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The Best Business Advice I’ve Ever Received

Source |Linkedin .com  |  BY:Evangelist at IBM

Surviving in business is hard.

We all want to thrive, but sometimes it feels like survival is the best we can hope for.

In one of my favourite episodes of The West Wing, Sam Seaborn (played by Rob Lowe) is explaining to a White House colleague how he gets about thirty minutes of good work done each day and spends the rest of it just trying to keep up. I work for a very big company and I often know how that feels.

We all find ourselves trying to survive our jobs at some point, but as we try to do good work and create meaning in what we do, keeping up is often hard to do – no matter how big or small your company is. My friend Brian Solis describes the speed at which we do business today as “Digital Darwinism“. It’s a great phrase.

On the way to work this morning I was randomly scribbling down some of the best advice I’ve received during the last two decades of my career, and I came up with this short list, so I thought I’d post it. Maybe it will even inspire you this Friday as well. So here it is, the ten best pieces of advice I’ve received from people who I’ve met or worked with in some capacity, who have encouraged me to thrive, not just survive.


The first marketing book I ever read in 1990 finished with a great sentence that I still write today on the front page of all my notebooks.

“You can have everything you want in life if you just help enough other people get what they want”.


My all-time favourite marketing author. I’ve read all of his books. Twice.

“If you can’t state your position in less than ten words, you don’t have a position”.


In a keynote at Content Marketing World, Kevin (in character as Frank Underwood) gave an amazing address about how the audience is the most important part of any story. But…

“We must tell our stories as fast and compellingly as possible”.


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