Five Signs Your Job Is Holding You Back

Your Wisdom Isn’t Welcome

If no one wants to hear what you have to say, then your good ideas are going to waste. They can’t pay you enough to squash your creativity! You owe it to yourself to look around for another job that will make the most of your talents, instead of wasting them.

There Are No Hills To Climb

If you don’t see a meaty challenge ahead of you at work and every time you try to take on something bigger you get thwarted, how could your job still deserve you? It’s hard enough to go to work every day without having to also push a rock uphill when you get there. If you don’t feel challenged at work, how can you justify the hours, brain cells and heart cells you devote to your job?

There’s No Way to Move Up

Sometimes you can tell that there’s no way to move up at a job. Sometimes they tell you outright, like our friend Nelson’s boss told him. “Look, Nelson,” said Nelson’s manager, “you’re a great employee, but I have nothing to offer you here over the long term.

After a couple of years I won’t even be able to give you pay raises anymore. The company doesn’t think that a five- or seven-year employee in this department is worth a dime more than a two-year employee. That’s just the way it is.”

There’s No One to Learn From

It’s an awful feeling when you look around your workplace and see no one you can learn from — no one with the intellectual curiosity or altitude to teach you a thing. It’s depressing, but freeing at the same time, because you realize “Well, my learning here is done — on to the next adventure!”

Your Flame is Dying

If you hate getting out of bed on a weekday morning to go to work, your body is speaking to you. Your body will tell you in louder and more emphatic ways the longer you resist receiving its messages. You could end up in the hospital if you pretend that everything is fine at your job when your body knows for sure that it isn’t fine at all.“


Full article from Liz Ryan here:



What Amazing Bosses Do Differently

Manage individuals, not teams. 
When you’re under pressure, it’s easy to forget that employees are unique individuals, with varying interests, abilities, goals, and styles of learning. But it’s important to customize your interactions with them. Ensure you understand what makes them tick. Be available and accessible for one-on-one conversations. Deliver lessons cued to individual developmental needs. And when it comes to promotion, look past rigid competency models and career ladders for growth opportunities tailored to the ambitions, talents, and capacities of each person.


Go big on meaning.  
Most employees value jobs that let them contribute and make a difference, and many organizations now emphasize meaning and purpose in the hopes of fostering engagement. But this is also the manager’s responsibility. You can’t rely on incentives like bonuses, stock options, or raises. You’ve got to inspire them with a vision, set challenging goals and pump up their confidence so they believe they can actually win. Articulate a clear purpose that fires your team up, set expectations high, and convey to the group that you think they’re capable of virtually anything.


Focus on feedback.
A 2013 Society for Human Resource Management survey of managers in the U.S. found that “only 2% provide ongoing feedback to their employees.” Just 2%!   Many bosses limit themselves to the dreaded “performance review” and often mingle developmental feedback with discussions about compensation and promotion, rendering the former much less effective.
(…) Use regular—at least weekly—one-on-one conversations to give lots of coaching. Make the feedback clear, honest and constructive, and frame it so that it promotes independence and initiative.


Don’t just talk… listen. 
Employees tend to be happiest when they feel free to contribute new ideas and take initiative, and most managers claim they want people who do just that. So why doesn’t it happen more often? Usually the problem is that bosses promote their own views too strongly. Employees wonder: “Why bother taking risks with new ideas when my boss’s views are already so fixed?”
The best leaders spend a great deal of time listening. They pose problems and challenges, then ask questions to enlist the entire team in generating solutions. They reward innovation and initiative, and encourage everyone in the group to do the same.


Be consistent. 
Who could be happy with a boss who does one thing one day and another thing the next? It’s hard to feel motivated when the bar is always shifting in unpredictable ways and you never know what to expect or how to get ahead. So be consistent in your management style, vision, expectations, feedback and openness to new ideas. If change becomes necessary, acknowledge it openly and quickly.”


Read the full article by Sydney Finkelstein here:

Leadership lessons by a drug dealer



“I wanted the same for them and for them to even surpass me.”

They might not always take it. But give them the chance to be as successful as you and they will take that example to the people below them.


This sounds strange coming from a drug kingpin but there aren’t any lawyers or courts to track down liars. Honesty is the law in that game.

When there are lawyers, people lie and deceive and betray. When everything is based on your word and everyone is carrying guns, honesty is the rule.

“If there was any funny business, I’d rather not deal with them anymore, or be very careful with them in the future.”


Nobody ever saw Rick being flashy. He was so low key that even when he was running almost a half billion dollars a year, the police had no idea what he looked like.

