Good stories are about challenge or conflict. Without these elements, stories aren’t very interesting. The compelling part of a story is how people deal with conflict–-so start with the people and the conflict.
“The moon does not fight. It attacks no one. It does not worry. It does not try to crush others. It keeps to its course, but by its very nature, it gently influences. What other body could pull an entire ocean from shore to shore? The moon is faithful to its nature and its power is never diminished.”
- Deng Ming-Dao
“Leadership is about making people feel safe. When someone feels heard, they feel safe.”
- Simon Sinek
“Authenticity is about imperfection. And authenticity is a very human quality. To be authentic is to be at peace with your imperfections. The great leaders are not the strongest, they are the ones who are honest about their weaknesses. The great leaders are not the smartest; they are the ones who admit how much they don’t know. The great leaders can’t do everything; they are the ones who look to others to help them. Great leaders don’t see themselves as great; they see themselves as human.”
- Simon Sinek
“The power of preserving silence is the very first requisite to all who wish to shine, or even please in discourse; and those who cannot preserve it, have really no business to speak. … The silence that, without any deferential air, listens with polite attention, is more flattering than compliments, and more frequently broken for the purpose of encouraging others to speak, than to display the listener’s own powers. This is the really eloquent silence. It requires great genius—more perhaps than speaking—and few are gifted with the talent…”
“We only want to link up with people whom we like, admire, and trust. … We do not wish to join with managers who lack admirable qualities, no matter how attractive the prospects of their business. We’ve never succeeded in making a good deal with a bad person.”
- Warren E. Buffett
“No one can manipulate anyone else. In any relationship, both parties know what they’re doing, even if one of them complains later on that they were used.”
- Paulo Coelho
“Many people believe that great designers get great clients. It’s the other way around.”
— Seth Godin
A quote from this fantastic Seth Godin CreativeMornings talk.
“The true spirit of conversation consists more in bringing out the cleverness of others than in showing a great deal of it yourself; he who goes away pleased with himself and his own wit is also greatly pleased with you.”
- Jean de La Brùyere
(via The Happiness Project)
“What I regret most in my life are failures of kindness.”
- George Saunders
01. High standards of personal ethics.
02. Big people, without pettiness.
03. Guts under pressure, resilience in defeat.
04. Brilliant brains — not safe plodders.
05. A capacity for hard work and midnight oil.
06. Charisma — charm and persuasiveness.
07. A streak of unorthodoxy — creative innovators.
08. The courage to make tough decisions.
09. Inspiring enthusiasts — with trust and gusto.
10. A sense of humor.
- David Ogilvy
David Ogilvy on the 10 Qualities of Creative Leaders
“The best way to “install a generator” in a man is to give him the greatest possible responsibility. Treat your subordinates as grown-ups — and they will grow up. Help them when they are in difficulty. Be affectionate and human, not cold and impersonal.”
- David Ogilvy
From Maria’s wonderful post on David Ogilvy’s Principles of Creative Management
“… great projects, like great careers and relationships that last, are gardens. They are tended, they shift, they grow. They endure over time, gaining a personality and reflecting their environment. When something dies or fades away, we prune, replant and grow again.”
- Seth Godin
Read the full post: Gardens, not buildings
“Freedom lies in being bold.”
- Robert Frost
“Each online community decides what it is going to be, and in the end, reflects the people that participate in it. The internet is made of people. Like Anne Frank, I believe that, despite all evidence to the contrary, people are good at heart. And always, on the internet, I am astounded by people’s insistence on being generous, compassionate and kind.”
- Caterine Fake
Caterina Fake on Online Communities.
“Every kind of creative work demands solitude, and being alone, constructively alone, is a prerequisite for every phase of the creative process.”
- Barbara Powell
“The important thing is not to stop questioning.”
- Albert Einstein
“The word sugru is the Irish word for play and that’s what it’s all about—getting people to have a playful attitude toward life and to know that they can do something about their problems without having to wait around on others.”
- Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh
“I’ve generally explained to each of them why stock options are nice, but are worth much less than may think. I don’t persuade them against accepting the offer because I think you should be willing to take a pay cut to learn and do more at a startup than you would learn and do at a big company. I just tell my friends that they should never optimize for options, but optimize for an experience. “- Benjy Boxer
The Real Value of Stock Options, by Benjy Boxer.
“There are moments in life, when the heart is so full of emotion that if by chance it be shaken, or into its depths like a pebble drops some careless word, it overflows, and its secret, spilt on the ground like water, can never be gathered together.”
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
“Endlessly amused by people’s minds.”
- Daniel Kahneman
Love the idea behind a 7-Word Autobiography. What is yours?
“Sometimes, we’re so focused on being consistent that we also lower the bar on amazing. After all, the thinking goes, if we can’t be amazing all the time, better to reset the expectation to merely good. Which robs us of the ability to (sometimes) be amazing.”
- Seth Godin
But it only works sometimes, by Seth Godin