Monday, 17 October 2011
Isn't it amazing how often children watch the same DVD over and over again and never complain? They only complain if you don't let them watch it. How many times has the Lion King been in and out of your DVD player?
Now, I can watch a DVD again and again. Something like The Godfather, or the Hannibal Lecter movies or The Pink Panther movies. Perhaps your preference is Star Wars or Lord of the Rings? Whatever it is, we do it. And sometimes we see something, or understand something, that we didn't 'get' or that we missed the first or last time.
I am the same with books. They can be Clive Cussler thrillers or they can be books that are relevant to personal development, NLP, Hypnosis, Persuasion etc. Its just that SOMETIMES we read or see something that resonates more than before.
Unfortunately this is what some adults do with their days. I say unfortunately because they don't do it in a GOOD way. The majority of men and women play a movie in their mind. And they do this day after day, relentlessly focusing on past events, most of which are unpleasant and disturbing experiences. Arguments and fights. Bad experiences. Failures.
They get so good at it that they can remember entire arguments. THEN they rewrite it and imagine themselves saying things they hadn't and WINNING an argument they may have lost, or saying things they hadn't thought of at the time.
At some point they realise that this is having a negative effect on them so they then allow impressions of their current surroundings and recent results to dominate their thoughts.
If they contemplate the future then it is usually by worrying about it, or wishing that something better might come along.
Then they wonder why bad things keep happening to them, or why they never rise above the issues and obstacles in their lives.
People are free to think anything they want but I know one thing for sure. If you keep doing the same thing your results will never improve.
An image in your mind is the first stage of the creative process in life. From your imagination your visions and plans arise.
Napoleon Hill wrote, "You will never have a definite purpose in life; you will never have self confidence; you will never have initiative and leadership unless you first create these qualities in your imagination and see yourself in possession of them." He went on to say, "... imagination is the most marvelous, miraculous, inconceivably powerful force the world has ever known."
There is a concept called "Fantasy - Theory - Fact." The premise underlying this concept is that everything has its origination in the form of Fantasy, which some adventurous souls dare turn into a theory and then boldly turn into fact. Give this serious thought for a moment.
The idea of moon landings, communicating by email, traveling on jets, cellular phones or wearing synthetic garments was, a very short time ago, sheer fantasy. Today, they are considered commonplace.
Your marvelous mind has factors that you can, with little effort, develop to use to improve the quality of life, not just for yourself, but for anyone you choose. Imagination is one of those creative faculties. The individuals who were responsible for the conception and creation of the email, cell phones and any of the thousands of modern conveniences we enjoy today had a highly developed imagination.
Walt Disney with animation.
Steve Jobs with Apple
Thomas Edison with Electricity.
Edmund Hilary with Mount Everest.
All of the above had one thing in common; Imagination. They saw it, they achieved it.
Fantasy - Theory - Fact.
Think of it. Figure it out. Do it.
They didn't listen to people who said they were mad, or wasting their time. They took no notice of the people who poured scorn on their ideas. They didn't listen to people who said 'that can't be done'.
Do you listen to people who are negative, energy vampire, MOOD HOOVERS?? Why? They don't know what they are talking about.
Do you get involved in arguments with people? Why? They don't know what they are talking about or what they are doing.
They have no positive interest in you so why do you assume that anything they say should make any difference to you?
These pioneers above; Disney, Jobs, Edison...they used their mental faculties to fantasize, to build wild and wonderful pictures in their mind. Then, holding their thought with their will, they watched their fantasy unfold into a theory and then into fact. They seemed to have an innate awareness that if they could visualize it, they could do it.
Use this power to let your mind play. Fantasize a much better life than you presently enjoy. Draft your future with imagination, ponder and calculate with intelligence and awareness, then knit it with care. Next, devise paths and find tools to help get you there.
Create a vision board. Construct a board containing all of the things you want to buy, achieve and experience. One by one, or in some cases all at once, you will be able to tick off each achievement.
Commit to reach those new goals. The only barrier separating you from your goal is ignorance - ignorance of how simple, and simply powerful, your mind really is.
Think those powerful things again and again.
Read the positive books again and again.
