Food for Thought

The power of perspectives


It is so easy to let the demands of the moment consume our attention. However, the value of setting aside time to visualize the future and seek out the lessons learned by others can have an incremental impact on day-to-day thinking. Here is some food for thought.

Sharing Lessons Learned

I had a great “food for thought” experience while participating in the Ignition CEO Summit, an event that the venture capital group hosts for the CEO’s in their portfolio companies.


The event is an important opportunity for CEO’s, Venture Partners and Subject Matter Experts to share lessons learned, and benefit from each others experiences.

I saw the CEO’s put down their smart phones or stop typing on their tablets and laptops whenever another CEO talked about a lesson learned. For me, it was a valuable reminder of what power there is in seeking out perspectives on key issues that will impact your future.

Sources of Food for Thought

It also got me to thinking about other food for thought sources. While there are many ways to gather perspective-changing insights, there are a couple of internet resources I would like to call out.

Ted Talks

TED Talks

This is a well-established and respected lecture series described as “great talks to stir your curiosity.” Indeed it does. Clicking on the logo will take you to the subject directory. Enjoy browsing.

Rand Fishkin Blog

Rand Fishkin

Rand Fishkin is the co-founder and CEO of SEOmoz. In an article that appears in Forbes, Rand was ranked as #1 in “leaders who aren’t afraid to be transparent.

SEOmoz has made their funding decks open to the public, which is pretty much unheard of. They share all of their failures (and their successes) with the world so others can learn from their experiences.

TheBeach Meets TheStreet

The Street

This is a new endeavor, launched in Feb 2013, focused on airing “casual conversations with serial entrepreneurs, founders and startup leaders.” I am calling this one out because they are currently seeking founders to be interviewed. If you are a founder at a start-up that has secured venture capital financing, you can share your insights by appearing on TheBeach. Contact Manoj Rao of Media 11:11.

The Power of Perspectives

In my own work, which involves positioning and messaging for emerging companies, I have learned the value of seeking out and merging multiple perspectives before making strategic decisions. For example:

Positioning:  To successful position a company for growth there are three key perspectives that need to be sought out and then merged.

  • Company
  • Competition
  • Customer

Described in more detail:   Market Force #5: “Positioned Clearly?”

Messaging:  To resonate with a targeted prospect there are three key perspectives that must be understood and communicated.

  • Why Me?
  • Why Now?
  • Why This Product?

Described in more detail:   Why Me? Why Now? Why This Product?

During a one-on-one conversation with a CEO at the Ignition event, we discussed this positioning and messaging framework and a perspective logjam was broken. The CEO immediately knew what he wanted to do differently in order to communicate his company’s value. This was my personal example of sharing lessons learned, in action. It is also the goal of my blog series as the ChangeMarketer.

Moral of the Story

Make the time today, to seek out perspectives on the key issues that will shape your future. The value of setting aside time to visualize the future and learn from the lessons of others, can have a positive impact on day-to-day thinking.


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