The canvas strategy

Quote of the day:

Be lesser, do more. Imagine if for every person you met, you thought of some way to help them, something you could do for them? And you looked at it in a way that entirely benefited them and not you. The cumulative effect this would have over time would be profound…

That’s what the canvas strategy is about – helping yourself by helping others. Making a concerted effort to trade your short-term gratification for a longer-term payoff. Whereas everyone else wants to get credit and be “respected,” you can forget credit. You can forget it so hard that you’re glad when others get it instead of you…

Once we fight this emotional and egotistical impulse, the canvas strategy is easy. The iterations are endless.

  • Maybe it’s coming up with ideas to hand over to your boss.
  • Find people, thinkers, up-and-comers to introduce them to each other. Cross wires to create new sparks.
  • Find what nobody else wants to do and do it.
  • Find inefficiencies and waste and redundancies. Identify leaks and patches to free up resources for new areas.
  • Produce more than everyone else and give your ideas away…

It is a rewarding and infinitely scalable power strategy. Consider each one an investment in relationships and in your own development.

~ Ryan Holiday, Ego is the Enemy

Networking done wrong always has one foot firmly placed in the “short-term payoff” camp. You can tell by that weird taste you get in your mouth after that half-intro, half-pitch.

Networking done right is the opposite. It’s the canvas strategy in practice. You put yourself out there, but apply enough restraint to do the honest work without expectation of a return.

And when the returns do come, you realize it was well worth the effort.

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