“Show Your Work!” is built on an interesting premise. One of the main take aways is that you can leverage social networks by sharing your creative work flow. Many people find the story behind creating the thing just as interesting as the thing itself. Kleon advises posting daily. In practice, this feels like quite a bit of weight on your shoulders. However, and probably even more importantly, it helps you get in a rhythm. This instills the discipline of producing something everyday.
Kleon includes a lot of fun art work. Even though the book is a couple of hundred pages long, it only takes about an hour to read. My opinion, an hour well spent.
In part, this book is why I built the new ‘Blog’ section of JetsonHacks. There are a couple things I like about the idea. First, it puts accountability on the creator. When was the last time I did a video, a blog post, an article? Blogs are short posts, there could be a few a week. Second, it helps tell everyone what’s coming down the pike. Here’s where Austin keeps his blog, he practices what he preaches.
Credit is always due
Another take away is to share credit where it is due. This is a major mistake a lot of people make. By sharing credit and giving references, you are actually increasing your social score and network reach. Too many people (especially engineers) attempt to ‘black box’ their creations. “This is MY idea”. This might be appropriate in a corporate environment, where you can’t share. In the new social networking world, it’s a red flag. It stops other people from connecting with you. Here’s what every money person knows: connections with other people have the potential to be monetized. For the rest of us that means either a social or monetary connection. Good feedback is invaluable, most people will try to help you.
Learn to take a punch
Some great advice is in the chapter “Learn to take a punch”. You might find this surprising, but not all people are nice to you on the Internet. Here’s the problem: Is some one presenting valid criticism of your work, or are they just trolling you? When you’re new to the game, it’s difficult not to take every comment personally. As a pro, that’s one of the skills you need to learn. I can’t stress this point enough.
On my value meter, this one rates high. Monetary investment is low, reading time is short. Big ideas? They be there.