Watch the great stuff again and again.
Be a kid watching the Lion King again and again. Who knows? This time you may see something you missed last time ;-)
Many people have explained what one can learn from Steve Jobs. But few, if any, of these people have been inside the tent and experienced first hand what it was like to work with him. I don’t want any lessons to be lost or forgotten, so here is my list of the top twelve lessons that I learned from Steve Jobs.
1.Experts are clueless.
Experts—journalists, analysts, consultants, bankers, and gurus can’t “do” so they “advise.” They can tell you what is wrong with your product, but they cannot make a great one. They can tell you how to sell something, but they cannot sell it themselves. They can tell you how to create great teams, but they only manage a secretary. For example, the experts told us that the two biggest shortcomings of Macintosh in the mid 1980s was the lack of a daisy-wheel printer driver and Lotus 1-2-3; another advice gem from the experts was to buy Compaq. Hear what experts say, but don’t always listen to them.
2.Customers cannot tell you what they need.
“Apple market research” is an oxymoron. The Apple focus group was the right hemisphere of Steve’s brain talking to the left one. If you ask customers what they want, they will tell you, “Better, faster, and cheaper”—that is, better sameness, not revolutionary change. They can only describe their desires in terms of what they are already using—around the time of the introduction of Macintosh, all people said they wanted was better, faster, and cheaper MS-DOS machines. The richest vein for tech startups is creating the product that you want to use—that’s what Steve and Woz did.
3.Jump to the next curve.
Big wins happen when you go beyond better sameness. The best daisy-wheel printer companies were introducing new fonts in more sizes. Apple introduced the next curve: laser printing. Think of ice harvesters, ice factories, and refrigerator companies. Ice 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0. Are you still harvesting ice during the winter from a frozen pond?
4.The biggest challenges beget best work.
I lived in fear that Steve would tell me that I, or my work, was crap. In public. This fear was a big challenge. Competing with IBM and then Microsoft was a big challenge. Changing the world was a big challenge. I, and Apple employees before me and after me, did their best work because we had to do our best work to meet the big challenges.
Steve drove people nuts with his design demands—some shades of black weren’t black enough. Mere mortals think that black is black, and that a trash can is a trash can. Steve was such a perfectionist—a perfectionist Beyond: Thunderdome—and lo and behold he was right: some people care about design and many people at least sense it. Maybe not everyone, but the important ones.
6.You can’t go wrong with big graphics and big fonts.
Take a look at Steve’s slides. The font is sixty points. There’s usually one big screenshot or graphic. Look at other tech speaker’s slides—even the ones who have seen Steve in action. The font is eight points, and there are no graphics. So many people say that Steve was the world’s greatest product introduction guy..don’t you wonder why more people don’t copy his style?
7.Changing your mind is a sign of intelligence.
When Apple first shipped the iPhone there was no such thing as apps. Apps, Steve decreed, were a bad thing because you never know what they could be doing to your phone. Safari web apps were the way to go until six months later when Steve decided, or someone convinced Steve, that apps were the way to go—but of course. Duh! Apple came a long way in a short time from Safari web apps to “there’s an app for that.”
8.“Value” is different from “price.”
Woe unto you if you decide everything based on price. Even more woe unto you if you compete solely on price. Price is not all that matters—what is important, at least to some people, is value. And value takes into account training, support, and the intrinsic joy of using the best tool that’s made. It’s pretty safe to say that no one buys Apple products because of their low price.
9.A players hire A+ players.
Actually, Steve believed that A players hire A players—that is people who are as good as they are. I refined this slightly—my theory is that A players hire people even better than themselves. It’s clear, though, that B players hire C players so they can feel superior to them, and C players hire D players. If you start hiring B players, expect what Steve called “the bozo explosion” to happen in your organization.
10.Real CEOs demo.
Steve Jobs could demo a pod, pad, phone, and Mac two to three times a year with millions of people watching, why is it that many CEOs call upon their vice-president of engineering to do a product demo? Maybe it’s to show that there’s a team effort in play. Maybe. It’s more likely that the CEO doesn’t understand what his/her company is making well enough to explain it. How pathetic is that?
