Chris Fussell starts the podcast explaining the process of becoming a Seal. The teams of the Special Forces do not select as much as they down select. Out of the 150 people who start a Seals class, maybe 25 will make it. The military uses rigorous training to sort out “who has it” and who doesn’t. People have to have special inherent skills and then they are nurtured to refine those skills. A good team is made up of individuals that complement each others shortcomings and are able to magnify each others strength.
Chris stresses that these men have all the same burdens that civilians have, they just have it coupled with combat stressors as well. They deploy for an amount of time and then come home to a wife, kids, and a stack of bills. Everyone, especially soldiers, need to have a cocktail of coping tools so there is a balance between work and personal life. You can’t be amazing at work and have your family falling apart. Things will start to unravel at work rapidly.
Chris was a young officer in 2004 when the conflict in Iraq started. This was his first full scale conflict. He had the misconception that there was a set plan going in, and that all they had to do was execute that plan. Chris quickly learned he wasn’t entering a stable environment. Everyone needed to be proactive and adaptive to the war zone.
Now that Chris is helping manage a company, he uses that experience to always adapt and readjust. He realizes he needs small teams with a rapid fire adaption mentality. People need to see a problem and intuitively react to it. While in the Navy Seals they re-strategized every 24 hours. There were 6,000-7,000 people around the world sharing a consciousness every 24 hours. The most seasoned teams were able to run with speed and autonomy without checking in because of this once a day communication. They were able to make decisions on their own and be highly effective.
Chris and Michael end the podcast discussing what makes a working relationship. Relationships are grounded in knowing other perspectives. We have to be willing to see things differently and know that both individuals, when there is a disagreement, could be right. When you are on a team and leading with the perspective that everyone is part of your family, it turns teams into a more giving and trusting environment.
In this episode of Trend Following Radio:
Nature vs. Nurture
Learning from failure
Synchronicity between data and leadership
Zealots and martyrs
“Treat everyone on the battlefield like they are your mother.”- Chris Fussell
Eric Barker is founder of the blog, Barking Up The Wrong Tree. He provides science based answers and expert insight on how to be awesome in life. His newest work is “Barking Up the Wrong Tree: The Surprising Science Behind Why Everything You Know About Success Is (Mostly) Wrong”.
What happens to valedictorians after graduation? Valedictorians are great at following rules and not breaking outside the box. This gets them far in school but not too far in the real world. Studies have proven most who excel in school end up in structured non-pioneering jobs. Most entrepreneurs don’t follow the rules of school or society. They are also generally classified as creative people and therefore have huge obstacles to maneuver through. Most teachers say they love creative children but research shows those are the students hated most. They don’t sit still or follow direction well. Luckily, In today’s era it is easier than ever for those creative types to succeed. The internet has given ideas the opportunity to spread quickly and easier than ever before.
With ideas easily being spread, so are negative (and positive) influences. We are always more influenced by those around us than we realize: work colleagues, friends, people at social events… whoever you choose to surround yourself with will have a tremendous influence on your life.
Learning to accept failure is just as important as surrounding yourself with the right crowd. New opportunities and innovation springs from a person’s ability to fail. Doing everything the same way every time, will always get the same results. Pushing boundaries is critical otherwise you’re not working toward expertise, you are just practicing redundant behavior. Everyone loves to hear about the 25 year old billionaire because it doesn’t seem like there was much work involved but when you peel back the layers, you see the grit necessary in getting to their success.
One example of grit and sustaining the right mindset is a research project Eric did with Navy Seals. What stood out the most was their optimism. They have short term focus that keeps them optimistically moving forward. Personal, persistent and pervasive are the three P’s that if kept positive, you can produce optimism and grit. Navy Seals don’t look at a 60 day program and say, “I can have no sleep or food for 60 days.” Instead they say, “I can get to lunch” and then after lunch they say, “I can get to dinner.” It is a day-to-day survival mode rather than big picture. The big picture is too daunting.
