This blog is an update to one I first posted a year ago.  As you will read – an experience on Friday at Innovation College and yesterday while working on the next Innovation Engineering Curriculum upgrade brought it to mind.

“There is nothing better for a man to do than to eat and drink and enjoy himself in return for his labors.”

This quote from Ecclesiastes 2:24 was hand written on the note pad on the top of Dr. W. Edwards Deming’s desk in his basement office when he passed away.  I learned this from a set of videos I was given in Powell Wyoming – the town where Dr. Deming grew up.   The videos were taken of Dr. Deming’s office shortly after he died.

That quote came to mind at the conclusion of last week’s Innovation College when one of the Innovation Engineering Black Belt students – a leader from a top University – said with a slight apology for the language but a purity in her heart…., “This week I learned to Do COOL SHIT that MATTERS.”   She went on to explain how that very morning she had been trying to make a decision on an issue and she suddenly realized that it just didn’t matter.  She realized that in her life she needed to stop worrying about things that didn’t matter and focus on what really matters.

Stop and Think. This day. This week ahead.

Are You Doing COOL SHIT that MATTERS?

Dr. Deming  would often begin his lectures declaring…

“Why are we here?
 We are here to come alive,
 to have fun, to have joy in work”

In my mind the key to finding joy in work and in life is to “Do COOL SHIT that MATTERS”

As you make the transition don’t sit there today and plan, study, study, study.  Rather,  just get started. Just DO SOMETHING different this day and week ahead.  What you choose will probably wrong.  But it will be useful.  With every thing you DO, TRY, EXPERIENCE you will get smarter.

As Dr. Deming said one of the great challenges of life is getting started.

“It’s so easy to do nothing It’s a challenge to do something. Learning is not compulsory; it’s voluntary. Improvement is not compulsory; it’s voluntary. But to survive, we must learn. The penalty for ignorance is that you get beat up. There is no substitute for knowledge. Yet time is of the essence.”

What are you waiting for – Get Up! Get Out! Get Going!

Doug

p.s.  This is a very exciting three weeks for the Innovation Engineering Movement.  Maggie P, Renee, James, Brad, Greg and I are “locked up” working on creating version 3.0 of the Innovation Engineering Curriculum.    All 100+ videos and 500+ assignments (across all four University courses)  are being meaningfully improved based on learning from faculty, students, executives, social innovators, small/large companies as well as hard data from the Cycles to Mastery system.

Yesterday was a 14 hour day! However, I wasn’t exhausted at the end of it.  And the reason was simple….We are doing COOL SHIT that MATTERS!