11.Real CEOs ship.
For all his perfectionism, Steve could ship. Maybe the product wasn’t perfect every time, but it was almost always great enough to go. The lesson is that Steve wasn’t tinkering for the sake of tinkering—he had a goal: shipping and achieving worldwide domination of existing markets or creation of new markets. Apple is an engineering-centric company, not a research-centric one. Which would you rather be: Apple or Xerox PARC?
12.Marketing boils down to providing unique value.
Think of a 2 x 2 matrix. The vertical axis measures how your product differs from the competition. The horizontal axis measures the value of your product. Bottom right: valuable but not unique—you’ll have to compete on price. Top left: unique but not valuable—you’ll own a market that doesn’t exist. Bottom left: not unique and not value—you’re a bozo. Top right: unique and valuable—this is where you make margin, money, and history. For example, the iPod was unique and valuable because it was the only way to legally, inexpensively, and easily download music from the six biggest record labels.
Bonus: Some things need to be believed to be seen. When you are jumping curves, defying/ignoring the experts, facing off against big challenges, obsessing about design, and focusing on unique value, you will need to convince people to believe in what you are doing in order to see your efforts come to fruition. People needed to believe in Macintosh to see it become real. Ditto for iPod, iPhone, and iPad. Not everyone will believe—that’s okay. But the starting point of changing the world is changing a few minds. This is the greatest lesson of all that I learned from Steve.
Read more: http://blog.guykawasaki.com/2011/10/what-i-learned-from-steve-jobs.html#ixzz1ayJF4kpa
Because there are no real surprises any more. Everything is so easy and accessible in this day and age it takes a lot to surprise people.
In 1969 people stayed up all around the world to watch the landings live on TV. Now life has changed, they probably wouldn't bother to watch, or wait until it was trending on Twitter.
Today, we live in a society that is abundant. I really don't care if you think; 'What's he talking about? We have a double dip recession!'
Take a look around London.
Take a look on the internet.
Millions of people are spending millions of pounds, dollars, euros on millions of things.
Look at the carrier bags being carried around Westfield, Oxford Street, Covent Garden, Knightsbridge or your local area. These people haven't been told we are in a recession.
A recession is the only thing they don't buy!
Do you really care about the economy? Why? Care about your OWN economy!
Our society is one of abundance. The money is out there.
Unfortunately, the knock on effect of all this is children. One of the reasons we have a lack of respect in this country is that the majority of people know the price of everything and the value of nothing. They go into debt because their children want top of the range electronic goods, from games stations to mobile phones.
Ten year olds with mobile phones? What the Phuq?
I can remember aspiring to achieve something or saving to buy something, and getting a real buzz out of owning something I had taken a while to save up and buy.
Now we just go and get credit and buy it.
Some of the stores sell out of toys and luxury goods at the start of December because the demand is so great.
Life has changed from a time when people worked hard to get something, children were grateful, people were grateful and the average person aspired to achieve things so that they could have a better life.
Technology is supposed to make life easier. We now find that automatic diallers make your life hell by making your phone ring with useless offers from automatons.
The computer says NO and you cant speak to a human being.
Everytime you call a company you have so many options to press and waiting time has grown that by the time you finally get through to a call center in India - not only do they not speak English and cant help, you have forgotten what you were calling about!
Life has changed, but not necessarily for the better.
Saturday, 15 October 2011
A fire extinguisher fired out of the Dalek gun makes it look like the real thing from Doctor Who.
Who would believe it was the third floor of a serviced office building in Nottingham.
|Me and Black n Gold|
|Me and Dalek in Black|
|Bruce and Dalek in Black|
Thursday, 13 October 2011
I say shattered but in some instances it was akin to the Earth ending. I can understand businesses being effected but it was a real eye-opener to see the dejected, jaded, and confused staring at the little black plastic block in their hands.
I was one of them, at the start.
The situation did uncover something that had been hidden from me though. Just how stupid O2 customer service are.
They were 'unaware' of any problem up until Monday evening!
I had a remarkable exchange with 'Tony' at O2 on Monday afternoon when I called to enquire why I couldn't get Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. It was unable to connect to the BlackBerry server!
