You are currently browsing the monthly archive for August 2012.

What’s on my mind? This SO IS… please do yourself a favour and watch it. It’s so funny and so packed with needed truth.

The world seems to be heading towards a collective groundswell of ‘entitlement mentality’ at break neck speed. Our appreciation for the amazing wanes as familiarity steals our sense of awe. The unfortunate outcome being the selfish outlook that can result and a lack of outward focus and thinking…

“I’ve been inconvenienced or don’t have this or that luxury so SOMEONE’S GONNA PAY AND THAT’S MY RIGHT!”

Ask a dying man on the streets of Calcutta what he considers a luxury… to live.

On your next business flight, or personal trip for a holiday. Stop, look out the window and just say “Wow, look at that, I’m above the clouds. Amazing!” You won’t have to tell your kids to, they’ll already be saying it… they haven’t been as affected by the folly of the entitlement that so many of us in the world enjoy. And hopefully they never will…

And leaders aren’t either.

Thanks to Kirk over at T4D for sharing this. Kirk’s post where he shared this is here: http://kirkweisler.com/t4d/2012/08/03/give-it-second-life-is-amazing/

No business or organisation will grow beyond or mature past the collective ability of its team and their personal growth. Can a 10L bucket hold 12L of water?

This is quite a challenging thing for me personally as at this stage I’m only mature enough to have built a team of five! What a wonderful team of committed people they are though… obviously I need to grow some more! It’s ok, I’m working on it, constantly!

I believe the biggest thing a leader can do is be a catalyst, an inspirer, a connector for people to truly become the best they can. It leads to very successful businesses and people who are responsible for their own growth, fuelled by their own passion about becoming better and contributing to a better result.

As a leader in a team, business, or organisation it is surely the most important role we have to create a system that builds and grows great people, either to produce great results within our team or beyond in a world badly in need of it. I will go out on a limb and say that surely if we fear particular team members moving on as many do in building leadership with their team, then maybe we haven’t grown enough ourselves to build a system in our own teams that we can place anyone into, with the right attitude, to ensure we constantly produce amazing results.

To do all of this, we need to build bigger buckets … constantly.

That’s what leaders do.

One of the great shames nowadays is all the different ways we’ve come up with to avoid one magical question that can changes someone’s day, when asked with meaning, intent, and dare I say it, love.

The question I’m referring to is ‘How are you’.

I believe we used to use it with far more empathy and we used to mean it. In our fast paced world and techniques of avoidance – you can’t go too deep with just anyone! – we’ve changed it to phrases like ‘What’s up’… err the sky. ‘Whadda ya know?’ … hmmm “lot’s and not much”. Or worst of all, we actually ask “How are you?” but really don’t care and simply are being polite, the encounter an interruption to a busy day and all that needs doing because my day is all about me!

You see the old fashioned approach was to take time and energy when meeting people to actually ask them ‘how are you’ and then genuinely listen for their reply then connect with them. For me, one of the more beautiful elaborations on this theme actually came from the movie Avatar. There is a tribe called the Na’vi tribe who live on the planet Pandora where the story takes place and their standard greeting when they met was ‘I see you’. It’s far deeper than the words though. It was said with meaning, a gaze filled with intent that emanated from the big emotion filled eyes of the Na’vi. It communicated so much for just three short words, the key component communicated one of understanding. ‘I see you’ really said “I’m stopping and taking time to connect with you, your life, who you are AND I care.”

For me it is surely one of the more magical lines of the movie, said many times, as it also espouses the connectedness and community that existed within this magical tribe who completely understood we truly are all connected and to ‘see’ each other was so important that it had to be recognised in such a powerful ‘standard’ greeting.

I’m not suggesting you go out and start greeting people with “I see you”, you might get arrested! However today, let’s look at ourselves and reinvigorate our “How are you”. The first challenge I have is actually use those words, it asks a commitment from the speaker if nothing else. Then lets learn something that’s very real from the very fictional Na’vi people and when we greet people, let’s communicate all that I believe the Na’vi tried to with their greeting. You never know you might connect with someone, a team member, friend, boss. Maybe even your son, daughter, father, mother, wife or husband who really needed you to stop and care. You might even change someone’s life. That’s what leaders do.

So, how are you?