I spent years not reading Seth Godin’s blog, and there were good reasons for that. At least they were reasons I thought were good at the time.
- His design is horrible.
- His posts are all short, with no pictures. No attempt to be professional.
- He doesn’t interact with his audience there.
I could go on, but you get the point. He breaks rules. He even breaks his own rules. And that all added up to show me he just had this massively popular blog…only because he was already popular anyway. It wasn’t because it was an awesome blog. It’s popularity was simply a byproduct of his success in other areas, namely speaking and publishing.
I recently started reading Seth’s blog very often, because I’ve found his insights very helpful and realized he’s actually one of the few bloggers out there who can post almost daily and maintain high quality at the same time. There really is no filler on his blog that I’ve seen so far. He’s a really authentic dude. Not just in his books but on his blog also. Day in and day out. He’s just a guy who’s doing this for the right reasons. He just doesn’t happen to care whether or not I like his blog or not.
Seth seems to have learned some things a long time ago that I just learned very recently. Namely:
- It’s not your job to get people to like you.
- It’s not your job to always put your best foot forward.
- It’s your job to innovate and provide value, in whatever capacity that is consistent with your competencies.
- Innovation does not require optimization. Innovation is often quite raw.
- Even if your true audience doesn’t get you at first (and if you’re a real leader they probably won’t), they will get you eventually. But you have to stick around. You have to still be there when they’re ready, or it’s all for nothing.
- Breaking rules is necessary, but it also has a cost.
Seth just published a post today which proves my thoughts on this. The non-optimized life shows that he’s been operating on these principles for a long time now.
I wasn’t going to make this blog live for a little while longer, because it’s not complete. It’s not ready yet. But I’m going to publish this post anyway, because actions are key. When is your blog complete anyway? What matters is doing what matters.