“Strategy needs to be flexible: it needs room to move. You can’t think of every single outcome, every possibility, but you need to build it out to allow for you to change tack at any given moment if things aren’t going in the right direction.”—Kripy
When I was living in Mexico, this was a really big chart album. I first heard it playing on a stereo in a cemetery on the night of the El Día de los Muertos. ‘Lento’ was the first song I’d heard in Spanish where I could instantly make out every word of the chorus.
When you’re learning a new language, there some moments like that, where words just becomes clear.
The chorus is really simple:
"Ser delicado y espera Dame tiempo para darte Todo lo que tengo”
It means: “Be delicate and wait, give me time so I can give you all that I have.”
Anyway, I was checking referrer stats in We Are Hunted’s analytics recently and one of our top referrers via Twitter has been @julietav - which is none other the the Julieta Venegas. She has music taste too. Through her Twitter, I discovered this amazing cover of ‘My Girls’.
In advertising, and also editorial, when people have 2 days, the briefing is much better, and the discussion is much better. It’s not that people just sign off on anything because they’re in a hurry. They’re just really looking at what they have, and trying to make the best product, and get it done.
If the anxiety is about the deadline, then the energy really focuses on the result. If there is not anxiety about a deadline, all of the anxiety goes right to the creative part.
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”—Steve Jobs (via hrrrthrrr)
“The messages that received the highest scores had three things in common: they contained something of substance, were timely, and provided the kind of information that users expected from the source company or organization. ”—Jakob Nielsen on user satisfaction with corporate communications via social media.
Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.
Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.
Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.
Every sentence must do one of two things—reveal character or advance the action.
Start as close to the end as possible.
Be a Sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them—in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.
Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.
I know the story on Facebook has shifted and people are going crazy about time on site, user growth, how it’s the fourth biggest country in the world, it’s revenue spike in the last 12 months etc. etc.
This isn’t to dispute any of the above points.
It’s simply to state that Facebook is no longer useful to me.
My Facebook inbox is full of stuff I don’t want from people I don’t know.
My notifications are the same. Friend requests, event invitations, Page Suggestions are now 95% irrelevant.
I’ll post a photo album occasionally. My wall gets something interesting on it once a fortnight. But that’s it.
The result is that I rarely check Facebook and when I do, it’s never longer than for a minute.
At least with Twitter, which I check and enjoy every day, I can moderate who I follow. And I don’t feel any obligation to follow back everyone who follows me. With Facebook, it’s different. Unless you want to cause offence, you have to accept everyone’s friendship.
I understand Facebook’s value and the hype around it.
But over a certain number of ‘friends’ (roughly 200) and after a certain period of time (10-12 months), Facebook simply becomes less useful.
“No one experiment is going to replace what we are now losing with the demise of news on paper, but over time, the collection of new experiments that do work might give us the journalism we need.”—Clay Shirky
While running with my friend and regular advisor Simon Kalinowski recently, he said something really smart.
In any business, the only long-term, irreplaceable skills are:
Commercial savvy (good business skills he called it) - Having the capability to look at and break apart any business in a structured way.
Everything else - legal, design, accounting is a commodity and can be bought in.
I’ve been thinking about what he said for weeks, and it’s true. Great leaders, managers and commercially savvy strategists are the most valuable entities in any business.
In thinking about my own skills, I think 1 & 2 are where I best fit.
But I also think there’s a 5th irreplaceable skill - which is relationships. Every person brings to an organisation a distinct set of relationships which, in their most tangible sense, result in information, knowledge, advice, leads, support and perspective.
I actually think it’s this 5th skill that’s the most important.
Jarryd Hayne, the world’s best player? How wrong I was. The world’s best player is Greg Inglis. A try, the winning field goal, outstanding defence, dangerous every time he touched the ball. He looked so superior to Hayne or Slater. It was quite stunning.
Hayne was swamped. 3 or 4 men in the tackle every time. His kick returns were average and he never looked threatening, even in broken play. Not once.
The Storm were dominant from the first set. The Eels never looked on top, until a brief stint after the 70 minute mark.
The short passes between forwards at the line. That appeared only a few times, right towards the end of the game. It’s as if the Eels were too stunned by the fact they’d made the grand final to start really playing in that first half.
The Eels lack of depth in the halves was very evident. A lacklustre kicking game had the Storm starting their sets 30 and 40 metres from their own line time and again. Cronk and Smith meanwhile had the Eels pinned repeatedly, forcing them to start sets from their own line.
The Eels looked nervous before kick-off. While Bellamy was still breaking things down for the Storm, the Eels were killing time. Where was Daniel Andersen in all that?
There was an interesting moment in the huddle before kick-off, as Cayless pumped his team up. All of a sudden, Hayne jumped in over the top of him and started barking orders. It looked wrong. Hayne seemed out of his depth. Cayless has been captain since he was Hayne’s age. He’s been in Grand Finals before. It wasn’t time for Hayne to speak up like he did.
The Eels repeated kicks to Steve Turner’s wing in the first half bordered on the absurd. So, so ineffective. Clearly it was in the game plan - but it was never on. I’m not sure why they persisted.
Fuifui Moi Moi. Amazing. What speed and strength. By far the Eels’ best. Single-handedly brought them back into the game when he came on for the 3rd time with a bullocking run and then a steamrolling try. Simply amazing - the game’s form prop.
Eric Grothe played the game of his life.
Dallas Johnson must be entering Martin Lang brain damage territory by now?
Benching Reddy was a mistake at the start of the second half. There’s no way Inglis would have scored from that bomb if Reddy was on. Smith was caught out of place in the centres.
Andersen was out-coached by Bellamy. Completely out-coached.
Mortimer kept running out of options and going to the line, only to surrender meekly in the tackle. Then he missed the tackle that led to the Slater try. He will learn from the experience.
The story I bought into was a fairytale - the Eels win the Premiership from 8th place on the back of Hayne’s brilliance. The 100-1 outsiders come good. That’s what I wanted to happen.
But the real story of the day was what would history have said about the Storm if they’d lost their third grand final in four years?
The loss is a good thing for Hayne. He was heading for a fall. Imagine - a 21 year old Dally M medallist, responsible for bringing the Eels a premiership after signing a $2M deal? It would have been downhill from there. Now he gets an off-season with the bad taste of losing in his mouth. He’ll come back better next year.
Feleti Mateo was in the Eels top three, alongside Hindmarsh. So dangerous. In every tackle, looked certain to offload. Always had the defence in two minds. Looks 5kg overweight, but a tough offseason will have him a real threat next year.
The penalty against Moi Moi in the dying minutes was a shocking, shocking decision. It robbed the game of its deserved tension for the final minutes. What a clanger.
The Storm deserved to win. They must surely now be one of the great teams of all time. There’s no reason they won’t make a 5th straight grand final in 2010.