Execution Success Quotes

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Whenever I am in a difficult situation where there seems to be no way out, I think about all the times I have been in such situations and say to myself, "I did it before, so I can do it again.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Vision without execution is just hallucination.
Henry Ford
When you work on something that only has the capacity to make you 5 dollars, it does not matter how much harder you work – the most you will make is 5 dollars.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
But if you forgive someone for something they did to you, it doesn’t mean you agree with what they did or believe it was right. Forgiving that person means you have chosen not to dwell on the matter anymore; you have moved on with your life.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
We do not get to choose how we start out in life. We do not get to choose the day we are born or the family we are born into, what we are named at birth, what country we are born in, and we do not get to choose our ancestry. All these things are predetermined by a higher power. By the time you are old enough to start making decisions for yourself, a lot of things in your life are already in place. It’s important, therefore, that you focus on the future, the only thing that you can change.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Today is a new day and it brings with it a new set of opportunities for me to act on. I am attentive to the opportunities and I seize them as they arise. I have full confidence in myself and my abilities. I can do all things that I commit myself to. No obstacle is too big or too difficult for me to handle because what lies inside me is greater than what lies ahead of me. I am committed to improving myself and I am getting better daily. I am not held back by regret or mistakes from the past. I am moving forward daily. Absolutely nothing is impossible for me.
Idowu Koyenikan (Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability)
Success in life is not how well we execute Plan A; it's how smoothly we cope with Plan B.
Sarah Ban Breathnach
The elegance under pressure is the result of fearlessness.
Ashish Patel
You can't stop negative thoughts from coming in, but you can make sure they leave as quickly as they enter.
Nkem Paul (The Art of Achievement and Fulfillment: Fundamental Principles to Overcome Obstacles and Turn Dreams Into Reality!)
Above all, success in business requires two things: a winning competitive strategy, and superb organizational execution. Distrust is the enemy of both. I submit that while high trust won't necessarily rescue a poor strategy, low trust will almost always derail a good one.
Stephen M.R. Covey (The Speed of Trust: The One Thing that Changes Everything)
Social media takes time and careful, strategic thought. It doesn’t happen by accident.
Brian E. Boyd Sr. (Social Media for the Executive)
Success is rarely determined by the quality of your ideas. But it is frequently determined by the quality of your execution.
Jeff Atwood (Effective Programming: More Than Writing Code)
Innovation requires having at least three things: a great idea, the engineering talent to execute it, and the business savvy (plus deal-making moxie) to turn it into a successful product.
Walter Isaacson (The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution)
Share and Enjoy' is the company motto of the hugely successful Sirius Cybernetics Corporation Complaints Division, which now covers the major land masses of three medium-sized planets and is the only part of the Corporation to have shown a consistent profit in recent years. The motto stands-- or rather stood-- in three mile high illuminated letters near the Complaints Department spaceport on Eadrax. Unfortunately its weight was such that shortly after it was erected, the ground beneath the letters caved in and they dropped for nearly half their length through the offices of many talented young Complaints executives-- now deceased. The protruding upper halves of the letters now appear, in the local language, to read "Go stick your head in a pig," and are no longer illuminated, except at times of special celebration.
Douglas Adams (The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide: Five Complete Novels and One Story (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1-5))
I suggest to you, late or not late, the moment you have discovered that the mission of someone is to pee on your dreams, keep him away or keep away from him.
Israelmore Ayivor (Leaders' Frontpage: Leadership Insights from 21 Martin Luther King Jr. Thoughts)
Once you achieve intimacy and connection, I predict that innovation, partnership, execution and success won't be far behind.
Susan Scott (Fierce Leadership: A Bold Alternative to the Worst "Best" Practices of Business Today)
The works must be conceived with fire in the soul but executed with clinical coolness.
Joan Miró
Make failure a concentration of the will—the will to want to continue moving forward and the will to have the ability to execute anything you set your mind to do. Failure stops procrastination because it will make us execute the journey God has planned for us to achieve our goals.
Charlena E. Jackson (No Cross No Crown)
Colonel Cargill was so awful a marketing executive that his services were much sought after by firms eager to establish losses for tax purposes. His prices were high, for failure often did not come easily. He had to start at the top and work his way down, and with sympathetic friends in Washington, losing money was no simple matter. It took months of hard work and careful misplanning. A person misplaced, disorganized, miscalculated, overlooked everything and open every loophole, and just when he thought he had it made, the government gave him a lake or a forest or an oilfield and spoiled everything. Even with such handicaps, Colonel Cargill could be relied on to run the most prosperous enterprise into the ground. He was a self-made man who owed his lack of success to nobody.
Joseph Heller (Catch-22)
Courage is the ability to execute tasks and assignments without fear or intimidation.
Jaachynma N.E. Agu
In life, the question is not if you will have problems, but how you are going to deal with your problems. If the possibility of failure were erased, what would you attempt to achieve? The essence of man is imperfection. Know that you're going to make mistakes. The fellow who never makes a mistake takes his orders from one who does. Wake up and realize this: Failure is simply a price we pay to achieve success. Achievers are given multiple reasons to believe they are failures. But in spite of that, they persevere. The average for entrepreneurs is 3.8 failures before they finally make it in business. When achievers fail, they see it as a momentary event, not a lifelong epidemic. Procrastination is too high a price to pay for fear of failure. To conquer fear, you have to feel the fear and take action anyway. Forget motivation. Just do it. Act your way into feeling, not wait for positive emotions to carry you forward. Recognize that you will spend much of your life making mistakes. If you can take action and keep making mistakes, you gain experience. Life is playing a poor hand well. The greatest battle you wage against failure occurs on the inside, not the outside. Why worry about things you can't control when you can keep yourself busy controlling the things that depend on you? Handicaps can only disable us if we let them. If you are continually experiencing trouble or facing obstacles, then you should check to make sure that you are not the problem. Be more concerned with what you can give rather than what you can get because giving truly is the highest level of living. Embrace adversity and make failure a regular part of your life. If you're not failing, you're probably not really moving forward. Everything in life brings risk. It's true that you risk failure if you try something bold because you might miss it. But you also risk failure if you stand still and don't try anything new. The less you venture out, the greater your risk of failure. Ironically the more you risk failure — and actually fail — the greater your chances of success. If you are succeeding in everything you do, then you're probably not pushing yourself hard enough. And that means you're not taking enough risks. You risk because you have something of value you want to achieve. The more you do, the more you fail. The more you fail, the more you learn. The more you learn, the better you get. Determining what went wrong in a situation has value. But taking that analysis another step and figuring out how to use it to your benefit is the real difference maker when it comes to failing forward. Don't let your learning lead to knowledge; let your learning lead to action. The last time you failed, did you stop trying because you failed, or did you fail because you stopped trying? Commitment makes you capable of failing forward until you reach your goals. Cutting corners is really a sign of impatience and poor self-discipline. Successful people have learned to do what does not come naturally. Nothing worth achieving comes easily. The only way to fail forward and achieve your dreams is to cultivate tenacity and persistence. Never say die. Never be satisfied. Be stubborn. Be persistent. Integrity is a must. Anything worth having is worth striving for with all your might. If we look long enough for what we want in life we are almost sure to find it. Success is in the journey, the continual process. And no matter how hard you work, you will not create the perfect plan or execute it without error. You will never get to the point that you no longer make mistakes, that you no longer fail. The next time you find yourself envying what successful people have achieved, recognize that they have probably gone through many negative experiences that you cannot see on the surface. Fail early, fail often, but always fail forward.
John C. Maxwell (Failing Forward)
You can do just about anything if you break it down into habits and execute on them. That's not to say that it's easy, only that it's possible. The key is to be honest about what's stopping you from success, take responsibility for it, and create new habits to correct.
Tynan (Superhuman by Habit: A Guide to Becoming the Best Possible Version of Yourself, One Tiny Habit at a Time)
In the early stages of a startup, focusing on “execution” will put you out of business. Instead, you need a “learning and discovery” process so you can get the company to the point where you know what to execute.
Steve Blank (The Four Steps to the Epiphany: Successful Strategies for Startups That Win)
We’ve all heard the usual examples: Michael Jordan cut from his high school basketball team, Walt Disney fired by a newspaper editor for not being creative enough, the Beatles turned away by a record executive who told them that “guitar groups are on their way out.” In fact, many of their winning mantras essentially describe the notion of falling up: “I’ve failed over and over again in my life,” Jordan once said, “and that is why I succeed.” Robert F. Kennedy said much the same: “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” And Thomas Edison, too, once claimed that he had failed his way to success.
Shawn Achor (The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work)
When efforts that are wisely executed, the situation and condition don't affect the performance.
Ashish Patel
Some bad friends are so crafty in such a way that by the time their mission is reveal, they have already executed portions of it.
Israelmore Ayivor (Leaders' Frontpage: Leadership Insights from 21 Martin Luther King Jr. Thoughts)
However, I would like to point out that hard work alone will not bring success. The world is filled with people who have worked hard but have little to show for it. Something more than hard work is necessary: It is creative thinking and firm belief in your ability to execute your ideas. The successful people in history have succeeded through their thinking. Their hands were merely helpers to their brains.
Claude M. Bristol (The Magic of Believing)
It is very difficult for me to come to terms with my spiritual illness because of my great pride, disguised by my material successes and my intellectual power. Intelligence is not incompatible with humility, provided I place humility first. To seek prestige and wealth is the ultimate goal for many in the modern world. To be fashionable and to seem better than I really am is a spiritual illness. To recognize and to admit my weaknesses is the beginning of good spiritual health. It is a sign of spiritual health to be able to ask God every day to enlighten me, to recognize His will, and to have the strength to execute it. My spiritual health is excellent when I realize that the better I get, the more I discover how much help I need from others.
Alcoholics Anonymous (Daily Reflections: A Book of Reflections by A.A. Members for A.A. Members)
when words are well chosen, well arranged, they generate gratifying experiences for the listener. It is not for utilitarian reasons alone that breadth of vocabulary and verbal fluency are among the most important qualifications for success as a business executive. Talking well enriches every interaction, and it is a skill that can be learned by everyone.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience)
The more you try to do, the less you actually accomplish.” They elaborate that execution should be aimed at a small number of “wildly important goals.” This
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
Every organisation, not just business, needs 1 core competence: Tactical execution
Tony Dovale
Success is simple, but isn't easy because it demands execution, not intentions.
Orrin Woodward
The Six Steps to Success: 1) Define Success 2) Devise a Plan 3) Execute and Overcome Adversity 4) Measure Results with Key Metrics 5) Revise the Plan 6) Work Hard
Ken Poirot
What Manner Of Men Are These That Wear The Maroon Beret? They are firstly all volunteers and are toughened by physical training. As a result they have infectious optimism and that offensive eagerness which comes from well-being. They have 'jumped' from the air and by doing so have conquered fear. Their duty lies in the van of the battle. They are proud of this honour. They have the highest standards in all things whether it be skill in battle or smartness in the execution of all peace time duties. They are in fact - men apart - every man an emperor. Of all the factors, which make for success in battle, the spirit of the warrior is the most decisive. That spirit will be found in full measure in the men who wear the maroon beret
Bernard Montgomery
Resilient strength is the opposite of helplessness. The tree is made strong and resilient by its grounded root system. These roots take nourishment from the ground and grow strong. Grounding also allows the tree to be resilient so that it can yield to the winds of change and not be uprooted. Springiness is the facility to ground and ‘unground’ in a rhythmical way. This buoyancy is a dynamic form of grounding. Aggressiveness is the biological ability to be vigorous and energetic, especially when using instinct and force. In the immobility (traumatized) state, these assertive energies are inaccessible. The restoration of healthy aggression is an essential part in the recovery from trauma. Empowerment is the acceptance of personal authority. It derives from the capacity to choose the direction and execution of one’s own energies. Mastery is the possession of skillful techniques in dealing successfully with threat. Orientation is the process of ascertaining one’s position relative to both circumstance and environment. In these ways the residue of trauma is renegotiated.
Peter A. Levine (Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma)
It’s about our burning desire to create something from nothing. It’s about defining success for ourselves, and our motivation to find success by doing things our way. And it’s about the freedom to create and execute our ideas, and then share those ideas with the world. It’s about the thing I believe most entrepreneurs today are looking for.
Pia Silva (Badass Your Brand: The Impatient Entrepreneur's Guide to Turning Expertise into Profit)
So, execution is really the critical part of a successful strategy. Getting it done, getting it done right, getting it done better than the next person is far more important than dreaming up new visions of the future.
Louis V. Gerstner Jr. (Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?)
Develop your leaders into a competitive advantage. Reconnect your leader-power to success.
Gene Morton (Leaders First: Six Bold Steps to Sustain Breakthroughs in Construction)
It’s critical that your belief in yourself is stronger anyone else’s doubt.
Kim Perell (The Execution Factor: The One Skill that Drives Success: The One Skill that Drives Success)
Most men each have a to-do list of women that they plan on executing if and when they get rich or famous.
Mokokoma Mokhonoana
It is far better to have 10,000 Facebook friends who are in the same category or aligned with your values or a common inter- est than 100,000 random robot followers from around the world.
Brian E. Boyd Sr. (Social Media for the Executive)
The action plan is a statement of intentions rather than a commitment. It must not become a straitjacket. It should be revised often, because every success creates new opportunities. So does every failure.
Peter F. Drucker (The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done (Harperbusiness Essentials))
Success = Dream x Plan x Work Conscious dreams are essential components of your success. When you are backed up by a convincing dream, meticulous planning, and 100% execution, you are bound to be victorius.
Vishwas Chavan (Vishwasutras: Universal Principles for Living: Inspired by Real-Life Experiences)
Success depends on psychological safety. At Google, members of teams with high levels of psychological safety were less likely to leave their jobs, brought in more revenue, and were rated effective twice as often by executives. MIT researchers who studied team performance came to the same conclusion: simply grouping smart people together doesn’t guarantee a smart team. Online and off, the best teams discuss ideas frequently, do not let one person dominate the conversation, and are sensitive to one another’s feelings.
Liz Fosslien (No Hard Feelings: The Secret Power of Embracing Emotions at Work)
An organization is not, like an animal, an end in itself, and successful by the mere act of perpetuating the species. An organization is an organ of society and fulfills itself by the contribution it makes to the outside environment.
Peter F. Drucker (The Effective Executive)
One should bear in mind that there is nothing more difficult to execute, nor more dubious of success, nor more dangerous to administer, than to introduce new political orders. For the one who introduces them has as his enemies all those who profit from the old order, and he has only lukewarm defenders in all those who might profit from the new order.
Niccolò Machiavelli (The Prince)
Dee Henning. I understand your focus, your drive to succeed, really I do, but I gotta wonder how you can even call it success when you’re so wrapped up in your work that the only way you’ll ever get laid is if they put it in the job description.
