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Stay hungry, stay foolish: Put those accomplishments away


You should have been here in my office five minutes ago.

My whiteboard was FULL - and I mean jam-packed - with ideas, notes, bullets, to-dos, action items, brainstorms, and some jottings about the "next big thing" for my professional speaking and marketing firm.

Perhaps you have a similar whiteboard in your office. Or perhaps you have a wall filled with post-it notes. Or maybe you keep plaques and awards on your bookcase. Or do you prefer other visual reminders of where your company has been and all that you have accomplished?

You may feel this is tremendously exciting.

There’s just one problem: it was tremendously exciting yesterday. With every day, every week, every month - hell, every hour - that you do not ACT on your ideas, they start to turn on you.

Instead of becoming motivators, they turn into pacifiers that remind you how great you WERE and what you imagined you would become. They also remind you that things, for better or worse, didn't quite turn out the way you envisioned last week, last month or last year.

In my case, my office whiteboard was holding onto ideas and initiatives from 6 months ago.

Yikes!

These were totally useless to my future. They only served to make me feel good about how gosh darn smart I am and what big plans I have or had. So I took everything down.

Ask yourself these questions

When Steve Jobs came back as interim CEO of Apple in 1997, he had every award, plaque, and completed project plan removed from the walls and hallways of Apple.

He did not want any visual reminders of the past. All he wanted his teams to see was their future.

Apple’s hallways, offices and conference rooms were filled with new plans, current prototypes, and upcoming projects. Everything became future-focused and kept rigorously up to date.

Look around your office and ask:

  • What do you need to erase from your whiteboard?
  • What plans, projects and prototypes are holding you back?
  • Which awards should you put away?
  • Which of your accolades are keeping you stuck in the past?
  • Which of your business goals are no longer relevant to your company’s future?

 Now, put all this stuff away.

Take a moment to enjoy the clear space around you before looking towards your future.

In the words of Steve Jobs, this will help you "Stay hungry. Stay foolish."

And it will help you achieve your NEXT level of "insanely great."

 

About David Newman

David Newman is a marketing expert, professional speaker and founder of Do It! Marketing, a marketing strategy firm dedicated to making thought-leading entrepreneurs and executives more successful. David’s book, "Do It! Marketing: 77 Instant-Action Ideas to Boost Sales, Maximize Profits, and Crush Your Competition" is available at http://bit.ly/doitbook. Free resources are available online at www.doitmarketing.com. Contact David directly at david@doitmarketing.com or call 001-(610)-716-5984.