Why Entrepreneurial Thinking Is For Everyone Now

“We need a new playbook,” says entrepreneur and author Ben Casnocha. “The world has changed. The world of work has changed. Many of the assumptions that have guided how we think about careers in America are no longer true.”
The Start-Up of You, written by Casnocha and LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, is that playbook. It argues that we can no longer expect to find a job, instead we mustmake our jobs. As Hoffman says, we have to “find a way to add value in a way no one else can. For entrepreneurs, it’s differentiate or die — that now goes for all of us.”*

Relevant for recent grads to mid-career professionals in the midst of a transition,Start-Up provides pragmatic, actionable advice, finishing each chapter with tasks to complete in the next day, in the next week, and in the next month.

I chatted with Casnocha — a longtime favorite blogger of mine — after reading Start-Up to explore the book’s themes in more depth and investigate his collaborative process with Reid.


the99percent.com

“We need a new playbook,” says entrepreneur and author Ben Casnocha. “The world has changed. The world of work has changed. Many of the assumptions that have guided how we think about careers in America are no longer true.”

The Start-Up of You, written by Casnocha and LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman, is that playbook. It argues that we can no longer expect to find a job, instead we mustmake our jobs. As Hoffman says, we have to “find a way to add value in a way no one else can. For entrepreneurs, it’s differentiate or die — that now goes for all of us.”*

Relevant for recent grads to mid-career professionals in the midst of a transition,Start-Up provides pragmatic, actionable advice, finishing each chapter with tasks to complete in the next day, in the next week, and in the next month.

I chatted with Casnocha — a longtime favorite blogger of mine — after reading Start-Up to explore the book’s themes in more depth and investigate his collaborative process with Reid.
What role does passion play in a good career plan — if any?
… Leer más “Why Entrepreneurial Thinking Is For Everyone Now”

Why Your Inner Critic Is Your Best Friend

You might find it helpful to use one workspace for drafting/sketching/experimenting, and another for reviewing your work.
Before you start work, take a moment to reflect on the advantages of having a finely honed critical faculty.

Another thing to try before you start work is telling yourself, “I’m not really going to start just yet, I’ll just make a few sketches” – or scribble a few notes, or practice a few scales, or the equivalent for your creative medium.

When you’re working, if the Critic starts telling you what’s wrong with the piece, ask yourself, “So what does the work need instead?” or “So what do I need to do to make it better?”

If the Critic keeps interfering, promise yourself that you’ll do a critical review at the end of this stage of execution – so you can afford to ignore her now and keep your momentum going.


You and Your Critic

When have you been most grateful for possessing sharp critical judgment?

Do you agree that your Inner Critic is – potentially – your best friend?

Any tips for utilizing your critical faculty more effectively in the creative process?


The Inner Critic gets a lot of bad press, especially among blocked creatives who wish the nagging critical voice at the back of their mind would disappear. No wonder there’s so much creativity advice on how to banish, silence, or obliterate the Inner Critic. By the time the creative thinking gurus are done, the Critic’s had a tougher pounding than an extra from Kill Bill.
But do you ever wonder why the Critic keeps coming back for more? Could it be that the Critic is actually a very important part of your creative process?
If you think about it, you’d be in big trouble without an Inner Critic. Without some kind of internal quality filter, you’d be happy to churn out any old rubbish – and join the ranks of mediocrities. A finely honed critical faculty is one of the things that separates a creative professional from the legions of amateurs.
In the words of musician Mike Monday:
A good producer and a great producer have the same number of ideas – some good, some great. But a great producer will know the difference.
And the great producer’s Inner Critic is the difference that makes the difference. Because the great producer has listened more keenly and thought more sharply about music, she has a more powerful and useful Inner Critic.
So the Inner Critic isn’t the enemy, just an over-zealous friend who’s delivering the criticism too forcefully and without considering your feelings. We all have friends who do that from time to time.
The trick is to get the Critic back “onside,” delivering genuinely constructive criticism. Like the inspiring mentor who urged you to do your best and didn’t accept anything less – but with a supportive and encouraging tone of voice. Leer más “Why Your Inner Critic Is Your Best Friend”

The 5 Types of Work That Fill Your Day

What We Learn When We Audit Our Work

Taking all five types of work into perspective, we can audit our day and the types of work we engage in most.