Grace Marshall (An Executive Decision (The Executive Decision Trilogy, #1))
It's alright to keep and open mind, but at a certain point—once you have thoroughly completed your homework—you have to learn how to stop and focus on intensely and passionately executing these goals step by step. You have to repel the distractions.
Injap Sia (Life Principles)
GONZALO: I' the commonwealth I would by contraries Execute all things; for no kind of traffic Would I admit; no name of magistrate; Letters should not be known; riches, poverty, And use of service, none; contract, succession, Bourn, bound of land, tilth, vineyard, none; No use of metal, corn, or wine, or oil; No occupation; all men idle, all; And women too, but innocent and pure; And no sovereignty; - SEBASTIAN: Yet he would be king on't. ANTONIO: The latter end of his commonwealth forgets the beginning.
William Shakespeare (The Tempest)
Above all, success in business requires two things: a winning competitive strategy, and superb organizational execution. Distrust is the enemy of both.” I submit that while high trust won’t necessarily rescue a poor strategy, low trust will almost always derail a good one.
Stephen M.R. Covey (The SPEED of Trust: The One Thing that Changes Everything)
Don’t mistake activity for achievement. To produce results, tasks must be well organized and properly executed; otherwise, it’s no different from children running around the playground—everybody is doing something, but nothing is being done; lots of activity, no achievement.
John Wooden (Coach Wooden's Leadership Game Plan for Success: 12 Lessons for Extraordinary Performance and Personal Excellence)
Freedom of Will"—that is the expression for the complex state of delight of the person exercising volition, who commands and at the same time identifies himself with the executor of the order—who, as such, enjoys also the triumph over obstacles, but thinks within himself that it was really his own will that overcame them. In this way the person exercising volition adds the feelings of delight of his successful executive instruments, the useful "underwills" or under-souls—indeed, our body is but a social structure composed of many souls—to his feelings of delight as commander.
Friedrich Nietzsche (Beyond Good and Evil)
d. In designing your organization, remember that the 5-Step Process is the path to success and that different people are good at different steps. Assign specific people to do each of these steps based on their natural inclinations. For example, the big-picture visionary should be responsible for goal setting, the taste tester should be assigned the job of identifying and not tolerating problems, the logical detective who doesn’t mind probing people should be the diagnoser, the imaginative designer should craft the plan to make the improvements, and the reliable taskmaster should make sure the plan gets executed. Of course, some people can do more than one of these things—generally people do two or three well. Virtually nobody can do them all well. A team should consist of people with all of these abilities and they should know who is responsible for which steps.
Ray Dalio (Principles: Life and Work)
How do tyrants hold on to power for so long? For that matter, why is the tenure of successful democratic leaders so brief? How can countries with such misguided and corrupt economic policies survive for so long? Why are countries that are prone to natural disasters so often unprepared when they happen? And how can lands rich with natural resources at the same time support populations stricken with poverty? Equally, we may well wonder: Why are Wall Street executives so politically tone-deaf that they dole out billions in bonuses while plunging the global economy into recession? Why is the leadership of a corporation, on whose shoulders so much responsibility rests, decided by so few people? Why are failed CEOs retained and paid handsomely even as their company’s shareholders lose their shirts? In
Bruce Bueno de Mesquita (The Dictator's Handbook: Why Bad Behavior is Almost Always Good Politics)
Almost every product promises to change your life: it will make you more beautiful, cleaner, more sexually alluring, and more successful. Born again, as it were. The messages contain promises about the future, unfailingly optimistic, exaggerating, miracle-promising—the same ideology that invites corporate executives to exaggerate profits and conceal losses, but always with a sunny face. The virtual reality of the advertiser and the “good news” of the evangelist complement each other, a match made in heaven.
Sheldon S. Wolin (Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism)
Leaders are made not born. They are the results of persistent effort. Thus, leadership involves much more than just shouting. Effective leadership requires a human focus and reflects a servant and transformation mentality. It is about the nuts and bolts of execution. Leadership is an everyday activity. It is a process that begins but never ends.
Vishwas Chavan (Vishwasutras: Universal Principles for Living: Inspired by Real-Life Experiences)
The 4 Disciplines of Execution,
Cal Newport (Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World)
The honor of your presentation, execution, experience, and growth will do much more for you and your career over false claims that have no substance yet.
Loren Weisman
If a business is underperforming, then the assumptions are wrong
Fritz Shoemaker
A “Wait and See” approach to an external factor is not strategic
Fritz Shoemaker
Relationship Awareness: How do people interpret your business’s story
Fritz Shoemaker
A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan next week.” The
Steve Blank (The Four Steps to the Epiphany: Successful Strategies for Startups That Win)
Write your executive summary of where you want to take your business, and why your business idea will be successful.
Timi Nadela (Get To The Top)
Act and fail, but don’t fail to act.
Amit Kalantri (Wealth of Words)
Change occurs when excuses pivot to execution.
Ryan Lilly
Success is rarely determined by the quality of your ideas. But it is frequently determined by the quality of your execution.
Jeff Atwood (Effective Programming: More Than Writing Code)
learning” is the oldest excuse in the book for a failure of execution.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
it is paramount that senior leaders explain to their junior leaders and troops executing the mission how their role contributes to big picture success.
Jocko Willink (Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win)
Many software executives consider the independent channel partners as a readily available, flexible and inexpensive sales resource and nothing could be further from the truth. I
Hans Peter Bech (Building Successful Partner Channels: in the Software Industry)
Strong executive commitment is a success factor for implementing Scrum, and management can best demonstrate their support of the transformation through their actions.
Scott M. Graffius (Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions)
Use daily systems to propel yourself into success.
Peter Hollins (Finish What You Start: The Art of Following Through, Taking Action, Executing, & Self-Discipline)
They had “achieved failure”—successfully, faithfully, and rigorously executing a plan that turned out to have been utterly flawed.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
Executing the solution means gaining customer commitment and delivering on your promises
Chris Murray (Selling with EASE: The Four Step Sales Cycle Found in Every Successful Business Transaction)
We’ve been told that Henry Ford never fired employees but shifted them around until he found the niche that was right for them. A
Peg Dawson (The Smart but Scattered Guide to Success: How to Use Your Brain's Executive Skills to Keep Up, Stay Calm, and Get Organized at Work and at Home)
achieving failure: successfully executing a plan that leads nowhere.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
The law of successful operations is to avoid the enemy's strength and strike his weakness.
Steven W. Michaelson (Sun Tzu For Execution: How to Use the Art of War to Get Results)
The primary task for the executive targeting first 100 days success is to set out the right strategic priorities and stay focused on them.
Niamh O'Keeffe (Your First 100 Days: How to make maximum impact in your new leadership role (Financial Times Series))
They own the window, You own the view
Vineet Raj Kapoor
As I developed as a CEO, I found two key techniques to be useful in minimizing politics. 1. Hire people with the right kind of ambition. The cases that I described above might involve people who are ambitious but not necessarily inherently political. All cases are not like this. The surest way to turn your company into the political equivalent of the U.S. Senate is to hire people with the wrong kind of ambition. As defined by Andy Grove, the right kind of ambition is ambition for the company’s success with the executive’s own success only coming as a by-product of the company’s victory. The wrong kind of ambition is ambition for the executive’s personal success regardless of the company’s outcome. 2. Build strict processes for potentially political issues and do not deviate. Certain activities attract political behavior. These activities include:   Performance evaluation and compensation   Organizational design and territory   Promotions Let’s examine each case and how you might build and execute a process that insulates the company from bad behavior and politically motivated outcomes.
Ben Horowitz (The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers)
It is executive presence—and no man or woman attains a top job, lands an extraordinary deal, or develops a significant following without this heady combination of confidence, poise, and authenticity that convinces the rest of us we’re in the presence of someone who’s the real deal. It’s an amalgam of qualities that telegraphs that you are in charge or deserve to be.
Sylvia Ann Hewlett (Executive Presence: The Missing Link Between Merit and Success)
Every republic runs its greatest risk not so much from discontented soldiers as from discontented multi-millionaires. They are very rarely, if ever, content with a position of equality, and the larger the population which is said to be equal with them, the less content they are. Their natural desire is to be a class apart, and if they cannot have titles at home, they wish to be received as equals by titled people abroad. That is exactly our present position, and would be the end of the American dream. All past republics have been overthrown by rich men, or nobles, and we have plenty of Sons of the Revolution ready for the job, and plenty of successful soldiers deriding the Constitution, unrebuked by the Executive or by public opinion.
Kory Stamper (Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries)
But the process should not be confused with science. When tests are used as selections devices, they're not a neutral tool; they become a large factor int he very equation they purport to measure. For one thing, the tests tend to screen out - or repel - those who would upset the correlation. If a man can't get into the company in the first place because he isn't the company type, he can't very well get to be an executive and be tested in a study to find out what kind if profile subsequent executives should match. Long before personality tests were invented, of course, plenty of companies proved that if you only hire people of a certain type, then all your successful men will be people of that type. But no one confused this with the immutable laws of science.
William H. Whyte (The Organization Man)
[These] powerful women understood that success in imperfect. What would happen if we all started speaking honestly and openly about our priorities and the choices we make about how we spend our time? How inspiring would it be to the young women in our offices if they saw female executives who don't pretend to do it all, but are open and honest about the balls they have dropped to get where they are today? Women need to support one another by being honest about the compromises we make and by speaking openly about the help we require from our partners and other support systems.
Tiffany Dufu (Drop the Ball: Achieving More by Doing Less)
Success is not a rocket science when you clearly understand your skills and capabilities, focus on what you do best, plan accordingly, and execute one objective at a time using your time wisely.
John Taskinsoy
The execution of any successful network project plan involves bringing all the pieces together, applying solid organizational principle to your network, and documenting what you add to your network.
Ed Tittel (Windows Server 2008 for Dummies)
From Slim to Fulford—both promoted to four-star general—came the same message: at the executive level, your job is to reward initiative in your junior officers and NCOs and facilitate their success.
Jim Mattis (Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead)
A good PowerPoint show turned a failed project into a success in the eyes of top management. As often is the case, senior executives had no knowledge or no real interest in what was really going on.
Mats Alvesson (The Stupidity Paradox: The Power and Pitfalls of Functional Stupidity at Work)
The truly important events on the outside are not the trends. They are changes in the trends. These determine ultimately success or failure of an organization and its efforts. Such changes, however, have to be perceived; they cannot be counted, defined, or classified. The classifications still produce the expected figures—as they did for the Edsel. But the figures no longer correspond to actual behavior.
Peter F. Drucker (The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done (Harperbusiness Essentials))
Every good-to-great company had Level 5 leadership during the pivotal transition years. • “Level 5” refers to a five-level hierarchy of executive capabilities, with Level 5 at the top. Level 5 leaders embody a paradoxical mix of personal humility and professional will. They are ambitious, to be sure, but ambitious first and foremost for the company, not themselves. • Level 5 leaders set up their successors for even greater success in the next generation, whereas egocentric Level 4 leaders often set up their successors for failure. • Level 5 leaders display a compelling modesty, are self-effacing and understated. In contrast, two thirds of the comparison companies had leaders with gargantuan personal egos that contributed to the demise or continued mediocrity of the company. • Level 5 leaders are fanatically driven, infected with an incurable need to produce sustained results. They are resolved to do whatever it takes to make the company great, no matter how big or hard the decisions. • Level 5 leaders display a workmanlike diligence—more plow horse than show horse. • Level 5 leaders look out the window to attribute success to factors other than themselves. When things go poorly, however, they look in the mirror and blame themselves, taking full responsibility. The comparison CEOs often did just the opposite—they looked in the mirror to take credit for success, but out the window to assign blame for disappointing results.
James C. Collins (Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap... and Others Don't)
The lessons of these iconoclastic CEOs suggest a new, more nuanced conception of the chief executive’s job, with less emphasis placed on charismatic leadership and more on careful deployment of firm resources.
William N. Thorndike Jr. (The Outsiders: Eight Unconventional Ceos and Their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success)
When forecasting the outcomes of risky projects, executives too easily fall victim to the planning fallacy. In its grip, they make decisions based on delusional optimism rather than on a rational weighting of gains, losses, and probabilities. They overestimate benefits and underestimate costs. They spin scenarios of success while overlooking the potential for mistakes and miscalculations. As a result, they pursue initiatives that are unlikely to come in on budget or on time or to deliver the expected returns—or even to be completed. In this view, people often (but not always) take on risky projects because they are overly optimistic about the odds they face. I will return to this idea several times in this book—it probably contributes to an explanation of why people litigate, why they start wars, and why they open small businesses.
Daniel Kahneman (Thinking, Fast and Slow)
Good ideas are hard to find. And even the best ideas face an uncertain path to real-world success. That’s true whether you’re running a startup, teaching a class, or working inside a large organization. Execution
Jake Knapp (Sprint: How To Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days)
When it comes to public relations, perception is reality. The reality is, the size, scope and strengths of the campaign must be directed towards a specific target audience in order for it to be effectively executed.
Germany Kent
I have always thought that one man of tolerable abilities may work great changes, and accomplish great affairs among mankind, if he forms a good plan, and then makes the execution of that plan his sole study and business.
Benjamin Franklin (The Way to Wealth: Ben Franklin on Money and Success)
The certainty that life cannot be long, and the probability that it will be much shorter than nature allows, ought to awaken every man to the active prosecution of whatever he is desirous to perform. It is true, that no diligence can ascertain success; death may intercept the swiftest career; but he who is cut off in the execution of an honest undertaking has at least the honour of falling in his rank, and has fought the battle, though he missed the victory.
Samuel Johnson (Selected Essays)
Amateurs are fond of advising that all practical measures should be postponed pending carrying out detailed researches upon the habits of anophelines, the parasite rate of localities, the effect of minor works, and so on. In my opinion, this is a fundamental mistake. It implies the sacrifice of life and health on a large scale while researches which may have little real value and which may be continued indefinitely are being attempted… In practical life we observe that the best practical discoveries are obtained during the execution of practical work and that long academic discussions are apt to lead to nothing but academic profit. Action and investigation together do more than either of these alone.
Ronald Ross (Researches on Malaria)
But they found that the traits that correlated most powerfully with success were attention to detail, persistence, efficiency, analytical thoroughness, and the ability to work long hours. That is to say, the ability to organize and execute.
David Brooks (The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources Of Love, Character, And Achievement)
These executives are quoted in an article called “Sleep Is the New Status Symbol for Successful Entrepreneurs.”4 Nancy Jeffrey of the Wall Street Journal writes: “It’s official. Sleep, that rare commodity in stressed-out America, is the new status symbol.
Greg McKeown (Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less)
The 5 Clues to Spotting the Next Starbucks They permanently change people's habits. They're copycats. Their success is validated by the competition. They are driven by the founder's vision and passion. They have superb entrepreneurial management and execution.
