Smartcuts: The Breakthrough Power of Lateral Thinking

Lots of great stories about how successful people took shortcuts to become successful.

My Notes

Hack the ladder. Trade up for better job or opportunities.

Learn from mentors. Develop personal relationships with them. Open up and be vulnerable.

Have to have environment where it’s ok to fail fast without risk and get feedback (Second City). Need to separate negative feedback from perceived failure and think of it as objective experiment. The feedback is about the experiment, not the person. Fail fast doesn’t have to be failure of a company – get the feedback about smaller steps and feedback on the way. Second City grows performers by:
1. gives them rapid feedback
2. depersonalizes the feedback
3. lowers the stakes and pressure, so students take risks that force them to improve

Leverage platforms to amplify work effort.

Two ways to catch a wave: hard work or pattern recognition. Fast followers have an advantage over first movers.

Building relationships through giving is the best way to harness superconductors and create serendipity.

Creativity comes easier within constraints. They give us boundaries that direct our focus and allow us to be more creative. Tiny startups companies start with so few resources that they’re forced to come up with simplifying solutions.

It’s easier to make something 10X better than 10% better. To get 10X better you have to start over, break basic assumptions.

“if you can get people to let go of their fear, and to be more intellectually open, intellectually hones, more dispassionate about being creating, trying new things and all of these other issues cloud their judgment, you can get to radically better solutions in honestly about the same amount of time.”

We’re less likely to perform at our peak when reaching for low-hanging fruit. There’s more competition at the bottom.

“The first step is stop establish that something is possible; then probability will occur.” – Musk

“If you make something en times better for a large number of people – producing huge amounts of value – the money’s gonna come find you because it would be hard not to make money if you’re really adding that much value.”