My typical day includes 2-5 types of work, with the majority being Reactionary Work. I hate to admit it, but I find that Reactionary Work constantly bleeds over into my efforts to schedule myself (Planning Work) and the deep thinking required to solve problems (Problem-Solving Work).

I also find that, between nearly any type of work, I usually slip into a period of Reactionary Work that may include surfing the top of my email inbox, or a period of Insecurity Work, which usually comes in the form of scanning Twitter messages about our business.


http://the99percent.com
by Scott Belsky
Illustration: Oscar Ramos Orozco
Hacking work is all the rage these days, along with tips for managing email, taking notes, and running meetings. But, at a higher level, what can we learn from analyzing the different types of work we do and how we allocate our time?First, let’s take a look at the five kinds of work we do every day:

1. Reactionary Work
In the modern age, most of our day is consumed by Reactionary Work, during which we are focused only on responding to messages and requests – emails, text messages, Facebook messages, tweets, voicemails, and the list goes on. You are constantly reacting to what comes into you rather than being proactive in what matters most to you. Reactionary Work is necessary, but you can’t let it consume you.

2. Planning Work >>> Leer más “The 5 Types of Work That Fill Your Day”

Willy Franzen: How The Internet Has Changed The Job Hunt

What are some of the biggest mistakes that job seekers make?
People lead with the job and I think that’s totally wrong. You go to the job board and you find a job. It’s medieval. If you don’t understand what the company is and what they do, the job doesn’t have meaning. It’s just a piece of a puzzle. You have this little piece but you don’t understand the context on how it fits in.

Instead of looking at a job posting and applying for it, take apart the details inside. Look at the company. Look at the name of the person who posted it. Is it a hiring manager or recruiter? Look at the news. What’s happening with the company? What about the industry? There’s so many plot and sub-plots here that you need to understand to be successful in that job.


According to Willy Franzen, many of us make the mistake of job hunting when we should be “company hunting.” As the founder of OneDayOneJob.com, the 27-year-old Franzen is on a mission to help recent grads find awesome entry-level jobs. To achieve this, he’s been profiling cool, relevant companies – one a day – for the past 4.5 years. That means ODOJ.com now houses 1,500+ company profiles, each accompanied by companion job openings and internship listings.I recently interviewed Franzen about how anyone in the job market can improve their job-seeking tactics as well as about his own experiences bootstrapping a web business.

What are some of the biggest mistakes that job seekers make?
People lead with the job and I think that’s totally wrong. You go to the job board and you find a job. It’s medieval. If you don’t understand what the company is and what they do, the job doesn’t have meaning. It’s just a piece of a puzzle. You have this little piece but you don’t understand the context on how it fits in.

Instead of looking at a job posting and applying for it, take apart the details inside. Look at the company. Look at the name of the person who posted it. Is it a hiring manager or recruiter? Look at the news. What’s happening with the company? What about the industry? There’s so many plot and sub-plots here that you need to understand to be successful in that job.

How have the Internet and social media changed the job search? 
The truth is that the technology doesn’t really change anything in terms of what you need to do. It changes the tactics but it doesn’t really change the strategy. You still need to make the same impression. You still need to show the person that you can do the job and that you’re going to make them look good.

But technology changes things in a few ways. First and foremost, you can learn so much more about the company and the job than you ever could have before. That can’t be understated. To find the information I put on One Day, One Job, I’d have to spend weeks researching each company because I’d have to dig through old newspaper articles, old magazine articles – it would be impossible. Now all that information is at your fingertips.

People lead with the job and I think that’s totally wrong. You go to the job board and you find a job. It’s medieval… Leer más “Willy Franzen: How The Internet Has Changed The Job Hunt”

Spencer Tunick: On Stealing Cameras, Controversy, and Kickstarter

Flanders 2 (Gaasbeek Castle, Belgium) 2011 © Spencer Tunick
Who doesn’t know Spencer Tunick? Over the past two decades, the artist has photographed more than 100,000 nudes of all ages and persuasions on all seven continents. His large-scale projects, which he calls installations, continuously gather the attention of the world press and sometimes change the lives of the liberated participants.
The subject of two HBO films — Naked States and Naked World — and one-time “Man of the Year” in Chile, Tunick has raised awareness of environmental issues, including the melting icecaps in Switzerland and the evaporation of the Dead Sea in Israel, while also having fun with naked bodies and props.


