Third in the Series…

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On Getting Ahead, Getting a Job and/or Getting Funded

Advice Too Simple Not to Know

Whatever It Takes

It was a coffee break during a strategy planning session and I was standing up looking out the window. The CEO came over to join me and with glazed eyes was taking in the scene. He spotted a roofer and said, “I wish I had a job like that.” While I was hoping that the share holders didn’t hear him, I knew that while we were stuck in process, he was longing for closure.

Closure is a highly undervalued element of the world. One reason why we like sports so much is that the game ends and there is an outcome. A reason we like college so much is that the semester has a clear ending and we know when we will be able to throw that calculus book away. People enjoy project oriented work because there is an end and one can move on to the next thing. And maybe the next project will be even better.

Think about areas where there is very little closure and how frustrated it makes us. How about health care reform? Progress in Iraq? Public school reform? Improving the Sarbanes Oxley legislation? The Jersey diner and Tony Soprano? If there is any closure there it is, at best, in the form of an ambiguous victory or a nebulous defeat.

I think because of the current frustrations about closure, the buzz words out there today are all about implementation and simply, getting things done.

The ability to get things done or to convince people that you will get things done is a bankable proposition. The appreciation that goes along with getting things done captures both closure and progress; it should never be under estimated. Getting things done requires the “whatever it takes” aura.

Whatever it takes means you will:

Stay up all night to meet the deadline.
Be on a first name basis with every shift at Kinko’s.
Induce your team to do things they thought they couldn’t do.
Take a shower in the sinks at Logan or JFK airports and be ready for an 8am meeting.
Continue the night classes to earn the promotion
Understand the expectations and over-deliver
Last minute reschedule of the dinner date and celebrate the new account with a weekend in Napa
An entrepreneur should convince any funding source that you are willing to drag your body across burning coals to make the idea successful, whatever it takes.

A job seeker should convince the hiring manager that life will be better when you join because stuff will get done, whatever it takes.

A project manager will get promoted if the project is completed, on-time, on-budget, whatever it takes.

This blog entry will get completed and posted on time, whatever it takes.

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