He gave me a staggering piece of advice...
"Have you taken the sim card out and rubbed it on your trousers?"
I had to admit, that hadn't been my FIRST idea. I had assumed it was something a little more technical than that.
"No I haven't done that Tony and quite frankly I don't intend to!"
"Why not, it may work." He answered.
I then went on to ask how a quick rub on my jeans would 'free up' the BlackBerry service, which was the only function not operating on my phone. Was the sim card THAT clever to only take what it needed from a rub on my jeans?
"Tony, I am not going to take the sim card out and rub it on my jeans for one simple reason. When my Mac crashed, Apple didn't tell me to take the hard drive out and stick it up my Ass!"
"And another thing Tony, this is a problem with BlackBerry. It's not the phone."
I hung up and checked Twitter. There it was, BlackBerry was trending with various permutations of the name. It was obvious that there was a major problem. If only someone had told O2.
I tweeted the above exchange and copied the name @O2 into it.
I got this reply from O2 on Tuesday. Remember, this is in the MIDDLE of all the BlackBerry problems as it travelled around the world wiping out millions of phone systems:
@O2 O2 in the UK @mooreconsortium Doesn't necessarily has to be your trousers, could be any clean cloth. Did it resolve the issue or still persisting?
Guess what Sherlock? It IS still persiting! Tell me; Do you actually KNOW what is going on?
And what's with the grammar? ("Doesn't necessarily HAS to be...")
Still persisting? The problem was halfway to India at that point!! And it carried on travelling to the USA.
If that was the normal advice dispensed to every BlackBerry customer that called O2 then the static electricity generated by the millions of people throughout the EMEA when they rubbed their sim cards furiously on all manner of fabrics would be enough to trigger off a change in the Earths Orbit and set light to Europe!
Hey O2! Why not put a comment on the front page of your website informing that there is an issue or is it because it wasn't anything to do with you? Even a message on your Customer Service answerphone would be cool.
You know the one I mean. Its the one that gives you hundreds of options, asks you to enter your number, press this button, is this correct, enter your number again, is this correct, press one of these 8 options, enter your number and then, when you finally get through to a carbon based life-form, they ask you for the number of your phone!!!
Heres a quick tip when calling O2. When you hear that woman who sounds like she is smirking at you, press '0' and then again every time she says 'Sorry', THAT way you will go straight through to Customer Services...where your REAL problems will start!
After two days it was obvious that there was a major, MAJOR, problem at Research in Motion. It only rectified itself at 4am on Thursday morning. It was obvious as I was awoken by my Blackberry doing a very passable impersonation of R2D2 on speed.
I can't help thinking that if Steve Jobs had been alive he would have grasped the opportunity and sent a message to the thousands of people who were moaning on Twitter and all other networking sites about the loss of service, and made them a very quick offer for an iPhone. I can't help but think that BlackBerry, or Research in Motion (should that be MotionLESS?), would have lost an awful lot of customers in the blink of an eye.
Sunday, 9 October 2011
Whenever you saw a big Mercedes parked in a handicapped space, you could be sure that it was Steve's car (actually, it was hard to be sure otherwise, since he also had a habit of removing his license plates). This sometimes caused him trouble, since unknown parties would occasionally retaliate by scratching the car with their keys.
Anyway, the story is that one day Apple executive Jean-Louis Gassee, who had recently transferred to Cupertino from Paris, had just parked his car and was walking toward the entrance of the main office at Apple when Steve buzzed by him in his silver Mercedes and pulled into the handicapped space near the front of the building.
As Steve walked brusquely past him, Jean-Louis was heard to declare, to no one in particular - "Oh, I never realized that those spaces were for the emotionally handicapped...".
One day in October 1983 I got a phone call at my desk at Apple from the Cupertino police department saying something like, "You reported that Mercedes parked in the handicapped space at your lot at Apple. Well, we sent a car out there but we can't really tow it away because the handicapped space is improperly designated."