by Paul Laster | http://the99percent.com

Flanders 2 (Gaasbeek Castle, Belgium) 2011 © Spencer Tunick
Who doesn’t know Spencer Tunick? Over the past two decades, the artist has photographed more than 100,000 nudes of all ages and persuasions on all seven continents. His large-scale projects, which he calls installations, continuously gather the attention of the world press and sometimes change the lives of the liberated participants.
The subject of two HBO films — Naked States and Naked World — and one-time “Man of the Year” in Chile, Tunick has raised awareness of environmental issues, including the melting icecaps in Switzerland and the evaporation of the Dead Sea in Israel, while also having fun with naked bodies and props.
aurillac_550
Aurillac 1 (France) 2010 © Spencer Tunick
What was your motivation for first picking up a camera?
I’m a fourth generation photographer. My great grandfather was a photographer and owned the first Kodak photo finishing plant in downtown New York, where the World Trade Center was later located. My grandfather was a photographer for the United Nations Council on Foreign Relations, where he photographed Truman, Eisenhower, DeGaulle, Castro, Tito, JFK, and countless other diplomats and world leaders. And my dad had photo concessions in several Catskill Hotels in the 1960s and ‘70s — selling pictures of guests in keychain viewers. I often worked for him for free and when he retired at an early age, he gave me all of his cameras.
brugge_550
Brugge 1, 2005 © Spencer Tunick
How did you start photographing nudes in public places?
After attending Emerson College in Boston, I moved to a storefront in NY‘s East Village that I rented from the surf and music photographer Justin Jay. I took a one-year program at the International Center for Photography and became interested in photography that documented performance art and took some sculpture and painting classes at SVA. I couldn’t find myself so I realized that I would have to satisfy my dreams of people floating naked through the city at sunrise with photography.

I discovered George Holz, a commercial photographer who shot nudes that I liked, and decided to intern with him. I basically stole his camera, not literally, but I bought the same camera and lens that he used — a set-up that allowed the subject to be sharp and the background blown out of focus. You can have an idea, but you have to find the materials to manifest it — you have to buy the right canvas or clay. In my world I had to get the right camera to do what I wanted to do.

Sometime in 1990, I was walking down the street and saw a guy who looked absolutely amazing (he turned out to be Alistair Butler, a Robert Mapplethorpe model and Alvin Ailey dancer) and I said, “Trust me, even though I don’t have any pictures to show, I could take a wonderful photograph of you,” and he did. I photographed him on Wall Street, which was my first public nude image. Leer más “Spencer Tunick: On Stealing Cameras, Controversy, and Kickstarter”

The Interview Prep Cheat Sheet: What Hiring Managers Really Want To Know

Your power of influence to get things accomplished. Many organizations have done away with a traditional business hierarchy for ever-mutating project teams and a flat organization design. Therefore, the skill of persuasion is as important as ever.

Your drive and initiative. It’s the 99% perspiration factor: the ability to come up with ideas and work and work to execute them. What are the things you’ve done in that prove you’ve got energy and vision?

Be sure to articulate your experiences through clear examples. In preparing for an interview, take an inventory of the things you’ve accomplished and be able to discuss them in detail. The story of your career is marked by signposts, subplots that demonstrate something about you.

Try not to talk about what you would do if given the opportunity. Talk about the stuff you’ve already done. That’s what really demonstrates what you’re all about.


http://the99percent.com 
by Scott McDowell

Illustration: Oscar Ramos Orozco

Part of my work as a consultant to creative organizations is what’s known as “executive search” (I prefer “executive find” myself – not that either phrase sounds very sexy). Companies hire me to go out and locate a leader who can help push their ideas out into the world. Among other things, this job involves interviewing… lots and lots of interviewing. So what have I learned in all these interrogations?Despite the fact that people switch jobs more than ever these days, the interview is still somewhat of a specter. It’s a lot of pressure to represent yourself over the course of an hour or two and be judged one way or the other.

