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“Finding the humility to happily walk away from those that don’t get it unlocks our ability to do great work.” – Seth Godin

You can please some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time…

Embracing the failure to please everyone all of the time, unleashes your best work and will in the end please the most people the most times. Including yourself. Seth Godin examines the humility of this failure embrace in a number of his posts…

  • “It seems arrogant to say, ‘perhaps this isn’t for you.’ When the critic pans your work, or the prospect hears your offer but doesn’t buy, the artist responds, ‘that’s okay, it’s not for you.’ She doesn’t wheedle or flip-flop or go into high pressure mode. She treats different people differently, understands that she is working to delight the weird, not please the masses, and walks away. Isn’t that arrogant? No. It’s arrogant to assume that you’ve made something so extraordinary that everyone everywhere should embrace it. Our best work can’t possibly appeal to the average masses, only our average work can.” – The humility of the artist
  • 2% of your customers don’t get it. They won’t read the instructions, they’ll use the wrong handle, they’ll ignore the warning about using IE6. They will blame you for giving them a virus or will change the recipe even though you ask them not to… If you’re going to be in a mass market business, you have no choice to but to accept that this group exists. And to embrace them. Not to blame them, but to love them. Successful businesses have the resilience to make it easy for them to recover. To make it easy for these people to find you and to blame you and to get the help they need.” – Customers who break things
  • Unanimity is impossible unless you are willing to be invisible. We can be unanimous in our lack of feedback for the invisible one. For everyone else, though, the ability to say, ‘It’s not for you,’ is the foundation for creating something brave and important. You can’t do your best work if you’re always trying to touch the untouchable, or entertain those that refuse to be entertained. ‘It’s not for you.’ This is easy to say and incredibly difficult to do. You don’t have much choice, though, not if you want your work to matter.” – For the one person who didn’t get the joke
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