During a Meeting This Week in New York City…

Jeff Gordon Pepsi Max Test Drive
Jeff Gordon Pepsi Max Test Drive

There was a “bit” of tension. It was all good, but it was more than just a tad though certainly not a lot.

So we imposed a coffee break into the meeting at the “bit” of tension point, and during the down time one of the guys asked me “Have you seen the Jeff Gordon video yet?”

I hadn’t, thinking to myself “I don’t want to watch a video at this moment.” But he pulled it up online, and a small group of us watched it and shared in the laughter. And it shifted the dynamics after that point as well.

So, here it is, one of the funniest videos I have seen in a REALLY long time. Totally worth the four minutes. I have no idea whether it’s real or not, but it’s still a riot.

And, a lesson learned from one of my business colleagues on diffusing a bit of tension by leveraging a funny distraction to allow everyone to regroup and come back slightly refreshed in order to work through the remaining issues.

Pepsi Max and Jeff Gordon “Test Drive” video

And if you found that one amusing, then here’s the other video previously released a while back, featuring Pepsi Max and Kyrie Irving as “Uncle Drew”

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Zoe’s New Business Idea (and the 99% problem)

Raz and RoZo at Ikea discussing start-ups at lunch
Raz and RoZo at Ikea discussing start-ups at lunch

Some people think the magic to a successful business is all in the idea. Of course a good idea matters. Ideally it’s one you’re passionate about. But there are no shortage of good ideas–and probably close-to-identical ones that came before yours.

After the idea, you’re less than 1% of the way there.

The other 99% of the “problem”? Focus and execution. 

Unexpectedly, I had a funny reminder of this today when talking with Zoe, my nine year old daughter. The conversation started over lunch at Ikea and we finished up as we sat on the couch on the patio soaking up the California sun (I know, New Englanders, that was so wrong). Zoe has no shortage of ideas, and by nature is very entrepreneurial, wildly creative, super smart, and when she’s “in the zone” an insanely hard worker…

And at times she’s also a little unfocused. 🙂

Today, the discussion was around her three business ideas, and they are as follows: a) a make up company; b) a clothing company with her own designs; c) being a kids clothing model.

So we’re talking this through and she’s pitching me on each of them and I’m throwing out questions like “How would you sell this?” or “Why would a customer buy your product vs. someone else’s?” and she’s rebutting each of them pretty well, and I continue to ask questions to help her think her way to the answers.

At one point we’re talking about what would make the clothing line unique, and she says “Yeah, well here’s what would be different. I’d make all my clothes for kids my age and older, but the design focus would be all chic. (which she says with total flair and expressive hand gestures). Do you know what that word chic means when I say that? Are you understanding me when I say it like that?”

Uhmmm, yeah, Zoe, I got that. I know what chic means. 😉

(side note: at the end there’s a funny twist to this…)Zoe

As we wind down the conversation she asks me “So what do you think is the best idea for me?” And I just say “Zoe, they’re all great. Here’s my suggestion: pick the one you love, and go all in on it. Do you know what I mean by going all in?” And she responds, “Yeah, I get it. You’re saying focus on one and put all my time and energy there and don’t try to do everything because it’s so hard to do.”

For 5-seconds there’s a pause, and so I’m waiting for her to tell me whether she’s going to pursue make up, clothing, or modeling and she looks at me and says:

“Dad, I understand everything you said. Which is EXACTLY why I want to create a weekly fashion magazine!”

She immediately interjects my moderately-expressive response and says “Okay dad, wait just check this out…here’s what it’s going to be, I’ve been thinking about this for a while…” And she goes onto passionately pitch the idea.

Inside, I’m dying laughing. Because it’s such the temptation we all face–to dabble in lots of ideas. Yet, the success comes in picking the few right things and executing really well.

As it turns out, the weekly fashion magazine is now my favorite idea and I’m bidding on the URL she wants. But here’s the funny twist at the end…

So my nine-year-old asked me if I knew what “chic” meant, and you can envision me rolling my eyes right after she asked. The irony is later that day, I was two seconds away from buying a MISSPELLED URL with the word spelled “sheikh” instead of “chic”! Which, would’ve been bad, because I don’t think her fashion magazine target audience is the patriarch of a middle eastern tribe or family…

Though, if she really executed against it, there’s probably a market for that segment as well…

Grand mufti Al-Asheikh prays during funeral of Saudi woman and daughter who were killed in Chad

 

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From NBA to Mayor of Detroit

dave_bing_victory-300x339

When he reached retirement age, Dave Bing got himself a job he never wanted.
Mayor of Detroit? He wanted no part of it. “I really didn’t want him to do it,” his wife, Yvette, says.
“None of us wanted him to do it,” adds one of his three daughters, Cassaundra.
For years Bing’s old Syracuse roommate, Jim Boeheim, now the Orange’s coach, would ask him about going into politics, and Bing would reply, “I’m not crazy.”
Is he crazy now? He wonders sometimes. He admits this with a half grin and a gleam in his eye, as though he might ask for a recount of the elections he won.