Don’t sweat it. You can greatly enhance your chances of getting to round 2 (or 3) by understanding what the hiring manager is really looking for. (Hint: it’s usually not your technical kung fu.) While the skills and experience of any job can vary to extremes, what the person hiring needs right now is confidence in you. Leer más “The Interview Prep Cheat Sheet: What Hiring Managers Really Want To Know”

Layering: Multitasking That Actually Works

In a few short years, multitasking has gone from star child to black sheep in productivity pop culture. This is because the most common forms of multitasking require rapidly switching between similar tasks, which creates a sort of “flickering” effect in your brain. (Think of a connection gone bad… annoying at best, useless at worst.)But sometimes multitasking really is the only way to fit in all of your priorities, and the benefits far out weigh any slight quality reduction. Of course, that’s if — and this is a big IF — you’re doing it the right way. I call this good kind of multitasking “layering.”

I define “layering” as strategically deciding to do tasks that require different “channels” of mental functioning such as visual, auditory, manual or language. As David Meyer, one of the world’s leading experts on multitasking, explains in this New York magazine article , “The only time multitasking does work efficiently is when multiple simple tasks operate on entirely separate channels.”

Through my work with time coaching clients, I’ve seen that layering can have a dramatic positive impact on productivity in four oft-neglected areas: Physical Order, Eating & Exercise, Social Connection, and Mental Processing.


by Elizabeth Grace Saunders | http://the99percent.com

-.-

Illustration: Oscar Ramos Orozco

In a few short years, multitasking has gone from star child to black sheep in productivity pop culture. This is because the most common forms of multitasking require rapidly switching between similar tasks, which creates a sort of “flickering” effect in your brain. (Think of a connection gone bad… annoying at best, useless at worst.)But sometimes multitasking really is the only way to fit in all of your priorities, and the benefits far out weigh any slight quality reduction. Of course, that’s if — and this is a big IF — you’re doing it the right way. I call this good kind of multitasking “layering.”I define “layering” as strategically deciding to do tasks that require different “channels” of mental functioning such as visual, auditory, manual or language. As David Meyer, one of the world’s leading experts on multitasking, explains in this

New York magazine article , “The only time multitasking does work efficiently is when multiple simple tasks operate on entirely separate channels.”Through my work with time coaching clients, I’ve seen that layering can have a dramatic positive impact on productivity in four oft-neglected areas: Physical Order, Eating & Exercise, Social Connection, and Mental Processing. Leer más “Layering: Multitasking That Actually Works”

6 Steps To Creating A Knockout Online Portfolio

As the Chief Designer of Behance, few people are better at identifying a great online portfolio than Matias Corea. While judging contests, looking for new talent, and conducting design research for the Behance Network, he has reviewed thousands of creative portfolios on the web.
To get some insight on what works (and what doesn’t!) when it comes to showcasing creative work online, I chatted with Matias about his observations and extracted six simple tips for building a knockout creative portfolio:

1. Take a step back, and curate your best work. Take the time to look at all of your work and carefully choose the right pieces for your portfolio. “One piece of advice I got from my mentor was to always showcase the type of work you want to be doing in the future,” says Matias. “Display only the projects that you are really proud of, that look the best, and that use the best materials.”

Choose at least five projects so you can demonstrate the breadth of your work, but be selective. Remember, it’s always better to have a portfolio of a few projects that are stunning than dozens of projects where some of them are just OK. The quality of your portfolio is only as good as your weakest project.

Always showcase the type of work you want to be doing in the future.

2. Use eye-catching images, and share the backstory. Now that you’ve edited the work you want to show, get into the nitty-gritty of each project and think about how to best present it. Visitors like to know the story behind your finished work, so think about presenting your process — from the initial concept, to early sketches, to the finished product.


by Mell Ravenel
http://the99percent.com/tips/7127/6-Steps-To-Creating-A-Knockout-Online-Portfolio

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ProSite Portfolio by Adam Jesberger

As the Chief Designer of Behance, few people are better at identifying a great online portfolio than Matias Corea. While judging contests, looking for new talent, and conducting design research for the Behance Network, he has reviewed thousands of creative portfolios on the web.
To get some insight on what works (and what doesn’t!) when it comes to showcasing creative work online, I chatted with Matias about his observations and extracted six simple tips for building a knockout creative portfolio:

1. Take a step back, and curate your best work. Take the time to look at all of your work and carefully choose the right pieces for your portfolio. “One piece of advice I got from my mentor was to always showcase the type of work you want to be doing in the future,” says Matias. “Display only the projects that you are really proud of, that look the best, and that use the best materials.”

