evil plans and big companies

I have a feeling that I’m going to be asked the following question a lot in the next couple of years:

“How do I execute my EVIL PLAN within the limits of my current job at a big company?”

I’m probably the wrong person to ask- I’ve never fitted into corporate culture very well. But I did write few initial thoughts below, just to get the gears turning. Feel free to add your own in the comments. I’m going to be thinking about this for a while, Thanks.

1. An EVIL PLAN’S success is 90% the people around you. This so true whether we’re talking small business or large, salaried or freelance, boss or employee. So if you have smart, nice, dynamic, successful people around you- both colleagues and customers- I don’t see why you can’t execute it from anywhere. It all depends how aligned your EVIL PLAN with the people you work with and sell to.

2. If your EVIL PLAN is not aligned with what your company is doing, you have two choices. Quit and go do something else, or give up your EVIL PLAN.

3. Patience is a virtue. Things tend to happen more slowly at big companies, especially the more edgy stuff. A lot more time and effort is needed to corral your allies into critical mass. That’s just reality.

4. Risk. I always liked Robert Scoble’s line, “If what you’re doing doesn’t risk getting you fired, it probably isn’t that interesting.” People who are very risk averse don’t get to play in the EVIL PLANS sandbox. That, too is just reality, and no crazy-ass cartoonist’s blog post will change that.

5. Create your own luck. Create your own job description. None of the best jobs in large corporation are ever created by your boss. They’re created by you taking the initiative. And there’s a definite art to that.

6. Practice. Fail. Practice some more. Fail some more. Keep practicing and failing. Eventually you’ll get there.

[UPDATE:] Ian Wallace left a comment below.  Samuel Beckett’s advice to anyone who dares to follow their own EVIL PLAN:

‘Ever tried. Ever fai­led. No mat­ter.
Try again. Fail again. Fail better.’

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Comments

  1. I always liked Samuel Beckett’s advice to anyone who dares to follow their own evil plan.

    ‘Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter.
    Try again. Fail again. Fail better.’

    Your plan may not have the outcome that you forecast or expect but it will always give you the result that you reaaly need.

  2. I’m helping friend get his plan together. He works for the state. He does have to be careful. But that makes it all the more worthwhile.

    My plan is underway. Or, I hope it is. There’s certainly enough smoke pouring out my ears.

  3. #2 and #4 go together. Those of us who were bought in on the evil plan, once it got shut down and the team shrunk, were all fired.

    But it was interesting. Their loss.

  4. ;-)why do I find so many similarities in these “evil” tips with my journey?;-)
    spooky;-)

    after having guts and proposing to CEO of international consulting co. my own job description,where i can serve my, the best and reply was negative, so the only option was EXIT;-)

    and find a spot where the ideas i have can be spread and add value to lives of many other people;-)and passion is damn contagious;-)

    and the spot is home and being voluntarily unemployed for now;-) even tough i have never been more busy;-)
    LOL

    keep on disturbing world Hugh with more evil plan thoughs;-)

  5. Darkness has no power, you can only doubt that Dawn will not come.

  6. It can be done – as I have seen it done and done it myself. Many of your points are spot on. IMO, it comes down to a few key factors, many of which have been detailed by Marty Cagan http://svpg.com/thriving-in-large-companies/

  7. Oh, that’s easy. Just lay the groundwork for your EVIL PLAN in the off-hours and then make the most of your severance package when they lay your ass off, since they’re bound to do it sooner or later anyway.

  8. it can be done – just make sure you have some advocates to suport you when things get tough (they will)…otherwise you’re jumping out of a plane without a parachute. get the advocated BEFORE, not AFTER you launch.

    oh and the old adage of asking for forgiveness rather than permission is good to keep in the back of your mind :)

    go fort, change the world…nobody else is going to!

  9. Robert Godwin says:

    Evil is a matter of un-absolute perspective. If your ‘evil plan’ moves revenue from one bucket to another in your company, you only make enemies.

    If your ‘evil plan’ takes revenue from one company and moves it to another, you make both friends and enemies, and doubled your pleasure. do that more than three times and you will always have a job. And never discount the value of a good enemy.

    Defining your own job is the only way to justify going to work for someone else. If you don’t define your job, what the hell are you bringing to the game anyway? When all you seek to do is keep a seat warm, then then no one will care what happens to you; only to the residue of your(easily replaceable) efforts.

    Rising to your own, defined level of incompetance is vastly superior – and always more rewarding – than rising to someone else’s.

  10. I particularly like this one:

    The only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything ~ Theodore Roosevelt

    This even beats all the ‘fail hard and fail fast’ so you can be a success quotes.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] one more quote from his blog: Patience is a vir­tue. Things tend to hap­pen more slowly at big com­pa­nies, espe­cially the [...]

  2. [...] is his ‘Evil Plans’ and he is starting to reveal portions of them. This week he posted ‘Evil Plans and Big Companies’ and half of his 6 points embraced [...]

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