Archives for the month of: December, 2011

In the early days of NASA’s attempt to explore space they faced a seemingly impossible problem.

How could they make a material that could stand up to the heat generated by the re-entry of a spacecraft? They had to find a material that would not melt. Countless trials ended in failure because the heat was so intense.

They solved that problem by focusing on finding a material that would melt. The solution was to add a shell that would melt off as the craft re-entered the earth’s atmosphere.

If you can’t find a solution, maybe you need to change the problem.

In the old world of work, the solution was to find a job where you could develop a career and work your way into management. You expected an average annual salary increase of 4 – 5% and earned accumulating weeks of vacation based on your years of service to a company.

In the new status quo, multiple employers are becoming the norm and the new solution is to develop several streams of income, ideally with one involving a residual income.

Your problem is NOT to get a job, it’s to DO a job for multiple customers (employers).

Your NEW challenge (problem) is to get multiple employers (customers) to provide you a diversified stream of income based on your delivery of solutions that help them make money, save money or solve a problem.

Start using this mindset and your job search will take a different perspective and offer you far more employment security than most people have ever had. Employment security used to come from a company, now it needs to come from YOU and the talent you offer.

Now more than ever, you need to focus on what you’re doing AND where you are going. Decide what you want and then build a bridge to get it. Your solution is to change the problem and come up with a new solution.

Changing the problem may be as simple as focusing on these 4 things.

  1. Who you know.
  2. Who knows YOU?
  3. What talent is your personal brand?
  4. The quality of your relationships.

How many people would work for Richard Branson, Chairman of the Virgin Group, for 90 days without pay, just to get insights into to improving their personal brand? You need to focus on your long-term “market value”, not just how much money you make now.

Focus on the results you can produce, build a reputation as an expert, and establish a network of quality relationships to watch your market value and income increase automatically.

Change Your Thoughts to Change Your World – Change The Problem to Discover New Solutions.


A few weeks ago, Microsoft sold 960,000 Xbox 360s, making it the best selling week in the console’s history.
That makes the Xbox 360 one of their hottest product launches ever in terms of units sold per day!

After selling 8 million units in 60 days, the Kinect holds the Guinness World Record of being the “fastest selling consumer electronics device.”

But wait! The Xbox 360 is 6 years old.
The technology is essentially the same as it was when the console first came out.
How can this happen?
It’s the magic of repurposing.

Microsoft developed a motion sensing input device for the Xbox 360 video game console called a Kinect.
It enables users to control and interact with the Xbox 360 without the need to touch a game controller using gestures and spoken commands.  But the real magic came from Microsoft’s repurposing of its technology tied to its Xbox console.

Microsoft released a non-commercial and eventually a commercial Kinect software development kit for Windows 7 that allows .NET developers to write Kinecting apps that can be used for non-gaming applications.

Kinect reset the console lifecycle, turning a 6 year old game machine into something that feels brand new again.

So how can you repurpose yourself?

For many job searchers, reINVENTING themselves is difficult because it requires them to radically change their skill sets.
Going back to school or starting a new business is often not an option due to immediate financial considerations.

The solution may be to rePURPOSE yourself.
Take your core talents and explore ways to apply what you know to a different corporate or customer base.

Microsoft did it by expanding their gaming customer base to include software developers who took their core gaming technology and applied it to different applications.

French technologists repurposed Kinect as a gesture recognition system that can read and translate basic sign language. With more development, this could be a system for deaf or hearing-impaired users or a software tool to teach sign language.  Take a look:

Are the jobs you’re looking for focused on what you’ve done in the past, or are they related to what you can do for new end-users and/or employers in a more valuable or different way?

A repurposed “job search perspective” may be just the magic (mindset) you need to feel brand new again.

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