I had no idea what he was talking about. A few hours later, I found out that Apple's other cofounder, Steve Wozniak, who was a prolific prankster, called up the Cupertino police and reported that a silver Mercedes was illegally parked in a handicapped space and told them the person reporting it was Andy Hertzfeld, giving them my phone number at work. I decided not to inform Apple's facilities department about the improperly marked space, just in case Woz decided to try it again.
He took his food and left, and as he walked down that beautiful leafy street, he stretched out his arms like an airplane — like he was flying into the sunshine.
For all the times I’ve seen him at the height of his powers on stage, and for all the sweat-inducing interviews, that is how I will remember Steve Jobs — completely confident and carefree, being just who he wanted to be, flying straight into the future.
Here’s how a typical press interview with Steve Jobs used to go in the early 2000s. You wouldn’t be immediately ushered into his presence; you would be passed from PR person to PR person, corridor to corridor, waiting at each step, until you reached the inner sanctum.
You would often pass a fellow journalist on his way out, looking white as a sheet and shaking his head like he’d gone ten rounds with Mike Tyson. You would mentally prepare your questions about the latest Apple product, knowing that Steve would bat them away like flies and say what he wanted to say.
And then there you were, with the man himself: black turtleneck, jeans, white trainers, spiky salt-and-pepper stubble, and those no-nonsense eyes that could look straight into your soul. You’d sputter out a question while he sipped from a bottle of Odwalla. Perhaps he would deign to answer politely, or perhaps he would interrupt: “that’s a stupid question. That’s not what we should be talking about.”
If you could survive twenty minutes of this without cracking, his demeanor would soften. If you were lucky, then just for a moment the mask would slip, and Steve would break into a broad smile. It was a grin that acknowledged the silliness of this interview game — and that you both loved playing your roles in it.
As a technology writer for Time magazine in the 1990s and 2000s, I went through this routine a dozen times. It’s easy to forget, but back then an Apple product launch was not a huge deal. The company was seen as struggling, a distant second to Microsoft, even years after Jobs had retaken the helm. I had to fight for a single page on the launch of the iPod in 2001, for instance, at a time when the headlines were all about war and terror.
But Jobs was always compelling. He was the news. His enormous passion for a product was unrivaled in any industry, before or since. As long as I could convey him on the page, Steve as he really was, Apple stories were an easy sell for my editors.
The Urgency of the Future
The more stories I did, the friendlier Steve got. He started calling me at home with story ideas and off-the-record information. He asked me to interview him on a video that would be broadcast at a Warner Music conference; this was when he was still trying to persuade the record labels to let him sell songs within iTunes.
I figured this meant we should start with a few softball questions about music in general, but Steve interrupted and got straight to the pitch: 99-cent MP3s would save the music industry. Of course, he was absolutely right, and of course, he got his way.
Here was a man who knew precisely what the future looked like, and had no patience for anyone or anything who got in the way. Not a second was to be wasted. The vision was too important. This is what he meant in that famous Stanford commencement speech: “your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”
Thursday, 6 October 2011
I was very sad to hear of the death of Steve Jobs. It was inevitable, the writing was on the wall when he retired, when he started to look so very ill, when the rumours of his weight loss abounded but nothing prepares you for the shock when it finally happens.
It isn't often that the death of a CEO of a Company makes the Earth shake but this was one occasion.
I have read a lot about Steve Jobs. There have been numerous books about him and his Biography is published soon.
A friend of mine Cliff Mann, the CEO of Time4Change, http://www.t4c.org.uk/ posted a quote by Steve Jobs which struck me as one of the best pieces of advice you can give anyone in business.
Well, I dont think you have to be dying any time soon to take charge of your life but obviously Steve Jobs had other issues going on, his health was deteriorating rapidly through pancreatic cancer.
I hate the phrase "Today is the first day of the rest of your life". It's as if you have plenty of time to start again. You dont.
Consider my take on that.
What if today was the LAST day of your life? What then? I bet you could get a shed load of work done. I bet you could talk to a lot of people. I bet you could come up with so many plans and ideas you would have seen through IF ONLY...you had the time. You HAVE the time. Use it.
Steve Jobs changed the world. Through hard work, innovation, business acumen, customer service/ experience, technology and by just being Steve Jobs. How many other CEO's do you know of who do that? There are a few, there should be more.
