Funny how it works
I wrote about risk on Friday...about bucking the system and tackling business in the best way; the most efficient way; the way you want....and not necessarily according to some spreadsheet.
Then by chance I received an email from Amazon.com listing their top 10 Kindle business books of 2011 (so far as they say.) (do you use a kindle? If not, you MUST! I resisted until prodded 6 months ago by one of my sons in school. I quickly fell in love with it. It is perfect for both airplane and library reading. Like many others who have made the switch with whom I have spoken, I read more now - because it is so easy and convenient - than before. And to succeed in business today you must be a voracious reader of news, intelligence reports, journals, magazines, tweets AND books - looking for things to broaden and challenge, particularly in the area of international business. Get a kindle today - it is a miniscule business investment! Topic for another day, but I am interested in the correlation between international experience, expertise and success and volume - assuming quality - of reading. Similar to another topic for another day of international experience as a management qualifier and predictor of success.)
So I ordered two - Seth Godin's Poke the Box and Josh Linkner's Disciplined Dreaming. Two great books - two easy and edifying reads. I am about half way through each and strongly recommend them.
How does this fit in?
They both talk about making your own rules. Obviously in a prudent, considered way - but nevertheless creating your own rules. And beginning now! As in not waiting for next month, next quarter, next fiscal year, etc.
As Godin rhetorically asks - "When can you start?" and answers "Soon is not as good as now!" This book is a short primer and "call to action." (Download Seth Grodin's Poke the Box Workbook now.)
In contrast, in a deeper exploration Linker hypothesizes that business success (and he has his own to cite) in today's unforgiving and constantly changing markets, requires the skills of an improvisational jazz musician. A clear understanding of parameters or guidelines; of collaborative coordination of very creative individual efforts; and of the negative business consequences of pursuing a less creative path. In today's markets ubiquity is the enemy as information is so immediately and readily available. The secret sauce is a company's ability to innovate - not just in a traditional R&D context - but at the level of every employee and in business approach and outlook. (Take Josh Linkner's "How Creative Are You" Creativity Quiz now!)
Both messages (and these are vast oversimplifications - seriously, order a kindle and start with these two books) are directly pertinent to this topic so close to my heart. At the end of the day we are talking about creatively taking your business in new directions. The beauty of this approach is that you don't have to abandon your traditional approaches, but rather complement them. (I believe that over time you will find these more fruitful, but certainly profitable.)
There are so many reasons to wait, to delay, to ponder, to anticipate the "right time." No one will criticize you if you don't begin immediately. But when will you begin....? If nothing else, this is such an emphatic focus of the US Government right now it is a shame to squander the resources and assistance which they will provide.
This is your business and the RIGHT TIME IS NOW!!