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Posts Tagged ‘creativity’

The Daily Rituals of Great Minds

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Part One

I have become a bit obsessed about the daily work patterns of famous people. I liken this interest to my interest in biographies: it’s fascinating to see how someone who changed the world thinks and acts on a daily basis. Voyeuristic? Maybe. Informative? Like you wouldn’t believe.

My new morning habit is to read a single chapter out of Daily Rituals: How Artists Work by Mason Currey. The book’s premise is dead simple: it explains the daily rituals of 161 inspired minds – authors, playwrights, philosophers, scientists, mathematicians – particularly the self-discipline required to be great and navigate life’s frequent and annoying obstacles.

rituals

If anything, I find this book’s themes quite constant: diligence, discipline, set wake up/work times, and even a little bit of patterned self-medication. The book is truly fascinating, and you should buy it. My suggestion would be to get the hardcover, and pass on the Kindle version unless you are a 100% pure ebook hound. You want this one on your nightstand.

Part Two

In keeping with the above, here’s a website that’s equally fascinating: The Daily Routines of Famous Creative People. Don’t let the term ‘creative’ think this doesn’t apply to you: whether you write for a living or make presentations or run multiple businesses, creativity is part of what you do. Don’t fool yourself.

This site gives a daily timeline of about two dozen famous minds, from 12 AM running through the rest of the day. The graphic is below, but you need to visit the site to click around the graphic (it’s interactive) to see exactly what each person was doing in each segment. It’s awesome.

The_Daily_Routines_of_Famous_Creative_People___Podio

If nothing else, I find digesting information like this forces me to be more conscious of my own daily habits, much like reading about top athletic performers made me think about my own training and incorporate some new ideas.

Always be learning. It’s a secret to growth and performance I wish I learned 15 years ago.

Have a great weekend, everyone.

The Art of Possibility

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possible

I was at a client recently. I was hunkered down in their conference room trying to knock out a few emails in between meetings. I noticed a sign that caught my attention.

The sign read 10 Rules for Meetings and was clearly posted as some guiding principles for those who use the room. It included a few goodies like (in no particular order):

  1. Give everyone a chance to speak before speaking again

  2. Assign action items and timeframes

  3. Finish on time

  4. Have a clear purpose and agenda for the meeting

While these are great reminders of what makes an effective and productive meeting, there was one that grabbed my attention:

THINK “OUT OF THE BOX”; BE A POSSIBILITARIAN!

I stopped to ponder the value of that statement.  How many times do we all sit in meetings that get de-railed by what “can’t” be done when trying to solve a problem?  I have been in meetings where one problem has turned into an immeasurable list of the things we can’t do. Roadblock after roadblock. We spent so much time talking about what we can’t do that we forgot what the problem was.

I completely understand how those conversations happen, but they can totally hijack a meeting, stifle creativity, demoralize the team, and leave everyone feeling defeated.  The true genius is within those folks who are not saddled by what cannot be done, but challenged by the possibilities of what can.  They are POSSIBILITARIANS, and they tend to open doors for all of us.  Remind yourself of the jobs created by folks like Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg and thousands like them who decided to chase what is possible rather than focus on what they can’t do.

For a few fleeting moments, this one simple rule opened a world of opportunity for me.  It reminded me that I am more valuable to my company, and my peers, and my clients when I chase what is possible and focus on “getting things done.” Sometimes I ruffle feathers. Sometimes I say the wrong thing. Or sometimes my good intentions are labelled as “we can’t do that.” And sometimes I stumble on an idea that makes a positive impact on a wide audience.

With thanks to my customer and a simple little sign in their conference room, I am reminded that the chase for the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is far better than sitting alone justifying that I “can’t” find it because it doesn’t exist.

Seize the day!  Chase the moment!  Be a POSSIBILITARIAN!  You have it in you!

“Jony Makes Some of His Greatest Decisions While Having a Drink”

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Fascinating article in Vanity Fair about how Jony Ive and Marc Newson collaborated for Product Red:

In 2007, at Larry Gagosian’s town house, following the opening of the Newson show, Bono spoke to Newson about the possibility of doing something for Product (Red). Bono has also known Ive for years. They met through Steve Jobs, whom Bono had approached back in 2004 when the iPod was new, offering his band, U2, for an iPod commercial. Part of the deal included a special-edition iPod that Bono had requested, manufactured in black with a red dial. (At the time, iPods came only in white.) When the deal seemed like it might founder, Ive was dispatched in person to take the prototype black-red iPod to Bono at his home in Dublin. The two men went drinking in a pub and sorted out the remaining issues in the deal. “Jony makes some of his greatest decisions while having a drink,” Bono said to me over the phone, speaking from his home in France.

Read the whole thing.

Maybe Boston Legal was on to something, eh?

