"Man is what he believes." - Anton Chekov
It has been a couple of weeks of belief and varying degrees of success.
the rescue of the incredibly brave football team in those very dark
caves in Thailand to England getting to a semi-final in the World Cup
and an unlikely South African hero called Kevin Anderson, who with his
dodgy knees beat Roger Federer, the greatest of all time, to make a
Watching all these news stories I noticed
something a little strange. Take the cave story in Thailand. The
reporters would ask the divers and dive experts massive questions. Would
the children in the cave live? How is this all going to end? In other
words, what would the outcome be? What will happen in the future?
The divers would always respond to the reporters big questions with
small answers. We just have to focus on replenishing the air bottles and
continue to follow our plans. In other words, we are just going to
focus on right now.
Harry Kane was repeatedly asked if England
would win the World Cup. Is it coming home? His answer was always about
focusing on what they had to do right now. The small details they have
to get right, right now. Their success was based on being granular. It
helped them focus on what they could control and deal with the
expectations of a nation.
Kevin Anderson in his post match
interview after beating Roger Federer in the Wimbledon Quarter Final
said that in the fourth set of their marathon long five set match
started to think about winning. Of what might be. He admitted he had to
quickly banish those thoughts and just focus on the next point. He had
to focus on right now.
Success and the future is something everybody speaks about a lot. Doing and the present is always done by the very few.
would seem success in our minds is made of a giant tomorrow. It is
filled with massive ambition and massive results. However, in reality,
success seems to happen when you focus on the smallest actions and get
them right. And that happens, when you are able to focus on the present.
And that happens, when you believe in your own ability or what you are doing.
although belief in our business is slightly unfashionable these days,
it would seem success of any kind is literally impossible without it.
has become unfashionable because way too many posters have been put up
with snappy slogans on agency walls. This is just window dressing that
doesn't help anybody. It is the easy alternative to creating an agency
where you believe you can do something special. And doing something
special, normally begins with being in a place that makes you believe
you can. So, that is the first part.
The second part for
creatives is about craft. It is about doing the small things, that often
don't seem important, correctly. It is about focusing on right now,
rather than the outcome. Large belief meets tiny, seemingly unimportant
actions and bingo.
These days, the world is often about speed and
output. We all just want the outcome rather than looking at the tiny
unglamorous steps to get there. This week was a great reminder that if
you want to do something properly, there are no shortcuts. You have to
have the right ingredients. You have to have belief. You have to be
prepared to graft.
A grandiose vision, is the easy part.
Everybody has them. In fact, these days, many mistake the vision, for
the finished article. It is a big mistake that makes a huge amount of
work look the same. I wonder how long it will be before anybody notices?
truth is for a creative, creating Moby Dick often begins with the
tedious, yet essential task, of finding enough plankton right now and
having the slightly strange belief that a majestic whale will eventually
However, the world always wants the whale to happen right now.
But, whales don't happen that way.