We are all looking for the recipe for our strongest contribution, that mystical combination of ideas and focus that will bring out our very best. Where do I begin? What is step one?
I see this reality of the rapid change of our lives more and more these days – that the new norm for life is akin to a ride on white water rapids. We have to remain connected to it and changed by it, in order to remain relevant.
Most of us have thought about what it takes to move away from where you are and toward something new. It is a repeating story in our lives and there are many examples; from being single to being married, from living in this town to living in that town, from having this job to having that job, from seeing life this way, to seeing life that way.
Consultants like myself are often hired to bring in some magical potion that will help improve co-worker relationships for the sake of faster or less conflicted production. Sometimes that is precisely the wrong thing to do.
It was globally accepted at one stage that the world was flat. That it was possible to sail off the edge of it into oblivion and unprecedented danger. All the unexplained of the sea, was thrown into the cauldron of the ‘edge of the world’. All the danger and unexplained mysteries, sea monsters and certain destruction, was bundled up into that place. Allowing the threat of ‘word-of-mouth’ dragons to obstruct your intentions is not a healthy way to lead.
It may seem like a redundant question, but can you lead yourself or is that exclusively the privilege of another? Leadership tools are usually wielded on others but if you chose to use them on yourself which 3 would make the top of your list? Here are mine…
We often underestimate the genesis of things. Where an idea, conversation, relationship or even a thought begins, strongly influences its existence.
Brad Anderson, recently retired President of Best Buy said: “My suspicion is that expectations have a huge impact on the kind of contribution people actually do make.” (http://www.marketnews.ca/LatestNewsHeadlines/BestBuyCEOtoRetire;BrianDunnNamedSuccessor.html)
From a sporting point of view, I have on occasion and on purpose, performed at 9/10’s of my ability intentionally holding my full commitment back because it allows me an escape hatch if/when my result is not what I wanted. In short I have effectively sabotaged myself from the possibility of winning, in exchange for some version of guaranteed control.
I attend a gym near my home and as a World Swimming record holder I am glad it has a swimming pool in it. Inside the men’s locker room is a suit dryer. This particular suit dryer at my gym is an exercise in Leadership just waiting to happen. It is a small 2X1X1ft box with a stainless steel drum in it that spins 80% of the water out of a swim suit. Simply drop the wet suit in the top, close the lid & press on it firmly for 5-8 seconds and release. The suit emerges much drier – it is a very handy tool.