I’m a big fan of Jason Fried and the 37signals blog in general, bu this post from August 19 struck a particular chord with me.
In the post, Fried starts with the fact that the he wrote an opinion piece for The New York Times. That’s a huge deal, obviously, but Fried’s mission is to show us how he got to that point by connecting the dots of his story. Working backwards, the NYT piece happened because an editor like his TEDx talk. The TEDx talk happened because he was invited to speak by one of the Groupon co-founders. He knew that Groupon co-founder because … well, you get the point. Hop over to Fried’s post and read his quick breakdown of the progression of his career, starting most recently with The New York Times and going all the way back to a little music cataloging app he created in the 90s.
I took two things from Fried’s post I consider important for us as church communicators:
- Tomorrow’s opportunities and successes are built on today’s work. If we want to create meaningful things going forward — and I believe we all do — we have to be willing to hustle and grind and put in the time now.
- There is power in connecting the dots. It’s important for Jason Fried to know his story and how he got where he is today. It inspires him to keep going, and it inspires others too. As a communication leader, you can teach people to connect their own dots as well as the dots of your organization. Knowing where we are and where we’ve been helps to unite us as we pursue the vision and mission ahead.
In thinking about the way Fried connected the dots and how that practice might inspire us, I couldn’t help but think about “Strangers,” a video produced by my talented colleagues at Igniter Media. In this fictional account, the characters are only aware of one or two of their particular dots, but the bigger principle is still at work: in the story unfolding all around us, what we do today has the potential to change tomorrow.
Enjoy the video, and give some thoughts to what connecting the dots may mean for you and your organization.
Scott McClellan is the Editor of Echo Hub and the Director of Echo Conference. You can follow him on Twitter: @scottmcclellan.