A few weeks ago I traveled up to Minneapolis to see Seth Godin speak. It was one of the stops on his 'Linchpin Road Trip'. It also happened to be the closest city to me.
Three things drove me to hear him speak. 1) It's Seth Godin
, live. 2) This was first time he was speaking publicly outside of New York. And there was no telling whether he would do it again. 3) Student Tickets were 25 bucks, regular tickets were $150.
The event was worth far more than either price. As I told my friends Seth stoop up on stage and 'spat truth'
at the audience for close to an hour and a half. Then he let us ask questions about any topic we wanted.
He even answered my question about education! (more about that later)
I can honestly say this was one of the most awesome and thought provoking events I have ever attended. But you're probably itching to hear a little about what he talked about.
Seth brought up a myriad of good points. (Enough for me to fill out 7 pages in my notebook and tweet my fingers off.) Much like his blog posts he presented the information in chunks. Each of the chunks was a unique bit of wisdom while still fitting in with the overall idea of Complacently vs Creativity.
To me no chunk was more poignant than his words about problem.
He urged the audience to seek out problems that have no perfect. Because when we have a perfect problem we shoot for the ceiling, but don't go any further. With imperfect problems we try to do as much as possible because there's no benchmark for when it's done.
With imperfect problems we never get to settle. Those problems keep people working and innovating because they are constantly being molded. I found that a really cool way to look at things.
Seth was also pretty down about education, something I could identify with. He said that public schools are too focused on being a factory for students. They encourage memorization instead of critical thinking. In a humorous jab he said, "Wikipedia has all the facts you'll ever need."
For Seth Colleges aren't much better than public schools. He described them as high school with more drinking and debt. A pretty apt description from my experience. He also reasoned that schools aren't going to change much. So it is the responsibility of parents to encourage real thinking at home.
I'll leave you with one of the last chunks Seth left the audience with, as a business/individual/marketer "what you say must be true." This isn't new thinking but it seems that so many people forget to be truthful when they are offering a service. If marketing is truly your passion it's definitely not a lesson you want to forget.
If you have thoughts about anything that he said feel free to leave a comment below. It's a blast talking about this stuff.