Lessons from 2010

2010 has been a massive year of both ups and downs for me which has lead to some significant personal development. As I take a leap forwards into come new challenges I thought what better time to compose a very brief list of some lessons I’ve learned in the year past.

Professional Lessons

– A campaign not working is not a failure as long as you learn something from it
– Just because something is a good idea doesn’t mean it will work, just because something didn’t work doesn’t mean it wasn’t a good idea
– Take holidays – for years I put off taking trips because I didn’t want to fall behind on work, but nothing leaves you more hungry to do good work than a little time away
– ‘No’ is not a dirty word – If a timeline is unrealistic at least suggest a more manageable solution, don’t just say yes
– Low cost, High Quality, Fast delivery – Pick 2
– Anyone can be insightful, often without realising it. The secret is to listen closely enough to hear the verbal diamond in the rough.

Personal Lessons

– There is no such thing as a black and white situation – only varying shades of grey
– While it’s important to speak your beliefs it is more important to listen to those of others
– Exercise really is enjoyable – everyone wasn’t lying to me for the past 23 years despite what I previously thought
– If you want something in life take it. Don’t wait for the ‘right time,’ it may never come
– In 12 months everything can change – Last year my dad spent about 6 months in hospital undergoing chemotherapy and a stem-cell transplant. The end of December see’s him 12 months cancer free and he is currently back at work full-time and looking more healthy everyday.

The 5 P’s I (try to) live my life by


Me getting passionate with a kiwi in New Zealand

As someone who works in marketing I’ve always had the 4 P’s drummed into me (as well as the additional 3 for service based marketing) as the essential way to think about your marketing mix. So I decided to stick with this idea and try and breakdown how I think about living my life into 5 segments (naturally I chose to pick keywords starting with P).
So here we go:

People:
The people in your life determine where you go, what you do and who you are seen to be. Always try to surround yourself with people of intelligence, drive, ambition, and above all else passion and a sense of humour

Persuasion:
Learn to be persuasive and how to put together a concrete, logical, argument when you need to. Let your emotions guide you, but don’t let them cloud your views. Just because something someone else does goes against what you would do doesn’t mean its wrong. Using logic and distancing yourself from another’s actions will help determine if they’re really a prick or just acting differently to how you would.

Punctuality:
People hate people who are late. There is no grey area on this, if you are constantly late to (or worse still cancelling) meetings, appointments or social arrangements people will just stop inviting you.

Performance:
Be a performer. Learn an instrument, take a drama class, get involved in debating and do it while you’re young. Its not essential that you continue these activities but doing them when you’re young will give you the confidence to be your own person and teach you to show the world who that person is. Presenting in a boardroom is a lot easier when you’ve played an instrument in front of several hundred people. It also teaches you the most important P for your life…

Passion:
Above all else be passionate about whatever you do. Whether its your music/art/creative outlet or a presentation for a client. Pour your heart into what you do. Work hard, knowing that if you love what you do it will return your efforts ten-fold down the track. Play hard, you only live once. Travel, not only is it fun it provides you with so many lessons. Try everything and try it with passion, don’t half heartedly stumble through it, leap in headfirst.

Having passion is important because even if everything in your life is going wrong, you will have a sanctuary in what you love.

I may not live by these ideals 100% of the time, but I do try.

What are the ideals you live by? What lessons have you had that have lead to advice you would impart on others?