By Scott Nolan, Senior Designer
A question that everyone should ask themselves which speaks the five habits mentioned in “Digital Leader: 5 Simple Keys to Success and Influence” by Erik Qualman. This is a book I hope will help take control of this thought-provoking question.
Qualman introduces the concept of digital footprints and shadows that make up our imprint on the world. “Digital footprints are the information we post about ourselves online while digital shadows are what others upload about us.” This isn’t limited to online as our actions in the real world play a huge role.
How do we take control of our imprint? STAMP.
The acronym STAMP stands for: Simple, True, Act, Map, People. These are the five simple habits of digital leadership Qualman discusses in his book.
The book covers each habit in detail, using some great stories and case studies to help explain them. It’s also filled with some great quotes from the likes of Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, Henry Ford, Mark Twain, Albert Einstein and even Yoda and Dr Seuss, to name a few.
Spoilers: following are a handful of highlights from each chapter.
- Success is the result of simplification and focus. Less is more.
- Multitasking – the best way to screw up both jobs.
- Don’t complain: Try going a day without complaining.
- “A smooth sea never made a skillful mariner.” – English proverb.
- Your phone and email is for your convenience, not the caller’s or sender’s.
- Your digital presence should be less “Chinese menu” and more “lemonade stand”. Keep it simple.
- Be true to your passion.
- It’s always a mistake to decide what you want to do before you decide what you want to be.
- “Only you can control your future.”- Dr. Seuss
- If we love what we do we may never want to retire.
- “I never worked a day in my life. It was all fun.” – Thomas Edison
- Nothing happens without action – take the ﬁrst step, be decisive.
- Increase your rate of failure: fail forward, fail fast, fail better.
- Leverage inertia: people in motion tend to stay in motion.
- “We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.” – Randy Pausch, author of The Last Lecture.
- “Do or do not. There is no try.” - Yoda
- Explore. Dream. Discover.”- Mark Twain
- Digitally unplug one day per week.
- To perform your best you need proper rest.
- Goals and visions are needed to get where you want to be.
- Be ﬁrm in your destination, but ﬂexible with your path.
- Your digital footprint reminds you, in real-time, how you are living your life.
- Set laughable goals.
- “If you can dream it, you can do it.” – Walt Disney
- If your goal is average and uninspiring, your effort will reﬂect this.
- Success doesn’t happen alone.
- Go out of your way to thank and praise people digitally.
- Consumers are demanding partnerships with companies.
- Praise publicly and criticise privately.
- Don’t shy away from digital critics or criticism; it’s a great method for improvement.
Only you can answer the question “What do you want to be known for?” But I think STAMP is a good guide to truly owning and taking control. It’s definitely shaping me in my journey to being the digital leader I hope to become.
Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed it.