Mark Tier (How to Spot the Next Starbucks, Whole Foods, Walmart, or McDonald's BEFORE Its Shares Explode)
The advantages of a hereditary Monarchy are self-evident. Without some such method of prescriptive, immediate and automatic succession, an interregnum intervenes, rival claimants arise, continuity is interrupted and the magic lost. Even when Parliament had secured control of taxation and therefore of government; even when the menace of dynastic conflicts had receded in to the coloured past; even when kingship had ceased to be transcendental and had become one of many alternative institutional forms; the principle of hereditary Monarchy continued to furnish the State with certain specific and inimitable advantages. Apart from the imponderable, but deeply important, sentiments and affections which congregate around an ancient and legitimate Royal Family, a hereditary Monarch acquires sovereignty by processes which are wholly different from those by which a dictator seizes, or a President is granted, the headship of the State. The King personifies both the past history and the present identity of the Nation as a whole. Consecrated as he is to the service of his peoples, he possesses a religious sanction and is regarded as someone set apart from ordinary mortals. In an epoch of change, he remains the symbol of continuity; in a phase of disintegration, the element of cohesion; in times of mutability, the emblem of permanence. Governments come and go, politicians rise and fall: the Crown is always there. A legitimate Monarch moreover has no need to justify his existence, since he is there by natural right. He is not impelled as usurpers and dictators are impelled, either to mesmerise his people by a succession of dramatic triumphs, or to secure their acquiescence by internal terrorism or by the invention of external dangers. The appeal of hereditary Monarchy is to stability rather than to change, to continuity rather than to experiment, to custom rather than to novelty, to safety rather than to adventure. The Monarch, above all, is neutral. Whatever may be his personal prejudices or affections, he is bound to remain detached from all political parties and to preserve in his own person the equilibrium of the realm. An elected President – whether, as under some constitutions, he be no more than a representative functionary, or whether, as under other constitutions, he be the chief executive – can never inspire the same sense of absolute neutrality. However impartial he may strive to become, he must always remain the prisoner of his own partisan past; he is accompanied by friends and supporters whom he may seek to reward, or faced by former antagonists who will regard him with distrust. He cannot, to an equal extent, serve as the fly-wheel of the State.
Harold Nicholson
This is Pyrrhia, where there are seven dragon tribes. There were seven queens. Then came a great war, a prophecy, a volcano … and after the War of SandWing Succession was over, a shift in the balance of power. Not everyone approves of the new SandWing queen. In fact, the only topic more controversial is the new queen of the NightWings. Can they hold on to their thrones? Should they? In the dungeon of the SandWing stronghold, two prisoners await … what? A trial? Imminent execution? They’re not exactly sure. They are NightWings, but they cannot go back to their tribe. They are in exile; they are too dangerous to be allowed to return. And yet: too complicated to be killed. (They hope.) So they wait, and scheme (well, one of them schemes. The other one is catching up on sleeping and eating). And they wonder what will happen to them. All they want is access to the most dangerous weapon of all: a chance to tell their own story. They are prisoners. But perhaps that is about to change.
Tui T. Sutherland (Prisoners (Wings of Fire: Winglets, #1))
source of self-delusion. How could a successful young executive with a passion for fitness be an alcoholic? After quitting, I increased my daily exercise time to two hours per day and began bicycling. Everyone has a different experience quitting, and I am truly thankful that mine did not come with a lingering desire to repeat any of
Kurt Koontz (A Million Steps)
If charter schools are not more successful on average than the public schools they replace, what is accomplished by demolishing public education? What is the rationale for authorizing for-profit charters or charter management organizations with high-paid executives, since their profits and high salaries are paid by taxpayers' dollars?
Diane Ravitch (Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America's Public Schools)
principles of masterful planning 1. Be clear on purpose. 2. Start with an accurate assessment of today. 3. Create a shared vision of success. 4. Identify your critical successful factors and barriers. 5. Define the drivers: your strategies and priorities. 6. Monitor and report results. 7. Have rewards and consequences to build accountability.
Michael Wilkinson (The Executive Guide to Facilitating Strategy)
I recommend that you focus on both substance and process of your goals. I believe that both are equally important: by setting a high-quality SMART goal you will enable yourself to be conscious and your actions will carry more meaning; meanwhile, it is the execution of the SMART goals strategy that separates achievers from the rest of the people.
Anna Szabo (Turn Your Dreams And Wants Into Achievable SMART Goals!)
how to focus—how to, as we might say these days, “bring it.” Like Hokusai, their lives begin to look like guided missiles. How exactly do they accomplish this? How do you get from where most of us live—the run-of-the-mill split mind—to the gathered mind of a Hokusai? Krishna articulates the principle succinctly: Acting in unity with your purpose itself creates unification. Actions that consciously support dharma have the power to begin to gather our energy. These outward actions, step-by-step, shape us inwardly. Find your dharma and do it. And in the process of doing it, energy begins to gather itself into a laser beam of effectiveness. Krishna quickly adds: Do not worry about the outcome. Success or failure are not your concern. It is better to fail at your own dharma than to succeed at the dharma of another. Your task is only to bring as much life force as you can muster to the execution of your dharma. In this spirit, Chinese Master Guan Yin Tzu wrote: “Don’t waste time calculating your chances of success and failure. Just fix your aim and begin.
Stephen Cope (The Great Work of Your Life: A Guide for the Journey to Your True Calling)
Burgess said, “If you are asking about them using strategic nukes against us, I will be very clear. Admiral Jorgensen and I have been to several meetings about this recently at the Pentagon. Russia no longer has any ability whatsoever to execute a successful debilitating first strike on the United States. Two-thirds of their nuclear weapons are obsolete.
Tom Clancy (Command Authority)
Professionalism is the grease that lubricates an organization’s functional gears. Of course, professionalism alone is inadequate to ensure business success. It must be accompanied by the leadership’s compelling vision for the business and the execution of a well thought-out strategic plan. Assuming these exist, the organization’s people will make the difference in the end.
Bill Wiersma (The Power of Professionalism: The Seven Mind-Sets that Drive Performance and Build Trust)
Fifty years ago A Charlie Brown Christmas was first broadcast on American television. Some network executives thought it would be ignored, while others worried that quoting the Bible would offend viewers. Some wanted its creator, Charles Schulz, to omit the Christmas story, but Schulz insisted it stay in. The program was an immediate success and has been rebroadcast every year since 1965.
Our Daily Bread Ministries (Our Daily Bread - October/November/December 2015)
There’s an interesting story about Abraham Lincoln. During the American Civil War he signed an order transferring certain regiments, but Secretary of War Edwin Stanton refused to execute it, calling the president a fool. When Lincoln heard he replied, ‘If Stanton said I’m a fool then I must be, for he’s nearly always right, and he says what he thinks. I’ll step over and see for myself.’ He did, and when Stanton convinced him the order was in error, Lincoln quietly withdrew it. Part of Lincoln’s greatness lay in his ability to rise above pettiness, ego, and sensitivity to other people’s opinions. He wasn’t easily offended. He welcomed criticism, and in doing so demonstrated one of the strengths of a truly great person: humility. So, have you been criticised? Make it a time to learn, not lose.
Patience Johnson (Why Does an Orderly God Allow Disorder)
Businesses and entrepreneurs have become experts at microwaving rather than Crock-Potting their business plan. They are so worried about the moment, Q1 or Q2, that they lose their vision and their soul. They trade real, rich, abiding, deep success for the momentary win and then are constantly having to start over. Have a long-term vision and execute it. As the billionaire advised me, slow and steady wins the race.
Dave Ramsey (EntreLeadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches)
The history professor Nelson Lichtenstein told me, “What you can’t measure, you can’t reward,” and that may be why executives are so focused on work hours. For decades, the corporate world has been consumed with metrics. Managers love tangible measures by which they can determine success or failure. Work hours is one of the easiest ways to measure employee performance, but total hours worked is a meaningless statistic.
Celeste Headlee (Do Nothing: How to Break Away from Overworking, Overdoing, and Underliving)
Invariably, people who suffer from hoarding problems fail to maintain even the most rudimentary organization of their stuff—but not from lack of effort. Like Irene, most have spent countless hours trying to organize their possessions, with little success. Deficits in executive functions such as planning, categorization, organization, and attention leave them lost amid a sea of things, unable to figure out what to do next.
Gail Steketee
Felder, the son of famed U.S. flying ace Milton Felder, executed for treason several years ago, said, “the convention was a success in that no one showed up.” When quizzed about the objectives of the sect, Felder said, “One of the objectives is to not attend any meeting held in this insolent city.” (The mayor of Miami in a news conference later in the afternoon said that Felder was welcome to leave Miami anytime he wished.)
Thomas S. Klise (The Last Western)
The racial oppression that inspired the first generations of the civil rights movement was played out in lynchings, night raids, antiblack pogroms, and physical intimidation at the ballot box. In a typical battle of today, it may consist of African American drivers being pulled over more often on the highways. (When Clarence Thomas described his successful but contentious 1991 Supreme Court confirmation hearing as a “high-tech lynching,” it was the epitome of tastelessness but also a sign of how far we have come.) The oppression of women used to include laws that allowed husbands to rape, beat, and confine their wives; today it is applied to elite universities whose engineering departments do not have a fifty-fifty ratio of male and female professors. The battle for gay rights has progressed from repealing laws that execute, mutilate, or imprison homosexual men to repealing laws that define marriage as a contract between a man and a woman. None of this means we should be satisfied with the status quo or disparage the efforts to combat remaining discrimination and mistreatment. It’s just to remind us that the first goal of any rights movement is to protect its beneficiaries from being assaulted or killed. These victories, even if partial, are moments we should acknowledge, savor, and seek to understand.
Steven Pinker (The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined)
Effectiveness refers to successfully producing the expected or desired result; it’s the degree to which you achieve your objectives, solve problems, and realize profits. In business, effectiveness is summed up by “doing the right things.” Efficiency is the accomplishment of a job with the minimum expenditure of time, effort, and cost—the shortest distance between a goal and a checkmark. In business, efficiency is summed up by “doing things right.
Laura Stack (Doing the Right Things Right: How the Effective Executive Spends Time)
Under the seeming disorder of the old city, wherever the old city is working successfully, is a marvelous order for maintaining the safety of the streets and the freedom of the city. It is a complex order. Its essence is intricacy of sidewalk use, bringing with it a constant succession of eyes. This order is all composed of movement and change, and although it is life, not art, we may fancifully call it the art form of the city and liken it to the dance — not to a simple-minded precision dance with everyone kicking up at the same time, twirling in unison and bowing off en masse, but to an intricate ballet in which the individual dancers and ensembles all have distinctive parts which miraculously reinforce each other and compose an orderly whole. The ballet of the good city sidewalk never repeats itself from place to place, and in any once place is always replete with new improvisations. The stretch of Hudson Street where I live is each day the scene of an intricate sidewalk ballet. I make my own first entrance into it a little after eight when I put out my garbage gcan, surely a prosaic occupation, but I enjoy my part, my little clang, as the junior droves of junior high school students walk by the center of the stage dropping candy wrapper. (How do they eat so much candy so early in the morning?) While I sweep up the wrappers I watch the other rituals of the morning: Mr Halpert unlocking the laundry's handcart from its mooring to a cellar door, Joe Cornacchia's son-in-law stacking out the empty crates from the delicatessen, the barber bringing out his sidewalk folding chair, Mr. Goldstein arranging the coils of wire which proclaim the hardware store is open, the wife of the tenement's super intendent depositing her chunky three-year-old with a toy mandolin on the stoop, the vantage point from which he is learning English his mother cannot speak. Now the primary childrren, heading for St. Luke's, dribble through the south; the children from St. Veronica\s cross, heading to the west, and the children from P.S 41, heading toward the east. Two new entrances are made from the wings: well-dressed and even elegant women and men with brief cases emerge from doorways and side streets. Most of these are heading for the bus and subways, but some hover on the curbs, stopping taxis which have miraculously appeared at the right moment, for the taxis are part of a wider morning ritual: having dropped passengers from midtown in the downtown financial district, they are now bringing downtowners up tow midtown. Simultaneously, numbers of women in housedresses have emerged and as they crisscross with one another they pause for quick conversations that sound with laughter or joint indignation, never, it seems, anything in between. It is time for me to hurry to work too, and I exchange my ritual farewell with Mr. Lofaro, the short, thick bodied, white-aproned fruit man who stands outside his doorway a little up the street, his arms folded, his feet planted, looking solid as the earth itself. We nod; we each glance quickly up and down the street, then look back at eachother and smile. We have done this many a morning for more than ten years, and we both know what it means: all is well. The heart of the day ballet I seldom see, because part off the nature of it is that working people who live there, like me, are mostly gone, filling the roles of strangers on other sidewalks. But from days off, I know enough to know that it becomes more and more intricate. Longshoremen who are not working that day gather at the White Horse or the Ideal or the International for beer and conversation. The executives and business lunchers from the industries just to the west throng the Dorgene restaurant and the Lion's Head coffee house; meat market workers and communication scientists fill the bakery lunchroom.
Jane Jacobs (The Death and Life of Great American Cities)
I could have been a successful bank robber, gangster, business executive, psychoanalyst, drug trafficker, explorer, bullfighter, but the conjecture of circumstances was never there. Over the years I begin to doubt if my time will ever come. It will come, or it will not come. There is no use trying to force it. Attempts to break through have led to curbs, near disasters, warnings. I cultivate an alert passivity, as though watching an opponent for the slightest sign of weakness.
William S. Burroughs (Interzone)
Any good strategy involves risk. If you think your strategy is foolproof, the fool may well be you. Execution, too, is uncertain — what works in one company with one workforce may have different results elsewhere. Chance often plays a greater role than we think, or than successful managers usually like to admit. The link between inputs and outcomes is tenuous. Bad outcomes don’t always mean that managers made mistakes; and good outcomes don’t always mean they acted brilliantly.
Philip M. Rosenzweig (The Halo Effect: ... and the Eight Other Business Delusions That Deceive Managers)
An organization is not, like an animal, an end in itself, and successful by the mere act of perpetuating the species. An organization is an organ of society and fulfills itself by the contribution it makes to the outside environment. And yet the bigger and apparently more successful an organization gets to be, the more will inside events tend to engage the interests, the energies, and the abilities of the executive to the exclusion of his real tasks and his real effectiveness in the outside.
Peter F. Drucker (The Effective Executive)
A novel is a large diffused picture, comprehending the characters of life, disposed in different groups, and exhibited in various attitudes, for the purposes of an uniform plan, and general occurrence, to which every individual figure is subservient. But this plan cannot be executed with propriety, probability, or success, without a principal personage to attract the attention, unite the incidents, unwind the clue of the labyrinth, and at last close the scene, by virtue of his own importance.
