Friday Speed Review! Tools of Titans by Tim Ferriss

The Tactics, Routines and Habits of Billionaires, Icons and World-Class Performers

Speed Review: Tools of TitansChampion snowboarder Shaun White reveals that he always approaches major competitions with both serious goals (win the Vancouver Olympics) and silly goals (wear stars-and-stripes pants on the cover of Rolling Stone). “It takes a lot of pressure off,” he tells podcaster and author Tim Ferriss. “Winning the Olympics is a very big goal, it’s a very stressful goal to have. So it’s nice to have something else to offset it. Everything was so serious at the time, and that was just my way of dealing with it.”

Conversations and Facts

White’s unexpected but effective method for dealing with intense pressure is one example of the many gems found in Ferriss’ latest book, Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers. This 670-page collection of notes offers lessons, snippets of conversations and surprising facts from more than 100 of his podcast guests. There is, for example, this quote from Peter Diamandis, the engineer and entrepreneur who founded the $10 million XPRIZE for private space travel. “I talk to CEOs all the time, and I say, ‘Listen, the day before something is truly a breakthrough, it’s a crazy idea. If it wasn’t a crazy idea, it’s not a breakthrough; it’s an incremental improvement. ’”

White and Diamandis exemplify the astounding diversity of the highly successful people in the book, ranging from famous CEOs and company founders to athletes and coaches to business writers, cartoonists, generals, professors and actors. Tools of Titans is divided into three parts that reflect Benjamin Franklin’s three measures of success: Healthy, Wealthy and Wise. Ferriss notes in his introduction that “Wealthy” includes not only money but also an “abundance in time, relationships and more.”

There’s no doubt that finding the right category for many of his guests would be a challenge. Where does one put photographer Chase Jarvis or actor Kevin Costner, for example? (They finished in Wealthy and Wise, respectively.) Ferriss puts Dilbert creator Scott Adams in the Wealthy category, a decision to which this reviewer takes exception: Is there anyone wiser than Dilbert?

At any rate, the entry for Adams offers a glimpse of the combination of insights, facts and factoids offered in each profile. Ferriss explains…(click here to read the full review)

Follow-Up Q&A with Best-Selling Author, Patty Azzarello

Image result for patty azzarello moveOn Thursday, March 2nd, Soundview hosted a webinar with Patty Azzarello, author of Move: How Decisive Leaders Execute Strategy Despite Obstacles, Setbacks, and Stalls.

Patty was kind enough to provide further insights on executing strategy:


Join us for our next Soundview Live webinar on Thursday, March 9th, How to Become the Person Others Follow, with author and speaker, Joshua Spodek. Click here to register.


 

Q: Can you describe the tools used to address the details revealed in the conversations that represent major influencers to the conversation and that need to be shared globally.

A: What needs to be shared globally? More than you think!

We all have a tendency to take for granted what we know ourselves. It is not interesting to us because we already know it. 

It is a valuable and important habit to keep track of the things you are learning and seeing when you have conversations with colleagues, customers, management, media, sales and service people, headquarters people. We are all global employees. When we are learning something we need to always keep in mind our global counterparts and make an effort to share our information with them.

When I was running sales and marketing for a global business unit, every day someone in my headquarters organization would come to me for approval of a plan. My first question would always be, “what did the people in Europe and Asia say about this?”. I asked this question of someone in my organization almost every day for more than a year. Get in the habit of listening on purpose and sharing information on purpose. Share more than you personally think is interesting. And remember not to only share information globally, also make an effort to create genuine rapport and conversation with your global counterparts. 

Friday Book Review! Hopping Over the Rabbit Hole

Image result for hopping over the rabbit holeGrowing up on Long Island, young Anthony Scaramucci had only one dream: to own his own company. In his book, Hopping Over the Rabbit Hole: How Entrepreneurs Turn Failure into Success, Scaramucci, a hedge fund manager and conservative TV personality, recalls his success in building up his Long Island Newsday paper route through hard work and creativity. He would, for example, get free newspapers from his managers and deliver them to houses that did not subscribe, then follow up with a visit the following day, asking the “nice ladies at the door” if they enjoyed the free paper and would like to subscribe. They often did.


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As Scaramucci explains, he enjoyed receiving the money from the paper route, but his pleasure in building up his route was about much more than money. “I felt proud,” he writes. “Proud of my accomplishment. Proud that I was doing something that served people. Proud that I made people happy.” Yes, he liked the money, he continues, “but more than anything, I loved the sense of pride I felt in building something. Of hustling day-in and day-out to earn my keep. Of being my own boss.”

An Entrepreneurial Blueprint

In Hopping Over the Rabbit Hole, Scaramucci combines colorful and well-described biographical details with how-to advice drawn from the stories that end each chapter. The result is a solid overview of attitudes and approaches that can help entrepreneurs succeed.

The chapter called “An Entrepreneurial Blueprint,” for example, ends with four valuable pieces of advice:

  1. Don’t spend money on the wrong things. Scaramucci describes visiting the offices of a new investment company at the request of a mutual friend. The founder of the company, a highly respected bond trader, leads Scaramucci on a 40-minute tour of the sumptuous offices, with long discussions about the furniture and art collection. When Scaramucci returns to his own offices, he warns his friend that the bond trader will be out of business in one year.

