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#23 Do a first bad draft. You can’t edit a blank page.
Starbucks, Ted Lasso and some more
‘Pour Your Heart into It’ is quite an enjoyable read on how to build a product, brand and culture you love. Howard Schultz shares the following on how he built the leadership team at Starbucks.
Then as now, I was conscious of having to show the people. around me that my self-esteem and confidence were strong enough to absorb the arrival of new talent, managers who were more qualified than I to handle certain segments of the business. At the same time, I also had to make sure that I clearly handed them the authority to do what they needed to do, for their departments would be reporting to them, not to me. I tried to make the message I sent to them and by extension, to the entire company as unequivocal as possible: "I hired you because you're smarter than I am. Now go and prove it."
It has taken me more time than usual to complete this book between my work and personal commitments. I’m only halfway through, still! But whenever I get to it, it feels like I am having my favourite cup of chai. Brewed slowly and to perfection. And something that needs to be enjoyed with every sip. Give this book a read, if you like your coffee or otherwise.
My buddy Satyajit Rout wrote a very thought-provoking piece on how leaders can nurture curiosity. This one piece of advice struck a chord with me. It’s a tough one to master, but worth the effort.
Deconstruct gut feel and explain thinking to the team. Leaders often have an intuition that has been honed by experience. They have developed mental heuristics that take them to a decision faster. But if they are unable to articulate their internal process, it often leads to a “trust me” scenario. By explaining the variables that, when different, would change the decision, they equip their teams to follow a process in the future while also avoiding being seen as indecisive should they reverse their initial decision at any point in time later.
For now, let’s grab your favourite brew and get to today’s post.
“Over time, all marketing strategies result in shitty clickthrough rates.” - that's the law of shitty clickthroughs as per Andrew Chen. Sounds common sensical right? Or maybe not. This is not an easy truth to accept, and thus difficult to adopt in our work. As per the author, there are three key reasons for this:
Customers respond to novelty, which inevitably fades
First-to-market never lasts
More scale means less qualified customers
It should make more sense now. How do we overcome this? Read on the short essay here and find yourself.
“If you don’t notice my work, it means I’m doing my job properly.” David Buchanan proudly claims in this essay on the art of audiovisual translation. For those who don't know, he is talking about subtitles & dubbing. If you've binged on those Spanish, French, Korean TV dramas, you've experienced the magic done by people like David. We don't notice much, but there is a lot that goes behind the scene. Read this short read to know more. It will make you appreciate the next international TV series even better.
There are many tricks to get productive. One of them must read - stop searching for more productivity hacks, just do it. Here is a simple infographic, in case you’re still looking for a good enough starting point. My favourite:
Start ‘Idea Dump’ book for genius ideas that you can’t work on now.
Do a first bad draft. You can’t edit a blank page.
Better done than perfect.
Little moments of Joy: Questions that kids ask are the purest of their kind. Wish we had the wisdom to that match their curiosity and sincerity.
Credit: Ektara & team.
Some random goodness from the internet:
Twitter: Target80s publish pages from the '80s children's magazine Target every day. I somehow did not read it when I was a kid. Now, I can surely tell I missed a lot by doing that. Thanks Gaurav for bringing this to our world again.
Instagram: Yann Le Gall - ylegall - creates beautiful art using programming. They are fun. For those of you who know, don’t they feel like the new-age 4k version of Winamp visualizations?
Web: Strava Art = artwork your trails create while you cycle, run, swim, walk, hike, ski etc. I tried it myself but my designs are no better than the drawing I do. Some really amazing entries here across categories like dinosaurs, birds & animations.
Youtube: Rare footage from ~1890s from cities around the world. People dressed more formally and looked more social & engaging then.
Long read: A week in the world’s most chaotic city is a photo essay covering the hustle that’s life in Lagos. Some details are depressing. But, ignoring them does not do any good for all of us. Lagos is just an example, there are many Lagos in each country.
Before we sign off, here's a snapshot of a tweet worth saving.
Ted Lasso season 2 is over, I’ve to find something new to keep up the tempo. Any recommendation?
That's all for this week, folks!
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