Tobias Smollett (The Expedition of Humphry Clinker (Second Edition) (Norton Critical Editions))
I was Pittsburgh Young, Black, and Successful. Pittsburgh Young, Black, and Successful meant Friday evenings downstairs at Savoy in the Strip District, and perhaps a table upstairs if it was your birthday. It meant Alpha and Que boat rides, NEED Scholarship dinners, and Ronald H. Brown Leadership Awards galas. It meant a stint on the Urban League Young Professionals executive board. It meant brunches at the LeMont on Mother’s Day and the Grand Concourse when you wanted to stunt. It meant frequent pictures in the Post-Gazette and the City Paper
Damon Young (What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker: A Memoir in Essays)
So, preferring death a thousand times to arrest, I accomplished astonishing feats which, more than once, proved to me that our excessive concern with the welfare of our bodies is almost the only obstacle to the success of any of our plans, when these demand rapid decisions and vigorous and determined execution. In reality, once you have made the sacrifice of your life, you are no longer the equal of other men; or, rather, they are no longer your equal, because whoever has taken such a resolution instantly feels his strength increase ten times and his outlook vastly extended.
Alexandre Dumas (The Count of Monte Cristo)
Watch movies. Read screenplays. Let them be your guide. […] Yes, McKee has been able to break down how the popular screenplay has worked. He has identified key qualities that many commercially successful screenplays share, he has codified a language that has been adopted by creative executives in both film and television. So there might be something of tangible value to be gained by interacting with his material, either in book form or at one of the seminars. But for someone who wants to be an artist, a creator, an architect of an original vision, the best book to read on screenwriting is no book on screenwriting. The best seminar is no seminar at all. To me, the writer wants to get as many outside voices OUT of his/her head as possible. Experts win by getting us to be dependent on their view of the world. They win when they get to frame the discussion, when they get to tell you there’s a right way and a wrong way to think about the game, whatever the game is. Because that makes you dependent on them. If they have the secret rules, then you need them if you want to get ahead. The truth is, you don’t. If you love and want to make movies about issues of social import, get your hands on Paddy Chayefsky’s screenplay for Network. Read it. Then watch the movie. Then read it again. If you love and want to make big blockbusters that also have great artistic merit, do the same thing with Lawrence Kasdan’s Raiders Of The Lost Ark screenplay and the movie made from it. Think about how the screenplays made you feel. And how the movies built from these screenplays did or didn’t hit you the same way. […] This sounds basic, right? That’s because it is basic. And it’s true. All the information you need is the movies and screenplays you love. And in the books you’ve read and the relationships you’ve had and your ability to use those things.
Brian Koppelman
Taken as a whole, the last four administrations represent the culmination of a century of executive abuse. With each successive president from forty-one to forty-four the disease grew worse. By the time Obama leaves office in 2017, Americans will have suffered under twenty-eight consecutive years of unconstitutional executive usurpation of power. An elected king? The British taxpayer spends around $50 million annually to support the entire royal family. With an annual budget that exceeds $1 billion for expenses, including travel, the American president supplanted the British monarch in everything but a title long ago.
Brion T. McClanahan (9 Presidents Who Screwed Up America: And Four Who Tried to Save Her)
Then, in the end, the leader makes the call. It’s conflict and debate leading to an executive decision. No major decision we’ve studied was ever taken at a point of unanimous agreement. There was always some disagreement in the air. Our research showed that before a major decision, you would see significant debate. But after the decision, people would unify behind that decision to make it successful. Again, and I can’t stress this too much, it all begins with having the right people—those who can debate in search of the best answers but who can then set aside their disagreements and work together for the success of the enterprise.
Verne Harnish (The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time: How Apple, Ford, IBM, Zappos, and others made radical choices that changed the course of business.)
The great ones, however, never get lost in those distractions. Biggie in particular was legendary for his ability to stay focused. There could be all sorts of things going on—drinks being passed, blunts being rolled, people trying to holler at him about various projects—but he’d just sit in a chair with his eyes closed, seemingly oblivious to all the chaos around him. That was his way of connecting to the stillness inside of him, so that when it was time to get behind the microphone, he wasn’t caught up in worrying about how his last record did or how this one might be received once it was released. No, when it was time to make a song, he was always able to connect with both the music he was hearing in his headphones and the poetry that was filling up his heart. The same way today artists like Jay Z or Lil Wayne are able to create entire songs without ever putting a word down on paper. Through being able to connect completely with the music, they are able to operate from that “zone” that the great ones are able to access. That might not sound like a big deal, but I’ve seen so many artists get sidetracked by those distractions. And when it’s time for them to get in the recording booth and execute their craft, their mind is somewhere else. Sure, they’re rapping along to the beat, but they’re not connected to it.
Russell Simmons (Success Through Stillness: Meditation Made Simple)
CONCLUDING ADVICE A core piece of wisdom I want to impart to teenagers and young adults is this: In life, school, or work, you must resourcefully act with purpose, curiosity, and wisdom toward positive outcomes, if not a vision. Passionately develop a positive and pragmatic psychology; a fine skill set; strategic thinking; and execution effectiveness. Continuously practice, strengthen, and expand this repertoire in you. Doing so will help you go a long way. You will become even more successful, more effective in powering through obstacles, fear, and failures, and more fulfilled in life, school, or work. Managing failures and mistakes made—including bouncing back from
Jason L. Ma (Young Leaders 3.0: Stories, Insights, and Tips for Next-Generation Achievers)
especially in the key task of translating broad strategic concepts into feasible operational orders. Marshall understood that Eisenhower had a talent for implementing strategy. And that job, Marshall believed, was more difficult than designing it. “There’s nothing so profound in the logic of the thing,” he said years later, discussing his own role in winning approval for the Marshall Plan. “But the execution of it, that’s another matter.” In other words, successful generalship involves first figuring out what to do, then getting people to do it. It has one foot in the intellectual realm of critical thinking and the other in the human world of management and leadership. It
Thomas E. Ricks (The Generals: American Military Command from World War II to Today)
The Executive Committee of the People's Will had scored it's biggest success on 1 March 1881 by assassinating Alexander II, but also its biggest failure. (...) The aim of terror was to rouse the people from their torpor and trigger a mass uprising based on previous models (Razin/Pugatchev), but this time under new conditions and in order to completely destroy the autocracy and its institutions. It never worked out and, in a grumpy mood, Lenin once characterised terrorists as liberals with bombs, suggesting that both held the opinion that propaganda alone, of deed or word, would be sufficient for the task that lay ahead. For the most part terrorist acts scared people and legitimised government repression.
Tariq Ali (The Dilemmas of Lenin: Terrorism, War, Empire, Love, Revolution)
One remarkable part of the SnapTax story is what the team leaders said when I asked them to account for their unlikely success. Did they hire superstar entrepreneurs from outside the company? No, they assembled a team from within Intuit. Did they face constant meddling from senior management, which is the bane of innovation teams in many companies? No, their executive sponsors created an “island of freedom” where they could experiment as necessary. Did they have a huge team, a large budget, and lots of marketing dollars? Nope, they started with a team of five. What allowed the SnapTax team to innovate was not their genes, destiny, or astrological signs but a process deliberately facilitated by Intuit’s senior management.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
Students who take Latin are more proficient and earn higher scores on the verbal SAT exam. The business world has long recognized the importance of a rich vocabulary and rates it high as evidence of executive potential and success. Understanding the etymological history of a word gives the user vividness, color, punch, and precision. It also seems that the clearer and more numerous our verbal images, the greater our intellectual power. Wheelock’s Latin is profuse with the etymological study of English and vocabulary enrichment. Our own experiences have shown that students will not only remember vocabulary words longer and better when they understand their etymologies, but also will use them with a sharper sense of meaning and nuance.
Frederic M. Wheelock (Wheelock's Latin (The Wheelock's Latin Series))
Even the most talented executives are a blend of strengths and weaknesses, light and dark. One of the most difficult jobs in running a company is to keep people’s energies focused by giving them new challenges. As we looked for the next generation of leaders at Disney, only those who could handle highly varied responsibilities were going to be candidates. The company had become too interdependent to rely on highly specialized managers with narrow sets of skills. I was less drawn to people with perfect credentials for a given job than to those who had strong underlying qualities such as common sense, character, creativity, and passion. With those traits—and the right training and support—people tend to succeed at whatever jobs they’re given.
Michael D. Eisner (Work in Progress: Risking Failure, Surviving Success)
a European executive who works for a company that has failed is an executive who no longer has a career. In America, by contrast, having tried (and failed) to start your own company is often a résumé booster—particularly in the fertile fields of Silicon Valley. It marks you as a risk taker, a self-starter, someone who is not afraid to shoulder a whole lot of responsibility. And the (correct) assumption is that in your failure, you’ve learned a lot of valuable lessons that your new employer will benefit from. On the two continents, the exact same set of circumstances signal wildly different things: in Europe, that you are irresponsible, and perhaps too lazy and incompetent to run a business, in America, that you are a risk taker and a visionary.
Megan McArdle (The Up Side of Down: Why Failing Well Is the Key to Success)
Most Western managers believe that long-term success flows from a state of stability, harmony, predictability, discipline, and consensus-a state that I refer to as stable equilibrium. This belief leads them to demand general prescriptions that they can immediately convert into successful action. The most popular prescriptions are to formulate a vision of an organization's future state, to prepare long-term plans to realize that vision, to set strategic milestones and monitor achievements against those plans, to write mission statements and persuade people to share the same culture, to encourage widespread participation and consensus in decision making, and to install control systems that allow top executives to set the organization's direction and stay in command.
Ralph D. Stacey (Managing the Unknowable: Strategic Boundaries Between Order and Chaos in Organizations)
Leaders nourish and uphold the culture of an organization. They make choices that inevitably limit the size and scope of activities that the organization undertakes. A good leader will only work in a firm where there is clear and effective governance to protect the culture, philosophy and investment discipline of the firm. The most effective leaders create a non-hierarchical environment in which idea sharing is encouraged, and diligent execution is rewarded. They also establish a solid foundation, a durable framework, and processes for successfully managing an organization that can maintain these qualities. And last, a great investment leader has a zero tolerance policy for breaches of integrity. By integrity, we mean not only honesty and fulfillment of fiduciary obligation, but process integrity.
Brian Singer (Investment Leadership and Portfolio Management: The Path to Successful Stewardship for Investment Firms (Wiley Finance))
The principles of war are the same as those of a siege. Fire must be concentrated on one point, and as soon as the breach is made, the equilibrium is broken and the rest is nothing.' Subsequent military theory has put the accent on the first clause instead of on the last: in particular, on the words 'one point' instead of on the word 'equilibrium'. The former is but a physical metaphor, whereas the latter expresses the actual psychological result which ensures 'that the rest is nothing'. His own emphasis can be traced in the strategic course of his campaigns. The word 'point' even, has been the source of much confusion, and more controversy. One school has argued that Napoleon meant that the concentrated blow must be aimed at the enemy's strongest point, on the ground that this, and this only, ensures decisive results. For if the enemy's main resistance be broken, its rupture will involve that of any lesser opposition. This argument ignores the factor of cost, and the fact that the victor may be too exhausted to exploit his success-so that even a weaker opponent may acquire a relatively higher resisting power than the original. The other school-better imbued with the idea of economy of force, but only in the limited sense of first costs-has contended that the offensive should be aimed at the enemy's weakest point. But where a point is obviously weak this is usually because it is remote from any vital artery or nerve centre, or because it is deliberately weak to draw the assailant into a trap. Here, again illumination comes from the actual campaign in which Bonaparte put this maxim into execution. It clearly suggests that what he really meant was not 'point', but 'joint'-and that at this stage of his career he was too firmly imbued with the idea of economy of force to waste his limited strength in battering at the enemy's strong point. A joint, however, is both vital and vulnerable. It was at this time too, that Bonaparte used another phrase that has subsequently been quoted to justify the most foolhardy concentrations of effort against the main armed forces of the enemy. 'Austria is our most determined enemy....Austria overthrown, Spain and Italy fall of themselves. We must not disperse our attacks but concentrate them.' But the full text of the memorandum containing this phrase shows that he was arguing, not in support of the direct attack upon Austria, but for using the army on the frontier of Piedmont for an indirect approach to Austria.
B.H. Liddell Hart (Strategy)
Ask yourself . . . What are my goals when I converse with people? What kinds of things do I usually discuss? Are there other topics that would be more important given what’s actually going on? How often do I find myself—just to be polite—saying things I don’t mean? How many meetings have I sat in where I knew the real issues were not being discussed? And what about the conversations in my marriage? What issues are we avoiding? If I were guaranteed honest responses to any three questions, whom would I question and what would I ask? What has been the economical, emotional, and intellectual cost to the company of not identifying and tackling the real issues? What has been the cost to my marriage? What has been the cost to me? When was the last time I said what I really thought and felt? What are the leaders in my organization pretending not to know? What are members of my family pretending not to know? What am I pretending not to know? How certain am I that my team members are deeply committed to the same vision? How certain am I that my life partner is deeply committed to the vision I hold for our future? If nothing changes regarding the outcomes of the conversations within my organization, what are the implications for my own success and career? for my department? for key customers? for the organization’s future? What about my marriage? If nothing changes, what are the implications for us as a couple? for me? What is the conversation I’ve been unable to have with senior executives, with my colleagues, with my direct reports, with my customers, with my life partner, and most important, with myself, with my own aspirations, that, if I were able to have, might make the difference, might change everything? Are
Susan Scott (Fierce Conversations: Achieving Success at Work and in Life One Conversation at a Time)
and confused if someone does not appreciate their niceness. Others often sense this and avoid giving them feedback not only, effectively blocking the nice person’s emotional growth, but preventing risks from being taken. You never know with a nice person if the relationship would survive a conflict or angry confrontation. This greatly limits the depths of intimacy. And would you really trust a nice person to back you up if confrontation were needed? 3. With nice people you never know where you really stand. The nice person allows others to accidentally oppress him. The “nice” person might be resenting you just for talking to him, because really he is needing to pee. But instead of saying so he stands there nodding and smiling, with legs tightly crossed, pretending to listen. 4. Often people in relationship with nice people turn their irritation toward themselves, because they are puzzled as to how they could be so upset with someone so nice. In intimate relationships this leads to guilt, self-hate and depression. 5. Nice people frequently keep all their anger inside until they find a safe place to dump it. This might be by screaming at a child, blowing up a federal building, or hitting a helpless, dependent mate. (Timothy McVeigh, executed for the Oklahoma City bombing, was described by acquaintances as a very, very nice guy, one who would give you the shirt off his back.) Success in keeping the anger in will often manifest as psychosomatic illnesses, including arthritis, ulcers, back problems, and heart disease. Proper Peachy Parents In my work as a psychotherapist, I have found that those who had peachy keen “Nice Parents” or proper “Rigidly Religious Parents” (as opposed to spiritual parents), are often the most stuck in chronic, lowgrade depression. They have a difficult time accessing or expressing any negative feelings towards their parents. They sometimes say to me “After all my parents did for me, seldom saying a harsh word to me, I would feel terribly guilty complaining. Besides, it would break their hearts.” Psychologist Rollo May suggested that it is less crazy-making to a child to cope with overt withdrawal or harshness than to try to understand the facade of the always-nice parent. When everyone agrees that your parents are so nice and giving, and you still feel dissatisfied, then a child may conclude that there must be something wrong with his or her ability to receive love. -§ Emotionally starving children are easier to control, well fed children don’t need to be. -§ I remember a family of fundamentalists who came to my office to help little Matthew with his anger problem. The parents wanted me to teach little Matthew how to “express his anger nicely.” Now if that is not a formula making someone crazy I do not know what would be. Another woman told me that after her stinking drunk husband tore the house up after a Christmas party, breaking most of the dishes in the kitchen, she meekly told him, “Dear, I think you need a breath mint.” Many families I work with go through great anxiety around the holidays because they are going to be forced to be with each other and are scared of resuming their covert war. They are scared that they might not keep the nice garbage can lid on, and all the rotting resentments and hopeless hurts will be exposed. In the words to the following song, artist David Wilcox explains to his parents why he will not be coming home this Thanksgiving: Covert War by David Wilcox
Kelly Bryson (Don't Be Nice, Be Real)
Young men are fitter to invent than to judge, fitter for execution than for counsel, and fitter for new projects than for settled business; for the experience of age in things that fall within the compass of it, directeth them; but in new things abuseth them . . . . Young men, in the conduct and management of actions, embrace more than they can hold, stir more than they can quiet; fly to the end without consideration of the means and degrees; pursue absurdly some few principles which they have chanced upon; care not to” (i.e., how they) “innovate, which draws unknown inconveniences . . . . Men of age object too much, consult too long, adventure too little, repent too soon, and seldom drive business home to the full period, but content themselves with a mediocrity of success. Certainly it is good to compel employments of both, . . . because the virtues of either may correct the defects of both.
