An Extremely Very Good Book
At first glance it would appear that Vince Poscente and I stand for exactly opposite things.
Vince is all about speed. His mantra seems to be, “You don’t have to choose; you can have it all. And you don’t have to wait, you can have it now.”
Yes, at first glance it would be easy to write Poscente off as just another preacher of gimmicks and hype. But that would be a mistake.
Vince challenges the fable of the Tortoise and the Hare in chapter six, Naughty, Naughty Speed. “The hare doesn’t lose because he’s fast – speed does not work against him in any way. And the tortoise doesn’t win because he is slow. The hare loses because he makes a ridiculous choice about how to spend his time.”
Time. Focus. Purpose. Clarity. Commitment. These are the things Vince Poscente talks about. I like him.
You and I know the world is changing at an unprecedented rate. The big fish are no longer eating the little fish. The fast fish are eating the slow.
Lee Iacocca, in his just-released book, Where Have All the Leaders Gone? says, “When you stop to think about it, most of the great companies of our times began as upstarts – Little Davids taking on big Goliaths. When I first heard about Fred Smith, the guy who created Federal Express, I thought the idea was crazy. I remember thinking, He’s going to take on the post office? Today Federal Express does such a huge business that even the U.S. Postal Service hires it to move a billion dollars in packages every year.”
My problem with the rabbit in the fable is the problem I have with all traditional preachers of speed: they almost always lack commitment. They’re all huzzah and high-fives until Adversity rears his ugly wolf-snout and then the twitchy little bastards scatter like the rabbits they are.
Vince Poscente is not a twitchy little rabbit. He’s an Olympic speed skier who loves the feeling of standing still at 200 kilometers per hour.
My favorite chapter in his book is number twenty-nine, Racing Across a Tightrope. “One after another, each of us started across the tightrope, believing we could win. And one after another, each of us failed. No one won the race because no one could stay on the rope. We’d hold our arms out to our sides, keep our eyes on the rope, and carefully place one foot in front of the other. We’d concentrate all our energy on going fast and not falling – but then we’d fall. Again. And again. Once we had accumulated enough bruising and humiliation, the coach let us in on a little secret: to go fast, stop focusing on the rope and start focusing on the destination.”
It reminded me of what Peter learned in that famous walking-on-water incident.
Gosh, I’ve already written 478 words, yet I’ve barely scratched the surface of what Poscente has to say.
Let me accelerate for you: The book is about using speed to reduce the stress in your life.
I hate stress. If you do too, read the book. It just hit the New York Times bestseller list.
Now for some fun: Vince has created an insightful, online survey exclusively for readers of The Monday Morning Memo of the Wizard of Ads. You’ll enjoy the questions; it’s a fun survey to take. Even better, Vince is going to calculate our answers as a group and then let us see how similar, or dissimilar, we are to the general population.
Look for the results in next week’s Monday Morning Memo.
Roy H. Williams
Like a fastball from the pitcher's mound, Accelerated Branding is hurtling toward you. Will you swing toward Austin with all your might or stand with your bat on your shoulder and watch it pass? The combined populations of heaven and earth are waiting to see what you'll do.
Another Hall-of-Fame Inductee! Back before he got too busy and rich, my business partner Dave Young used to teach a class at Wizard Academy. In it, he guided every student through the process of creating a fully functional website in a single day. Every student left that class with a brand new website and a head full of knowledge about how to keep it current and profitable.
One of his very first students was Michele Miller. The website she created that day was named by Forbes magazine as one of the Top Five Business Blogs in America just two years later. Michele has, like Dave, become quite rich and famous. But unlike Dave, she still finds time to teach at Wizard Academy.
Now Dave's own Branding Blog has been selected by Typepad from among several hundred thousand sites as a featured blog for September. In essence, they've inducted him into their Hall of Fame. Way to go, Dave!
Now go to his blog and send Dave an email asking him if he'll please teach his amazing class just one more time. If enough of us work together, maybe we can shame him into doing it. When I try to shame him privately he just laughs at me. – RHW