Michael and Eric end the podcast discussing what Eric calls “the buffet.” How close are you to buffet food? How much are your friends eating? Are you facing the food, or are you facing away? All these factors play a part in how your life is modeled.
Andy Molinsky author of “Reach: A New Strategy to Help You Step Outside Your Comfort Zone” is on the podcast. Everyone can learn better ways to push themselves and step outside of their comfort zone. Andy and Mike help show listeners how to get there.
If we can’t find ways to sacrifice comfort, how do we obtain future success? There is some truth to living on the edge of your comfort zone. However, sometimes it is perfectly OK to stay in your comfort zone, like trading in the stock market. There are times to play it safe and there are times to take the leap. Often there is a lot of work that goes into taking a leap that is commonly overlooked. Having a person to hold you accountable, push you, or just let you know when an idea is good or not can be a critical building block to your success.
How you execute an idea is also monumental to creating success. Taking uncomfortable steps is often necessary to get projects off the ground. Andy uses the story of Neil Kennedy as an example. Neil had a comparable website to Facebook before Facebook was around. He was shy and uncomfortable talking to venture capitalists and wasn’t able to move forward in getting his project off the ground. Because of this, Facebook succeeded and Neil failed.
Five core challenges to stepping out of your comfort zone that Andy points out are: 1. Authenticity challenge 2. Likeability challenge 3. Competence challenge 4. Resentment challenge and 5. Morality challenge. You may not experience all of these challenges but they are a nice road map to help single out your weak points. Mike and Andy finish up their conversation talking about presentations and how to engage an audience.
Michael Covel interviews Ryan Holiday. Today they discuss his new book, “Ego is the Enemy.”
Ryan makes the case that ego is the worst factor that you can add into any situation. So many entrepreneurial ideas start out as crazy. However, when the idea works out after ignoring every critic or bit of sound evidence that it would not work, then that can create an ego that can easily get out of control. Ryan says, “This is how a person that builds an empire also destroys an empire.” He uses General Sherman from the Civil War as an example of controlled success. His greatness came gradually and unexpected as opposed to a person like Napolean who thought they were set for greatness from the outset. Google is another example. It was started by two men who did not set out to conquer the internet but because they focused on events as they came, one at a time, greatness gradually happened.
Next, Michael brings up one of Ryan’s book chapters relating to being a student. He tells the story of Kirk Hammett, one of the greatest heavy metal guitarist of all time, being a student of Joe Satriani who is one of the most famous guitar virtuosos of all time. Hammett hired him when he was already on his way to being famous. Even with his success, he knew he still had plenty to learn from Satriani. Hammett was able to be humbled enough, even after being chosen as the new guitarist of Metallica, to hire someone who was an even better guitarist than him so he could continue to learn. Steve Jobs is another example that is brought up. Before he created the iPod and iPhone there were many other layers to his story. His story could have ended after he was fired and he could have become a cautionary tail for CEO’s to learn from but instead he became an inspiring story that everyone can learn positives from.
Michael and Ryan move into breaking apart the “10,000 hour rule.” Ryan says that it isn’t a real number. It is egotistical to think that once you hit that 10,000th hour that you will gain your success at that moment. Outcome is one thing, but the process is something else. If we could learn everything from a book that would be great but some lessons can only be learned from painful experiences. It is a balance between learning from your own experiences and learning from others. Landing on the other side of fear, failure, success, and aspirations can be a great feeling. Ryan says that each person is constantly at one of those points in their life. It is ever changing, but the worst thing you can introduce into any of those phases is ego.
Michael finishes the conversation asking Ryan if he thinks his message will translate to the younger “millennial” generation. Ryan says that this is something he had thought a lot about while writing his book.
In this episode of Trend Following Radio:
Letting other people win
Being seen not heard
Only the paranoid survive
Dealing with failure
Dealing with success
“You control the effort that you put into the work, you don’t control the reception to the work.” – Ryan Holiday