I’m fortunate in that I have a lot of discretionary time to spend working with, and listening to, some very smart people. As a relentless note taker I often write down some of the things I’m fortunate enough to hear — and the following list contains some of my favorites from 2013 (DISCLAIMER: None of the following quotes are my own).
“Theres a big difference in believing in a core value and simply not violating it” (Kent Thiry – DaVita Chairman and CEO). No kidding — and we all know examples of both types of behavior, and people.
“Everything benefits the data even though not everything benefits revenue” (Anonymous) That’s the secret of data — all data is good data if you’re in the data collection and analysis business.
“The hardest thing in the world to do is to simplify your life” (Yvon Chouinard Founder of Patagonia). He’s right — try it — it’s very difficult.
“What you’re famous for and what you focus on is where you’ll make the best returns” (Paul Walsh CEO of Diageo). Two thoughts here — (1) what you’ve already been successful at is where you’ll find the best future success and (2) focus matters – a lot!
“Invention requires a long term willingness to be misunderstood” (Jeff Bezos Amazon). What I like about this is the implication on tracking competitors vs. disrupters. Be careful what you dismiss.
“I can get more and faster everywhere – what is rare is less and slower” (Anonymous). I substitute better for less and intimate for slower and to me this explains a lot about the experience focused commerce trends.
“I personally focus on anything that undermines the credentials of what we’re trying to sell” (Anonymous). Similar to my “eliminate dysfunction” mantra for executive leaders.
“There is infinite demand for the unattainable” (Multiple Sources). It’s only after you build “one” that you can really gauge market demand.
“Everything speaks” (Multiple Sources). This is particularly true in today’s everything is on-line instantly everywhere world.
Cheers and Happy New Year! DC