Will Durant (The Story of Philosophy)
The literature is full of discussions of these questions; full of stories of the ‘entrepreneurial personality’ and of people who will never do anything but innovate. In the light of our experience – and it is considerable – these discussions are pointless. By and large, people who do not feel comfortable as innovators or as entrepreneurs will not volunteer for such jobs; the gross misfits eliminate themselves. The others can learn the practice of innovation. Our experience shows that an executive who has performed in other assignments will do a decent job as an entrepreneur. In successful entrepreneurial businesses, nobody seems to worry whether a given person is likely to do a good job of development or not. People of all kinds of temperaments and backgrounds apparently do equally well. Any young engineer in 3M who comes to top management with an idea that makes sense is expected to take on its development.
Peter F. Drucker (Innovation and Entrepreneurship (Routledge Classics))
This is a small book about a very important subject. A lot has been written about trust: about what it is and what it can do for people, families, companies, communities and countries. As an executive coach and consultant I often find myself engaged by companies where good work is being sabotaged by interpersonal conflict, political infighting, paralysis, stagnation, apathy, or cynicism. I almost always trace these problems to a breakdown in trust. It not only kills good work, it also inevitably creates some degree of misery, annoyance, fear, anger, frustration, resentment, and resignation. By contrast, in successful companies where people are innovative, engage in productive conflict and debate about ideas, and have fun working together, I find strong trusting relationships. As a result, I’ve come to believe having the trust of those you work with is too important not to be intentional about building and maintaining it.
Charles Feltman (The Thin Book of Trust; An Essential Primer for Building Trust at Work)
Every day all over the nation young people start working in new jobs. Each of them “wishes” that someday he could enjoy the success that goes with reaching the top. But the majority of these young people simply don’t have the belief that it takes to reach the top rungs. And they don’t reach the top. Believing it’s impossible to climb high, they do not discover the steps that lead to great heights. Their behavior remains that of the “average” person. But a small number of these young people really believe they will succeed. They approach their work with the “I’m-going-to-the-top” attitude. And with substantial belief they reach the top. Believing they will succeed—and that it’s not impossible—these folks study and observe the behavior of senior executives. They learn how successful people approach problems and make decisions. They observe the attitudes of successful people. The how-to-do-it always comes to the person who believes he can do it.
David J. Schwartz (The Magic of Thinking Big)
Pattee explains there is a basic and extremely important distinction between laws and rules in nature.11 Laws are inexorable, meaning they are unchangeable, inescapable, and inevitable. We can never alter or evade laws of nature. The laws of nature dictate that a car will stay in motion either until an equal and opposite force stops it or it runs out of energy. That is not something we can change. Laws are incorporeal, meaning they do not need embodiments or structures to execute them: there is not a physics policeman enforcing the car’s halt when it runs out of energy. Laws are also universal: they hold at all times in all places. The laws of motion apply whether you are in Scotland or in Spain. On the other hand, rules are arbitrary and can be changed. In the British Isles, the driving rule is to drive on the left side of the road. Continental Europe’s driving rule is to drive on the right side of the road. Rules are dependent on some sort of structure or constraint to execute them. In this case that structure is a police force that fines those who break the rules by driving on the wrong side. Rules are local, meaning that they can exist only when and where there are physical structures to enforce them. If you live out in the middle of the Australian outback, you are in charge. Drive on either side. There is no structure in place to restrain you! Rules are local and changeable and breakable. A rule-governed symbol is selected from a range of competitors for doing a better job constraining the function of the system it belongs to, leading to the production of a more successful phenotype. Selection is flexible; Newton’s laws are not. In their informational role, symbols aren’t dependent on the physical laws that govern energy, time, and rates of change. They follow none of Newton’s laws. They are lawless rule-followers! What this is telling us is that symbols are not locked to their meanings.
Michael S. Gazzaniga (The Consciousness Instinct: Unraveling the Mystery of How the Brain Makes the Mind)
It seems strange that George Burns and Gracie Allen would be discovered, as radio properties, by the British. They were doing a vaudeville tour in England, playing to packed houses everywhere. The British just loved Gracie; her routines became so well known during the six-month trip that the audience would sometimes shout out the punchline in unison. They were aided in this by radio, using the infant medium to promote their stage shows, doing short bits from their act on various BBC stations as they traveled. From the beginning, Gracie had severe mike fright. She never really lost her fear of the microphone, Burns would say in interviews and in his books, but she always coped with it. Returning home, they auditioned for NBC and Grape Nuts in 1930. But the agency executive thought Gracie would be “too squeaky” on the air, and they lost the job. It was an irony: a few years later, the same product would be carrying their radio show, then one of the most successful in the nation.
John Dunning (On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio)
George Romney’s private-sector experience typified the business world of his time. His executive career took place within a single company, American Motors Corporation, where his success rested on the dogged (and prescient) pursuit of more fuel-efficient cars.41 Rooted in a particular locale, the industrial Midwest, AMC was built on a philosophy of civic engagement. Romney dismissed the “rugged individualism” touted by conservatives as “nothing but a political banner to cover up greed.”42 Nor was this dismissal just cheap talk: He once returned a substantial bonus that he regarded as excessive.43 Prosperity was not an individual product, in Romney’s view; it was generated through bargaining and compromises among stakeholders (managers, workers, public officials, and the local community) as well as through individual initiative. When George Romney turned to politics, he carried this understanding with him. Romney exemplified the moderate perspective characteristic of many high-profile Republicans of his day. He stressed the importance of private initiative and decentralized governance, and worried about the power of unions. Yet he also believed that government had a vital role to play in securing prosperity for all. He once famously called UAW head Walter Reuther “the most dangerous man in Detroit,” but then, characteristically, developed a good working relationship with him.44 Elected governor in 1962 after working to update Michigan’s constitution, he broke with conservatives in his own party and worked across party lines to raise the minimum wage, enact an income tax, double state education expenditures during his first five years in office, and introduce more generous programs for the poor and unemployed.45 He signed into law a bill giving teachers collective bargaining rights.46 At a time when conservatives were turning to the antigovernment individualism of Barry Goldwater, Romney called on the GOP to make the insurance of equal opportunity a top priority. As
Jacob S. Hacker (American Amnesia: How the War on Government Led Us to Forget What Made America Prosper)
Mental toughness is the ability to focus on and execute solutions, especially in the face of adversity. Greatness rarely happens on accident. If you want to achieve excellence, you will have to act like you really want it. How? Quite simply: by dedicating time and energy into consistently doing what needs to be done. Excuses are the antithesis of accountability. Important decisions aren’t supposed to be easy, but don’t let that stop you from making them. When it comes to decisions, decide to always decide. The second we stop growing, we start dying. Stagnation easily morphs into laziness, and once a person stops trying to grow and improve, he or she is nothing more than mediocre. Develop the no-excuse mentality. Do not let anything interrupt those tasks that are most critical for growth in the important areas of your life. Find a way, no matter what, to prioritize your daily process goals, even when you have a viable excuse to justify not doing it. “If you don’t evaluate yourself, how in the heck are you ever going to know what you are doing well and what you need to improve? Those who are most successful evaluate themselves daily. Daily evaluation is the key to daily success, and daily success is the key to success in life. If you want to achieve greatness, push yourself to the limits of your potential by continuously looking for improvements. Within 60 seconds, replace all problem-focused thought with solution-focused thinking. When people focus on problems, their problems actually grow and reproduce. When you train your mind to focus on solutions, guess what expands? Talking about your problems will lead to more problems, not to solutions. If you want solutions, start thinking and talking about your solutions. Believe that every problem, no matter how large, has at the very least a +1 solution, you will find it easier to stay on the solution side of the chalkboard. When you set your mind to do something, find a way to get it done…no matter what! If you come up short on your discipline, keep fighting, kicking, and scratching to improve. Find the nearest mirror and look yourself in the eye while you tell yourself, “There is no excuse, and this will not happen again.” Get outside help if needed, but never, ever give up on being disciplined. Greatness will not magically appear in your life without significant accountability, focus, and optimism on your part. Are you ready to commit fully to turning your potential into a leadership performance that will propel you to greatness. Mental toughness is understanding that the only true obstacles in life are self-imposed. You always have the choice to stay down or rise above. In truth, the only real obstacles to your ultimate success will come from within yourself and fall into one of the following three categories: apathy, laziness and fear. Laziness breeds more laziness. When you start the day by sleeping past the alarm or cutting corners in the morning, you’re more likely to continue that slothful attitude later in the day.
Jason Selk (Executive Toughness: The Mental-Training Program to Increase Your Leadership Performance)
Absolute solution comes from absolute problem, ultimate certainty comes from ultimate uncertainty, total acceptance comes from total rejection, complete perfection comes from complete flaw, ample richness comes from ample poverty, foolproof protection comes from unyielding danger and unlimited liberty comes from unlimited restriction. Each one is coincident of another as dark is coincident of light. To such a degree, never try to escape from them.Rather bravely and wisely engage to sort them out . You know, these wonderful stuffs fetch for its tail all wonderful-reverse-stuffs, making your life tested and dignified. Never give up rather wake-up, have a great shower, eat, dress up and join in the struggle. Neither dishearten yourself nor give ears to others' words, just keep faith on you, believe your own intuition and keep the struggle going... I am damn sure, Success, it must lay its head eventually beneath your noble feet as a flunky of order execution and will crown you as the king." Many Cheers from Lord Robin
Lord Robin
Death is only relevant to "genetic adaptation" insofar as it relates to the capacity for self-reproduction (what is relevant is not that an individual died, but success in gene propagation while alive). The potentially misleading phrase "genetic adaptation" means that either because or despite an organism's adaptedness to external conditions, genes were or are successful in propagating themselves. Success in reproducing genes, in other words, is the ultimate measure of so-called "genetic adaptation". The possibility of adaptation unto extinction through individualism does not contradict the Darwinian notion of adaptation for survival. On the contrary, it is only a confirmation of it. The question here is what survives, the individual or its genes? The genes, and not the individual organism, provide the measure of survival in biological evolution. This point is illustrated by the modern corporate executive who adapts to the changing economic conditions better than any of his or her competitors, but fails to produce any children.
Mitchell Heisman (Suicide Note)
They recruited senior research scientists from different local companies as subjects, and asked them to bring with them to the sessions at least two different problems on which they had been working without success for at least three months. These subjects were executives at Hewlett-Packard, fellows at the Stanford Research Institute, architects, and designers. Among them were the people who would design the first silicon chips, create word processing, and invent the computer mouse. Fadiman and his colleagues administered one-hundred-microgram doses of LSD to the subjects and guided them through the next hours as they puzzled over their intractable problems.*3 The subjects worked on their problems and took a variety of psychometric tests. The results were striking. Many of the subjects experienced flashes of intellectual intuition. Their performance on the psychometric tests improved, but, more important, they solved their thorny equations and problems. According to Fadiman, “A number of patents, products, and publications emerged out of that study.
Ayelet Waldman (A Really Good Day: How Microdosing Made a Mega Difference in My Mood, My Marriage, and My Life)
According to the Constitution as ratified, the legislature was to be the most powerful and important branch of government. Jefferson echoed this theme in the opening paragraph of his speech. “To you, then, gentlemen, who are charged with the sovereign functions of legislation, and to those associated with you, I look with encouragement for that guidance and support which may enable us to steer with safety the vessel in which we are all embarked amidst the conflicting elements of a troubled world.” Notice that Jefferson was not setting policy; he was looking for “guidance and support” from the “sovereign” men who served in the legislative branch. He would not be “chief legislator.” Jefferson’s job, as he saw it, was to make recommendations and then execute the laws of Congress, nothing more. And in a subtle though important change, Jefferson’s “recommendations” would arrive as a written message to Congress rather than in person—the executive was not to encroach on legislative matters. Every successive president continued Jefferson’s practice until Woodrow Wilson took office in 1913.
Brion T. McClanahan (9 Presidents Who Screwed Up America: And Four Who Tried to Save Her)
Colonel Cargill, General Peckem’s troubleshooter, was a forceful, ruddy man. Before the war he had been an alert, hard-hitting, aggressive marketing executive. He was a very bad marketing executive. Colonel Cargill was so awful a marketing executive that his services were much sought after by firms eager to establish losses for tax purposes. Throughout the civilized world, from Battery Park to Fulton Street, he was known as a dependable man for a fast tax write-off. His prices were high, for failure often did not come easily. He had to start at the top and work his way down, and with sympathetic friends in Washington, losing money was no simple matter. It took months of hard work and careful misplanning. A person misplaced, disorganized, miscalculated, overlooked everything and opened every loophole, and just when he thought he had it made, the government gave him a lake or a forest or an oilfield and spoiled everything. Even with such handicaps, Colonel Cargill could be relied on to run the most prosperous enterprise into the ground. He was a self-made man who owed his lack of success to nobody.