Part of this was a decentralized structure. People several layers below him in the organization would not have any contact with him and would have to deal with conflicts at their level.

“I had to show by example how to manage, so the people underneath me would know what to do instead of me being always involved.”


Rick arranged the top level contacts between his sellers and his buyers. Then he stepped back.

Everything else had to be dealt with by the people who worked for him and the people who worked for them.

“Everyone knew what they had to do.” And if they didn’t, they stopped being part of the food chain.


Again: odd advice from a mega drug lord.

Rick poured many of his profits back into his neighborhood.

This was in part to give back, to contribute. But at the same time, it was strategic.

When he went to jail at one point and his bail was set at over a million dollars the million had to come from legitimate enterprises. So Rick could not supply his own bail.

Instead, every household on the block he grew up on, put up their own homes as bail in order to get Rick out of jail.

When you make it not about the money the benefits never stop since money is only a tiny byproduct of the reasons we live, we do things, we strive for success.


When things have the possibility of getting incredibly violent, reduce confrontation as quickly as possible.

Often Rick would simply pay off or write off any losses on people who were no longer fitting in with the organization, rather than have a confrontation with them.

Violence could bring in a whole new set of problems. Better to take a loss and move on and now worry about it.


It’s almost a cliche, but Rick told how he went to Cincinnati. Stayed with a friend and told him to invite ten of his friends over.

Then when everyone was there he gave everyone a free supply and told them if they were interested to come back in a week and buy the next batch.

Everyone came back. Sometimes the sooner you charge in a business, the quicker you put a ceiling on your potential for expansion. This is true whether your business is drugs or when Facebook was waiting to charge for ads.


“I always knew I was going to go to jail,” Rick said.

But he wasn’t going to sit around and wait for it to happen. He owned over a dozen houses so nobody knew where he was.

He barricaded the houses with multiple iron fences so that it would take the police over an hour to smash their way in and by then everyone would be gone.

He would leave town for months at a time. He would put extra profits into “legitimate” businesses like a car parts company and hotels.

He always assumed the worst, so that’s how he was able to diversify all the potential ways he could succeed.

Entrevista a Rick Ross por James Altucher



Team Chemistry

Here are three lessons every manager should learn about the importance of team chemistry:

1. Value the Team

Track and marketing actually have a lot in common. Individuals are part of a larger team, but most of the work they do is on their own.

I’ve seen firsthand the transformative effect breaking down business silos can have on employees. Science also suggests that it’s in our DNA to be social creatures, whether at home or in the workplace.

Brigham Young University research recently found that loneliness and social isolation are just as much a threat to longevity as obesity. And a past study from the BYU research team equated loneliness to smoking 15 cigarettes a day and being an alcoholic.

A team is one of the most rewarding communities you can belong to as a professional. As a manager, it’s your job to ensure that all team members feel included, heard, and valued. No one should feel like an island at your company.

Learn how to increase interaction among your team members, for the health of your department and of your staff.

2. Remember your thank-you’s

When you’re a team of one, there’s no one you need to answer to, no one you need to thank, and no one to praise you for a job well done. But in a team environment, gratitude goes a long way in building culture and respect.

In our rush to get our work done, it’s natural to deprioritize gratitude in favor of checking off the next item on our to-do lists. However, research shows that not saying thank you or showing gratitude can lead to an unhappy workplace.

Harvard Health found that “gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improves their health, deal with adversity, and builds stronger relationships.”

As a manager, you’re going to receive most of the praise for when your team does well and reaches its goals. By remembering to show gratitude to your staff and praising them for their work, you’re more likely to earn their respect and compel them to work more productively long-term.

Saying thank you isn’t just a courtesy; it’s a motivator that inspires your team to do its very best every day.

3. Laugh

Funny stories are often the hardest ones to tell. But those professionals who effectively inject humor into their management styles are more likely to establish relationships with their peers, and at a much quicker rate.

A study published in Human Nature found that sharing a few laughs with someone makes him or her more likely to open up and tell you something personal about themselves. And this opening up is a crucial stepping-stone in building new relationships and solidifying social bonds.

You might not be the funniest person in the room, but allowing your team to joke around and share funny stories facilitates a bonding experience seldomly replicated in any other way. Therefore, you need to learn when it’s okay to let people wind down.

A laughing team isn’t an unproductive team. Sharing a few chuckles builds the team dynamic, and ultimately leads to stronger collaborative work down the line.

Back when we were kids, being the best mattered more than being a team player. Today, that’s just not the case; your biggest asset as a manager is a happy and healthy team.

Ask yourself: Are you building a team dynamic or are you allowing individualism to stunt your team’s creative output?