Click here to continue reading to find out the other 3 pieces of advice.

 

Learn how to work without stress

largeIf you’re like most people, you probably think that stress is an inevitable part of life. The truth is it’s not. In a groundbreaking 30-year study, Dr. Derek Roger has discovered that everything we think we know about stress and how we should “manage” it is just plain wrong. Stress is not a natural response to the pressures of work. It’s a choice that you make, consciously or not, to worry and fret and agonize over the work you need to do instead of just doing it. Why do some people get stressed while others stay calm, cool and collected under pressure? The answer lies in resilience –– your ability to cope with challenges and thrive under adversity –– rather than ruminating and obsessing over them. The key to “managing” stress is to stop it before it starts.


You can always count on summaries of New Releases every month when you subscribe to Soundview! Find out more.


To be resilient, flexible and ready for anything. Work Without Stress offers a radically different approach to stress. It’s about being resilient. Flexible. Mentally awake and in the moment. It’s about changing your mindset to keep things in perspective instead of adding fuel to the fire with negative thoughts. The techniques you’ll find in this book are powerful, practical and proven to work –– without stress.

IN THIS SUMMARY, YOU WILL LEARN:

• Why stress is not an inevitable part of life.
• The difference between pressure and stress.
• To control your attention and become more resilient.
• To practice resilient communication and lead organizational change without stress.

Surprisingly Simple Strategies for Today’s Crazy-Busy Sellers

Here’s a sneak peak of what’s in this month’s subscription:

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Your clients expect more, with faster turnarounds. Your quota keeps going up. You need to leverage social media, keep up to date on your industry, figure out how to sell new products and services, and learn all the latest technologies. The demands are never-ending. You could work nonstop around the clock and still not get it all done. It’s a huge problem faced by experienced sales pros, busy entrepreneurs and sales rookies. Jill Konrath, a globally recognized sales consultant and speaker, experimented relentlessly to discover the best time-savers and sales hacks in order to deliver the first productivity guide specifically for sales success. In More Sales, Less Time, Konrath blends cutting-edge behavioral research with her own deep knowledge of sales to teach you how to succeed in this age of distraction. Konrath helps you develop strategies specifically tailored to your life in sales, using your strengths to cut through the feeling of being overwhelmed. All salespeople have the same number of hours in a day; it’s up to you to rescue your time to sell smarter. More Sales, Less Time will show you how.

IN THIS SUMMARY, YOU WILL LEARN:
• The unique challenges of today’s “Age of Distraction.”
• To eliminate distractions and change the way you tackle email and social media.
• To focus better and plan your work systems.
• To transform your mindset to effortlessly incorporate new, more productive habits; leverage your best brainpower; and stay at the top of your sales game.

Friday Book Review! Thank You For Being Late

9780374273538In the latest book from influential New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations, readers are taken through a typical globe-spanning Friedman-esque journey of ideas, insights and, of course, people — many people of a wide variety of nationalities and perspectives, but all supporting in some way Friedman’s central theme: The world is speeding up — and that’s okay, as long as we all keep moving ourselves.


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Friedman compares thriving in today’s world to riding a bicycle: a bike is steady, upright and comfortable when you are moving; stop moving and you topple over. The way to keep moving is to embrace collaboration, pluralism, trust of others — and to not be afraid of change. “So many people today seem to be looking for someone to put on the brakes, to take a hammer to the forces of change — or just give them a simple answer to make their anxiety go away,” he writes. “It is time to redouble our efforts to close that anxiety gap with imagination and innovation and not scare tactics and simplistic solutions.”

Not that there isn’t good reason for trepidation. As Friedman notes, the most dangerous period on New York City streets occurred when cars started appearing but horse-and-buggies had not yet disappeared. We are currently in a similar transition period, with the world accelerating at such a rate that humans are having trouble adapting to the changes.

The Machine and The Supernova

In Thank You for Being Late, Friedman explores in detail the three accelerations driving “the machine” today — the machine being Friedman’s term for the “world’s biggest gears and pulleys [that] are shaping events.”

The first acceleration is in the domain of technology. When visiting the laboratories of the multinationals driving technology forward, Friedman writes, he feels a bit like James Bond visiting Q’s laboratory to discover the latest high-tech spy gadgets.

Except that the mechanical gadgets of Fleming’s hero have been replaced by what most people refer to as “the cloud” and what Friedman calls “the supernova.” Beginning in 2007, according to Friedman, the supernova started launching Moore’s law on the exponential increase in processing power into the stratosphere. Friedman uses the example of an information-technology multinational company based in the surprisingly named town of Batman, Turkey to exemplify how the supernova empowers innovators to reach everywhere from anywhere.

The second…(click here to continue reading this review)

Upcoming Webinar 2/16: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less

readinglist_restWhy You Get More Done When You Work Less

Date: Thursday, February 16
Time: 1:00 PM ET
Speaker: Alex Soojung-Kim Pang


Click here to register


In this Soundview Live webinar, Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, Silicon Valley consultant Alex Pang argues that we can be more successful in all areas of our lives by recognizing the importance of rest. Drawing on rigorous scientific evidence and revelatory historical examples, Pang overturns everything our culture has taught us about work and shows that only by resting better can we start living better.

