Every two days now we create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003, according to Eric Schmidt.
That is a staggering stat. The world is moving at light speed.
Simply put: You better have a strategy to TRY and keep up with this reality.
I call it Hustle.
It’s the only tool I know of to guard against being wiped out to the middle (or worse) of the bell curve. Examples of NOT Hustling are everywhere you look.
Look at social media. I wrote about sea changes in businesses, and what that means in terms of ignoring them (you’re obsolete). If Fortune 100 executives can give you an example of burying their head in the sand, chances are many more are doing the same.
People being asleep at the switch always presents opportunity.
Think about our “institutions of knowledge” like colleges/universities. They used to be the destination to spend 4 dedicated years to fill your brain with critical information that provided a foundation for a career. Yes, principles of accounting in 1985 don’t change dramatically through the years. But the reality is that the world is moving at light speed, and the end of year 4 may look very different than when the 18 year old entered college in year 1. Yet another reason, I wouldn’t want to be on my heels if I were a College President: I’d be awake at night. Too many are, and you can see higher education Disruption coming around the corner.
Here’s the good news: HUSTLE is a choice.
Choosing to make a commitment to stay relevant, up to date, and valuable is 100% in your control. That is a liberating feeling.
There are role models all around us, and tools. You just need to get off your heels and make that choice to step it up.
A Free Hustle Resource
I consider Twitter to be a great tool, not just for talking, but for LISTENING. I think of it as the world’s largest cocktail party of likeminded people. I have met many great, interesting people I wouldn’t hesitate to meet for coffee in the “real world” if I were in their neighborhood.
One person in particular I respect, enjoy and have learned from for many years? Tom Peters. He’s one of the great management thinkers of our time. His mind is brilliant, and he’s witty and humorous at the same time. It’s amazing what can be learned in 140 characters.
He has also pulled together 30+ years of his materials into a free website, appropriately named EXCELLENCE Now.
Unbelievably generous work to give away for free what has taken years to amass. An MBA worth of leadership material.
I have shared this site with lots of people in my business network. Being obsessed with performance, bell curves and results, I keep a “mental tally” of the % of folks that have browsed it, or at least recognized how powerful this is. I put the % at <15%. Maybe I should double that % for those that have not responded, kind of like consumer complaints. Pretty low, but the bell curve is one of those harsh realities.
Any way you cut it, not Hustling is all around us.
Sometimes entering the right side (excellence) of the bell curve is not that difficult.
You can choose to use your free time (on-line) in many ways. Go shopping on Amazon. Talk to your buds on Facebook. Catch the latest viral You Tube Video. I certainly do my fair share of goofing off.
But there is one thing you should be INTENTIONAL about. Your “scale” should not be tipped towards the goofing off end of the free time balance. Because there are people that have their scale tipped in the other direction. Those people are staying sharp, engaging with thought leaders, and learning. Some of them are competing with you for market share.
They are making different choices. They are HUSTLING.