A Rocket Scientist’s Advice On How To Do Impossible Things

Have you ever been at a cocktail party, had someone ask you what you do for a living, and wished you could come up with something impressive-sounding to wow them? Adam Stelztner probably never experiences that. He’s an engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory who has worked on flight missions including Galileo, Cassini, and Mars Pathfinder, and the Mars Exploration Rover project. He has a lot to say about innovation and leadership.

Finding Your “Sweet Spot”

Having worked with and interviewed hundreds of professionals, I’ve come to believe that each person has a “sweet spot”. It’s comprised of the situations and activities where they are maximally effective, and where they create the most unique value for their effort. It’s not necessarily a specific job or task, but rather a mode they go into that separates them from the pack. It’s a unique kind of value that they become known for, and that others seek out.

Three Tactics From Getting Things Done That Transformed My Productivity

GTD is a system for organizing and acting on the work that matters most. There are a lot of nuances to the system, and as a result many people get lost in the weeds and intricate details and get off track and stop utilizing it altogether. That’s unfortunate, because there are many principles that can be borrowed from GTD and acted upon, even if you don’t use the entire system.

Why No One Is Listening To Your Great Idea

The ugly truth is that great work isn’t enough. No one tells you this early in your career; It’s something you learn over time. Cream doesn’t automatically rise to the top, and we don’t live in a meritocracy. If you want your idea to be heard, you have to go the extra mile to ensure that it’s framed to resonate with the right audience.

Louder Than Words Press & Articles

Because I’ve been writing much more “out there” over the past few weeks than around here, I’ve compiled a list of some of the interviews and articles featuring Louder Than Words.

Win Signed Copies Of Die Empty & The Accidental Creative

I am awash in paperbacks! My publisher just re-configured its office space, and sent me a few boxes of Die Empty and The Accidental Creative paperbacks.

Books aren’t meant to be kept in a box, they’re meant to be read, so I’m giving giving away 15 signed paperback copies of Die Empty and The Accidental Creative.

Why Authenticity Is The Key To Making Your Work Resonate

It’s noisy. Not physically noisy, but culturally noisy.

Everyone is clamoring for attention, and clanging their gongs trying to win a few seconds of your precious time. Clickbait, shock tactics, and distractions are so commonplace that they are now used even by previously “credible” institutions. It’s tempting to follow suit and fall into these tactics with your own work. Don’t do it.

Harness The Power Of Your Authentic Voice

Don’t spend your life chasing a vapor. Don’t waste it bouncing from one comfortable place to another, hoping things work out in your favor. Commit to doing the difficult work of excavating, then utilizing your authentic voice. The journey is challenging and the hurdles are very real, but in the end you will point with pride to a body of work that represents you well. It begins now, in this moment.

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