270 Bits of Unsolicited Advice

Here is my personal collection of the best Kevin Kelly’s unsolicited advices from all his posts.

103 bits

  1. Don’t ever work for someone you don’t want to become.
  2. When you lead, your real job is to create more leaders, not more followers.
  3. Productivity is often a distraction. Don’t aim for better ways to get through your tasks as quickly as possible, rather aim for better tasks that you never want to stop doing.
  4. The biggest lie we tell ourselves is “I don’t need to write this down because I will remember it.” (That’s the reason why I write this post)
  5. Speak confidently as if you are right, but listen carefully as if you are wrong.
  6. Three things you need: The ability to not give up something till it works, the ability to give up something that does not work, and the trust in other people to help you distinguish between the two.
  7. Half the skill of being educated is learning what you can ignore.
  8. You cannot get smart people to work extremely hard just for money.
  9. We tend to overestimate what we can do in a day, and underestimate what we can achieve in a decade.
  10. It’s possible that a not-so-smart person, who can communicate well, can do much better than a super-smart person who can’t communicate well.
  11. Backups are cheap compared to regrets.
  12. When you are stuck, explain your problem to others. Often simply laying out a problem will present a solution. Make “explaining the problem” part of your troubleshooting process. (Rubber duck debugging is that you?)
  13. Don’t bother fighting the old; just build the new.
  14. You are as big as the things that make you angry.
  15. If you repeated what you did today 365 more times will you be where you want to be next year?
  16. Copying others is a good way to start. Copying yourself is a disappointing way to end.

99 bits

  1. Under-promise and over-deliver.
  2. Be governed not by the tyranny of the urgent but by the elevation of the important.
  3. Don’t create things to make money; make money so you can create things. The reward for good work is more work.
  4. Train employees well enough they could get another job, but treat them well enough so they never want to.
  5. A multitude of bad ideas is necessary for one good idea.
  6. Most overnight successes —in fact, any significant successes— take at least 5 years. Budget your life accordingly.
  7. To be wealthy, accumulate all those things that money can’t buy.
  8. It is much easier to change how you think by changing your behavior than it is to change your behavior by changing how you think.

68 bits

  1. Always demand a deadline. A deadline weeds out the extraneous and the ordinary. It prevents you from trying to make it perfect, so you have to make it different.
  2. A worthy goal for a year is to learn enough about a subject so that you can’t believe how ignorant you were a year earlier.
  3. Don’t be the smartest person in the room. Hang out with, and learn from, people smarter than yourself. Even better, find smart people who will disagree with you.
  4. The more you are interested in others, the more interesting they find you. To be interesting, be interested.
  5. Separate the processes of creation from improving. You can’t write and edit, sculpt and polish, or make and analyze at the same time. If you do, the editor stops the creator. While you invent, don’t select. While you sketch, don’t inspect. While you write the first draft, don’t reflect. At the start, the creator’s mind must be unleashed from judgment.
  6. Before you are old, attend as many funerals as you can bear, and listen.
  7. How to apologize: Quickly, specifically, sincerely