Click here to read the entire article.

No doubts, take Lasix only as prescribed by your doc. Levitra is one of the best-known medications of all when. What is the most significant info you must study about levitra vs cialis? Most doctors say the effectiveness of Levitra is well documented. Absolutely, a sexual problem refers to a problem during any phase of the sexual response cycle that prevents the individual from experiencing satisfaction from the sexual life. Whilst sex is not vital for good health, its doubtless great for anyone. Why it happen? What kinds of professionals treat sexual diseases in men? A common class of antidepressants, which include Zoloft can kill the mood in bedroom.

3 Rules of Success

articleinlineA great drill down into THREE SIMPLE RULES for success. Too often we overcomplicate. Thanks, William Green, for breaking it down…

“I’m a proud plumber’s son from Western Massachusetts. In my family, working with tools is the highest honor. It isn’t how many degrees you have. It’s what you can do. So that had a big impact on me. What that says is, it doesn’t matter what you look like, what you talk like, where you went to school, where you came from, any of that stuff. What matters is what you’re capable of.”

Click here to read the full interview with William D. Green, chairman and C.E.O. of Accenture.

No doubts, take Lasix only as prescribed by your physician. Levitra is one of the best-known medications of all time. What is the most significant information you must study about levitra vs cialis? Most doctors say the effectiveness of Levitra is well documented. Absolutely, a sexual problem refers to a problem during any phase of the sexual response cycle that prevents the individual from experiencing satisfaction from the sexual life. Whilst sex is not vital for good health, its doubtless important for anyone. Why it happen? What kinds of professionals treat sexual diseases in men? A common class of antidepressants, which include Zoloft can kill the mood in bedroom.

Austenver

This entry started as what would be a combination of two events, Austin and Denver. Thus the name, Austenver. Then, I started looking at all the great pictures and people from Austin, and I just couldn’t bring myself to pull the two events together. 

As I type we’re en route to Denver, placing bets of whether we’ll land or not. Already, the Frontier flight first thing this AM was cancelled to Denver, and many United flights leaving Denver were cancelled, yet as I write we’re flying in gorgeously sunny skies—hopefully beating this last winter storm that’s apparently on its way (side note: when I landed this was published, so obviously we have made it to Denver and we will see you this afternoon). 

So the three of us are doing our thing in flight, Stephen pounding away on his keyboard (though not quite as loudly as me), Regan sits ahead of us CEO style in first class (bumped, not a purchased ticket) watching 30 Rock, and I’m bloggin’ away.

Arriving into Austin was welcome warmth, spectacular sun and temperature. It’s the best weather so far. And, while weather is really an exceptionally boring and mindless topic, when you live in 40-50 degrees and rainy for much of the year (though I actually love it) the topic of sunny skies and arid warmth becomes just a tad more interesting.

Austin is such a hoppin’ city, and for a Friday night our turnout was fantastic—probably close to 200. Significantly more people than we had last time in Austin, and the energy and excitement was a lot better as well. Not that last time our Austin trip wasn’t great, it was good. But this was really exceptional with the quality of people and just the…Energy.

I’d rather have energy, excitement, and conviction any day of the week over someone with just talent and talk that lacks passion. In Austin we had people that are both talented and excited. The best of both. 

When I reference specific people that I meet on the Road Tour I always hesitate a bit, because there’s always more people that I can’t blog about that I met who are equally interesting. But I try to tie in one story or experience.

At this event I met a guy with a great story, his name is Mario (his brother Tommy attended the event as well), and is signed up under Colleen who was also attending. Mario’s story is a great one, he grew up in the Lyford, Texas area. Which, many of you know, is home to Hilltop Gardens—the Historical Home of Aloe. There’s more to this great story, it’s just evolving and someday I’ll write more about it, but the short of it that Mario has gone on to become exceptionally successful, and as I understand it is an inventor (even featured in magazines like Popular Mechanics) and has also done some feature work in TV. The amazing thing is not that he’s totally bought into Univera—the products and the business. It’s that he has a stronger tie to Hilltop Gardens than most anybody I know.

See, when Mario was growing up, his parents worked in agriculture and in the fields. And, some of the work they did was planting and harvesting aloe.

But the magic is, they didn’t just work any farms. One of the farms his parents worked in the fields was the Hilltop Gardens farm itself, before Bill had actually purchased it (owned by a different family, with a different name—but the oldest aloe vera farm in the U.S.).

So the evolution of this story is an amazing one, and among many other stories of success that will grow over the years this will also be another interesting one. 

 

 

No doubts, take Lasix only as prescribed by your physician. Levitra is one of the best-known medications of all time. What is the most significant information you must study about levitra vs cialis? Most doctors say the effectiveness of Levitra is well documented. Absolutely, a sexual problem refers to a problem during any phase of the sexual response cycle that prevents the individual from experiencing satisfaction from the sexual life. Whilst sex is not vital for good health, its doubtless important for anyone. Why it happen? What kinds of professionals treat sexual diseases in men? A common class of antidepressants, which include Zoloft can kill the mood in bedroom.