Joseph Heller (Catch-22)
Woody Allen once said that 80 percent of success is showing up. Having written and directed fifty films in almost as many years, Allen clearly knows something about accomplishment. How, when, and where you show up is the single most important factor in executing on your ideas. That’s why so many creative visionaries stick to a daily routine. Choreographer Twyla Tharp gets up at the crack of dawn every day and hails a cab to go to the gym—a ritual she calls her “trigger moment.” Painter Ross Bleckner reads the paper, meditates, and then gets to the studio by 8 a.m. so that he can work in the calm quiet of the early morning. Writer Ernest Hemingway wrote five hundred words a day, come hell or high water. Truly great creative achievements require hundreds, if not thousands, of hours of work, and we have to make time every single day to put in those hours. Routines help us do this by setting expectations about availability, aligning our workflow with our energy levels, and getting our minds into a regular rhythm of creating. At the end of the day—or, really, from the beginning—building a routine is all about persistence and consistency. Don’t wait for inspiration; create a framework for it.
Jocelyn K. Glei (Manage Your Day-To-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind)
The successful individual sales producer wins by being as selfish as possible with her time. The more often the salesperson stays away from team members and distractions, puts her phone on Do Not Disturb (DND), closes her door, or chooses to work for a few hours from the local Panera Bread café, the more productive she’ll likely be. In general, top producers in sales tend to exhibit a characteristic I’ve come to describe as being selfishly productive. The seller who best blocks out the rest of the world, who maintains obsessive control of her calendar, who masters focusing solely on her own highest-value revenue-producing activities, who isn’t known for being a “team player,” and who is not interested in playing good corporate citizen or helping everyone around her, is typically a highly effective seller who ends up on top of the sales rankings. Contrary to popular opinion, being selfish is not bad at all. In fact, for an individual contributor salesperson, it is a highly desirable trait and a survival skill, particularly in today’s crazed corporate environment where everyone is looking to put meetings on your calendar and take you away from your primary responsibilities! Now let’s switch gears and look at the sales manager’s role and responsibilities. How well would it work to have a sales manager who kept her office phone on DND and declined almost every incoming call to her mobile phone? Do we want a sales manager who closes her office door, is concerned only about herself, and is for the most part inaccessible? No, of course not. The successful sales manager doesn’t win on her own; she wins through her people by helping them succeed. Think about other key sales management responsibilities: Leading team meetings. Developing talent. Encouraging hearts. Removing obstacles. Coaching others. Challenging data, false assumptions, wrong attitudes, and complacency. Pushing for more. Putting the needs of your team members ahead of your own. Hmmm. Just reading that list again reminds me why it is often so difficult to transition from being a top producer in sales into a sales management role. Aside from the word sales, there is truly almost nothing similar about the positions. And that doesn’t even begin to touch on corporate responsibilities like participating on the executive committee, dealing with human resources compliance issues, expense management, recruiting, and all the other burdens placed on the sales manager. Again,
Mike Weinberg (Sales Management. Simplified.: The Straight Truth About Getting Exceptional Results from Your Sales Team)
MY FIRST ASSIGNMENT AFTER BEING ORDAINED as a pastor almost finished me. I was called to be the assistant pastor in a large and affluent suburban church. I was glad to be part of such an obviously winning organization. After I had been there a short time, a few people came to me and asked that I lead them in a Bible study. “Of course,” I said, “there is nothing I would rather do.” We met on Monday evenings. There weren’t many—eight or nine men and women—but even so that was triple the two or three that Jesus defined as a quorum. They were eager and attentive; I was full of enthusiasm. After a few weeks the senior pastor, my boss, asked me what I was doing on Monday evenings. I told him. He asked me how many people were there. I told him. He told me that I would have to stop. “Why?” I asked. “It is not cost-effective. That is too few people to spend your time on.” I was told then how I should spend my time. I was introduced to the principles of successful church administration: crowds are important, individuals are expendable; the positive must always be accented, the negative must be suppressed. Don’t expect too much of people—your job is to make them feel good about themselves and about the church. Don’t talk too much about abstractions like God and sin—deal with practical issues. We had an elaborate music program, expensively and brilliantly executed. The sermons were seven minutes long and of the sort that Father Taylor (the sailor-preacher in Boston who was the model for Father Mapple in Melville’s Moby Dick) complained of in the transcendentalists of the last century: that a person could no more be converted listening to sermons like that than get intoxicated drinking skim milk.[2] It was soon apparent that I didn’t fit. I had supposed that I was there to be a pastor: to proclaim and interpret Scripture, to guide people into a life of prayer, to encourage faith, to represent the mercy and forgiveness of Christ at special times of need, to train people to live as disciples in their families, in their communities and in their work. In fact I had been hired to help run a church and do it as efficiently as possible: to be a cheerleader to this dynamic organization, to recruit members, to lend the dignity of my office to certain ceremonial occasions, to promote the image of a prestigious religious institution. I got out of there as quickly as I could decently manage it. At the time I thought I had just been unlucky. Later I came to realize that what I experienced was not at all uncommon.
Eugene H. Peterson (Run with the Horses: The Quest for Life at Its Best)
What happened? Many things. But the overriding problem was this: The auto industry got too comfortable. As Intel cofounder Andy Grove once famously proclaimed, “Only the paranoid survive.” Success, he meant, is fragile—and perfection, fleeting. The moment you begin to take success for granted is the moment a competitor lunges for your jugular. Auto industry executives, to say the least, were not paranoid. Instead of listening to a customer base that wanted smaller, more fuel-efficient cars, the auto executives built bigger and bigger. Instead of taking seriously new competition from Japan, they staunchly insisted (both to themselves and to their customers) that MADE IN THE USA automatically meant “best in the world.” Instead of trying to learn from their competitors’ new methods of “lean manufacturing,” they clung stubbornly to their decades-old practices. Instead of rewarding the best people in the organization and firing the worst, they promoted on the basis of longevity and nepotism. Instead of moving quickly to keep up with the changing market, executives willingly embraced “death by committee.” Ross Perot once quipped that if a man saw a snake on the factory floor at GM, they’d form a committee to analyze whether they should kill it. Easy success had transformed the American auto
Reid Hoffman (The Start-Up of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career)
You may not recognize the name Steven Schussler, CEO of Schussler Creative Inc., but you are probably familiar with his very popular theme restaurant Rainforest Café. Steve is one of the scrappiest people I know, with countless scrappy stories. He is open and honest about his wins and losses. This story about how he launched Rainforest Café is one of my favorites: Steve first envisioned a tropical-themed family restaurant back in the 1980s, but unfortunately, he couldn’t persuade anyone else to buy into the idea at the time. Not willing to give up easily, he decided to get scrappy and be “all in.” To sell his vision, he transformed his own split-level suburban home into a living, mist-enshrouded rain forest to convince potential investors that the concept was viable. Yes, you read that correctly—he converted his own house into a jungle dwelling complete with rock outcroppings, waterfalls, rivers, and layers of fog and mist that rose from the ground. The jungle included a life-size replica of an elephant near the front door, forty tropical birds in cages, and a live baby baboon named Charlie. Steve shared the following details: Every room, every closet, every hallway of my house was set up as a three-dimensional vignette: an attempt to present my idea of what a rain forest restaurant would look like in actual operation. . . . [I]t took me three years and almost $400,000 to get the house developed to the point where I felt comfortable showing it to potential investors. . . . [S]everal of my neighbors weren’t exactly thrilled to be living near a jungle habitat. . . . On one occasion, Steve received a visit from the Drug Enforcement Administration. They wanted to search the premises for drugs, presuming he may have had an illegal drug lab in his home because of his huge residential electric bill. I imagine they were astonished when they discovered the tropical rain forest filled with jungle creatures. Steve’s plan was beautiful, creative, fun, and scrappy, but the results weren’t coming as quickly as he would have liked. It took all of his resources, and he was running out of time and money to make something happen. (It’s important to note that your scrappy efforts may not generate results immediately.) I asked Steve if he ever thought about quitting, how tight was the money really, and if there was a time factor, and he said, “Yes to all three! Of course I thought about quitting. I was running out of money and time.” Ultimately, Steve’s plan succeeded. After many visits and more than two years later, gaming executive and venture capitalist Lyle Berman bought into the concept and raised the funds necessary to get the Rainforest Café up and running. The Rainforest Café chain became one of the most successful themed restaurants ever created, and continues that way under Landry’s Restaurants and Tilman Fertitta’s leadership. Today, Steve creates restaurant concepts in fantastic warehouses far from his residential neighborhood!
Terri L. Sjodin (Scrappy: A Little Book About Choosing to Play Big)
True law necessarily is rooted in ethical assumptions or norms; and those ethical principles are derived, in the beginning at least, from religious convictions. When the religious understanding, from which a concept of law arose in a culture, has been discarded or denied, the laws may endure for some time, through what sociologists call "cultural lag"; but in the long run, the laws also will be discarded or denied. With this hard truth in mind, I venture to suggest that the corpus of English and American laws--for the two arise for the most part from a common root of belief and experience--cannot endure forever unless it is animated by the spirit that moved it in the beginning: that is, by religion, and specifically by the Christian people. Certain moral postulates of Christian teaching have been taken for granted, in the past, as the ground of justice. When courts of law ignore those postulates, we grope in judicial darkness. . . . We suffer from a strong movement to exclude such religious beliefs from the operation of courts of law, and to discriminate against those unenlightened who cling fondly to the superstitions of the childhood of the race. Many moral beliefs, however, though sustained by religious convictions, may not be readily susceptible of "scientific" demonstration. After all, our abhorrence of murder, rape, and other crimes may be traced back to the Decalogue and other religious injunctions. If it can be shown that our opposition to such offenses is rooted in religion, then are restraints upon murder and rape unconstitutional? We arrive at such absurdities if we attempt to erect a wall of separation between the operation of the laws and those Christian moral convictions that move most Americans. If we are to try to sustain some connection between Christian teaching and the laws of this land of ours, we must understand the character of that link. We must claim neither too much nor too little for the influence of Christian belief upon our structure of law. . . . I am suggesting that Christian faith and reason have been underestimated in an age bestridden, successively, by the vulgarized notions of the rationalists, the Darwinians, and the Freudians. Yet I am not contending that the laws ever have been the Christian word made flesh nor that they can ever be. . . . What Christianity (or any other religion) confers is not a code of positive laws, but instead some general understanding of justice, the human condition being what it is. . . . In short, judges cannot well be metaphysicians--not in the execution of their duties upon the bench, at any rate, even though the majority upon the Supreme Court of this land, and judges in inferior courts, seem often to have mistaken themselves for original moral philosophers during the past quarter century. The law that judges mete out is the product of statute, convention, and precedent. Yet behind statute, convention, and precedent may be discerned, if mistily, the forms of Christian doctrines, by which statute and convention and precedent are much influenced--or once were so influenced. And the more judges ignore Christian assumptions about human nature and justice, the more they are thrown back upon their private resources as abstract metaphysicians--and the more the laws of the land fall into confusion and inconsistency. Prophets and theologians and ministers and priests are not legislators, ordinarily; yet their pronouncements may be incorporated, if sometimes almost unrecognizably, in statute and convention and precedent. The Christian doctrine of natural law cannot be made to do duty for "the law of the land"; were this tried, positive justice would be delayed to the end of time. Nevertheless, if the Christian doctrine of natural law is cast aside utterly by magistrates, flouted and mocked, then positive law becomes patternless and arbitrary.
Russell Kirk (Rights And Duties: Reflections On Our Conservative Constitution)
Here’s some startup pedagogy for you: When confronted with any startup idea, ask yourself one simple question: How many miracles have to happen for this to succeed? If the answer is zero, you’re not looking at a startup, you’re just dealing with a regular business like a laundry or a trucking business. All you need is capital and minimal execution, and assuming a two-way market, you’ll make some profit. To be a startup, miracles need to happen. But a precise number of miracles. Most successful startups depend on one miracle only. For Airbnb, it was getting people to let strangers into their spare bedrooms and weekend cottages. This was a user-behavior miracle. For Google, it was creating an exponentially better search service than anything that had existed to date. This was a technical miracle. For Uber or Instacart, it was getting people to book and pay for real-world services via websites or phones. This was a consumer-workflow miracle. For Slack, it was getting people to work like they formerly chatted with their girlfriends. This is a business-workflow miracle. For the makers of most consumer apps (e.g., Instagram), the miracle was quite simple: getting users to use your app, and then to realize the financial value of your particular twist on a human brain interacting with keyboard or touchscreen. That was Facebook’s miracle, getting every college student in America to use its platform during its early years. While there was much technical know-how required in scaling it—and had they fucked that up it would have killed them—that’s not why it succeeded. The uniqueness and complete fickleness of such a miracle are what make investing in consumer-facing apps such a lottery. It really is a user-growth roulette wheel with razor-thin odds. The classic sign of a shitty startup idea is that it requires at least two (or more!) miracles to succeed. This was what was wrong with ours. We had a Bible’s worth of miracles to perform:
Antonio García Martínez (Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley)
Professional Bio of Shahin Shardi, P.Eng. Materials Engineer Welding and Pressure Equipment Inspector, QA/QC Specialist Shahin Shardi is a Materials Engineer with experience in integrity management, inspection of pressure equipment, quality control/assurance of large scale oil and gas projects and welding inspection. He stared his career in trades which helped him understand fundamentals of operation of a construction site and execution of large scale projects. This invaluable experience provided him with boots on the ground perspective of requirements of running a successful project and job site. After obtaining an engineering degree from university of British Columbia, he started a career in asset integrity management for oil and gas facilities and inspection of pressure equipment in Alberta, Canada. He has been involved with numerus maintenance shutdowns at various facilities providing engineering support to the maintenance, operations and project personnel regarding selection, repair, maintenance, troubleshooting and long term reliability of equipment. In addition he has extensive experience in area of quality control and assurance of new construction activities in oil and gas industry. He has performed Owner’s Inspector and welding inspector roles in this area. Shahin has extensively applied industry codes of constructions such as ASME Pressure Vessel Code (ASME VIII), Welding (ASME IX), Process Piping (ASME B31.3), Pipe Flanges (ASME B16.5) and various pressure equipment codes and standards. Familiarity with NDT techniques like magnetic particle, liquid penetrant, eddy current, ultrasonic and digital radiography is another valuable knowledge base gained during various projects. Some of his industry certificates are CWB Level 2 Certified Welding Inspector, API 510 Pressure Vessel Inspector, Alberta ABSA In-Service Pressure Vessel Inspector and Saskatchewan TSASK Pressure Equipment Inspector. Shahin is a professional member of Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta.
