By: Ryan O'connor

 Issue 110601 3rd / 4th Quarter 2011

Virtues: Gratefulness & Humility

We entered the year of 2011 with our sights high and with stars on the horizon. As we progressed into the year the power and confidence seemed to fade. After years of working with Inventors and successful Entrepreneurs, I believe that there are virtues to consider and that the formula for a successful new product venture must start at the roots of the problem statement. The inventor of today must have a sense of humility and solid integrity complimented with a mental toughness which typically comes from operating with confidence. In athletic terms it’s all about hitting the gym, then practice, practice, practice and the ability to sell your plans to your partners, investors and buyers will develop and with that confidence you will develop a winner.  If you are not happy and totally confident that your idea will succeed, then that lack of confidence will settle in and corrupt the best of plans.

We know most of what we communication is non verbal. Speech’s nonverbal elements known as paralanguage, including the quality, rate, pitch, volume, voice and speaking style, as well as rhythm, intonation and stress all play into the delivered message. Also consider how you present yourself in 2D graphic print, emails, documents or written texts including the formatting, style, spatial arrangement of words, or the physical layout of a page including correct grammar and spelling. When making a presentation your stance, physical facial expressions, movements, eye contact, gestures like nodding, rolling ones’ eyes and looking at the clock are all subtle but powerful parts of your communication. Unless you practice and/or are trained in communication and or leading a presentation or speech making, most people do not consciously control these types of movements or gestures.

The observation is unless you are operating with full confidence and integrity as an inventor trying to sell your invention to the world you probably communicate the wrong message and will not succeed, at least as quickly. The core of one’s ability to effectively communicate is based on the levels of education, skills and confidence and ability to communicate both in person and in writing. But most of all it is about hitting that core emotion of trust and having fun and enjoying what you are doing. To overcome the confidence problem usually comes with practice and operating with a ground work of virtues which keep you focused on what is most important. The business of new product development is one of risk management, communication and action. If you operate from an a inner knowing or fly by the seat of your pants then is no hiding positive having fun energy. To overcome the unconscious, subtle nut negative body language or just operate form a level of confidence that you at least believe in your own ideas. Operate your life under some of these virtues starting with gratefulness and humility combined with practice which leads to confidence. If you appear to be having fun at what you are doing, even though it is risky, you will greatly increase your chances of success.
Inspired for Benjamin Franklin and the “American ethic”:
Prime Virtues:
1. Gratefulness & Humility: Always in gratitude & remembrance of the price paid for your blessed condition.
2. Integrity: Your word is your bond. Your actions are who you are. You can be counted on.
3. Resolution: Resolve to never give up on your dream and work without fail what you resolve.
4. Silence:  Think before you speak. Speak only what will benefit others or yourself. Avoid judgement and trifling conversation.
5. Non-Judgmental: Treat your neighbour like you want to be treated. Do wrong by none.  Undisciplined thought and spoken words are powerful and the judgement will be equal.
6. Temperance: Eat in moderation and drink not for elevation, exercise to keep the body in tune, not for escaping or thrill seeking.
7. Order: All things have their places. Each part of your business has its time. If you can’t find it, what good is it.
8. Industry: Your days are numbered. Have a goal greater than you are.  Be always employed in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary actions. One step at a time.
9. Cleanliness: You have cleaned every corner and crevasse of your home – work environments, body & clothes.
10. Frugal: Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing. Form follows function. Owning stuff weighs you down.
11. Tranquillity: Be not disturbed at unexpected events or physical challenges or accidents, common or unavoidable.
12 Sincerity: Use no hurtful deceit. Think innocently and justly; and if you speak, speak accordingly.

The empowerment slogan for the year:
Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music. ~Ronald Reagan

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