Objections, Your Honor

Whenever I talk with anyone in sales, this question invariably pops up:

“How would you suggest I deal with objections?”

Short answer:
Don’t do anything objectionable.

Long Answer:
Take a seat.

Objections can take many forms. Maybe it’s about budget. Timing. Needing to talk with a partner before making big decisions.

Whatever they’re telling you, it’s a smoke screen.

The reason they give is never what the objection is truly about. No matter what the excuse, here’s the real issue:

Lack of Trust

Maybe they don’t trust you. Maybe they don’t trust themselves. Maybe they don’t trust whatever you’re selling to do what they need done.

Maybe they don’t trust their ability to do what you say they can do.

Maybe they don’t trust their team to follow through.

How do you find out?

You’re not a mind reader, so the only other option is to treat their objection as a request for more information. They need to know more about you, what you’re selling, other people who have bought from you previously, their results, how people like them have fared with your services, etc.

Objections are really only objections when you’ve done something inappropriate. Otherwise, they’re a request to build more trust.

Teachable Moment or Time for a Lesson?

Employees make mistakes, and even if you’re not new to the management game it can be difficult to know what to do about it.

You do the best you can. When you know better, you do better. ~David Hira

If someone under your care messes up, the first thing you should do is ask yourself:

Are they trying to do their job correctly?

If the answer is Yes, then this is an opportunity for you to continue their training. Help them understand why what they did was a mistake, what the expected course of action from this point forward is, and why. If the answer is No, however, then this is the time for disciplinary action. If they consistently are making the same mistakes even after proper instruction, then they are actively wasting your company’s time & resources.

Too often I see managers writing people up for simple mistakes that were the result of the manager’s own failure to properly train their employees. Disciplining someone who is genuinely trying to do good work will only erode any enthusiasm or loyalty they feel to your company. As a manager, it’s your job to tell your employees what’s expected of them, give them the tools to do their job, and empower them to use those tools.

Mistakes will be made, and that’s just par for the course. What you shouldn’t do is punish those who are trying. Otherwise, you’ll create an environment where honest hard-working people will be too scared to do anything, and that is the biggest mistake you can make.

Employee Turnover

There’s an entertainer’s proverb that goes a little something like:

Don’t believe your own promo.

It’s a subtle reminder to keep your head on your shoulders, and not get too carried away with the story of your character at the expense of losing who you actually are.

(Plus, if you choose to only believe the nice things people say about you, why don’t you choose to believe what all your haters say, too?)

This isn’t limited to the world of entertaining. It happens everywhere. And I get it, the neatly packaged soundbite is so much easier to handle than the (often) messy / unflattering truth.  In an effort to maintain our image, we like to gloss over the parts that we don’t like, and pretend they’re not there.

Doing this will destroy your life & business.

Case in point.

Losing Employees

CEOs, C-suite executives, and managers often think excessive turnover is just the nature of the beast.

It isn’t.

Sure, the world has changed to a more gig-focused dynamic, but employees who feel like their contributions matter (and are fairly compensated for it), will be fiercely loyal.

Turnover, then, is a symptom of a bigger issue and it’s costing your business dearly. Think about the gym industry. They have a turnover rate of 160% annually.

That means hire all new people. Fire everyone. Then hire 60% more new people.

Every. Year.

And they wonder why the industry is dying…

Decreased Effectiveness

Think about your business. A solid worker walks up and hands you a typed resignation letter. (Or even better, just emails it on Saturday night.)

You know that the instant someone turns in their two weeks’ notice, their give-a-shit drops to less than zero. This means other people on your team will have to step in to take up the slack.

And when you really think about it, you’ll realize that process didn’t start on the day they handed in their resignation. Who knows how long they’ve been pulling back from their job? How long have you been losing out on their capacity to be productive?

It could be months of lost revenue due to lack of engagement.

Maybe you’ll have to reach out to a temp agency to find a replacement. That costs the staffing agency time & money in terms of their vetting process, employee costs of their own, etc. Do you think that all happens for free? Nope. They pass those costs on to you, their customer.

Further, you now have the tricky job of facilitating their transition out of your organization. Exit interviews, HR hours spent covering your legal ass, etc. That all costs a lot, too.

Sidenote: Exit interviews are less than worthless. If you’re waiting this long to care about what your employee thinks about your company, you shouldn’t be surprised they’re leaving you. Also, if you expect honest answers, you’re crazy. If you actually wanted the truth, your employee would have felt comfortable coming to you with their problem months ago. Instead, they disengaged from your company, coasted on your time, and will give you the answers they think you want to hear.