Choose at least five projects so you can demonstrate the breadth of your work, but be selective. Remember, it’s always better to have a portfolio of a few projects that are stunning than dozens of projects where some of them are just OK. The quality of your portfolio is only as good as your weakest project.

 

Always showcase the type of work you want to be doing in the future.
2. Use eye-catching images, and share the backstory. Now that you’ve edited the work you want to show, get into the nitty-gritty of each project and think about how to best present it. Visitors like to know the story behind your finished work, so think about presenting your process — from the initial concept, to early sketches, to the finished product. Leer más “6 Steps To Creating A Knockout Online Portfolio”

My Revised “Most Important Task First” Model

Are you more focused and energetic in the morning?
Doing your “Most Important Task” first assumes that you’re most focused first thing in the morning. The idea is to shift this big task to the time when your mental powers are at their height. If you’re naturally inclined to be more focused later in the day, this model might not work for you. You’ll want to calibrate your MIT time to your natural creative rhythms.


http://the99percent.com/tips/6980/Lab-Rat-Do-Your-Most-Important-Task-First

Step 1: Spend 30 minutes scanning email and responding to urgent items.

Step 2: Turn off email and other distractions. Focus for 2-3 hours on completing your “Most Important Task.”

Step 3: Take a lunch break away from your desk. Leaving your computer and recharging is the key to being productive after your MIT time.

Step 4: Devote the post-lunch day to taking care of ongoing tasks and other “reactionary work” that requires less mental stamina.

The Caveat

Although tackling hard work first seems like a no-brainer, I did have to alter the model a bit for it to work for me, which made me realize that this approach really depends on your personality. For some, it may be an easy switch that will exponentially increase productivity, but for others, it might cause extra stress. Leer más “My Revised “Most Important Task First” Model”

Doreen Lorenzo: Clients Don’t Deserve Surprises

A World of Tweets: Data visualization Frog created to show tweets from across the globe.
According to advertising maven David Ogilvy, “Great hospitals do two things. They look after patients, and they teach young doctors. We look after clients, and we teach young advertising people.” It’s an apt comparison. Like doctors, creatives are regularly called upon to educate their clients, and a good bedside manner is crucial.
Client relationships are the bedrock of innovation at Frog Design, a global innovation firm founded in 1969. To name just a few of Frog’s accomplishments: they partnered with Apple to create the revolutionary Apple IIc in 1982; they designed the highest grossing e-commerce site of its time, Dell.com, in 2000; and, more recently, they created the popular Roku Netflix video player.

So how do they do it? We sat down with president Doreen Lorenzo for a conversation about how Frog “looks after clients” and “teaches young designers” – and how both of these elements play into the company’s remarkable ability to create break-through products.


 

A World of Tweets: Data visualization Frog created to show tweets from across the globe.
According to advertising maven David Ogilvy, “Great hospitals do two things. They look after patients, and they teach young doctors. We look after clients, and we teach young advertising people.” It’s an apt comparison. Like doctors, creatives are regularly called upon to educate their clients, and a good bedside manner is crucial.
Client relationships are the bedrock of innovation at Frog Design, a global innovation firm founded in 1969. To name just a few of Frog’s accomplishments: they partnered with Apple to create the revolutionary Apple IIc in 1982; they designed the highest grossing e-commerce site of its time, Dell.com, in 2000; and, more recently, they created the popular Roku Netflix video player. 

So how do they do it? We sat down with president Doreen Lorenzo for a conversation about how Frog “looks after clients” and “teaches young designers” – and how both of these elements play into the company’s remarkable ability to create break-through products.
Leer más “Doreen Lorenzo: Clients Don’t Deserve Surprises”

The Five Levels of Communication in a Connected World

In the digital world in which we live, it has become too easy to send emails, ping people via instant message, text, tweet, etc. Upon reflection, I think I’ve been too haphazard about how I communicate with my colleagues, clients, friends, and family. Oftentimes, an email about a problem should have been a phone call. And sometimes a phone call should have been an in-person meeting.
Knowing what to say and when to say it is not enough. In the modern day, we must decide HOW to communicate. [Más…]
Consider the five levels of communication:

Level 1: Message into the Ether
Snail mail and email have a few things in common: They can be of any length, and they are not conversational. Emails and letters are sent out, and then new messages are composed and returned. Sometimes it takes days or weeks before a response arrives. Since emails and letters are not conversational (they lump all points together rather than go point, counterpoint, point, etc…), there is a HIGH LEVEL of misunderstanding with this medium of communication. As many of us know, little issues can escalate over email.


