Archive for the ‘Chewing gum for the mind ;-)’ Category
There is much to be said about the ability to think from “outside-in” as a leader. Leaders who are able to focus on the effects of events on all stakeholdersare without doubt the most effective, especially in times of crisis.
Saying this, the leap from inside-out i.e. “how does this affect me, how will I be perceived, what will my peers think, am I an effective leader, how am I going to get through this?” to outside-in is only possible once you know yourself and can get yourself out of the way!
It’s a little like public speaking. To begin with, most of us are concerned with ourselves. “I can’t breathe, my palms are sweaty, my heart is racing, will I remember my words, will they like me, am I going to make a complete ass out of myself, what if I drop my crib notes, what if they walk out mid speech..?” And on it goes. The voice in our head is full of doubt, full of ego, identity, of self.
And as we master the art of speaking, we gain confidence. We begin to be concerned with our audience. “What do I need to do to connect with each and every person in the room, how can I deliver a powerful ‘take-away’, what value can I impart, how can I inspire, motivate, inform, educate and/or entertain?” We shift from inside-out to outside-in thinking, being and doing. And that’s a beautiful place to be.
So make the leap, take the chance, dive in, risk it and get going. We can only be in this incredible space by giving it our all and learning from our near misses and greatest successes along route. Afterall, there is no static destination, only a rich, varied and eventful journey.
I’ve dubbed 2012 the year fluidity. From necessity in life and the markets. 2011 was, in my humble book, the year of resistance. We ranted and railed and defaulted on a big brash country scale. We held on as tightly as possible not really getting ‘what was’ had already escaped us in 2009, discarded us in 2010 and made it felt in 2011.
Cause and effect have changed. If we do this we get that. Actually, if we do this, we get a lucky dip. Perhaps curiosity is the only sanity. If we do this, what will we get? And if we do it again, what else will crop up? Somehow, one has to have a sense of humour regardless of the outcome. And fluidity – are we able to move with the tides, the natural ebb and flow and stay on our toes knowing we can control little above our state of mind or the context we operate in – or in navel gazing speak, our consciousness?
A great dins last night with a diverse, influential group of people. All involved in the markets in some way shape or form. And the debate, well it was varied. And it was fluid. No conclusive answers and many searching Q’s?
TTaking stock in a new year seems to be a natural phenomenon. What was 2011 all about, am I doing more than treading water, and what do I want to achieve this year? No small Q’s and yet little steps are the only solution. Stay fluid, take a small step at a time, be mindful and present to every nuance.
This, incase you are wondering, is as much of a note to you as to self! Wishing you and yours the best of the best this 2012.
It’s a really strange phenomenon. It’s a little bit freaky. When businesses get conscious, they are more profitable. And they do this by being unrelentingly, consciously purposeful. By adding real value for no expected return. Real value for the people who work for the business, real value for families and communities, and real value for all of their stakeholders. And this is the strange bit – like a boomerang it all returns ten-fold.
In September 2008 I was in London – the markets crashed and the world changed inextricably forever. Never again shall we view conspicuous consumption as aspirational, never again shall we buy brands unconsciously. We want to know we are spending our money where people are as important as profit.
I am so inspired by Gina Hayden’s keynote this evening on Conscious Capitalism at smartLab – thank you Gina, you have managed to distill, analyse and make sense of all that matters to all of us right now – and I suspect forever more. We know that capitalism will never be the same again and I won’t begin to regurgitate your message – rather to point the reader in your direction.
I also know that it takes an outside-in approach. And first we have start with inside-out. That is, know thyself… then get thyself out of the way and begin to think outside-in. Once you truly know and are able to manage yourself despite how you think or feel about things, only then can you have the freedom to think outside-in. And the research shows that the most successful people in life have this perspective. They lead with their passions, come from a context of curiosity and are able to put themselves in their stakeholders’ shoes, which determines what they do.
And it all begins with purpose. What is it that you really want, what drives you, what are your true passions?
Passion – it’s the stuff of flow. When work doesn’t feel like work. When time contracts or expands. Opportunities open up and so do our minds, souls and beings. And our being drives our doing. Lovely stuff. How many people do you personally know who are living their passions? Good Q – are you?
I am currently reading The Passion Test by Janet Bray Attwood and Chris Attwood. At first the title grabbed me, then the logic stepped in. “Not another self-help book”. Saying that I bought the book and took the test. Wow! Finally something that speaks into being in action of my passion rather than my goals. Passion is sustainable, it’s authentic – we can do it without effort. The truth is that we all crave to live in joy and passion and all else is a poor substitute.
And what if we held real, deep Curiosity as the context of our enquiry? Active listening, insightful questioning, empathy and the ability to have difficult conversations. Good old-fashioned relationship building. If we can hold this context we develop our ability for real human compassion, connection and intimacy at levels that serve us and them. And yes this applies to business.
When we examine all the research – powerful, concrete, quality research – we know that what feels right – living with curiosity as the context and passion as the driver, we too can be as successful in our chosen paths as those who are leaders in their fields. It just takes a little curiosity to get the ball rolling and a real determination to live in passion…