A thing I have learned over the past couple of years is that it doesn't matter how cool the technical problems are, or how awesome your solutions and processes are, if the business problems and the people problems aren't being addressed. The best tech, under genius orchestration, produces a mere whimper in the dark if the people can't rally behind it or the business can't focus and direct it.

I used to look a bit askance at the axiom that "ideas are cheap, execution is everything" until I realized just how much is encompassed in the term "execution". I always just considered technical execution. As if adding a qualifier to a word ever did anything more than narrow and reduce it. But no, "execution" includes product strategy, marketing, organization, interpersonal dynamics, and much more. There are so many problems in those areas that have both deep and broad impact on the success of the enterprise that the core idea, no matter how rare and genius, pales in comparison.

I used to take the axiom personally, as a repudiation. I can execute. I have the chops. But I'm not an idea man. So where are all these ideas just waiting for me to run off with them? For the axiom to be true I must either be dumb or incompetent. But that completely misses the point. Good ideas aren't necessarily plentiful or easy to produce. But they cost nothing. Whereas execution....

Execution is everything. Not least because execution is everything.