What else are you losing when that employee leaves? All that institutional knowledge and shared culture. This has a direct impact on everyone else in the team, too. If you’re a client-based dynamic, who knows how many of your clients they’ve culled from your database. Goodbye contracts!

All Important Process: Hiring

So your company is hemorrhaging value with the loss of a single employee. Now you have to stop the bleeding. You want it done as quickly as possible, but if you don’t do it right, you’ll be right back in the same situation you’re in right now.

Hiring is one of the single most important things your company will do.

A lot of companies I work with don’t have a dedicated team to handle the hiring process. Instead, they dump it on some poor soul who already has a full plate. Now they have another hat they’re not trained to wear. Their client-facing work suffers. The client relationships suffer as they’re now focused on this new responsibility.

How can you expect stellar results when you hand one of the most important responsibilities a company has to someone that the dart landed on?

Knowing how to filter qualified candidates is a fine art itself. How do you get through the fluff, and to the heart of how your candidate actually works?

(Wouldn’t it be nice to have a mind reader on your side. . .)

How many hours are spent checking references? Leaving messages? Scheduling times to call back? Actually talking to references.

Multiplied by the number of candidates.

All before knowing they’re worth the effort.

5th Gear

So you’ve finally gone through the hiring process, found the perfect fit for the job & your company’s culture. Now what?

I don’t care how amazing someone is at their job; they’ll never be up to speed on their first day.

So.

What’s your onboarding process like?

Disney’s is a multi-day process. (I know because I went through it, myself!) It’s no surprise why they consistently have the best customer service in the world. They understand the value of instilling their employees with the right understanding of how their company works, and the culture they’ve built around their brand.

Again, what’s your onboarding process like? A couple balloons at their station and a handshake?

That’s going to cost you.

Grand Total

No wonder the cost of turnover can easily surpass the annual salary of the employee you’re replacing. You’d have to keep the newly hired person onboard for more than a year to just break even.

So, what’s the solution?

Keep your employees happy in the first place. Hire smart when you absolutely must bring someone new into the company.

How do you do all that? Glad you asked, because that’s exactly what I do.

When you truly understand what motivates your employees, you can custom-fit your strategy to what they want. This is one of those mythical win-win situations that I absolutely love helping clients achieve.

Let’s talk. You’ll find my rates to help keep your employees happy will pay for itself many times over. . .

Socratic Espionage

I know one thing; that I know nothing. ~Socrates

Socrates was a master at looking like an idiot while being the smartest person in the room. It’s an incredibly effective strategy, and there’s even a term for it: The Socratic Method. It’s the process of asking innocent questions that trap your target before they’re aware anything’s wrong.

Basically, it’s the skill of being stupid like a fox.

[vc_video ratio=”16-9″ align=”center” link=”https://youtu.be/y7QaXj-vnek”]

“Stupid like a fox,” is one of my favorite lines of all time, and it perfectly encapsulates the strategy we’re going to explore together.

In some ways, Homer is the epitome of the Socratic Method. He’s a bumbling idiot that everyone underestimates, yet everything seems to work out in his favor.

Over the years I’ve used the socratic method mixed with a healthy dose of human psychology to create something I call “Socratic Espionage.” It’s the closest you’ll get to being a master spy who can find out everything you need to know about someone, without them being able to stop themselves from sharing it.

Answers Without Questions

How many times have you been at a coffee shop, and overhear an incredibly personal conversation between two people? It’s amazing what people will share when they think nobody else is listening, isn’t it?

The instant they know you’re paying attention, though, they clam up. And, what would happen if you were bold enough to ask them a point blank question?

They’d tell you to get lost, right?

People hate telling you things. (Especially if they think it can be used against them!)

That’s why they won’t answer your questions. Information is power, and by refusing to answer you questions, they’re trying to maintain control of the situation.

Ask someone what their budget is for hiring speakers? Forget about it. They’re not going to tell you. They want you bid low because you’re desperate. They save money, and you miss out.

Need to know what the political landscape is in an office? Nobody’s going to take off the gloves and tell you what they really think of their manager. . . unless they’re an idiot. They don’t know where your loyalties lie, so they’re going to play it safe.

The more you appear to need something, the less willing people are to give it to you.

I wish it weren’t true, but it is. That’s just how things are. So how do we get around this?

