So I respect the man, Steve Jobs that is. He had the resilience and tenacity that every #TREP should aspire to have, and his life story, as immortalized in the book written by Walter Isaacson will forever be a source of inspiration. The underlying lesson that I take from this man’s life is that we should stay hungry and apparently stay foolish. (I did not understand it then)
At the beginning of the last 5 years of my life ( I try to plan and stick to 5-year goals) I etched out goals that I wanted to achieve. I remember back then, that I wanted to be free. Free to make my own decisions, to live and not be governed by resources, ( or the lack of them thereof.) Yes admittedly, it might have been some rebellious misguided teenager who just wanted to lash out at life, but still, those are the goals I set out to achieve ( however vague). I realize now, that most of what I have done has been to achieve this, so I believe for the following four or so years, I learnt, by trial and error, and by making tonnes of mistakes, how to achieve this, I honed the skills and mustered the courage. I tried, and failed, and tried again, until in the last year, I had some form of success, in the form of Neolab.
Yes, I finally had it, the team, the co-founders, the product the perfect vision. We had even won a couple of awards and had started churning revenue. I felt at peace with myself, I had reached that place that every leader yearns for when you can look down on your work and just feel content. I was Free……
That unfortunately only lasted for a few….days. It then all hit the fan. I would wake up every morning, carry out the same old routinely scheduled tasks, execute and by day end, I would have completed at best, half of them. By week-end, the cumulative number of tasks would scare me into complacency. I settled for the default move ( delete tasks), but that didn’t make them go away. It just got worse. It is only now, that I realize what Steve really meant ( the hunger and foolishness), that we need to preserve the qualities of youth;
“not a time in life, but a state of mind, a temper of the will, a quality of the imagination, of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease.”
We need to continuously hunger for knowledge and skills, to wander and delve into the depths of unknown knowledge and unravel the mysteries of our destiny. I was ignorant and foolish ( the bad kind of foolish) to think that I could apply the same old skill-set to achieve new goals and scale to new heights, and because of that ignorance, my colleagues and teammates suffered periods of my relative incompetence ( I do apologize for that).
It is imperative that you ask yourself at the end of each day, “What new skill have I learnt or improved today?” “What new knowledge have I unraveled today?” and ” How has this new knowledge and/or skill made me more efficient?” For if your answer to any of these questions is anything between mediocre and nothing, then its safe for you to conclude, that the dSo I have spent the last few weeks, restructuring, learning and regimenting my life, aligning it with my new set of goals for the next 5 years. I have begun exploring new skills and tools to aid my scaling this new set of challenges, (simple task lists just don’t cut it anymore….introducing SCRUM). It is only through honing my skills that I will achieve my mission