Shahin Shardi
I still had moments when my nerves got to me, but whenever I’d start to get anxious, Kyla Ross would remind me, “Simone, just do what you do in practice.” And before I went out for each event, she’d high-five me and say, “Just like practice, Simone!” I’d say the same thing to her when it was her turn to go up. “Just like practice” became our catchphrase. As I walked onto the mat to do my floor exercise, I held on to that phrase like it was a lifeline, because I was about to perform a difficult move I’d come up with in practice—a double flip in the layout position with a half twist out. The way it happened was, I’d landed short on a double layout full out earlier that year during training, and I’d strained my calf muscle on the backward landing. Aimee didn’t want me to risk a more severe injury, so she suggested I do the double layout—body straight with legs together and fully extended as I flipped twice in the air—then add a half twist at the end. That extra half twist meant I’d have to master a very tricky blind forward landing, but it would put less stress on my calves. I thought the new combination sounded incredibly cool, so I started playing around with it until I was landing the skill 95 percent of the time. At the next Nationals Camp, I demonstrated the move for Martha and she thought it looked really good, so we went ahead and added it to the second tumbling pass of my floor routine. I’d already performed the combination at national meets that year, but doing it at Worlds was different. That’s because when a completely new skill is executed successfully at a season-ending championship like Worlds or the Olympics, the move will forever after be known by the name of the gymnast who first performed it. Talk about high stakes! I’ll cut to the chase: I nailed the move, which is how it came to be known as the Biles. How awesome is that! (The only problem is, when I see another gymnast perform the move now, I pray they don’t get hurt. I know it’s not logical, but because the move is named after me, I’d feel as if it was my fault.)
Simone Biles (Courage to Soar: A Body in Motion, a Life in Balance)
Two other highly vocal FMSF Advisory Board members are Dr Elizabeth Loftus and Professor Richard Ofshe. Loftus is a respected academic psychologist whose much quoted laboratory experiment of successfully implanting a fictitious childhood memory of being lost in a shopping mall is frequently used to defend the false memory syndrome argument. In the experiment, older family members persuaded younger ones of the (supposedly) never real event. However, Loftus herself says that being lost, which almost everyone has experienced, is in no way similar to being abused. Jennifer Freyd comments on the shopping mall experiment in Betrayal Trauma (1996): “If this demonstration proves to hold up under replication it suggests both that therapists can induce false memories and, even more directly, that older family members play a powerful role in defining reality for dependent younger family members." (p. 104). Elizabeth Loftus herself was sexually abused as a child by a male babysitter and admits to blacking the perpetrator out of her memory, although she never forgot the incident. In her autobiography, Witness for the Defence, she talks of experiencing flashbacks of this abusive incident on occasion in court in 1985 (Loftus &Ketcham, 1991, p.149) In her teens, having been told by an uncle that she had found her mother's drowned body, she then started to visualize the scene. Her brother later told her that she had not found the body. Dr Loftus's successful academic career has run parallel to her even more high profile career as an expert witness in court, for the defence of those accused of rape, murder, and child abuse. She is described in her own book as the expert who puts memory on trial, sometimes with frightening implications. She used her theories on the unreliability of memory to cast doubt, in 1975, on the testimony of the only eyewitness left alive who could identify Ted Bundy, the all American boy who was one of America's worst serial rapists and killers (Loftus & Ketcham, 1991, pp. 61-91). Not withstanding Dr Loftus's arguments, the judge kept Bundy in prison. Bundy was eventually tried, convicted and executed.
Valerie Sinason (Memory in Dispute)
After a series of promotions—store manager at twenty-two, regional manager at twenty-four, director at twenty-seven—I was a fast-track career man, a personage of sorts. If I worked really hard, and if everything happened exactly like it was supposed to, then I could be a vice president by thirty-two, a senior vice president by thirty-five or forty, and a C-level executive—CFO, COO, CEO—by forty-five or fifty, followed of course by the golden parachute. I’d have it made then! I’d just have to be miserable for a few more years, to drudge through the corporate politics and bureaucracy I knew so well. Just keep climbing and don't look down. Misery, of course, encourages others to pull up a chair and stay a while. And so, five years ago, I convinced my best friend Ryan to join me on the ladder, even showed him the first rung. The ascent is exhilarating to rookies. They see limitless potential and endless possibilities, allured by the promise of bigger paychecks and sophisticated titles. What’s not to like? He too climbed the ladder, maneuvering each step with lapidary precision, becoming one of the top salespeople—and later, top sales managers—in the entire company.10 And now here we are, submerged in fluorescent light, young and ostensibly successful. A few years ago, a mentor of mine, a successful businessman named Karl, said to me, “You shouldn’t ask a man who earns twenty thousand dollars a year how to make a hundred thousand.” Perhaps this apothegm holds true for discontented men and happiness, as well. All these guys I emulate—the men I most want to be like, the VPs and executives—aren’t happy. In fact, they’re miserable.  Don’t get me wrong, they aren’t bad people, but their careers have changed them, altered them physically and emotionally: they explode with anger over insignificant inconveniences; they are overweight and out of shape; they scowl with furrowed brows and complain constantly as if the world is conspiring against them, or they feign sham optimism which fools no one; they are on their second or third or fourth(!) marriages; and they almost all seem lonely. Utterly alone in a sea of yes-men and women. Don’t even get me started on their health issues.  I’m talking serious health issues: obesity, gout, cancer, heart attacks, high blood pressure, you name it. These guys are plagued with every ailment associated with stress and anxiety. Some even wear it as a morbid badge of honor, as if it’s noble or courageous or something. A coworker, a good friend of mine on a similar trajectory, recently had his first heart attack—at age thirty.  But I’m the exception, right?
Joshua Fields Millburn (Everything That Remains: A Memoir by The Minimalists)
In a Harvard Business Review article titled “Do Women Lack Ambition?” Anna Fels, a psychiatrist at Cornell University, observes that when the dozens of successful women she interviewed told their own stories, “they refused to claim a central, purposeful place.” Were Dr. Fels to interview you, how would you tell your story? Are you using language that suggests you’re the supporting actress in your own life? For instance, when someone offers words of appreciation about a dinner you’ve prepared, a class you’ve taught, or an event you organized and brilliantly executed, do you gracefully reply “Thank you” or do you say, “It was nothing”? As Fels tried to understand why women refuse to be the heroes of their own stories, she encountered the Bem Sex-Role Inventory, which confirms that society considers a woman to be feminine only within the context of a relationship and when she is giving something to someone. It’s no wonder that a “feminine” woman finds it difficult to get in the game and demand support to pursue her goals. It also explains why she feels selfish when she doesn’t subordinate her needs to others. A successful female CEO recently needed my help. It was mostly business-related but also partly for her. As she started to ask for my assistance, I sensed how difficult it was for her. Advocate on her organization’s behalf? Piece of cake. That’s one of the reasons her business has been successful. But advocate on her own behalf? I’ll confess that even among my closest friends I find it painful to say, “Look what I did,” and so I don’t do it very often. If you want to see just how masterful most women have become at deflecting, the next time you’re with a group of girlfriends, ask them about something they (not their husband or children) have done well in the past year. Chances are good that each woman will quickly and deftly redirect the conversation far, far away from herself. “A key type of discrimination that women face is the expectation that feminine women will forfeit opportunities for recognition,” says Fels. “When women do speak as much as men in a work situation or compete for high-visibility positions, their femininity is assailed.” My point here isn’t to say that relatedness and nurturing and picking up our pom-poms to cheer others on is unimportant. Those qualities are often innate to women. If we set these “feminine” qualities aside or neglect them, we will have lost an irreplaceable piece of ourselves. But to truly grow up, we must learn to throw down our pom-poms, believing we can act and that what we have to offer is a valuable part of who we are. When we recognize this, we give ourselves permission to dream and to encourage the girls and women
Whitney Johnson (Dare, Dream, Do: Remarkable Things Happen When You Dare to Dream)
He was taking his time on his way to the arena, which meant there was likely something he was waiting for. He didn’t intend to actually fight me, obviously, just as I didn’t intend to fight him. If all was going according to plan, and Yma had slipped the contents of the vial into the calming tonic he drank with his breakfast, the iceflowers were already swimming through his body. The timing would not be exact; that depended on the person. I would have to be ready for the potion to surprise me, or fail entirely. “You’re dawdling,” I said, hoping that calling him out would speed him up. “What is it you’re waiting for?” “I am waiting for the right blade,” Ryzek said, and he dropped down to the arena floor. Dust rose up in a cloud against his feet. He rolled up his left sleeve, baring his kill marks. He had run out of space on his arm, and started a second row next to the first, near his elbow. He claimed every kill that he ordered as his own, even if he himself had not brought about the death. Ryzek drew his currentblade slowly, and as he raised his arm, the crowd around us exploded into cheers. Their roar clouded my thoughts. I couldn’t breathe. He didn’t look pale and unfocused, like he had actually consumed the poison. He looked, if anything, more focused than ever. I wanted to run at him with blade extended, like an arrow released from a bow, a transport vessel breaking through the atmosphere. But I didn’t. And neither did he. We both stood in the arena, waiting. “What are you waiting for, sister?” Ryzek said. “Have you lost your nerve?” “No,” I said. “I’m waiting for the poison you swallowed this morning to settle in.” A gasp rattled through the crowd, and for once--for the first time--Ryzek’s face went slack with shock. I had finally truly surprised him. “All my life you’ve told me I have nothing to offer but the power that lives in my body,” I said. “But I am not an instrument of torture and execution; I am the only person who knows the real Ryzek Noavek.” I stepped toward him. “I know how you fear pain more than anything else in this world. I know that you gathered these people here today, not to celebrate a successful scavenge, but to witness the murder of Orieve Benesit.” I sheathed my blade. I held my hands out to my sides so the crowd could see that they were empty. “And the most important thing I know, Ryzek, is that you can’t bear to kill someone unless you drug yourself first. Which is why I poisoned your calming tonic this morning.” Ryzek touched his stomach, as if he could feel the hushflower eating away at his guts through his armor. “You made a mistake, valuing me only for my currentgift and my skill with a knife,” I said. And for once, I believed it.
Veronica Roth (Carve the Mark (Carve the Mark, #1))
So Japan is allied with Germany and they’re like “Sweet the rest of the world already hates us let’s take their land!” So they start invading China and Malaysia and the Philippines and just whatever else but then they’re like “Hmm what if America tries to stop us? Ooh! Let’s surprise attack Hawaii!” So that’s exactly what they do. The attack is very successful but only in a strictly technical sense. To put it in perspective, let’s try a metaphor. Let’s say you’re having a barbecue but you don’t want to get stung by any bees so you find your local beehive and just go crazy on it with a baseball bat. Make sense? THEN YOU MUST BE JAPAN IN THE ’40s. WHO ELSE WOULD EVER DO THIS? So the U.S. swarms on Japan, obviously but that’s where our bee metaphor breaks down because while bees can sting you they cannot put you in concentration camps (or at least, I haven’t met any bees that can do that). Yeah, after that surprise attack on Pearl Harbor everybody on the West Coast is like “OMG WE’RE AT WAR WITH JAPAN AND THERE ARE JAPANESE DUDES LIVING ALLLL AROUND US.” I mean, they already banned Japanese immigration like a decade before but there are still Japanese dudes all over the coast and what’s more those Japanese dudes are living right next door to all the important aircraft factories and landing strips and shipyards and farmland and forests and bridges almost as if those types of things are EVERYWHERE and thus impossible not to live next door to. Whatever, it’s pretty suspicious. Now, at this point, nothing has been sabotaged and some people think that means they’re safe. But not military geniuses like Earl Warren who points out that the only reason there’s been no sabotage is that the Japanese are waiting for their moment and the fact that there has been no sabotage yet is ALL THE PROOF WE NEED to determine that sabotage is being planned. Frank Roosevelt hears this and he’s like “That’s some pretty shaky logic but I really don’t like Japanese people. Okay, go ahead.” So he passes an executive order that just says “Any enemy ex-patriots can be kicked out of any war zone I designate. P.S.: California, Oregon, and Washington are war zones have fun with that.” So they kick all the Japanese off the coast forcing them to sell everything they own but people are still not satisfied. They’re like “Those guys look funny! We can’t have funny-looking dudes roaming around this is wartime! We gotta lock ’em up.” And FDR is like “Okay, sure.” So they herd all the Japanese into big camps where they are concentrated in large numbers like a hundred and ten thousand people total and then the military is like “Okay, guys we will let you go if you fill out this loyalty questionnaire that says you love the United States and are totally down to be in our army” and some dudes are like “Sweet, free release!” but some dudes are like “Seriously? You just put me in jail for being Asian. This country is just one giant asshole and it’s squatting directly over my head.” And the military is like “Ooh, sorry to hear that buddy looks like you’re gonna stay here for the whole war. Meanwhile your friends get to go fight and die FOR FREEDOM.
Cory O'Brien (George Washington Is Cash Money: A No-Bullshit Guide to the United Myths of America)
Product development has become a faster, more flexible process, where radically better products don’t stand on the shoulders of giants, but on the shoulders of lots of iterations. The basis for success then, and for continual product excellence, is speed. Unfortunately, like Jonathan’s failed gate-based product development framework, most management processes in place at companies today are designed with something else in mind. They were devised over a century ago, at a time when mistakes were expensive and only the top executives had comprehensive information, and their primary objectives are lowering risk and ensuring that decisions are made only by the few executives with lots of information. In this traditional command-and-control structure, data flows up to the executives from all over the organization, and decisions subsequently flow down. This approach is designed to slow things down, and it accomplishes the task very well. Meaning that at the very moment when businesses must permanently accelerate, their architecture is working against them.
Eric Schmidt (How Google Works)
CMOs and other top executives need to be SEO advocates within their organizations. Without an understanding of what it takes, the boss will not be able to make crucial decisions that support a website's organic search success.
Bruce Clay
A successful planner is one who does not try to control all of the parts and pieces of a wedding and the wedding planning process. But is rather someone who takes the time to listen to what it is their clients are looking for and to bring on the experts in each of their fields to properly execute and deliver what it is that the client wants.
Anthony V. Navarro (The Business of Being A Wedding Planner)
In this world, anything is possible. The United States might win a future war relying solely on air power for the first time in history, with no American or local ground forces involved and no meaningful threat of their deployment. That possibility cannot be excluded. The Rumsfeld vision of military transformation, however, does not pursue that as a possibility: it relies on it as a certainty. By focusing all of America's defense resources on the single medium of air power, Rumsfeld is betting America's future security on the conviction that the U.S. armed forces will be able to do every time what no military to date has ever been able to do. In doing so, he is greatly simplifying the task of those preparing to fight the United States by presenting them with only one threat to defeat. A sound program of military transformation would proceed in exactly the opposite way. It would recognize the value of America's technological advantage in the area of PGMs. It would continue to enlarge and enhance them, much as Rumsfeld currently proposes. But it would not do so at the expense of the unique capabilities that ground forces bring to bear. It would focus, instead, on developing the capabilities provided by air power. Ground forces can seize and hold terrain, separate hostile groups, and comb through urban with infinitely greater precision and distinction between combatant and non-combatant that can air power. They can present the enemy with unacceptable situations simply by occupying a given piece of land, forcing the enemy to take actions that reveal intentions and expose the enemy to destruction. And it goes without saying that only ground forces can execute the peacemaking, peacekeeping, and reconstruction activities that have been essential to success in most of the wars America has fought in the past hundred years. Above all, the United States must avoid the search for "efficiency" in military affairs. Redundancy is inherently a virtue in war. America's leaders should intentionally design systems with overlapping capabilities, spread across the services, and should intentionally support weapons that do not directly contribute to the overarching vision of war that they are pursuing. America should continue to try to build armed forces that are the best in every category and have the latent capabilities to meet challenges that cannot now even be imagined.
