Instinct or data?

by Fabrice Calando on April 17, 2014

When it come to determining what the next step is, you have two choices:

Follow your instinct or follow the data.

Instinct is of course a feeling. An intuition about what the next step could be. It’s usually based on experience and education. Following the data usually means testing different options and following what works.

Instinct has the advantage of being unexpected. Its risk? Failure. Following the data reduces the odds of mistakes, but can that come at the detriment of surprise? Is it a matter of revolutionary vs. incremental (or evolutionary)?

I don’t know if there’s a correct path, just know what you’re following, the outcome will vary.

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Autonomy and mastery

by Fabrice Calando on April 16, 2014

Autonomy and mastery: that’s what we look for as employees. Predictably,  that’s the supervisor’s biggest challenge.

Let me explain. The saying goes:
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”

For a supervisor, giving a fish is easy (conversely sending them off to learn how to fish with little training is just as easy). The hard part is teaching to fish, to guide your team enough for them to learn, master and be autonomous. It’s hard because teaching requires knowledge, communication, adaptability, self-improvement, patience and dedication — not the skills we all carry.

The more I think about it, the more I realize that as a manager, your priority is to be a great teacher.

Hone your skills. Go teach.

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Discussing the Four Hour Work-Week

by Fabrice Calando on April 15, 2014

Tim Ferriss does great work. I’m a fan of his The Four Hour Work-Week. It exposes many of the inefficiencies that are too easily called “work” and offers interesting solutions. Ignore the book title for a moment; to me it’s not about working less, it’s about leveraging the internet, automation and outsourcing to free up time to do the work that matters.

Regardless of whether you work in an office or if you’re on your own there’s some great stuff there for you.

On Wednesday April 16th, Micheline Bourque invited me to discuss the book in an online panel. The event will be in French and if you want to listen in, here’s the link to event:
Club de lecture affaires

Just tune in around 12-12:15.

Hope to see you there.

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The pace of revolution

April 10, 2014

The impression, I think, is that revolutions happen quickly. One big bang; overnight, everything changes. The new team is in place, the new corporate vision announced, the new government takes power, the new process implemented. Now the fresh air will blow. True, there’s usually a catalyst (an economic downturn, an election, a loss in market [...]

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What do artists do?

April 9, 2014

A few days ago I came across this definition of an artist: As artists, our job is to help people see things that perhaps we don’t see on the surface. – Louie Schwartzberg Artists are the ones dedicated enough to look below the surface, the ones that work to understand the mechanics and relate it [...]

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What do artists do?

April 9, 2014

A few days ago I came across this definition of an artist: As artists, our job is to help people see things that perhaps we don’t see on the surface. – Louie Schwartzberg Artists are the ones dedicated enough to look below the surface, the ones that work to understand the mechanics and relate it [...]

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They just don’t get it

April 8, 2014

It’s easy to blame them for your failure. It’s tempting to say the voters didn’t get your platform when you lose the election, or the customers didn’t get your product when you go out of business or the students don’t get the material when the class fails the midterm, or the boss didn’t get your [...]

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Waiting for permission

April 2, 2014

It’s frightening to put out a project, a story, a design, a song, an idea out there in the universe. It seems dangerous to present something new, something different, something no one has seen before. It’s terrifying to run your own race, listen you your intuition, listen to your calling. It’s terrifying because it hasn’t [...]

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Beware of falling ice

April 1, 2014

There’s a yearly ritual in Montreal where I live and work. As spring arrives, skyscrapers downtown quickly place temporary signs outside that read “beware of falling ice.” As the weather warms up, ice melts and slips off the top of buildings. I can imagine the meeting that led to those signs as solutions went something [...]

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The lonesome cowboy

March 27, 2014

It’s tempting to aspire to be the lonesome cowboy; the hero who stands alone in the face of adversity and puts him needs aside for the greater good. We glamorize individual achievements as though success is deep rooted in that person’s DNA. Of course aspiring to be the hero, the one who scores the game-winning [...]

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