What You’ll Learn:

  • Why working better does not mean working more, it means working less and resting better.
  • How treating rest as a passive activity secondary to work undermines our chances for a rewarding and meaningful life.
  • The importance of making space for daily naps like Winston Churchill, going on hours-long strolls like Charles Darwin, or spending a week alone in a cabin like Bill Gates.
  • Why pursuing what Pang calls “deliberate rest” is the true key to fulfillment and creative success.

Follow-Up Q&A with best-selling author, Courtney Lynch

Image result for courtney lynch sparkOn Thursday, February 2nd, Soundview hosted a webinar with author of New York Times Best Seller, Spark, Courtney Lynch on The 7 Key Behaviors of an Extraordinary Leader.

Courtney was kind enough to answer some follow-up questions on how to lead yourself and others to greater success:


Join us for our next Soundview Live webinar on Thursday, February 16, Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, with author and speaker, Alex Pang. Click here for more info.


What do you do if your boss/leadership does not hold colleagues accountable? Is there a good strategy we can follow?

It’s not uncommon for us to work in an environment where there is limited accountability.  Holding others accountable can often seem daunting.  Yet, it’s essential for high performance to happen.  And, when accountability happens in context with clear standards and leaders who do their best to set a strong example (and who also take the time to understand and work to meet the needs of others) it’s a natural step to creating success.  If your boss doesn’t hold others accountable keep in mind that it will be much easier for your performance to slip to the lowest acceptable standard.

To stay credible, work to hold yourself accountable, and handle the lack of accountability, in a professional manner.  It’s easy to gossip, complain and grow frustrated in these circumstances.  Instead, work to build trust with your colleagues.  Eventually in a high trust environment, you all as peers, without the benefit of authority, can work to hold each other accountable.  On the best performing teams, everyone is the keeper of the standards, not just the bosses.  If holding your peers accountable seems far-fetched in your current dynamics, just be vigilant with your performance, seeking to model a strong example regardless of how others perform.  Ultimately, that credibility will allow you influence to get what needs to be done, done well.

Of the 7 steps where would personal faith have the greatest impact?

Personal faith has an impact across the seven steps.  Yet I believe it’s most relevant as you seek to live your values with confidence.  It’s takes courage to chose to live and lead in ways that are consistent with what you value, versus what society tells us is “right.”  When we think about living our values, we often begin with a focus on what’s not working in our lives.  By doing that we eventually get to the point where we’ve created a good life, and betterment requires us to make even more challenging trade-offs, perhaps giving up something that we find enjoyable or gratifying to gain something we value even more.  I think that’s where personal faith is even more helpful, to support us in determining if we are doing what we believe is best based on our values, faith and priorities.

Boost Your Career by Saying What You Mean

page_image_0Writing Without Bullshit is the first comprehensive guide to writing for today’s world: a noisy environment where everyone reads what you write on a screen. The average news story now gets only 36 seconds of attention. Unless you change how you write, your emails, reports and web copy don’t stand a chance. In this practical and witty book, you’ll learn to front-load your writing with pithy titles, subject lines and opening sentences. You’ll acquire the courage and skill to purge weak and meaningless jargon and wimpy passive voice. And you’ll get used to writing directly to the reader to make every word count. At the center of it all is the Iron Imperative: Treat the reader’s time as more valuable than your own. Embrace that, and your customers, your boss and your colleagues will recognize the power and boldness of your thinking. Transcend the fear that makes your writing weak. Plan and execute writing projects with confidence. Manage edits and reviews flawlessly. And master every modern format, from emails and social media to reports and press releases. Stop writing to fit in. Start writing to stand out. Boost your career by writing without bullshit.

IN THIS SUMMARY, YOU WILL LEARN:
• Techniques that will help you adhere to the Iron Imperative.
• Why fear generates bad writing habits and how to get over it.
• Specific needs and expectations of business readers.
• To plan longer projects and embrace collaborative writing.
• To write and promote intelligently for online audiences.

Upcoming Webinar 2/1: Learn the 7 Key Behaviors of an Extraordinary Leader

Image result for courtney lynch author spark

The 7 Key Behaviors of an Extraordinary Leader

Date: Thursday, February 2nd
Time: 1:00 PM ET
Speaker: Courtney Lynch


*This webinar is free for subscribers. Click here to register or become a Soundview subscriber today to take advantage of this exclusive member-benefit (Save 15% if you subscribe today!).


Leadership isn’t about a job title – it’s about action and behavior. In this Soundview Live webinar, The 7 Key Behaviors of an Extraordinary Leader, business consultant and military Veteran Courtney Lynch shows how anyone can become an extraordinary leader by embracing seven key behaviors.

What You’ll Learn:

  • What makes someone a Spark leader.
  • The 7 key behaviors of an extraordinary leader.
  • How to identify potential Spark leaders in your organization.
  • The transformation that can take place when a Spark is ignited.