Frederick Kagan
Differentiating Yourself  Pursuing a differentiation strategy has merit over pursuing a low-cost strategy. Focusing and sharpening your strengths is a major step in developing competitive advantage—the thing that you can do better than anyone else.  The first step is to take stock of your resources and capabilities and assess whether they match your intentions. Do you have what is called “strategic fit”? Aligning your resources and capabilities with your intentions puts you in the best position for crafting and executing a successful strategy.  To help you achieve this, develop a personal USP, a one-sentence description of what you offer people that few others can match. Now do the same for a trusted friend and exchange the results. This is sometimes the best way of taking your personal skills inventory.
Calvinism, as we have seen, starts from a double decree of absolute predestination, which antedates creation, and is the divine program of human history. This program includes the successive stages of the creation of man, an universal fall and condemnation of the race, a partial redemption and salvation, and a partial reprobation and perdition: all for the glory of God and the display of his attributes of mercy and justice. History is only the execution of the original design. There can be no failure. The beginning and the end, God’s immutable plan and the issue of the world’s history, must correspond.
Philip Schaff (History Of The Christian Church (The Complete Eight Volumes In One))
In response, BEA launched an innovative program to put the company’s experts at the heart of its best customers’ IT organizations. BEA created Global Service Executives (GSEs) who were responsible for all services across education, consulting, and support. A portion of their compensation was based on customers’ ongoing success and full utilization of all purchased products. In addition, a client architect was placed on-site at strategic accounts, reporting to the customer’s CIO. These roles were in position to see customers’ needs from the inside and to help customers create strategy and road maps. Use proactive services to extend
Lilia Shirman (42 Rules for Growing Enterprise Revenue: Practical Strategies to Matter More and Sell More in B2B Markets)
I'm working on a screenplay, one where God appears with a bag of golf clubs in the apartment of a successful New York public relations executive and says that he wants to kill himself because He's always been a lousy god and He thinks everybody will be better off without Him.
Scott Carrier (Prisoner of Zion: Muslims, Mormons and Other Misadventures)
In sum, auditors had scrutinized Solyndra and found it to have, from its inception, a fatally flawed business model that was hurtling toward collapse. Yet, the president touted it as a success story that would be spurring jobs, growth, and spectacular success for the foreseeable future.
Andrew McCarthy (Faithless Execution: Building the Political Case for Obama’s Impeachment)
It is the principal antidote to the lethal problem of achieving failure: successfully executing a plan that leads nowhere.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
The people paying the bills almost always will consider properly filled-out paperwork to be more 'successful' than a brilliantly conceived and executed idea. Plan accordingly.
Adam Judge (The Little Black Book of Design)
Peter Drucker challenged executives to capitalize on “unexpected success.” He wrote: When a new venture does succeed, more often than not it is in a market other than the one it was originally intended to serve, with products or services not quite those with which it had set out, bought in large part by customers it did not even think of when it started, and used for a host of purposes besides the ones for which the products were first designed. If a new venture does not anticipate this, organizing itself to take advantage of the unexpected and unseen markets … then it will succeed only in creating an opportunity for a competitor.
Chip Heath (Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work)
I've failed in communication...and so I've learned to have open and honest dialogue at the opportune, and appropriate time. I've failed in relationships...and so I've learned to appreciate the people in my life, and to treat them with kindness. I've failed in paying bills...and so I've learned to properly and effectively manage my time, my talent and my resources. I've failed in work or business ventures...and so I've learned to be more prudent with planning, and more efficient in execution. I've failed in dodging a ball...and so I've learned to anticipate danger and to protect myself. I don't mind acknowledging my failures, because they've played a valuable part to my successes. Live, Love, Learn, and Be Well.
Katrena Patterson
I've failed in communication...and so I've learned to have open and honest dialogue at the opportune, and appropriate time. I've failed in relationships...and so I've learned to appreciate the people in my life, and to treat them with kindness. I've failed in paying bills...and so I've learned to properly and effectively manage my time, my talent and my resources. I've failed in work or business ventures...and so I've learned to be more prudent with planning, and more efficient in execution. I've failed in dodging a ball...and so I've learned to anticipate danger and to protect myself. Live, Love, Learn, and Be Well.
Katrena Patterson
One crisis, in Cuba, mounted quickly after Fidel Castro staged a successful revolution against a corrupt pro-American dictatorship and triumphantly took power in January 1959. Castro at first seemed heroic to many Americans. When he came to the United States in April, he was warmly received and spent three hours talking with Vice-President Nixon. But relations soon cooled. Castro executed opponents and confiscated foreign investments, including $1 billion held by Americans.
James T. Patterson (Grand Expectations: The United States, 1945-1974 (Oxford History of the United States Book 10))
The politician and the corporate executive alike aspire to power without responsibility, to a world in which both the customer and the voter are reduced to a condition of perfect predictability. Individuals and groups can be noticed separately and set against one another in the service of this predictability. But citizenship as the shared exercise of public power terrifies and disgusts our rulers. Those that successfully achieve citizenship in any substantial sense must have their achievements denied or explained away.
achieving failure”—successfully executing a flawed plan.
Eric Ries (The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses)
Pippin puts Hegel’s point sharply when he writes, “You have not executed an intention successfully unless others attribute to you the deed and intention you attribute to yourself.”1
Matthew B. Crawford (The World Beyond Your Head: On Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction)
Capitalism is brutal. It’s survival of the fittest. What’s a successful business? More money coming in than going out. If it’s the other way around, you’re out of business—simple as that. If Bernie and Arthur and I had had a bad idea when we started Home Depot, we’d have gone broke. If we’d had a good idea but executed it poorly, we’d also have gone broke. Look at all the automobile companies that have folded: Packard, Studebaker, Hudson; I can go right down the list. What happened? Mostly good ideas poorly executed. They couldn’t compete.
Ken Langone (I Love Capitalism!: An American Story)
The Marland definition of giftedness (page 499) broadened the view of giftedness from one based strictly on IQ to one encompassing six areas of outstanding or potentially outstanding performance. The passage of Public Law 94–142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, in 1975 led to an increased interest in and awareness of individual differences and exceptionalities. PL 94–142, however, was a missed opportunity for gifted children, as there was no national mandate to serve them. Mandates to provide services for children and youth who are gifted and talented are the result of state rather than federal legislation. The 1980s and 1990s: The Field Matures and Provides Focus for School Reform Building on Guilford’s multifaceted view of intelligence, Howard Gardner and Robert Sternberg advanced their own theories of multiple intelligences in the 1980s. Gardner (1983) originally identified seven intelligences—linguistic, logical-mathematical, spatial, bodily-kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, and intrapersonal (see Table 15.2). Describing these intelligences as relatively independent of one another, he later added naturalistic as an eighth intelligence (Gardner, 1993). Sternberg (1985) presented a triarchic view of “successful intelligence,” encompassing practical, creative, and executive intelligences. Using these models, the field of gifted education has expanded its understanding of intelligence while not abandoning IQ as a criterion for identifying intellectually gifted children. A Nation at Risk (National Commission on Excellence in Education, 1983) described the state of education in U.S. schools as abysmal. The report made a connection between the education of children who are gifted and our country’s future. This commission found that 50 percent of the school-age gifted population was not performing to full potential and that mathematics and science were in deplorable conditions in the schools. The message in this report percolated across the country and was responsible for a renewed interest in gifted education as well as in massive education reform that occurred nationally and state by state.
Richard M. Gargiulo (Special Education in Contemporary Society: An Introduction to Exceptionality)
Russia was destroyed by a sluggish, self-interested power that did not heed the wishes of the people, their hopes, their dreams. . . . In light of this, the revolution was inevitable.” My answer to his: “The people did not start the revolution; individuals like you did. The people spat on absolutely everything we wanted, on all we were dissatisfied with. I am not talking to you about the revolution—let it be inevitable, splendid, anything you like. But don’t lie about the people—they need all your executive ministries, the successions of the Shcheglovitovs by the Malyantoviches, and the abolition of all kinds of censorship like they need snow during summertime.
Ivan Alekseyevich Bunin (Cursed Days: Diary of a Revolution)
Donald’s problems are accumulating because the maneuvering required to solve them, or to pretend they don’t exist, has become more complicated, requiring many more people to execute the cover-ups. Donald is completely unprepared to solve his own problems or adequately cover his tracks. After all, the systems were set up in the first place to protect him from his own weaknesses, not help him negotiate the wider world. The walls of his very expensive and well-guarded padded cell are starting to disintegrate. The people with access to him are weaker than Donald is, more craven, but just as desperate. Their futures are directly dependent on his success and favor. They either fail to see or refuse to believe that their fate will be the same as that of anyone who pledged loyalty to him in the past.
Mary L. Trump (Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World's Most Dangerous Man)
Psychologist Stan Beecham, who counsels numerous elite athletes and high-ranking executives, also believes that our relationship with fear is utterly critical to what we will accomplish in our lives: “It’s all about fear. If you kill fear, you win. If you kill fear, you have your best year ever. If you kill fear, you train like a mad man. If you kill fear, you go to college for free. If you kill fear, you stand on the podium, you get paid, you have strangers walk up to you and call you by name. When fear dies, you begin to live.”20
Brad Stulberg (The Passion Paradox: A Guide to Going All In, Finding Success, and Discovering the Benefits of an Unbalanced Life)
In the programs and statements of these parties one hears echoes of classical fascist themes: fears of decadence and decline; assertion of national and cultural identity; a threat by unassimilable foreigners to national identity and good social order; and the need for greater authority to deal with these problems. Even though some of the European radical Right parties have full authoritarian-nationalist programs (such as the Belgian Vlaams Blok’s “seventy points” and Le Pen’s “Three Hundred Measures for French Revival” of 1993), most of them are perceived as single-issue movements devoted to sending unwanted immigrants home and cracking down on immigrant delinquency, and that is why most of their voters chose them. Other classical fascist themes, however, are missing from the programmatic statements of the most successful postwar European radical Right parties. The element most totally absent is classical fascism’s attack on the liberty of the market and economic individualism, to be remedied by corporatism and regulated markets. In a continental Europe where state economic intervention is the norm, the radical Right has been largely committed to reducing it and letting the market decide. Another element of classical fascist programs mostly missing from the postwar European radical Right is a fundamental attack on democratic constitutions and the rule of law. None of the more successful European far Right parties now proposes to replace democracy by a single-party dictatorship. At most they advocate a stronger executive, less inhibited forces of order, and the replacement of stale traditional parties with a fresh, pure national movement. They leave to the skinheads open expressions of the beauty of violence and murderous racial hatred. The successful radical Right parties wish to avoid public association with them, although they may quietly share overlapping membership with some ultraright action squads and tolerate a certain amount of overheated language praising violent action among their student branches. No western European radical Right movement or party now proposes national expansion by war—a defining aim for Hitler and Mussolini. Indeed the advocates of border changes in postwar Europe have mostly been secessionist rather than expansionist, such as the Vlaams Blok in Belgium and (for a time) Umberto Bossi’s secessionist Northern League (Lega Nord) in northern Italy. The principal exceptions have been the expansionist Balkan nationalisms that sought to create Greater Serbia, Greater Croatia, and Greater Albania.
Robert O. Paxton (The Anatomy of Fascism)
Imagine that the natural sciences were to suffer the effects of a catastrophe. A series of environmental disasters are blamed by the general public on the scientists. Widespread riots occur, laboratories are burnt down, physicists are lynched, books and instruments are destroyed. Finally a Know-Nothing political movement takes power and successfully abolishes science teaching in schools and universities, imprisoning and executing the remaining scientists.
Alasdair MacIntyre (After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory, Third Edition)
Define the metrics. Strive to make the KPIs reachable to ensure that executives can see the full picture. This can be retention rate to assess deviations Figuring out a simple assessment means can make it easier to keep a hand on business objectives to introduce amendments to the strategy. These steps will contribute to the successful release of your Salesforce implementation and allow one’s enterprise to gain more from Salesforce.
the power of each customer exchange. If the exchange was executed as well as possible—if we made the customer truly successful—we had the opportunity to transform him or her into an Apple loyalist and evangelist. This opened my eyes to the importance of customer success.
Marc Benioff (Behind the Cloud: The Untold Story of How Salesforce.com Went from Idea to Billion-Dollar Company-and Revolutionized an Industry)
Great Planning for Massive Execution and Great Execution For Massive Planning Can Generate Extraordinary Results.
Sandeep Aggarwal
Picture a company that pays its workers the bare minimum, and refuses them health insurance, paid vacation time, and other benefits. Its executives wish for profits, but lasting success cannot be built on the backs of discontented, disloyal, overworked, underproductive employees.
James Allen (As a Man Thinketh)
1. Self-depreciation. You have heard dozens of people say, “I would like to be a doctor (or an executive or a commercial artist or in business for myself) but I can’t do it.” “I lack brains.” “I’d fail if I tried.” “I lack the education and/or experience.” Many young folks destroy desire with the old negative self-depreciation. 2. “Security-itis.” Persons who say, “I’ve got security where I am” use the security weapons to murder their dreams. 3. Competition. “The field is already overcrowded,” “People in that field are standing on top of each other” are remarks which kill desire fast. 4. Parental dictation. I’ve heard hundreds of young people explain their career choice with “I’d really like to prepare for something else, but my parents want me to do this so I must.” Most parents, I believe, do not intentionally dictate to their children what they must do. What all intelligent parents want is to see their children live successfully. If the young person will patiently explain why he or she prefers a different career, and if the parent will listen, there will be no friction. The objectives of both the parent and the young person for the young person’s career are identical: success. 5. Family responsibility. The attitude of “It would have been wise for me to change over five years ago, but now I’ve got a family and I can’t change,” illustrates this kind of desire murder weapon.
David J. Schwartz (The Magic of Thinking Big)
In all great business very large errors are excused or even unperceived, but in definite and local matters small mistakes are punished out of all proportion.” This is one reason politicians are risk-averse, and why modern government administration seeks to minimize risk and avoid failure through a mindless bureaucratic process that delivers mostly mediocrity.
Steven F. Hayward (Churchill on Leadership: Executive Success in the Face of Adversity)
Dreaming in necessary for a winner,but executing the dreams to reality is must to 'win'.
Tommy Lasorda
but normal practice in Go is to deal with the error in the if block and then return, so that the successful execution path is not indented.
Alan A.A. Donovan (The Go Programming Language)
While making inexpensive furniture may be what IKEA does prac- tically, the vision of “creating a better everyday life” for people has emotional resonance we can rally behind. These are the words of a movement, and I would argue that without them, Ikea would be much less successful. Combine commitment to a meaningful purpose with flawless execution and it makes the difference between the world’s largest furniture retailer and a local purveyor of cheap junk.
Alan Philips (The Age of Ideas: Unlock Your Creative Potential)