To Fail, Expect to be Discovered

Part of the ongoing series based on a brilliantly delivered book Ignore Everybody and 39 Other Keys to Creativity (Amazon Affiliate Link) by Hugh MacLeod.

Key No 5: To Fail, Expect to be Discovered

If your business plan includes being “discovered” by some big shot, your business will fail.

This driver underestimated his competition.

This hardly needs elaborating, but here are few words to take with you.

Everyone overestimates their chances and underestimates competition. ~ Hugh MacLeod

People are busy and don’t have time to pay attention to you. Don’t expect them to.

If someone is not busy with their own shit then that’s the person you don’t need.

People who can help you don’t need you. And they don’t owe you shit either.

So instead, do your own thang, and don’t expect anyone to follow suit. In other words, be a Nantan.

Apaches didn’t have leaders. Instead they had Nantans.

Nantans were tribe’s men who did what they did. And if Nantan acted for the greater good of the tribe, or managed to capture and reflect the general consensus of the tribe, other people followed. Or didn’t.

This concept of leadership is completely foreign to Western intellect, but the pendulum is swinging towards this type of leaderless leadership.

The art of fighting without fighting. The art of leading without leading. The art of doing without expecting.

Can YOU be a Nantan?

Other Posts in this Series:

Devil Gets His Due Either Way So Choose Wisely

Ignore Everybody

Good Ideas Have a Lonely Childhood

Dino Dogan

Global Force for Badassery | Founder of Triberr | Refugee from Bosnia | Writer for Technorati | Speaker | Lousy Martial Artist | Pretty good singer/songwriter | Hi 🙂

More Posts - Website - Twitter - Facebook - Google Plus

  • Julie Nutter

    Lead by example. If people follow, they will follow.
    I like this idea of “your business will fail if you expect to be discovered.”
    But that’s going around with the sole plan of waiting for a knight in shiny armor. Totally not going to work. Why do you think I’m still single? (Okay, whatever. Don’t give me that look. It’s not like I would punch the knight in the face and tell him to shove it or something. Geez. …..Okay. I would. I have. So what?)

    All I have to say is “Who would use this as a business technique?!” and after that, I probably don’t want to know the answer…………………………

    • Dino Dogan

      How do you think the art of leading without leading applies to dog training? Anyways, I think a lot of online-centric businesses use this “I hope to be discovered” strategy. So do musicians, artists, many internet startups who hope to be “picked up” by google or another behemoth.

      I love that youre taking the structure of what Im saying and applying it to yourself (knight in shiny armor, dog training, etc). Whenever I write posts like this I wonder if the reader will be able to get past the content and focus on the structure instead. Glad to see that you do. Thats one sexy brain you got there miss lol 😉

      • Julie Nutter

        I think about it in terms like this: People may come to dog training class (we’ll say… “join the tribe”) but as to whether they take ANY of the information, training techniques, advice, etc home with them (ie: buy it) is their own decision.
        Here’s the kicker: I teach at the same facilities that I TAKE class. Though, when I’m taking class, I feel as though I’m indulging in a little of this leaderless leadership. A good 50% of our repeat customers have seen us with our crazy dogs, in action, during class. They try to copy our techniques (which don’t always follow the trainer’s … I’ll “switch up” my technique if the person beside me is having trouble and I think that a certain method will fix it. I’d say that 87% of the time, they will follow my example to success.)
        I also sell a lot of our products this way: bring my dog in on a face collar, harness, muzzle, etc, just to show how cool she is with wearing it. I’ll use the treats we have on the wall or bring her in with her kong, and everyone will oooh and aaahh at how calm she is. (They know she’s secretly a nut job and she barks at anything that moves. They love her “work” and “play” modes… and a lot of people have copied that, too!)
        I take class with her on purpose and sit next to people who are having trouble with this or that on purpose, having thought out and brought the necessary products or whatnot, and show how cool my nut job is when I use this or that technique.
        It works. A lot.
        Sometimes, it doesn’t.
        Depends on the person, but we still try.
        This is actually something we’ve thought out a bit, and it really works for advertising dog sports, obedience classes, etc. I can show my dog as the crazy dog she is, and I can demonstrate how to “get her back” as well. We push a lot of our techniques with this method, because we’ve found that it works. We have a “plant” person in almost every class we teach, even if they don’t know that’s what they are. ;]
        So, what do you think? Or did I miss the target here?

        • Julie Nutter

          I guess I could have made this much shorter by saying we purposely put a trainer in class to advertise our techniques and whatnot and leave it up to the people attending as to whether they follow and buy the product, classes, or training advice.
          The person gets to kind of do their own thing. The can add or subtract from any exercise (also inviting the rest of the class to do so – they can up the level or lower it depending on their specific comfort zone.) They can bring what they want and do whatever on the sidelines.
          We’re trying to sell good behavior, really. Using stuffed toys or play to get the dog to pay attention to the ow…… Oh, here I go again. I’m going to shut up now. ;]

        • Dino Dogan

          Target acquired and hit 🙂 Youre actually doing two things simultaneously.

          You are shaping your environment in your own image by demonstrating the effectiveness of what you do and allowing others to follow without asking them to follow. This is sovereignty. This is you being who you are rather than things you do. You are in fact leading without leading.

          Some might call this leading by example. Others might call it influencing, and others still might call it manipulation. They would all be correct of course. The only difference is the intention. In other words, there is no difference between influence and manipulation other than intention. And since your intention is to positively affect your surroundings you are simply being a positively charged catalyst. Congrats 🙂

  • Murlu

    The outliers ya know? It’s the “screw you, I’m gonna do what I like and do it awesome whether you care or not” because, at the end of the day, those are the businesses (and individuals) that leave the greatest impact.

    • Dino Dogan

      Preach on brother Lunn 🙂

  • Pingback: What's Holding Your Business Back and a Simple Fix You Can Implement Right Now

  • Stan Faryna

    Leadership is love. This is what our Apache brothers believed. They did not believe in SCREW YOU, FUCK OFF, and HEAR ME ROAR. Love is rooted in a profound connection between you and me and, yes, us and the world. 

    As my friend, Dr. Jack King often reminds me on Twitter: “You and me and love make three.”

    And Geronimo: 

    “We are all the children of one God. The sun, the darkness, the winds are all listening to what we have to say.”

    Love is open, listening, seeing, and serving. Leaders serve. Each of us can be leaders in any given moment – if we respond to dignity of all that is beautiful, good, and true. If we are ready and willing to serve and walk in beauty. If we do not live as if we enclosed unto our selves.

    Reflect on Geronimo’s wisdom:

    “I was born on the prairies where the wind blew free and there was nothing to break the light of the sun. I was born where there were no enclosures.”

    If you do not serve others (their virtues or their vices), you will not be recognized. For what? If you have not made yourself useful to others, you do not lead. If you do not give, you follow. Or worse, you take.

    Love is not a feeling or an idea. Nor is leadership. Love does not live in the heart though it fills the open heart. Love lives in action. As does leadership. Love does not belong to dreams, but in service to others.

    As Paul writes in his first letter to the Corinthians, Love is patient, it endures all things, and it bears all things.

    Stan Faryna

    Recently on my blog: How to walk in beauty through the forest of these words.


    Nantans were tribe’s men   ?  Tribesmen possibly ?

    Interesting article