From a brilliant text from Bryce dot vc

'Most people want to be fit, most people aren’t.

Most people want to build a successful business, most people won’t.

Most people want to be the best version of themselves, most people aren’t.

Most people have dreams they want to fulfill, most people won’t.

Everyone wants to quit something, build something, be something, do something. Most people won’t.

How many things have we wanted? How many opportunities have we craved? How many broken things have we wanted to fix? 

And how many of those have we shrunk from. Hid from. Or, excused away.

We’re not alone.

Most people won’t.

But every once in a while someone puts themselves out there. Makes the leap. Faces rejection or failure or worse. And comes out the other side. Better. Changed. Bolder.

Most people won’t. Which means those that do change everything.'
Taken from Julie Zhuo in The Year of the Looking Glass. See original post here (I agree with everything there...):

A Manager's Manifesto
10) Always get the full story before making a decision.

9) It's incredibly easy to 'flip the switch' and start writing people off after a few bad experiences. Resist at all costs. You were bumbling once too. You made poor decisions. You learn and grow, and so does everybody else.

8) Sweep up the crumbs. Wipe the tables. Turn off the lights. Plug the holes that need plugging—even if it's menial, even if nobody will know you did it. Do it in service of the product, the company, and this wondrous, magical thing you are all building together.

7) Recognize you can't do everything. Close your eyes, fall backwards, and learn to trust.

6) Clearly, there is a more efficient way to do the things you do. How? Ponder that on your daily drive home.

5) Figure out which people rely on you and how you can help them be self-sufficient. You may feel important having a monopoly on salmon provisions, but if the whole village learns how to fish, it'll free you up to do something else. Like figuring out how to grow wheat. Or how to domesticate those cute wolf-pups.

4) Don't say anything if it's not actually contributing to the discussion. Your voice is not so melodious that it absolutely must be heard.

3) Making the best decision is not as important as putting in the right processes to ensure that the best decisions get made.

2) Dole out thanks and encouragement like you dole out opinions.

1) Above all, this: never, ever get in the way. It's better to twiddle your thumbs and squint up at the clouds than to obstruct progress for the sake of that stupid, childish thing called ego.
My friend Melissah Smith posted this on her wall. I could not help but agree and commend her.

It is a striking portrait of a world ruled by the ego, giving us more, but leaving us more unsatisfied.

Thanks Mel for putting this together.

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom. 

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We've learned how to make a living, but not a life. We've added years to life not life to years. We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer space but not inner space. We've done larger things, but not better things.

We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We've conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We've learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small character, steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.
There are many 'plans' that seek to help manage a business. The business plan, themarketing plan, the strategic plan, the project management plan, etc. All tools to that use different techniques to answer the three fundamental questions:

- Who am I ? and Where am I today ?
- Where am I going ?
- How am I going to get there ?

I got tired of over-used business plans that nobody reads. Tired of marketing plans based on wishful thinking. Tired of task-based project management plans that narrow-mindedly didn't take into account the company's vision. Tired of strategic plans done during plush retreats with a select few that were disconnected with their corporate reality. 

Throughout my career, I have looked to integrate those 'plans' into one comprehensible, integrated, 1-page model. It's an ambitious idea : develop a model to unite all models. Particularly, I focus on the inter-relationships between the different parts of the model. How does one part of a plan affect the others ?

After years of research and vulgarising exercises, I give you the (continually developed) Integrated Strategy Model (ISM). This model has been tried and tested with many client cases, refined through my experience. I have extensively documented the description, the process and the how-to of each box as well as the reasoning behind each link. 

It will be updated and tweaked. The current state is :
Version : 1.0
Released : August 2012

Enjoy it, use it at will, discuss it with me, and contact me if you would like help to apply it to your business. 
I have been blessed with the joy of being able to choose many of the projects I have been involved with. My project-selection criteria hasn't always been the best. 

Early in my career, technology was my main motivation. In one project, I had built the best mousetrap in a world where there were very few mice to catch. Oh, so the market need is important !

Over the course of the many ups and downs in my entrepreneurial life, I was able to refine said criteria. This graph that I found floating on the Internet sea best describes it. (click to enlarge)

It's not always possible to find the 'Bliss' sweet spot (OK, truth be told, it's very rare), but it's something I consistently aim for. And if I can't have 'Bliss', at least I know where I am and why I am doing it.
There are special moments that come along ever so rarely, where the only reaction I can muster is : wow.

Last Saturday was one of those moments. A friend of ours, a brilliant writer, had finally succumbed to cancer after a brave 10 year battle. Her funeral was a testament to her courage, her love for others and her wordsmith ability.

When her eldest son stepped on the stage to deliver his eulogy, I did not expect what came out of his mouth. He painted a moving, heart-wrenching portrait of his relationship with his mother, her life and his feelings through the long storm. He wrote and delivered in a sublime way what I thought indescribable.

And to say that it hit home is a gross understatement.

I give you Phil Cotnoir's eulogy. Thank you Phil for making me feel your feelings, for accepting the doubt, for falling on your faith, for letting me peer into your mind and for bringing me along on your journey. 

You are beyond talented, like your mother. Again: Wow.
Without a name; an unseen face
And knowing not your time nor place
Tomorrow's Child, though yet unborn,
I met you first last Tuesday morn.

A wise friend introduced us two,
And through his shining point of view
I saw a day that would see
a day for you, but not for me.

Knowing you has changed my thinking,
For I never had an inkling
That perhaps the things I do
Might someday, somehow, threaten you.

Tomorrow's Child, my daughter-son,
I'm afraid I've just begun
To think of you and of your good,
Though always having known I should.

Begin I will to weight the cost
Of what I squander; what is lost
I should never forget that you
Will someday come to live here too.

- Glen Thomas (Interface Carpet Co.)
Thank you Steve for putting words to my thoughts.
Click here to see why you and I are really special and why today is so precious.