Every Apple product is an experience. Just entering a store is an adventure. He made technology fun. From the technology itself right the way down to the packaging and how you open the box...it is an experience.
If you love Apple you know what I mean. If you hate Apple, you have to admit they made their competitors 'up' their game.
Steve Jobs did it his way. As he said once; "Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life." ~ Steve Jobs
Wednesday, 5 October 2011
Paradigms – what are they?
Is it a buzzword for the information age? It very well may be a buzzword – but it’s one to be seriously considered. If you’re like most people, paradigms very likely are controlling every move you make. So, what are paradigms and why should we be concerned about how they affect our everyday lives? Well, paradigms are a multitude of habits. In most cases, these habits aren’t even originated by yourself, yet they guide every move you make. Paradigms affect the way you eat, the way you walk, even the way you talk. They govern your communication, your work habits, your successes and even your failures in life. It’s also important to know, that, for the most part, these paradigms are other people’s habits – yet they remain the guiding lights in your life.
In order to replace an old paradigm that doesn’t serve you (i.e., “I’ve never been able to make more than $40,000 a year), you must lay a new paradigm over that old one, ensuring that it’s sealed from “leaking through again. When you understand how to lay this floor, so to speak, you will expose yourself to a brand new world of power, possibility and promise.
Paradigms change you to the core
Organizational culture is founded on habits, work practices, attitudes, beliefs and expectations otherwise known as paradigms. Armed with paradigms, we approach and react to the world around us, interpreting what we see and experience according to our shared understandings and those culturally determined guidelines. A paradigm, in a sense, tells you that there is a game, what the game is, and how to play it successfully. A paradigm shift then, is a change to a new game, or a new set of rules. And when the rules change, your whole world can change.
Ideally, any changes to an organization should be implemented simultaneously with a change in attitude of the members. In other words, the people’s paradigms should be shifted at the same time the organization begins its transformation. It’s unfortunate that most of the organizations in the world are not preparing their people to make the personal paradigm shifts that are necessary. There are numerous individuals who lack the understanding required to adapt to the changes that are being forced upon them.
Think of how the world has changed. There are hundreds of thousands of people walking the street today who went to school, worked hard, studied long hours, graduated at the top of their class, secured employment with a major blue-chip company and bought into the promise that just about every major corporation offered: “If you give us loyalty, we will give you security.”
Twenty years later, as these loyal and misguided individuals stood proudly near the top of their corporate ladder, shouldering responsibility for big mortgages and small children, the corporate paradigm shifted. The ladder was yanked out from underneath them and they found themselves standing on the street, bruised, demoralized, unemployed and in a state of total shock.
Now, I know most people would say, “The problem is the corporation’s lack of loyalty” … but this is not the case. A job doesn’t owe you anything. People work at a job or for an employer in a mutual sort of relationship, but that doesn’t mean that one or the other party is utterly responsible for the other party’s livelihood. Ninety-some percent of the population keeps getting the same results—year in, year out!
This is as true for students in school as it is for the person in business. If there is an improvement in the performance of most people, it’s generally minimal—just a blip on the screen and not enough to make any substantial difference in a person’s life-style.
Is there a problem? An enormous problem! It’s called paradigms.
Paradigms can be likened to a program that has been installed in your brain. But you can change that software! The same infinite power flows to and through each one of us, and if we had been taught to develop our higher faculties in the first place, we would understand how and why all things are possible.
You are going to be delighted to learn that just changing a very small part of the old paradigm can make an enormous difference in the results you can enjoy in every area of your life.
Think of the areas in your life that money affects. Imagine shifting your paradigm there to substantially increase your income before year’s end. If you have difficulty meeting people and you alter the paradigm so that it’s easy and enjoyable to meet people, this could have quite an impact on your life.
These are just two examples of hundreds that could be done in YOUR life. Today!
There will be no permanent change in your life until the paradigm has been changed. Choose one or two limiting ideas that are part of your paradigm and replace them with ideas that represent freedom to you. Consciously keep those new thoughts in your head, and act as if those thoughts are already embedded in the foundation of your life. Before you know it – you life will begin to change – and dramatically!