In the digital world in which we live, it has become too easy to send emails, ping people via instant message, text, tweet, etc. Upon reflection, I think I’ve been too haphazard about how I communicate with my colleagues, clients, friends, and family. Oftentimes, an email about a problem should have been a phone call. And sometimes a phone call should have been an in-person meeting.
Knowing what to say and when to say it is not enough. In the modern day, we must decide HOW to communicate. Leer más “The Five Levels of Communication in a Connected World”

Shaping the Future: 7 Predictions for the Creative Community

At the start of every year, it’s fun to think about what’s next. However, for the creative professional community, considering the future is not just a casual exercise. It’s a necessity. The creative industries are rapidly changing, as is the way we manage our own creative careers.Do you rely on the web for inspiration, feedback, or any other part of your creative process? Do you rely on online networks or websites as a source of new customers, clients, or collaborations? Are you involved in the worlds of advertising, design, fine art, or any other industry that ultimately relies on matching the right creative talent with the best opportunities?

If you answered yes, get ready.


At the start of every year, it’s fun to think about what’s next. However, for the creative professional community, considering the future is not just a casual exercise. It’s a necessity. The creative industries are rapidly changing, as is the way we manage our own creative careers.Do you rely on the web for inspiration, feedback, or any other part of your creative process? Do you rely on online networks or websites as a source of new customers, clients, or collaborations? Are you involved in the worlds of advertising, design, fine art, or any other industry that ultimately relies on matching the right creative talent with the best opportunities?

If you answered yes, get ready. Leer más “Shaping the Future: 7 Predictions for the Creative Community”

5 Rules for Mindful Creativity

Necessity may have been “the mother of invention” back when Plato dropped the famous phrase, but necessity alone is no longer a sufficient reason for creation. Inventions that seem to embody a forward-thinking approach at their inception often appear backwards in their thinking given a few years (or decades) of reflection. Take, for instance, the advent of individually packaged goods, which made food conveniently transportable at the expense of using more materials and creating more waste for landfills. The desire to make the world and the objects that surround us stronger, faster, more convenient and more beautiful serves as constant inspiration for today’s creative problem solvers. But sometimes, as with single-use packaging or the more complicated case of CFL lightbulbs, the innovative solutions we arrive at create other problems, or even predicaments, that become evident only in hindsight.


Necessity may have been “the mother of invention” back when Plato dropped the famous phrase, but necessity alone is no longer a sufficient reason for creation. Inventions that seem to embody a forward-thinking approach at their inception often appear backwards in their thinking given a few years (or decades) of reflection. Take, for instance, the advent of individually packaged goods, which made food conveniently transportable at the expense of using more materials and creating more waste for landfills. The desire to make the world and the objects that surround us stronger, faster, more convenient and more beautiful serves as constant inspiration for today’s creative problem solvers. But sometimes, as with single-use packaging or the more complicated case of CFL lightbulbs, the innovative solutions we arrive at create other problems, or even predicaments, that become evident only in hindsight.
Leer más “5 Rules for Mindful Creativity”

Micro vs Macro: Using “Success Factors” To Manage Your Team

So what’s the secret to great MACRO management? Defining and then reinforcing “success factors.”

“Success factors” are the specific attributes for each person to be successful in his/her job. For example, a great “Office Manager” is (1) extremely organized, (2) has a great attention to detail, (3) understands the operations of the business, and (4) is comfortable working with different personalities. These four attributes are success factors.

A great MACRO manager states these success factors up front to someone hired for such a job. And then, over time, would consistently reinforce them – and support their development – going forward.

Everyone on your team should know (and agree) on the “success factors” for their role. When you check in periodically with folks on your team, you should restate the success factors and discuss what each person is doing to develop them over time. Industry conferences, workshops, and continuing education all lend themselves to addressing one’s success factors.

Rather than obsess over day-to-day performance, consider your team’s success factors on a consistent basis. By doing so, you will develop one of your own success factors – your capacity to MACRO manage!


