Monday, August 24, 2009

The Think Big Manifesto

On Sunday, Jenn and I stopped by Barnes and Noble. I headed over to the business section because right now I'm very interested in the topic of leadership. I scanned through a few books and then came across a rather small book with a rather bold title, The Think Big Manifesto. I'm about 48 pages into this little gem of a book and am just about going crazy with excitement. As you might suspect from the title, this big is about thinking big - about dreaming and seeing dreams to fruition. However, in describing "thinking big" the books also has to describe "thinking small."

The author Michael Port writes, "People dominated by their small thoughts and those who are thinking big struggle against one another: ... those who chose abundance versus those who choose scarcity... " A few years ago, I worked on a project that was dominated by small thoughts. Specifically, the common thought was that our employees were too busy to test the product using an improved test method. In fact, I still recall the fiery outburst that occurred when the instruments went out onto the production floor. Yet, twelve months later, this new measurement system had helped to achieve huge (multiple zeros) monetary savings. A conflict of thoughts existed - small thoughts versus big thoughts.

A friend recently shared some stories about this conflict. His storiesprobably best fit in one of these descriptions from Port, "the bold entrepreneurs versus those who dare not dream" or "the adventurers eager to explore new territory, new ideas, and new ways of being versus those set in their ways, whether by rigidity or timidity."

I guess that I'm left with a question:

Why not think big?

(Well, I can say from experience that there are a lot of reasons. However, I'm quickly starting to recognize that the reasons are pretty goofy.)

Take care,


1 comment:

Trent said...

I like this. If I were given two categories - 1)big thinkers, 2) little thinkers - I would tend to lean toward #1(as I'm sure we would all say). But, I can't imagine what the world would be like without the little thinkers. Who would manage and maintain the "big ideas." The "thinkers" aren't wired for that. They dream, but who would ever, "do"?

A mix is probably best.