The art of asking

One thing I want to do more of this year is ask.
Might it be being curious, asking for help, asking the right question…

Here an awesome testimonial of what can happen when you dare to ask:

You can follow Amanda Palme on Twitter @amandapalmer

Marie Sornin

A different type of chaos

As I enter my first winter in New York, Juno, the historic blizzard is bringing Chaos to the city. The irony is that I am looking at this dangerous mess on the TV screen of my air conditioned hotel room perched above “a different type of chaos”.

I spend half of my life in the most organized city in the world: NYC where everything runs on time, or should I say where time runs everything… and the rest in other urban amalgams such as Mexico city, Jakarta, where time doesn’t seem to matter.

I am on a business tip over the next 7 weeks. I will share my thoughts as I travel from Mexico City to Jakarta, Delhi Mumbai, Sydney, Tokyo and Singapore.

Here is the first philosophical thought that emerged in mind after a few days on the road,:
Is there a way out of the vicious circle of growth?

Might it be Sao Paulo, Jakarta, Mexico City… progress is creating mess and mess appears greater progress.

Everywhere you look you can see a construction site: roads are getting larger, buildings are getting taller, more electric cables are wired. So I wonder: is growth ever going to catch up with the chaos, or will chaos always be there as long as there is growth?

Illustration by example:
As crazy as it sounds: Jakarta a city that counts 10 million souls is only building its metro in 2014.

As a results, the roads which were already totally congested are getting even more clogged because of the roadwork.

Great, metro is super good news for the population and the environment, but…

As the metro is getting built, so are thousands of high-rise buildings crushing traditional housing.

Once these buildings are populated with homes and business, is going to cope. How about telecommunication infrastructure?

This will create need for more construction, throwing the vicious circle of growth into a spin!

Should I become an urban planner?

Next stop Sydney… don’t get me started about Military road

#AskHillary

There is a song saying that the only advise for the future is to wear sunscreen.
Hillary Clinton stopped by Twitter HQ for a Q&A yesterday.
Her advice is to put some moisturizer. And a lot of it!

I happened to be in San Francisco when Hillary did the rounds of the tech companies to promote her latest book “Hard Choices”.

When asked for a piece of advice for women or people considering a career in politics, she said: Find a good moisturizer!
In other words grow a thick skin.

Click on the link to watch:

She did deliver her advice with a touch of humor, which didn’t make it any less relevant.
Here are some of her wise words can be applied to any career.

  • Take criticism seriously but not personally.
    This is how you grow and build confidence.
  • When confronted with a difficult situation, make the decision you think is right. Ensure you feel totally comfortable about it. Then, negotiate and develop your influence about it.
  • If you are thinking about a career change: Try it first, make sure you like it.
    This is very similar to the advice given by Linkedin founder Reid Hoffman in his book “The Start Up of You”. Find your pivot and get involved.

I thought these little nuggets were totally worth sharing as they can be applied to any other context than politics.

I also wanted to give a shout out to my colleagues Katie Stanton who did an amazing job an interviewing Hillary and the SnappyTV crew who live tweeted the key moment of her talk on @Twittermedia

Marie Sornin