Secret of Comedy

Humans laugh for only 2 reasons:

  1. They feel superior
  2. They feel surprised

That’s it. I’ve just ruined your ability to enjoy anything funny from now on. I don’t care what situation you propose, if it’s funny, it’s because it’s one or both of these things.

Socrates + Comedy = Success

People hate to tell you anything, but they love to feel superior.

More than that; they love to let you know they’re superior.

That’s the secret formula.

By using strategically incorrect statements (instead of fact-finding questions) you are going to by-pass your mark’s in-born hesitation to answer questions, and trigger their deep desire to demonstrate their superiority over you.

In Practice

Let’s say you’re trying to find out how your friendly competition has been getting so much work lately.

You could ask them, “What’s your marketing strategy?”

Since it’s a direct question, you’ll get a vague answer. No good.

Try this instead.

Say something like, “I’ve been using Facebook marketing, and it’s pretty much useless.” You’ve demonstrated you’re failing which allows him to feel superior.

He will respond with one of two possible answers:

  1. Are you kidding me? We’ve been using them for 8 months, and it’s like printing money!
  2. Oh man, I feel you on that. We sank thousands into Facebook ads, and never saw a penny come back.

Either way he’s told you a very valuable piece of information about his marketing strategy.

So who cares that he thinks you’re stupid?

They don’t know you’re stupid like a fox.

 

Effect First Thinking

When a magician is creating something new, there are 2 parts of the equation.

  1. The Effect: What do I want the audience to experience?
  2. The Method: How am I going to make that happen?

In a good show, the magician puts most of his time into answering the first question as clearly as possible, and then devoting excessive amounts of time & effort to figuring out the second question.

He allows the effect to dictate his choices.

When it’s a decision between two options:

  1. The easy way that diminishes the effect, or
  2. The difficult way that enhances the effect

The good magician will choose the second option every time.

It’s not unusual for a magician to spend a couple years working on a method if it’s the difference between an ok trick and a perfect trick.

Backwards

Sometimes, however, a method can be so ingenious, novel, or fun that a magician tries to come up with a trick that would justify using that method. This, however, rarely creates something truly spectacular.

To use a common saying, “This is the tail wagging the dog.”

Your Business

Many people who aren’t where they want to be suffer from “Method First Thinking.” They allow where they are to dictate where they want to go.

So often when I ask clients what they want, they can’t tell me. If you don’t know where you want to go (the what), focusing on the how isn’t going to do you any good.

Get absolutely clear on what you want in your life, and then figure out how to make that happen. Not the other way around.

Focus on the effect, first & the method becomes secondary.

Marginal vs Full Cost

Gregory (Scotland Yard detective): “Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?”
Holmes: “To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.”
Gregory: “The dog did nothing in the night-time.”
Holmes: That was the curious incident.”

That’s an excerpt from Sir Conan Arthur Doyle’s “Silver Blaze,” a Sherlock Holmes novel, and it highlights a particularly curious hiccup in how our brains work: we’re exceptionally bad at noticing what’s not there.

In the story, detectives search everywhere for clues. They dust for fingerprints, look for fibers, etc. They’re looking for the presence of evidence.

Sherlock is the genius because he identifies the absence of a clue; thereby making it the most important clue of all. The dog’s silence means it recognized whoever was committing the crime.

What this costs you

Every time you’re making a choice, you’re evaluating what it is going to cost. There’s the marginal (or face value) cost, and full cost.

Here’s how it plays out, and trips you up.

Consider you’re starting a business, but you don’t have a big budget so you get free business cards from VistaPrint.

At face value it’s very low cost. There are no dollars involved.

You hand them out to prospective clients who you’re perfectly suited to work with. They have a huge budget, want the service you’re providing, and you guys would do amazing work together.

They look at your card and see the watermark on the back.

Get your free business cards from VistaPrint, too!

They’re considering putting you in charge of a massive project involving a lot of money, and you’re showing them you’re not willing to invest in the essentials.

They never offer you the job.

You won’t know why. The phone just won’t ring.

The dog’s not barking.

You’re paying the full price of your decision, but you’ll never see it.

Every choice you make is paid for in full whether you know it or not.

Every time you choose to do it the cheap way instead of the right way, you wind up paying more.

“If you need a machine and don’t buy it, then you will ultimately find that you have paid for it and don’t have it”. ~Henry Ford

Value

When I talk with potential clients who would rather do it on their own, I see that they’re signing up to pay twice for results they’re not going to get. They think, “Boy, that’s expensive! I bet I could do it myself!” Cut to 3 years later and they’ve missed out on all the payoff from investing in themselves compounded by 3 years. (You’re not just farther behind: You’re farther behind multiplied by how far you could have gotten with what you learned in those 3 years.)

