The Man In The Arena

It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.
— Theodore Roosevelt

On Big Ideas And Being Uncomfortable

Found this great gem buried in the back of “Buzzmarketing:Get People to Talk About Your Stuff” by Mark Hughes.

Rule number one is, if you want big ideas, be prepared to be uncomfortable. Big ideas will always make you uncomfortable in some respect. If you???re comfortable, it???s too vanilla. It???s too invisible. You need to be a little uncomfortable???. It takes courage to break through the clutter. It takes courage to rub some people the wrong way.

Just remember, if you???re pleasing everybody, your advertising will look like everybody else???s, and you???ll be invisible.

Something to consider if you find yourself moving forward with new ideas only if and when they feel safe and comfortable.

Miles Nadal???s 6 Rules of Partnership

So many mergers and acquisitions fail that I am surprised how so many look for it as the path to growth. One of the biggest reasons they fail is that the people involved did not figure out if they could work together well after the “marriage” was consummated.

MDC Partners has built one of the largest advertising/media empires in the world by acquiring some of the biggest agencies in the business. And, it seems, they have found a way to let those agencies continue to flourish post acquisition. So I was intrigued by the below list of rules their Chairman and CEO, Miles Nadal, uses to decide who they should bring on as partners (Note that they consider companies they acquire as partners).?? I spotted this within a great interview on Alex Bogusky’s FearLess QA online show. You can watch the whole show here for many more great insights.

1. Only partner with someone with whom you would want to have breakfast, lunch or dinner with a second time.

2. Only partner with someone you like, admire and respect.

3. Only partner with someone you trust enough to make the executor of your estate.

4. Only partner with someone with whom you would want to spend a long weekend on small boat, in a small cabin or on a small ranch.

5. Only partner with someone who the shares the same passion, dedication and willingness to sacrifice to accomplish the common mission.

6. Only partner with someone who has the human compassion gene.

Here are the bigger questions for you and your business: Do you consider these high standards when considering strategic partners? How about your executive team??? How about your entire staff??? Or your vendors?

What would happen if you did?