1. Develop burning desire. You have to be on fire or else you will not succeed. You have to sustain an undousable flame in your belly or else you will not survive the cruelty that naturally gravitates to those who boldly venture out of their wussy little boxes. Are you on fire yet?
2. Develop deeper silences. That’s where you hear the good stuff. The stuff this noisy world doesn’t want you to hear. The stuff that tells you the truth about yourself, without fail. Have you done your meditation today?
3. Develop entrepreneurial skill. We’re all entrepreneurs, like it or not. So, it behooves you to become a master of common business practices like marketing, selling, networking and customer service; and not-so-common business practices like leverage, execution, time management and creativity. How many books did you read last month?
4. Develop great timing. Timing is everything. Not just in standup comedy or trapeze flying. In business, too. Timing can be the difference between a crash-and-burn website like Pets.com and a life-changing-money-generating machine like GoDaddy.com. Do you possess know-HOW; or know-WHEN?
5. Develop healthy environments. Conducive to creativity and favorable to fire starting. Environments that encourage questioning, model patient listening and foster dialogue and community. Would a MBA class on Corporate Culture use your company as a case study?
6. Develop intellectual gravity. By writing a lot. By reading a lot. By hanging out with smart people and asking them mucho preguntas. By observing a lot. By thinking a lot. By writing a lot. Did I say writing a lot?
7. Develop mature judgment. Which, essentially comes from (1) screwing up a lot when you’re NOT mature, (2) having the humility to learn lessons from those experiences, and (3) teaching those lessons to the world. What have you screwed up lately?
8. Develop microscopic vision. Focus is mobilizing. Focus is wealth. Focus wins ballgames. SO: Know who you (uniquely) are; know what you (unqiely) do; know for whom you (uniquely) do it; and know what five practical, unarguable benefits that (uniquely) result. What can you do in the first half of this day to demonstrate focus and unstoppable action?
9. Develop newsworthy content. An article about me was once featured in the USA Today among top stories about fear, death, despair, war, famine and ill-health. My headline read, ‘Man wears nametag for a friendlier society.’ Wow. I guess friendliness is so rare that it’s become remarkable. How are you making the mundane memorable?
10. Develop options continually. The most dangerous answer is the one you’ve convinced yourself is the ONLY answer. Careful. Are you putting yourself into a position where you think you know all the answers?
11. Develop specialized knowledge. That way people (prospects, clients, the media, etc.) start coming to YOU. Not to Wikipedia. Not to Google. To YOU. Because you’re the specialist. You’re The Man. You’re the Go To Guy for this particular topic or industry. What specific topic have you written more articles about than anybody else?
12. Develop unique knowledge. Be known for knowing something. Be known for your questions. Publish the best blog in the world on the specific topic of (x). What does the media consistently come to you for an opinion about?
13. Develop your unpredictability. Be predictably unpredictable. Be a sleeper. Come out of nowhere. Keep people guessing and constantly on their toes. And I don’t mean that fearful, oh-crap-here-comes-the-boss kind of way. Rather, a challenging and exciting presence that shifts the dialogue up when you walk into the room. How predictable are you?