Penny smart and a pound foolish.

Every time you consider investing in yourself, it’s difficult to identify the costs you’re not going to see. Trust the people who have been where you are & can tell you. They’re desperately trying to save you from making a costly mistake trying to avoid a marginal expense.

You can’t afford not to.

Like vs Trust

If I’m going to have surgery done, the single most important factor in deciding who my surgeon is (besides what insurance I have), is whether or not I trust they can get the job done right.

I don’t care how terse they are in the consultation. I don’t care that they didn’t ask about my hobbies.

Trust is all-important.

But that’s not the end of the story.

High School Debate

I took debate as an elective in high school a whopping 6 times, and participated in tournaments enough that I earned a membership in the National Forensics League (NFL).

NFL debate tournaments were hosted at a variety of surrounding high schools (complete with trophy ceremonies, and everything). This is where I learned how to be comfortable speaking in front of a crowd.

The set-up is like this: There’s a “should” statement called the Resolution. For example, “We should respect the right to life.” Then you’re assigned the Affirmative role (you support the resolution), or the Opposition role (you argue against the resolution).

The Affirmative debater would go first to build their case. Then there’s 3 minutes for cross examination where the Opposition could ask clarifying questions. The Opposition could choose to go with the straight refutation strategy (only focus on why the Affirmative’s case doesn’t hold water), or the Refute & Build strategy (argue against Affirmative, and then present their own case to go against the resolution). Then Affirmative has a chance to speak again before the Opposition has the closing remarks.

That’s my whole world from 9th grade on through into college.

What does all this have to do with liking & trusting?

Everything, really. The question of whether trust or likability is better is a perfect example of a beginner’s debate tactic:

The false dichotomy: A logical fallacy that artificially assumes there are only 2 outcomes when there are, in fact, many other possibilities. Often called black-and-white thinking.

The question “which is more important” tends to direct your thinking into focusing solely on one or the other, instead of realizing you’ll do a lot more business with both.

Turns out, doctors who spend a little more time with patients, being personable, paying attention (instead of only looking at their charts), etc. are sued less often than doctors who are more to-the-point.

It’s in everyone’s best interest is the doctor is, in fact, trustworthy and likable.

Same goes for you.

Sure, I can do business with someone I don’t like if I trust they’ll deliver what they promise, but I’m going to continue doing business with someone I like and trust.

Being one doesn’t preclude your ability to be the other. It’s not a binary system. Being likable and trustworthy will gain you business, as well as prevent you from losing business in the long run.

Stage Name

What I Learned About Personal Branding When I Picked My Stage Name

Maybe you don’t need a stage name. Maybe you don’t have thousands of fans who want to track down where you live. Maybe you don’t want to create an entirely fictitious persona for fun & profit.

But here’s why you should still care about branding.

Branding isn’t something only companies should think about. Anyone interested in getting more out of life should think about their branding, and here’s why.

Personal branding allows you to take the lead in how people see you. It allows you to control the narrative others use when talking about you (and if you brand correctly they will be talking about you). If you craft a distinctive brand, you can position yourself as an expert in your field instead of being just another person who does the same thing as everyone else.

About 8 years ago I was the tour manager for Brian Brushwood. One late night after a show we were talking about showbiz and I said, “I should come up with a stage name.”

That’s the instant everything changed.

I didn’t realize it at the time, but what started with that one idea was the beginning of crafting my own brand. Taking ownership of how I choose to present myself to the world has improved my business, established my career, and even helped in my personal life.

Here are the lessons I’ve learned from creating not only a stage name, but an entire stage character, and how you can apply that experience in your own life (even if you never intend on going into showbiz).

Get Specific

In the magic world it’s not uncommon to see a business card that say, “Perfect for all occasions!” Really? How about funerals? Do you do those? Don’t think so.

The more general you are, the fewer reasons you give someone to pick you. Beige makes no statement.

When considering my character I knew I wanted to have fun on stage. I don’t want to come across as taking myself too seriously.

That’s where the “Jonny” part comes into play.

And then I added the tagline: “Psychic of the Year 2017!” It’s a great litmus test for my audiences. If they start laughing right away I know they understand it’s a joke. If they compliment me on the achievement, I might have to be a little less subtle with the comedy.