… by Ted Karczewski



How To Improve Your Writing: 5 Secrets From Hollywood

“In the same way that there’s an art to crafting surfboards or an art to designing cars, there’s an art to pumping gas or being a garbage man. No matter how much you’re being paid or what you’re doing as a career, you need to embrace the art of it and not be afraid of the artist in you… Find the art in everything you do.”

Artigo completo: How To Improve Your Writing: 5 Secrets From Hollywood



From cavemen to monkeys: Why storytelling works

“When we are just reviewing cold, hard facts, the language part of our brains light up to help us interpret the information.

When we sit and listen to a story, however, our brain makes very little distinction between what we experience personally and what we hear about others’ experiences. The brain remembers these supposed ‘experiences’ therefore, much easier than just lists of facts.

Not only are these stories easier for you to remember, but your brain also craves them. We reportedly spend an estimated one third of our lives daydreaming, with brains that are perpetually looking for the next distraction (that is definitely what I am going to tell my boss next time I am caught spacing out…).

When we tell stories with our brands, we answer this basic need of consumers and help them satisfy their brain’s craving for exciting and interesting tales. Since the story helps to address this consumer need, audiences become more engaged.”

Full Article by  Mark Hayes


“What I’d tell myself about startups if I could go back 5 years”

“This is, in no particular order, what I’d tell myself about startups if I could go back in time to when I first got involved. Which is probably the same as what I’ve learned. This is most definitely not advice, the “you” here is directed at me. So is “I”. Grammar is hard.

You’re definitely going to end up building too much and shipping too late. Be obsessive about avoiding this

Someone’s always already working on the same idea and that’s not a bad thing

Always refuse if someone asks you to sign an NDA before hearing their idea

Like it or not, most networking in London is focused around drinking. Find a way to deal with that without having a constant hangover

The people who are really getting somewhere aren’t the people who are always out for drinks

Linear growth can be worse than no growth

Most people who talk about failing fast, aren’t actually practicing this

It’s really easy to kid yourself that you’re “doing customer development” when actually you’re finding ways to make what your customers are saying fit with what you want to build

Everyone has a hidden stash of domains they’ve never used

It’s really easy to become hyper-critical and respond to every idea with “yeah but that won’t work because of x”. This is lazy, don’t do it.

Be especially careful to avoid the above when talking to people who are new to the scene. Call out other people who do it

It’s really hard to listen to someone pitching an idea you’ve seen fail several times already and focus on working out if there’s something slightly different and interesting there

Someone being a technically competent developer does not mean they know how to ship things. I’d always rather work with someone who ships over someone who’s technically brilliant

The programming language/ framework wars are great fun in the pub, but of limited value in real life

A good developer can pick up any language or platform in a few weeks

I still don’t know any real investors

Constantly exaggerating how well you’re doing can be very tiring. It makes it harder to publicly celebrate the real victories

It’s really hard to build a product if you don’t have a big personal investment in the problem it solves

Falling in love with a product (rather than the problem) is really dangerous

You can get away without knowing how a hash table works, but it’s really satisfying when you eventually learn it

Same goes for Big O notation

Overnight success isn’t a thing. The Social Network is still a great movie

I still don’t understand PR

Most technical solutions are trivial compared to how you get the product into peoples hands

Make something people want is probably a less useful heuristic than make something you want

But you wanting it doesn’t mean enough people want it for it to be a business

If you don’t have first hand experience of an industry, you’re probably wrong about how it works, what problems they have and so how they should be solved. Talk to people

“Ads” are where business models go to die

“We’ll monetize the data” is the new “Ads”

The people you end up wanting to work with (and help) are the ones who always try and work out how they can help you. Be more like them

But get really good at asking for things. Most people will give you a discount for no reason other than you asked. If you see someone important and influential, introduce yourself

Get good at saying no to things, from people asking you for discounts to interesting projects you really don’t have enough time for

Think hard about a pivot which makes good business sense but leads to a product you no longer care about

Writing (blogging, books, journaling) is a really positive experience

Don’t pay too much attention to internet comments about something you’ve written, there’s always someone who didn’t like one particular sentence (see point about trolls below)

One troll can wipe out a hundred positive interactions, be ruthless in keeping them out of your communities

If you end up pitching to someone over coffee, ask to hear their pitch afterwards

Only say you’re going to introduce someone or send them something if you’re actually going to do it. People quickly get a reputation for never following through

Show don’t tell. “I’m going to build this amazing thing” is a LOT less interesting than “I’ve built this slightly crappy thing that actually does something”. EVERYONE is GOING to build something, most people never do

