Painting an Insights Picture

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Charging Grounders

“There are three types of baseball players: those who make it happen, those who watch it happen, and those who wonder what happened.” – Tommy Lasorda

From the time they were in little league, Major League Baseball infielders have been taught to attack the grounders hit in their direction.  “Charge after the ball! Never stand still,” their coaches told them.  “If you wait for the ball to come to you, it might take an odd bounce.”

This is how we should attack life’s opportunities.  Don’t sit back, hoping and waiting for things to go your way.  Attack it.

Nobody owes you anything.  Go grab it for yourself.

Your Moment of Clarity

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.” – Steve Jobs

There comes a time in a person’s life, when he or she reaches a moment of clarity…a moment of awakening.  It happens at different times for different people.  For some of us, it never happens at all.  It happens when you set out to make your own mark on the world.

What the moment said to me, around age 27, was… “This life is meant for you and only you.  You don’t need to follow in anyone else’s footsteps.  Make your own footsteps.  Despite what you’ve been taught, you don’t have to live your life constrained by what other people have done in the past.  You are free to make your own choices and make your own mark on the world.  You are in control of your own destiny.”

So get out there and do something new.  Just because it hasn’t been done before by someone else, doesn’t mean it can’t be done or shouldn’t be done…by you.

Video

The Value of Data Visualization

Here’s a great video from Column Five highlighting the need for both data and design when telling your story. As always, it’s not enough just to have information. You need to tell a compelling story with that information if you want it to spread or provide value.

Todays Best Quarterbacks

The NFL Quarterback is one of the most high pressure jobs in the world.  It requires quick, creative decisions under tense circumstances.  The ultimate test of a quarterback’s skill is how they perform in the final minutes, with the game on the line.  My friends and I had a little fun creating a list of the top quarterbacks you want running your team’s 2 minute offense.  The list is by tier, in no particular order.  Enjoy:

Tier 1
Tom Brady###%
Drew Brees#
Aaron Rodgers#
Peyton Manning*#%

Tier 2
Eli Manning#
Ben Roethlisberger##%
Philip Rivers
Matt Stafford
Tony Romo

Tier 3
Michael Vick
Matt Ryan
Joe Flacco
Jay Cutler
Cam Newton
Matt Schaub
Alex Smith

Tier 4
Sam Bradford
Mark Sanchez
Ryan Fitzpatrick
Tim Tebow
Kevin Kolb
Matt Hasselbeck%
Andy Dalton
Matt Cassel
Josh Freeman

Tier 5
Carson Palmer
Tavaris Jackson
Rex Grossman%
Blaine Gabbert
Colt McCoy
Matt Moore
Christian Ponder

*Injured in 2012
#Super Bowls won
%Super Bowls lost

Going out your door

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” – Bilbo Baggins

Creativity needs inspiration.  Inspiration is usually found by going out, not by staying in.  By going out and exploring the world, you often find your ideas in unlikely places.  An idea needs structure, design, and simplicity.  These elements can be found everywhere.

Get out of your house. Get out of your office.  Get out of your comfort zone.  Your next idea is right outside.

Is it Good Enough?

“How do you know when it’s done?  It’s never done.  That’s not the right question.  The question is:  when is it good enough?” –  Seth Godin

Your idea doesn’t do the world any good sitting in your mind.  Your idea doesn’t do your company any good sitting in your inbox.  Your idea doesn’t do your client any good sitting on your desktop.  If you are waiting till it is perfect to release it to the world, you are wasting valuable time (and a valuable opportunity).

The questions you need to answer:   Is it valuable to the world?   Is it simple enough for my audience to understand?  Is it visually appealing?  When those questions have been answered and put into action, your idea is good enough.
When it is good enough, go to market.  Nothing is final, you can always improve.  You can never get back the time you wasted trying to be perfect.