Sidenote: When I came up with that tagline, it was 8 years ago. 2017 seemed like it was so far away. How time flies, right? So, at the end of the month I’m going to update it to 2027. I think that has a nice ring to it, and it’ll be more obvious that it’s a joke again.

So I got specific about what kind of experience I wanted my audience to have (fun!), what venues I wanted to work (absolutely zero children), and what kind of material I choose (only mind reading). The more specific I got, the easier time I had finding people who wanted me. Instead of saying, “I’m great for everything!” I’m able to say, “I’m perfect for your event because here are my specialties, and here’s where they overlap with what you have going on.”

This has paid off numerous times for TV opportunities, show bookings, and all the way down the line. Instead of being lumped in with all “magicians” I’m able to stand out because I’m distinctly unique as compared to everyone else being considered for the slot. It’s the law of supply & demand: the more rare something is, the more money it can demand.

It also allows me to turn down opportunities I know aren’t a good match.

Without getting crystal clear on what I’m about, I’d have no way to judge what’s a good fit and what’s not. (That also means the people thinking about hiring me have no idea what to say “yes” to, either.)

What’s the Narrative?

After my show when people talk to their friends, I want them to mainly talk about how much fun they had, and how much they laughed. Then I want them to talk about how they were able to do things they had no idea they could do, and wonder what else they might be able to do if they put their mind to it. And, lastly, I want them to talk about what a fun, smart, engaging, likeable guy I am.

Once I figure out the experience, I can then work on choosing tricks that will do the best job of telling that story. I now have a story that guides my marketing. It guides my interactions with people I work with. It informs every decision I make.

Same goes with your own story.

What story are you telling yourself? The answer to this will tell you what story you’re telling other people, too. It affects the people you choose to date. The jobs you take. What you allow others to do to you.

In short, everything.

That’s the power of your story.

Reputation Building

Proverbs 22:1 “A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.”

But it’ll also make you rich.

When you answer all the questions about who you want to be, and then put those answers into practice, you’ll start building a reputation. That reputation will make or break your career & personal life.

Your reputation, like trust, is built slowly. A good reputation is built even slower.

To destroy it can take only a moment.

It’s like a tree; takes years to grow, but you can chop it down in minutes.

Everything you say yes to contributes to your reputation. Everything you say no to contributes to your reputation. Sometimes it’s even more important to say no than yes. . .

Anything that doesn’t meet the bar you’ve set for yourself should ruthlessly be cut from your life. The higher your standards, the better your reputation. The higher standard you set for yourself, the bigger the rewards you’ll get because of it.

Allow Yourself to Grow

When I first started figuring out who “Jonny Zavant” is, I was all over the place. I did a trick with a pet cockroach that spelled words people were thinking of.  I had a mohawk.

I thought I was punk.

But my show is much less aggressive than punk, so all the grungy fonts and dirty textures I was using over my imagery didn’t fit the experience people had.

I was heavily influenced by my mentors, and I was mostly parroting what had worked for them. Once I allowed myself to really settle into what I wanted to say instead of what others were saying, I really settled into an approach that worked for me.

Be Prepared for Resistance

It felt weird when I first started introducing myself as Jonny Zavant. It was awkward. I felt stiff.

My mom didn’t like it.

She said the name I already had was strong enough, so why not just use that.

My longtime friends gave me shit about it. “Going Hollywood, huh?”

Eventually people got on board, and it’s just part of what makes me “me.”

What’s Your Stage Name?

Maybe you won’t go so far as creating a stage name for yourself. Maybe you’ll never get in front of an audience, either.

But you should still make time to deeply consider how what kind of reputation you want to build for yourself. It affects your personal & professional relationships in ways you’ll never know.

My friend CJ’s favorite saying is: “A man is only as good as his word.”

What a powerful statement! And it’s exactly what you need to think about when you’re doing your own personal branding.

Now, when you start making changes, you’ll see resistance from your friends, family, and coworkers.

Maybe they resent your success. Maybe they’ll think you’re just being fake. Maybe they like you the way you are, and don’t think you need to change.

Whatever their reason for wanting you not to change (& their desire to keep you in the box they’ve chosen to put you in) doesn’t mean you’re obligated to stay there.

Figure out who you want to be, and then do what you have to to make sure that’s the person people talk about when your name comes up.

Do it right and it’ll make you wealthy.

Work Life Balance

Work/Life Balance is a Scam.

Seems like most people hate their job. Seems like most people hate their life.