Every creative leader faces the challenge of building and managing a team. Finding the right folks is half the battle. After you find them, it is your responsibility to manage the team. Great management happens on both a
“micro” level and a “macro” level. Micro-management – not the notoriously negative “micromanagement,” but rather what I call the MICRO aspect of management – is all about the day-to-day management that keeps the team on track.

A great MICRO manager asks questions like:

  • What are the deadlines for a particular project?
  • How do we measure progress (and are we making progress)?
  • Is there sufficient feedback exchange?
  • How do we promote more accountability within the team?

But what about the MACRO part of management? Beyond your day-to-day role as a manager, you must also consider each person‘s career trajectory. Leer más “Micro vs Macro: Using “Success Factors” To Manage Your Team”

Experience Trumps Theory: Reviving the Apprenticeship Model

Once upon a time, we learned only by doing. A quality education meant finding an expert to take you under his or her wing. Whether you wanted to be a blacksmith or a shoemaker, the ultimate break was ultimately a relationship. In exchange, your capacity would be stretched. You would learn in real-time, soaking up the knowledge through trial and error. You would learn the trade in practice rather than theory. You would also build a network and gain respect based on your performance rather than any sort of degree.This era of apprenticeship is now largely a relic of history. Somewhere along the line we decided to economize and scale education. Given the time-intensive and intimate nature of apprenticeships, we sought to train more people at once with a streamlined curriculum. As we moved more and more learning into the classroom, we compromised the intense learning that happened in the field. We traded experiential learning for a more standardized but less potent education.

I believe the classroom underserves us. We become dissuaded by theoretical lessons, disenchanted teachers, and a reward system that is all about the grade and not at all about the trade. If experiential education is so important, why don’t we give college credits for what happens outside the classroom?

As we moved more learning into the classroom, we compromised the intense learning that happened in the field.

Unfortunately, undergraduate education is centered on the classroom experience and takes extracurricular activities (clubs, etc.) as an
afterthought. Many schools provide credit for internships, but they don’t stress them as an integrated aspect of the overall program. What’s more, the schools usually play little to no role in coordinating the internships, so it’s very hit or miss: A student could have a life-changing experience, or spend a semester fetching coffee and sitting on the sidelines.

Most of the passionate creative people I have met are motivated more by a genuine interest than by money. We are driven by our pursuit of an expertise in what fascinates us. The Holy Grail for most creative careers is becoming a leader in your interests and making an impact. Experiential on-the-job learning is the most natural conduit for developing such an expertise.


Once upon a time, we learned only by doing. A quality education meant finding an expert to take you under his or her wing. Whether you wanted to be a blacksmith or a shoemaker, the ultimate break was ultimately a relationship. In exchange, your capacity would be stretched. You would learn in real-time, soaking up the knowledge through trial and error. You would learn the trade in practice rather than theory. You would also build a network and gain respect based on your performance rather than any sort of degree.This era of apprenticeship is now largely a relic of history. Somewhere along the line we decided to economize and scale education. Given the time-intensive and intimate nature of apprenticeships, we sought to train more people at once with a streamlined curriculum. As we moved more and more learning into the classroom, we compromised the intense learning that happened in the field. We traded experiential learning for a more standardized but less potent education.

I believe the classroom underserves us. We become dissuaded by theoretical lessons, disenchanted teachers, and a reward system that is all about the grade and not at all about the trade. If experiential education is so important, why don’t we give college credits for what happens outside the classroom?

As we moved more learning into the classroom, we compromised the intense learning that happened in the field.

Unfortunately, undergraduate education is centered on the classroom experience and takes extracurricular activities (clubs, etc.) as an
afterthought. Many schools provide credit for internships, but they don’t stress them as an integrated aspect of the overall program. What’s more, the schools usually play little to no role in coordinating the internships, so it’s very hit or miss: A student could have a life-changing experience, or spend a semester fetching coffee and sitting on the sidelines.

Most of the passionate creative people I have met are motivated more by a genuine interest than by money. We are driven by our pursuit of an expertise in what fascinates us. The Holy Grail for most creative careers is becoming a leader in your interests and making an impact.  Experiential on-the-job learning is the most natural conduit for developing such an expertise.
Leer más “Experience Trumps Theory: Reviving the Apprenticeship Model”