Building things is awesome, don’t get too caught up with the whole “Lean Startup Landing Page” mindset

Lean Startup is awesome, but it’s a pamphlet not a book, read the first few chapters and you’ll get the idea. Four steps to the epiphany is more technical and probably a better book

Most startup advice is terrible and the good advice is usually obvious. Everyone will give different advice, trust your gut

Except when it comes to what your customers want, then ignore your gut and trust them

No-one has ever used a Bitcoin ATM for practical reasons

Do back of napkin financial forecasts for every potential business model you come up with, just to see if it’s in the right ballpark to a couple of orders of magnitude

It’s really easy to automatically dismiss everyone who starts a conversation with “I’m looking for a technical co-founder”. Doing this means you miss talking to some interesting people. But be upfront that you’re not that co-founder so no-one feels like their time is wasted

Trying to raise money and apply to accelerators is a full time job. You’re probably either building or fund raising. Not both. If in doubt, choose building

The solution to many, many problems, is not technical. That won’t stop people trying solve them with apps

Facebook is the Facebook for X

The idea you laughed at when you saw them pitch at a hackathon may well be the one that’s still alive and kicking long after whatever you pitched fails

If there are people who genuinely like failing, I’ve never met them

That was not “your idea” unless you shipped something, otherwise I invented Facebook, Nest and Oculus Rift

People don’t steal ideas. Tell as many people as possible. Never ask someone to sign an NDA before hearing your idea, you’ll instantly lose all credibility

Being friends with somebody is not the same as being able to work well with them

Small teams can move VERY fast, be really careful getting extra people involved in any project where agility is important

Multi-tasking isn’t a thing, switching costs are huge, do one thing at a time and do it really well. Find a way to block out interruptions

Read every essay Paul Graham has written

Tech news (and news is general) has a very low return on time invested. Prefer books and conversations

Read Founders Stories, Fooled By Randomness and The Four Steps to the Ephiphany

The logo doesn’t matter at the start, find a simple text based logo you can re-use for different projects

If you possibly can, open source and write up any side project. Every now and then you’ll meet somebody really interesting as a result

Regularly working 12 hour days is probably never a good idea. If this is happening a lot, find a way to optimise

Talk to everybody“

Ben Dixon

Management vs Leadership…

“It’s the million dollar question with a million possible answers; what’s the difference between leadership and management?

I have 30 years’ experience leading people so I’d like to think my thoughts aren’t redundant in the field however there are so many blogs surrounding these two concepts that it’s difficult take a fresh approach and write something impactful, but here goes…

Firstly, we have to question whether there really is a difference between being a manager and being a leader. Most people will say ‘yes of course there is’ but the difficulty lies in articulating these differences. To come to a conclusion, we need to establish what sets the two apart. What does a leader have that a manager doesn’t? What does a manager do differently to a leader?

I recently blogged about adopting leadership qualities and using them to your advantage. I believe everyone has the ability to be a leader but there’s no denying the existence of born leaders. Those people who have the ability to inspire a crowd, someone who has so much passion and belief in their chosen purpose that you yearn to follow them and become part of their journey.

Now that’s not to say you can’t be an inspiring manager but there are some prerequisites to consider.

For me, the difference between managers and leaders manifests in their actions. Managers administrate, leaders innovate. Manager’s delegate, leaders inspire and managers implement, whilst leaders direct.

To be a good manager, you need to motivate your staff and earn their respect but ultimately, you need to be able to get the best out of the people you manage and make sure they are doing the job to the best of their ability.

As a manager, you have learnt through experience and adopted a specific structure to get the answers you need in order to get the job done. You have set a goal and ask the how and when in order to accomplish that goal. I like to think of managers as the engine of the business; they keep the business moving whilst increasing profitability.

Leaders, on the other hand exude charisma and gravitas. They find a way of encouraging people to follow them by intrinsically changing their vision. They make people believe they can make a difference and following them will be the best decision they ever made. Just look at Martin Luther King or Winston Churchill – they are the epitome of great leaders! Their legacy continues to this day because their impact was felt worldwide.

Leaders are the type of people who are interested in the big picture. They’re focused on vision, not just keeping the cogs turning. I’ve met many leaders in my time and the one thing they all have in common is the ability to make you feel like you can take on the world and cross any hurdle along the way. They inspire you to be someone you really want to be.

There are many overlapping similarities between the role of a manager and that of a leader so the confusion surrounding this question is understandable. However the qualities I’ve mentioned above can help you decipher which end of the spectrum you fall under.

So, do you lead or do you manage?”

James Caan