Seth Godin

Seth Godin. Photo courtesy of Brian Bloom


Welcome to Creative Lives, a feature where I shine the spotlight on the talented creative pioneers in their respective industries. It is a complete honour to interview a hero of mine, Seth Godin.

Seth is a global thought leader, entrepreneur and author of a whopping 18 books including bestsellers Purple Cow, Linchpin and Tribes.

His blog is one of the most viewed worldwide (you can just type ‘Seth’ into Google to be directed to it) and he writes daily about digital marketing, leadership and change. Seth also founded the direct marketing company Yoyodyne and the charitable fundraising platform Squidoo.


How did you pursue and achieve your current creative job?

No one said I could do this. No one chose me or gave me a license. I merely began doing it, in the most generous way I could.


What are the advantages to working in tech, today?

Leverage. All the tools we used to have to build ourselves are there, for anyone to use. You have the same access as a billion-dollar corporation. You can use them or not, but we can’t deny that the access is there.


What are the biggest challenges you face as a creative?

Too many choices, too much noise, too many places to hide. It’s easy to be busy, hard to matter.


How do you deal with the inevitable ups and downs of leading a creative life, constantly pushing your art out into the world?

That’s all there is, isn’t there? If it weren’t for the ups and downs, we could just stay at home and keep our work in the attic. We put it into the world precisely because of the challenge.


Can you share any tips for building confidence?

I don’t think that building confidence is possible, because it comes from a place of fear, and a place of selfishness. When we enter with a posture of insufficiency, it’s not surprising that there’s a lack of confidence.

What happens if instead, we start with generosity. If we begin saying, ‘what can I do, no matter how small?’ Each of us is capable of something. And of course, once you do a small thing, you realise that you can actually do a bigger thing. Repeat it until you’re making an impact.


What are your career highlights to date?

Every day, every blog post, every time I get a chance to make a difference… those are my highlights.


Who inspires you?

Mostly my readers. People who stand up, speak up and make a difference. I get to see this happen every day, and it inspires me to dig ever deeper.


What’s the greatest advice you’ve been given?

Don’t ask for great advice.


What are your hopes and aspirations for the future?

I’m hoping we can slow down a bit, see the long game and realize that we’re more connected than not.


Define success.

Success has nothing to do with other people’s measures. It’s what we call it when you make the impact you’re capable of.

Seth Godin

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12 Responses

  1. Laura

    I am so pleased you recommended to follow him Vicki, I receive his daily thoughts and I look forward to reading them every day. Great interview and so glad that you have made space for such an inspiring leader in your blog.

  2. China

    We’re aligned, honestly: you and I are aligned, you and Seth…the humility and wisdom and his thoughts that self-validation while fortifying the world, are awesome.

    • Honest Mum

      We are China, so lucky to have you in my life and the amazing Uju. Seth is such an inspiration to me. His words are so powerful. This is my most favourite interview of all time x

  3. John Adams

    Oh yes, you can tell Seth is a unique individual. I love Seth’s response to the confidence question. Such a great idea to concentrate on the smaller things and take it from there. Never ask for great advice, I guess that puts a lot of pressure on the adviser. Very thought provoking, which I guess is what Seth intended.

    • Honest Mum

      Yes, looking outward is key, helping others helps you feel good about yourself too. Seth is a genius isn’t he x

  4. Babes about Town

    This. Is. Awesome. So smart, so succinct, so bloody inspirational… thank you so much for sharing. Brilliance with a sense of humour. I couldn’t love it more. I’ve already saved that quote about confidence vs generosity because that is EVERYTHING. Yup, yelling at you my beautiful Greek mama because I know you’d be yelling back. HOW AMAZING to have Seth Godin on your site and love this new interview series. Keep ’em coming xoxo

  5. Jacqui Paterson (@JaxFortyNorth)

    Oooooh, LOVE his answers!!! What a cool way of looking at things, and also for measuring your ‘success’; a real reminder to do what you want/need to do, and always be thinking of the greater good, and never get bogged down by the semantics.


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