Monday Mornings with Madison

Monthly Archives:
December 2011

Something Old. Something New.

Part 1 – Mixing Old and New Strategies To Achieve Success

There was an old English rhyme that said “Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue, And A Sixpence in your Shoe.” It was told to brides on their wedding day. Something old represented continuity. Something new offered optimism for the future. Something borrowed symbolized borrowed happiness that came with becoming part of a new family. Something blue stood for love and loyalty. And, a sixpence in your shoe was meant as a wish for good fortune and prosperity. The tradition was that brides who did these things on their wedding day would have a happy and successful marriage.

Most business owners and entrepreneurs surely hope for the same happiness and success in business as brides do in marriage. This week, we begin by apply the saying to business as we think about what has worked in the past and what new things to try in 2012. We’ll start by rethinking an old – but valuable – marketing strategy that helps promote brand continuity. We’ll also investigate a new marketing trend that is helping customers connect to businesses in a new way, generating a new optimism about branding for the future. Continue reading

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Words of Wisdom from Steve Jobs – Part 3

Living Your Own Life To Avoid Regrets

This week we conclude our three-part series reflecting on the Commencement Speech Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple Computer and Pixar Animation Studios, delivered to Stanford University students on June 12, 2005. His speech — told in three stories – offered the graduating seniors advice on how to live their lives after college, told by a man who himself had dropped out of college and yet achieved the highest level of business success.

Each of his three stories was a message unto itself. The first part advised graduates to have the courage to try new things in life without worrying about connecting the dots. The second part advised them to have the courage to find their passion and then do great work by doing what they love. Today we conclude with the third story in his speech. He said it was about death… but actually it really was about life. He advised students to be true to themselves throughout life’s journey in order to avoid having regrets when death inevitably comes calling. In light of his recent passing, his words are particularly poignant. Continue reading

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Words of Wisdom from Steve Jobs – Part 2

Last week, we began a three-part series reflecting on the Commencement Speech Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple Computer and Pixar Animation Studios, delivered to Stanford University students on June 12, 2005. His speech basically told three stories. Each was a message unto itself. The first part was about trying new things without worrying about connecting the dots.

This week, we’ll read the second part of his Commencement Speech – just as he spoke it and offer a little further insight. In this story, he talked about finding and doing what you love. This advice is not revolutionary, but neither is it necessarily common or easy to achieve. Mr. Jobs found his passion, lost it, and then found it again. He and the world were the better for it. Continue reading

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Words of Wisdom from Steve Jobs – Part 1

Many things serve as inspiration for our weekly Monday Mornings column. Over a year ago, a colleague sent me the Commencement Address by Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple Computer and Pixar Animation Studios, delivered to Stanford University students on June 12, 2005. It was no surprise that Mr. Jobs was a gifted communicator. With very little preamble, he basically told three stories. Each was a message unto itself, and each was inspirational.
As 2011 draws to a close and we begin to think about 2012, Mr. Jobs’ words of wisdom to those graduating students some six to seven years ago about past, present and future are particularly poignant, especially as we contemplate a year gone by that also brought Mr. Jobs’ untimely demise. This week, and for the next two weeks, we’ll share most of that that Commencement Speech — in three parts — and then perhaps dare to add a little insight of our own. His first story was about connecting the dots. Continue reading

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