Guys, we have the Wizard of Moz the one and only Rand Fishkin, speaking at our next CreativeMornings on RISK. Tickets will be available at 9:00am on Monday, March 29. If you don’t know Rand, he’s founder and former CEO of Moz, co-author of a pair of books on SEO, and co-founder of Inbound.org. Rand’s an unsaveable addict of all things content, search, & social on the web, from his multiple blogs to Twitter, Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn, and a shared Instagram account. In his miniscule spare time, he likes to galavant around the world with Geraldine and then read about it on her superbly enjoyable travel blog.
How do you define creativity and apply it in your career?
For me, it’s the concept of invention applied to ideas. My job is to identify which ideas are new, and which are new to me or new to my field/work, and then find ways to filter them, prioritize them, and apply them. That goes for the software we build, the presentations I create, the content I share, the updates I post to social media, and the ways to craft a company culture and set of processes.
Where do you find your best creative inspiration?
Perhaps not surprisingly, I get my best ideas from the world of social media. I read a tremendous amount - often via my Twitter feed, Pocket’s recommendations for me, my Nuzzel account, and other aggregators like Hackers News, Reddit, and Inbound.org. Out of a few hundred articles I peruse in a week, I might apply 2 or 3 directly to my work.
What’s the one creative advice or tip you wish you’d known as a young person?
I wish I’d learned more about coding and compsci. I believe a lot of my potential and creativity, especially earlier in my career, were limited by my lack of knowledge and experience in the field of computer science and software programming.
What’s the most inspiring talk you’ve ever heard?
Not quite a professional talk, but the documentary, Jiro Dreams of Sushi, certainly ranks near the top for me. The idea of dedicating oneself to perfecting a craft, to putting years into every detail, to relentless focus, and to expressing the utmost standard in one’s work is greatly inspirational.
What fact about you would surprise people?
I’m an introvert. I spend a lot of time talking on stage and interacting with people, but I need a lot of alone time to recharge in order to have the energy for those social interactions.
What keeps you awake at night?
I fear that I’ll always be an underachiever - someone who, with smarter or greater effort could have done more for others, but was limited by a lack of dedication or a failure to learn from past mistakes.