When I taught the "Entrepreneurial Journey" course at Concordia University, I loved sending my students off with a copy of Linchpin by Seth Godin. For those unfamiliar with the book, Linchpin challenges us to be indispensable to the organizations we serve.
Sounds logically aspirational in a straightforward kinda way, right? But here's where it gets interesting. Godin calls us all to work as artists. He argues that artists do "emotional work." Work that they love. Work that gives them a sense of purpose and, ideally, meaning.
Further, artists ship. They finish projects. Even when they're doubtful, they take a deep breath and push their creative endeavors in to the world.
It's really easy to allow self-doubt and outside criticism to thwart our entrepreneurial/artistic endeavors. Our lizard brains (amygdala) even can scream at us to hold something back just as we're ready to push forward. The challenge is to plow through and unveil that which often scares us.
As Godin admonishes, choose your journey very carefully. Be thoughtful and deliberate about what you work on. But once you're in, unleash your inner-artist and ship what you create -- be it a pitch, a proposal, an idea or a product.
Next time you're uncertain as to whether or not something is "good enough" to unveil, recall Godin's perspective: artists ship. And never forget that you, as a growth-centric entrepreneur and/or executive, are an artist!
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Steve Semelsberger is the Founder of Alder Growth Partners.