulnerability.

Success requires being fast. Society is moving faster than ever, and companies that don’t keep up become irrelevant quickly.

Inc had a great article a few years ago that emphasized four reasons to be fast: 

  1. If you’re not fast, your competitors will be
  2. Audiences expect it
  3. The faster you learn, the faster you evolve
  4. It creates a culture of speed

I’d add that speed eliminates waste, and speed makes you a better decision-maker.

Hurry up.

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Quote – Burrell – Rigor

Rigor is necessary, but not sufficient.

Lisa Burrell

It’s not always about just doing “more,” or doing it more thoroughly or exhaustively. It’s about doing tailored “more.” A leader’s job is not about challenging employees alone, but rather, giving them room to think and perform to build their skills to enable achievement one focused way at a time.

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Changing Course

Sometimes, in a career, you have to change course to get ahead.

3.5 years into my career, I was having some success, but an opportunity came up to completely change disciplines. After speaking with a few mentors, I made a move. My peers couldn’t understand why I did it when I was doing pretty well where I was.

The problem was that there was a glut of competition where I was with people incredibly more experienced than me. I knew I would be starting over where I was moving, but I saw more long-term opportunities there. Now, 12 years later, I’m on the group’s leadership team.

My experience was obviously under specific circumstances, interpreted in a particular way. 

While you shouldn’t let ambition get too far ahead of opportunity, you have to make sure you position yourself for opportunities, and sometimes that means change.

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Quote – Godin – AB Testing

A/B testing is an asymptomatic stroll toward a local maximum. But it leaves no room for more extreme alternatives, for breakthroughs.

Seth Godin

Godin reminds us that while using data to make decisions is essential, it isn’t the only thing. Be willing to take a risk. Data-driven execution will drive every company to the same point, if you want to stand out, you will need to try something different.

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