‘You’ve Just Gotta Fight Your Way Through’

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This quote is from Ira Glass, and it’s about working hard in creative endeavors so that your output can eventually match your ambitions, but this is worth hanging on your wall no matter what your business.

If more people kept fighting, even when things are far from where they’d like, everyone would be so much closer to their goals.

Ira Glass can teach us all a thing or two.

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MIPRO Consulting main website.

MIPRO on Twitter and Facebook.

About this blog.

Linkology: The Best of the Internet for 4/29/11

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Know This

The PlayStation Network was (badly) hacked, and 75M user accounts were compromised.  What’s been taken?  Passwords, billing information, and likely credit cards. If you our your children game on the PlayStation network, you need to know the details.  Here they are.

A biologist’s postdoc student wanted to buy a book about flies.  In searching Amazon, he found the book’s pricing to be $23,698,655.93.  What happened?  Nothing short of a couple runaway pricing algorithms.

Your taste is why your own work disappoints you.  Excellent advice for creative work from This American Life’s Ira Glass.

In the spirit of the NHL playoffs, here are the goal horns from every NHL arena.

Read This

Why McDonald’s Fries Taste So Good.  An excerpt about the incredible level of food engineering and flavor/satiety manipulation found in processed foods.  Probably the best thing I’ve read all week.

A profile of Apple’s Steve Jobs – from January 3, 1983.

Watch This

The Tempest Academy is a training facility in Los Angeles for people who want to learn parkour (aka freerunning).  Here’s what they teach.

Hyper Island Hard Facts, a promotional video for Hyper Island.  What is Hyper Island?  See here before watching the video.  If I were younger (and that’s the biggest if you’ll hear about all day), I’d be all over this.

Next time I need to try to illustrate the concept of choices to my son, I’m going to show him this picture by Alex Cretey Systermans.

Have a good weekend, everyone.

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More links:

MIPRO Consulting main website.

MIPRO on Twitter and Facebook.

About this blog.

Un-Manage Your Employees

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You know what we’ve found? Magical things happen when employees know they’ll get to be king for a week. Gone is the complaining about what management is forcing them to do, because rotating management gives them a clear perspective of both sides of the fence. Employees will step up and grow if you give them the chance.

Un-Manage Your Employees, an article for My Business by Rework co-author  and 37signals  partner David Heinemeier Hansson

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MIPRO Consulting is a nationally-recognized consulting firm specializing in PeopleSoft Enterprise (particularly Enterprise Asset Management) and Business Intelligence. You’re reading MIPRO Unfiltered, its blog. If you’d like to contact MIPRO, email is a great place to start, or you can easily jump over to its main website. If you’d like to see what MIPRO offers via Twitter or Facebook, we’d love to have you.

More quotes to read.

QUOTE: On Patience and Collaboration

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If you hold out with your vision a little bit, it’s like a cake being put in the oven. The scene doesn’t work immediately, you have to bake it a little bit. It’s unfair, when you begin to create a shot, say, or a scene, that it’s going to immediately be like those beautiful scenes in the movies. It needs a little bit of time to mature. It’s like taking the cake out without letting it be in the oven for more than a minute. Like, oh no, it’s terrible. So you have to be patient, and then slowly everyone starts to see that the ideas are right, or make the corrections. You have to battle the lack of confidence by giving the scene the chance to solidify.

Francis Ford Coppola on movie direction and collaboration

I think this quote gets at the crux of creative process, and it’s true for many endeavors.  What Coppola says about scene direction is true for (in our case) service line creation and client relationship strategies.  What appears to be insufficient or unfocused in the beginning just needs some time to breathe and perhaps absorb feedback from others.  Then, once the idea has seen the light of day for a while, it begins to take something close to its final shape.

(Via SvN)

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MIPRO Consulting is a nationally-recognized consulting firm specializing in PeopleSoft Enterprise (particularly Enterprise Asset Management) and Business Intelligence. You’re reading MIPRO Unfiltered, its blog. If you’d like to contact MIPRO, email is a great place to start, or you can easily jump over to its main website. If you’d like to see what MIPRO offers via Twitter or Facebook, we’d love to have you.

More quotes to read.

QUOTE: On Letting Your Ideas Breathe

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Usage is like oxygen for ideas. You can never fully anticipate how an audience is going to react to something you’ve created until it’s out there. That means every moment you’re working on something without it being in the public it’s actually dying, deprived of the oxygen of the real world.

Matt Mullenweg, founding developer of WordPress, in 1.0 Is The Loneliest Number

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MIPRO Consulting is a nationally-recognized consulting firm specializing in PeopleSoft Enterprise (particularly Enterprise Asset Management) and Business Intelligence. You’re reading MIPRO Unfiltered, its blog. If you’d like to contact MIPRO, email is a great place to start, or you can easily jump over to its main website. If you’d like to see what MIPRO offers via Twitter or Facebook, we’d love to have you.

More quotes here.

©2015 MIPRO Unfiltered