Projects vs tasks

Your job might be a series of tasks. Tasks are work where money is traded for time and effort. You put in a fixed amount of time, expending effort along the way, and you get paid. In the end, tasks are completed and its up to the boss to weave those tasks together into something useful.

The person at the front desk of a hotel is probably doing a task. So is the lineman working on a high power line. The easier a job is to get, the more likely it involves doing tasks.

The alternative is projects.

The way a project gets done is up to you. Your goal is to create an extraordinary outcome, not to perform the tasks. The work done is simply a means to an end. If you can figure out how to do less work or different work and still create project magic, thats exactly what you should do.

The challenge is in owning the project. To say, Im going to engage with this customer in a way that changes them from frustrated to loyal, as opposed to saying, Im going to move this paper from here to there.

Claim the project before you start the work.

The travel agents problem

Not just travel agents, but all agents.

Information scarcity is disappearing.

Forty years ago, passengers didnt know which airline flew where and when. And forty years ago, airlines had no easy way to find out who wanted to fly somewhere. Today, of course, theres no shortage of information or ability to connect. So paying 10% of their revenue to a human who will use a terminal instead of the passenger using a computer hardly makes sense for the airline.

Movie studios used to have to wrestle with information scarcity, and so did talented creators. Actors werent sure who was making what, and studios had imperfect information about who to cast. Today, IMDB (and proprietary tools) surface enormous amounts of information for the studios. They know who is working on what, who is a pain in the neck, who can add to the effectiveness of the project. And the creators are part of networks, formal and informal, that get them information faster and more efficiently than a single human often could.

The same thing is happening to car dealers. In fact, just about any job where you used to hoard information and charge a fee is now in danger.

When your clients know more than you do, its difficult to be an old-fashioned agent who is making money based on information scarcity.

The alternative is to become a network hub who creates value through information abundance.

This one simple trick makes everything faster and easier

Here it is, tested, effective and worthwhile:

Stop chasing shortcuts.

Personal finance, weight loss, marketing, careers, beating traffic, relationships, education, everything that matters to someone often comes with heavily promoted shortcuts as an alternative.

Fast, risk-free, effortless secrets that magically work, often at someone elses expense.

But if the shortcuts worked as promised, they wouldnt be shortcuts, would they? Theyd be the standard.

A shortcut is not an innovation. Its not a direct path, either. Those work, but they require effort, risk and insight.

If you cant afford the time and effort to do it right, you probably cant afford to do it over after you realize that the shortcut was merely a trap.

7 Ways To Captivate A Corporate Audience..

Dolphins Group Blog

 

We’re all presenting virtually all the time. Interviewing for a new job? That’s a presentation, and you’re the brand. Giving a PowerPoint demonstration to your supervisor or board? That’s a presentation, quite possibly one that could catapult your career or set you back a few notches. Don’t let those opportunities go by without maximizing your chances for success.

Here are some ideas to help you stand out when you’re speaking to a professional audience.

1- Involve your audience early… & often
Listeners want to be engaged, not bored. Right out of the gate, give them a reason to sit through your presentation. You have 30 to 90 seconds to grab their attention. Throw out the old rule of starting with a joke. Bad idea. I’ve got news for you: You’re not Chris Rock.

Don’t get me wrong — injecting a humorous aside is perfectly acceptable. But throwing out such an aside is a lot different than starting with, “Two guys walk into a bar…”. Instead, start by asking a question. I’ve seen this technique work wonders. It brings your listeners into the discussion, and sets an informal, but positive tone. Another technique used by master presenters is to refer to one or two people in the audience by name.

2- Be animated
The best presentations are given by people who are animated in both body language and vocal delivery (we’ll get to the latter in a moment). Resist the temptation to hide behind a podium or to stand in one place. When I work with clients, I place a video camera in one fixed position. If they move out of frame consistently during the course of the presentation, they’re animated.

Try this next time: When speaking to a group of 20 people or more, walk among your audience as you speak. Stop every once in a while, placing your hand gently on one of your listeners’ shoulders (it might help to know the person the first few times you do this). Walking in the audience will help you retain their attention and create a special bond with them.

3. View all Here

Caring is free…

In the short run, of course, not caring can save you some money.

Don’t bother making the facilities quite so clean. Save time and hassle and let the display get a little messy. Don’t worry so much about one particular customer, because you’re busy and hiring more people takes time and money.

But in the long run, caring pays for itself.

Caring is expensive, but it also generates loyalty and word of mouth.

In the long run, an organization that puts in extra effort gets rewarded.

Not to mention that caring makes us all more human. Worth it.

Getting the word out…

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For some, this is the holy grail of marketing.

If only more people knew what you know.

If only they were aware of what you have to offer, of the work you can share.

Perhaps you can get more people to click on your video, read your tweet or see your Instagram.

Alas, awareness is not action.

Everyone reading this is aware that Peru is a country. But that doesn’t mean you’ve visited recently, or have plans to go soon.

Everyone reading this is aware that turnips are a root vegetable. But knowing they exist doesn’t mean you’re going to have them for dinner.

Awareness is important, but it is insufficient.

Action comes from tension, desire and fear. Action is the hard part.

Why even bother to think about strategy?

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Theres confusion between tactics and strategy. Its easy to get tied up in semantic knots as you work to figure out the distinction. Its worth it, though, because strategy can save you when tactics fail.

If a tactic fails, you should consider abandoning it.

But that doesnt mean that theres something wrong with your strategy. Your strategy is what you keep doing even after you walk away from a tactic.

A real estate broker could decide that her goal is to get more listings.

And her strategy is to achieve that by becoming the most trusted person in town.

There are then 100 tactics she can use to earn that trust. She can coordinate events, sponsor teams, host community meetings in her office, sponsor the local rugby/golf team, be transparent about her earnings, hire countless summer interns at a fair wage, run seminars at the local library, etc.

It doesnt matter if one or two or five of the tactics arent home runs. They add up.

But if once, just once, she violates someones trust and expectations, the entire strategy goes out the window.

Tactics are disposable.

Strategy is for the long haul.

But are you doing your work?

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Here is a hint: your work might not be what you think it is.

A doctor might think her job is to cure diseases.

But in fact, thats not what gets and keeps patients. The cure is a goal, and its important, but its not sufficient.

The technical tasks are important, but the work involves more than that.

Doctors who contribute to the academic community, are personable, take a moment to bring emotional labor to their patient, invest in staff and training and put their office in a medical crossroads always do better than doctors who don’t.

And the same thing is true for the web designer who thinks the job is merely typing good code, or the restaurant owner whos merely focused on the food. Thats important, but theres more to the work than whats in the typical job description

Doing your job is not always the same as doing the work. The soft stuff might matter more than you think. Doing the work is the ticket you buy for the privilege of doing the other part.

Two kinds of practice

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The first is quite common. Learn to play the notes as written. Move asymptotically toward perfection. Practice your technique and your process to get yourself ever more skilled at doing it (whatever ‘it’ is) to spec. This is the practice of grand slalom, of arithmetic, of learning your lines or c++.

The other kind of practice is more valuable but far more rare. This is the practice of failure. Of trying on one point of view after another until you find one that works. Of creating original work that doesn’t succeed until it does. Of writing, oration and higher-level math in search of an elusive outcome, even a truth, one that might not even be there.

We become original through practice.

We’ve seduced ourselves into believing that this sort of breakthrough springs fully formed. What always happens (as you can discover by looking at the early work of anyone you admire), is that she practiced her way into it.