Making Decisions for Yourself First

Mar 14, 2008

A few days ago, John from 37signals blogged about why they disagree with Don Norman. Don had criticized them for designing for themselves, instead of other people. John responded by saying that “Designing for ourselves first yields better initial results because it lets us design what we know”, among other things (read the post for more).

I agree with John on this one, and I think it can be expanded to a greater theme, and one that raises an interesting question.

In your life, in the choices you make, who are you making the choices for? Are you making decisions for yourself first? Or are you making decisions trying to please others?

Personally, I do think that others are important. But I do also believe that you’re better of making decisions for yourself, living your life according to what you think is best.

Marketing Principles

Jan 20, 2008

Mitch Joel wrote an interesting post about Presentation Zen yesterday. But what really caught my eye in the post was this.


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Presentation Zen wins as a must-have book for every Marketer because the best insights come from Garr’s perspective on uncovering your own creativity, how to plan a presentation, how to craft the story (and even how to find the story) along with great concepts on story boards and core presentation skill principles. Garr spends a chunk of time writing about how the concepts from the book, Made To Stick – Why Some Ideas Survive And Other Die, by Chip and Dan Heath are core to a successful presentation. Presentation Zen is superbly organized, clear and has tons of key Marketing insights.

A book on presentations with key Marketing insights? How so?

blog it

That post, especially the question, got me thinking. And it made me realize, just how much of what we do everyday is marketing. Marketing principles and lessons can be found and applied in almost everything. Seth Godin made the point in “Meatball Sundae” about how a lot of business decisions – things that can be seen as management decisions – are really marketing decisions.

I think that can be extended to the rest of our lives, can’t it?

Daryl Peach: 2007 World Pool Champion

Nov 11, 2007

Congratulations to Daryl Peach, the 2007 World Pool Champion. He beat Roberto Gomez 17-15 in an amazing final. I know I posted in general about the World Pool Championships earlier, but today I just want to discuss the final.

I’ll start with Gomez, the losing finalist. He had played brilliantly throughout the tournament, but just seemed to choke in the end. He was playing much more conservatively than normal. It just wasn’t his own game. If you ask me, that’s one of the main reasons he lost. He didn’t stick to what he was good at. Ultimately, he just wasn’t himself. And he payed the price for that.

Peach, on the other hand, more or less stuck to his game. He didn’t really try anything too fancy. He just stuck to his calm, calculated game. And it paid off. That’s what his game has been all about throughout the week. It wasn’t about making the great, unbelievable, highlight-reel shots. It was just about making the best decisions consistently, doing the simple things well. That’s what got him to the final. Yes, he can do the highlight-reel shots (like the bank in the final rack), but his main game was always about percentages and decisions.

Above all, though, it was the mental strength that won the championship for him. I think the perfect example was the second last rack, with Peach leading 16-15. Gomez came to the table on the 9, and missed what would normally have been a simple shot. Daryl Peach came back and potted it, and went on to win the championship. That summed up the difference in composure and mental strength perfectly. Both players had their ups and downs over the matches, but Daryl Peach managed to maintain focus more than his opponent, and didn’t let it get to him. And that’s why he won.

There’s so much all of us can learn from that. You’ll have a higher chance of success if you stick to your game, and just be yourself, as Gomez’s loss shows us. And Peach showed us the value of good decision making, focusing on what we have and the power of mental strength.

Daryl himself summed it up perfectly after the game, “I haven’t got the most ability and there are lots of players with more talent than me but I just used my head and tried to focus on what I’ve got.”

How do you maintain your focus on your ability, and not get thrown off by circumstance?