Thursday, March 17, 2016

Mediocrity isn’t just rewarded, its demanded

I’m infuriated by the demand for mediocrity. 

People around the world are achieving massive success creating products that are cheap to produce, easy to manage, safe to launch, quick to sell, simple to monetize, likely to scale and effortless to imitate. 

Which sounds like a brilliant business model. And admittedly, there’s part of me that admires that level of shrewdness. 

But the only caveat is, this approach means you have to be willing to accept mediocrity. You have to be okay doing generic work. And for those of us who didn’t come here to swim in the shallow end, that’s simply too big of an existential risk. 

Personally, I prefer to create challenging work that pushes people. I’m not interested in the hot new get rich quick online cash grab content generation thought leadership snake oil bullshit factory. 

I’m here to make art. I’m here to get someplace rarified. I’m here to launch something that lasts forever. I’m here to build things that are worth noticing, worth owning, worth pointing to, worth crossing the street for, worth standing in line for, worth taking a picture of, worth paying extra for, worth showing off, worth socializing around, worth being criticized, worth sharing with others, worth being tired for, worth getting yelled at for, worth being sore for, worth sitting trough traffic for, worth coming back for, and worth saving for years. 

That’s my filter. Those are the measures of worthiness against which I execute my work to assure that mediocrity is never hot on my trail. 

And so, next time you’re staring down the barrel of the entrepreneurial gun, face to face with a situation where mediocrity might be exalted, remember the words of the greatest songwriter alive. Morrison sang

Gotta fight every day to keep mediocrity at bay, you gotta fight with all your might not to get in the bleeding heart’s way, because when you just go through the motions, they won’t want to hear a word you say. 

What are you doing consistently that average people aren’t?

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Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Filmmaker. Inventor. Singer. Songwriter.

Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

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