Make It Happen
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Oscar Performance

by Randall Craig on February 24, 2009

Filed in: Blog, Make It Happen Tipsheet, Motivational,

Tagged as: , ,

While very few of us may be professional actors, how often is our “performance” Oscar-worthy? If you’re like most people, you like to do a great job, but are you doing the greatest job? To do the greatest job isn’t a comment on your effort, but rather that the results of your efforts both surpass expectations, and surpass anyone else’s results.

When asked, most award winners will say that it was hard work and support from others that helped them achieve their greatness. If they focus on doing the greatest job, an Oscar may be on the horizon. But what does hard work and support from others mean? Digging behind these words suggests several specific activities:

  • Put in your time: Nobody can be the greatest without spending time learning their craft.
  • Put yourself in harm’s way: Stretch yourself in new ways – and prove you are up to the challenge.
  • Rehearse your presentations: If your message is important enough to give, then it’s important enough to deliver well.
  • Get feedback from your clients: Consider engaging a skilled consultant to collect feedback in client interviews.
  • Tape yourself: Record your presentations, then review the tapes and videos in detail. If you are humble enough, review them with a trusted advisor.
  • Focus beyond the spoken word: Tear apart your old written reports and marketing materials, and look for ways you could have improved them.
  • Find a coach: No matter how great you are, surely there is something that you can do better? A coach, in a certain sense, can play the role of a “living mirror”, providing feedback and instruction beyond what you can see for yourself.
  • Engage with a mentor: While playing a similar role to a coach, mentors provide a different, often more senior perspective.
  • Give back: If you are approaching greatness, you have an obligation to give back to your professional community, workplace, and to everyone else who helped you find your success. Not only does this make the system work, but by teaching what you know, your knowledge deepens even further.
  • Be grateful: The thank you speech is almost as important as the award itself. The speech does recognize all who helped make the Oscar winner great, but more importantly, what is said and how it is said is a reflection of the winner’s character.

This week’s action item: Of all of the items on the list above, how many are you doing? Pick one or two that are new to you, and schedule them in. While you won’t win an Oscar, you can still deliver an Oscar performance.

Note: The Make It Happen Tipsheet is also available by email. Go to to register.

Randall Craig

@RandallCraig (follow me)


Think and Grow Rich

by Randall Craig on February 14, 2006

Filed in: Blog, Make It Happen Tipsheet,

Tagged as: , , ,

No matter how clever you are, no matter how much education you have, and no matter how important your job title, thinking will only get you so far. Those who are successful, on the job and off, are those who successfully translate their thinking into action.

Whether you’re looking to “grow rich” or have some other goal, here are three ideas to get you started:

1) Start small: Setting smaller, achievable goals will earn you the confidence to attack larger ones. If you have one large goal, chunk it down to smaller parts, and set your sights on the smaller, attainable milestone.

2) Start a schedule: Choose a specific part of the day (or week) to do a special task that gets you closer to your goals. Making this thing part of your routine will move you closer, bit by bit by bit.

3) Start now: Decide on one small thing that you can do to move you towards your goal, and do it today. It can be as simple as looking at a web site, writing a to-do list, or booking an appointment with your manager.

If you think that these three ideas make sense, then think again: thinking makes it possible, but Action Makes it Happen.

Note: The Make It Happen Tipsheet is also available by email. Go to to register.

Randall Craig

@RandallCraig (follow me)
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