Be one on whom nothing is lost. WILLIAM JAMES

Joi Ito: Want to innovate? Become a “now-ist”

from the Director of the MIT Media Lab

Here are a few key points from Joi Ito’s TED Talk. Mr. Ito, the Director of the MIT Media Lab, is a leading thinker and writer on innovation, global technology policy, and the role of the Internet in transforming society in substantial and positive ways.

A few guiding principles he highlights:

Deploy or Die. You must get stuff out into the real world for it to really count (or exist). Don’t wait for large institutions to do it for us.

Pull Over Push. It’s about bottom-up innovation… democratic… chaotic… hard to control. It’s not bad, but it’s very different. Many of the traditional rules don’t work or are outdated.

Learn How To LearnEducation is what people do to you and learning is what you do to yourself.

Compass Over Maps. Strategic planning is important, but do not get bogged down over-planning, over-organizing, and over-strategizing. Have a STRONG COMPASS to guide you on your journey.

So I think the good news is that even though the world is extremely complex, what you need to do is very simple. I think it’s about stopping this notion that you need to plan everything, you need to stock everything, and you need to be so prepared, and focus on being connected, always learning, fully aware, and super present.

So I don’t like the word “futurist.” I think we should be now-ists, like we are right now.”  Joi Ito

DISCUSSION QUESTION:  What was your primary takeaway or inspiration from Joi Ito’s TED Talk?

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In the Hands of Providence: Joshua L. Chamberlain and the American Civil War (The University of North Carolina Press; Edition Unstated edition (August 15, 2001))

This remarkable biography, In the Hands of Providence, traces the life and times of Joshua L. Chamberlain, the professor-turned-soldier who led the Twentieth Maine Regiment to glory at Gettysburg, earned a battlefield promotion to Brigadier General from Ulysses S. Grant at Petersburg, and was wounded six times during the course of the Civil War.

Chosen to accept the formal Confederate surrender at Appomattox, Chamberlain endeared himself to succeeding generations with his unforgettable salutation of Robert E. Lee’s vanquished army.

After the war, he went on to serve four terms as governor of his home state of Maine and later became president of Bowdoin College. He wrote prolifically about the war, including The Passing of the Armies, a classic account of the final campaign of the Army of the Potomac.

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Why LEAD FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION®?

What is our duty?

I wanted to take a moment to describe why I was inspired to create Lead From Your Current Position®. Knowing this will give you a better understanding of the concept and insight into the rationale of why you should Lead From Your Current Position®.

What is our duty?

Developing this concept is deeply personal. In my journey through life, I’ve consistently sought to identify my purpose… to identify my duty.

In addition to the preparation my parents and schooling provided me, I’ve been fortunate to serve in one of the greatest leadership apprenticeship programs in the world: serving in the United States Army. A Retired Army Officer, my military career spanned 24 1/2 years where I served in a variety of positions as an Airborne Infantry and Attack and Cavalry Aviation Officer. I had the privilege to lead five platoons and command two companies and an ROTC battalion. Additionally, I taught at the Aviation Captain’s Career Course, the United States Military Academy (West Point), and Indiana University (Bloomington).

Always a Soldier, I’ve spent my entire life inquiring about leadership and learning. This has continued well after my transition from military service.

The Answer

The answer to the question of my duty, as it developed over the years, became very clear: Lead From Your Current Position®.

The Distinctions of Lead From Your Current Position® 

I began to discover and refine the distinctions of the phrase.

  • Lead = Contribute to an environment where others flourish
  • From Your = From Your… NOT from somebody else’s (you have everything you need… even permission to act)
  • Current Position = Geographic Location NOT title

What if we all simply did our duty (LEAD… contribute to an environment where others flourish) right where we are now (our current geographic location)… and didn’t wait for some future event/achievement or permission from others. Simply DO IT.

Lead From Your Current Position® is about Self-Development, Partnership, and Service.

Again, the answer is simple: do these things… actually BE these things.

Four Questions

The four key questions you should ask yourself every day to Lead From Your Current Position® are:

  • What is my primary responsibility as a Leader?
  • What is the ONE thing I should create, cultivate, and encourage in my environment?
  • What is the ONE thing I should eliminate in my environment?
  • Are there additional questions that would give me insight into how I can lead from my current position?

What a incredible world this would be if 7.3 billion people lead from their current position:  contributing to an environment where others flourished, right were they are. I’m completely devoted to live and share this idea. I hope you will join me on this quest.

Choose to Lead From Your Current Position®… when you do you will be on the path to realize your leadership potential, serving and contributing to others.

What are you waiting for:  The world is calling out for your genius!

DISCUSSION QUESTION:  What is your definition of LEADERSHIP?

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The LFYCP® One Week Challenge

“The Top 4 Questions You Should Ask Yourself Every Day to LEAD FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION®”

I’d like to provide you with a basic framework that will help you refocus and achieve extraordinary results each an every day. I call this framework: “The Top 4 Questions You Should Ask Yourself Every Day to LEAD FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION®”. The world is calling out for your genius, but the noise and clutter of your world may deafen that call.

Try answering these four questions every day for just one week and see what a difference it will make… and let us know what kind of results and insights you have below.

Four Questions

The four key questions you should ask yourself every day to Lead From Your Current Position® are:

  • What is my primary responsibility as a Leader?
  • What is the ONE thing I should create, cultivate, and encourage in my environment?
  • What is the ONE thing I should eliminate in my environment?
  • Are there additional questions that would give me insight into how I can lead from my current position?

Sign up for the FREE “Leader’s Guide” on my homepage if you haven’t already done so.

Challenge a Friend

Forward this link to a friend or loved one and challenge them to complete the LFYCP® ONE WEEK CHALLENGE. Ask them to sign up on my homepage to receive the FREE “Leader’s Guide” with “The Top 4 Questions You Should Ask Yourself Every Day to LEAD FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION®” and three free bonus tools:

  1. The Personal Brand Equity Evaluation by Tom Peters
  2. A Message to Garcia by Elbert Hubbard
  3. Youth by Samuel Ullman

DISCUSSION QUESTION:  What did you create in your environment so that others could flourish during the ONE WEEK CHALLENGE as you set out to LEAD FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION®?

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Extraordinary Putting: Transforming the Whole Game (Perigee Trade; Reprint edition (January 2, 2007))

The co-author of the classic Extraordinary Golf offers an innovative approach to improving the overall game by focusing on putting, which accounts for more than one third of the strokes in a typical round. Not just a tips-and-techniques book, Extraordinary Putting features a series of illustrated exercises that will help golfers:

– Develop the inner freedom to trust themselves and recognize self-imposed barriers
– Find the peace of mind that comes from letting go of mental chatter and self-judgments
Increase awareness, allowing golfers to pay attention to their experiences
– Understand the differences in those experiences from stroke to stroke – Master the art of self-coaching

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EMBRACE THE WOBBLE™

The Key to a Stable and Balanced Life

If we accept that chaos is the “new normal” and that “VUCA” (Volatility–Uncertainty–Complexity–Ambiguity) is a reasonable framework to recognize the nature of the conditions that we operate in, then that begs a question: “How can we best operate in this VUCA environment?” I believe that EMBRACE THE WOBBLE™ will unfold as an extraordinary solution to a stable and balanced life.

INDIVIDUAL STABILITY

Simply put, I believe INDIVIDUAL STABILITY is the most fundamental and essential requirement in life. Other people can tell you about it, demonstrate it, and even try to teach you with tips, tricks, and short-cuts. But I believe it’s an inside-out process that’s best attained through Self-Development (the first phase of LEAD FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION®).

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