And it seems like they’re trying to find happiness by finding a balance point between the two. In this way of thinking, however, this hypothetical person is constantly stuck between two weights that are pulling them in opposite directions. The more time they spend on one side, the higher up the other side goes (and looks more unattainable). This means they have to rush back over to the other side which only serves to make the up & down cycle go faster and faster with higher highs & lower lows.

That’s why it feels like you can have a happy family, a good job, but not both. There is no balance. It’s an either/or question with this mindset.

That’s why I say Work/Life Balance is a scam. It’s an idea that is overly simplistic, and keeps you running from one obligation to another without being able to really settle into what really makes you happy. You’re forever torn between two opposites.

There’s a way out.

Allow me to introduce Buckminster Fuller, striking a classic Mind Reader pose.

buckminster-fuller-portraitHe was a genius who was way ahead of his time. One of his most recognizable contributions to society is the “golf ball” at Epcot.

tensegrityWhile it might seem a big claim that a Disney attraction is a major contribution to humanity, it’s actually a lot bigger than that. The hidden genius of the golf ball is the secret of geodesic domes. How in the world do such light structures cover such great distances without collapsing?

Fuller gave this question quite a bit of thought and came up with a novel word for the answer:

Tensegrity: the characteristic property of a stable three-dimensional structure consisting of members under tension that are contiguous and members under compression that are not.

Tension + Integrity

Think about your body. There’s the fundamental skeletal structure. If we were only bones that were rigidly connected, we wouldn’t be able to move. If we were only muscles, we’d be a big blob of quivering jello on the floor.

Only through the connection of the rigid bone with the flexible & strong muscles can we run, jump, do cartwheels, etc. These are astonishingly complex movements performed by a body that is held together through the interplay of dynamic tension.

This is a roundabout way of saying you cannot have integrity without tension.

Think of any partner dance. Each partner relies on the counterbalance of the other to maintain the ability to continue the experience.

The dance is a dynamic expression of tensegrity through the interplay of two smaller systems made possible through tensegrity. Mind. Blown.

But what does this have to do with work & life?

Well, everything.

Our lives are not a static either/or see-saw with life on one side and work on the other. Our lives are more like a dance of obligations, desires, hopes, and dreams, and the only way it continues is through the tension and connection between the two. They are not opposites. They are not separate. They are intimately connected and only through that connection can you enjoy either.

So stop trying to run from one, or the other. You can’t ignore your home life and spend all your time at the office. Nor can you stay home all day and never create anything.

Balance is an illusion. Balance is the imaginary point between two opposing forces.

Integrity, happiness, and all of life is an intricate network of tension, flexibility, hard, soft, and all opposites you can imagine.

It’s a dance of dances as far down as you want to go.

So stop worrying about balancing your life, and embrace the dynamic tension between the two. Only then can you run, jump, and play in the sunlight.

New Jobs

Old Game

Imagine you’ve spent your whole life getting good at playing chess. Everyone you know plays chess. Your family plays chess. Your dad & his dad before him played chess as far back as you can imagine.

Then you hear about a new game, Go. It’s completely unlike chess. The rules are different. It feels totally foreign.

Before you know it, nobody plays Chess anymore. You’re hard pressed to even find a board to buy in any store.

What do you do?

Do you try to play Go with the rules of Chess? Do you force everyone to play your game? Or do you adapt to the situation, unlearn everything about what playing games means to you, and put effort into the new paradigm?

How would your answer change if we were asking about the type of job you have?

New Game

The world has changed in a fundamental way. For most of my life my dad worked in a factory. He’d stand on concrete for 14 hours a day, come home exhausted, and then go back the next day to do it all over again.

For most of his life my dad lived in a world without the internet; the biggest game changer in the history of humankind. I think when people look back, historians will count the invention of the connected world head and shoulders above the creation of Gutenberg’s printing press in terms of significance.

I’ve never worked in a factory. The most normal job I’ve had is a graphic designer at an agency and that lasted all of 9 months. After that working at Disney’s Animal Kingdom as a safari driver was the most normal position I’ve had.

Other than that, I’ve been self employed since the day I graduated college.

How?

The power of internet.

Politicians love to promise people that they can bring manufacturing jobs back to America. Nobody can do that. Least of all a politician.

The only person who can get you a new job is you.

The days of proverbial chess are gone. It’s never coming back. The rules of the money-making game have changed forever. If you keep trying to play by the old agreements, you’d do worse than lose; you’ll never get to play in the first time.

Do yourself a favor, and learn how the new economy of work & effort & value creation works, and then make it work for you.

Otherwise you’ll have to sacrifice your king.