Tuesday, March 06, 2007

"Wouldn't it be nice ..."

As my business partner and I talk more about the upcoming plans for the new Bock's Office, we find ourselves really engaged in our vision - and when we're engaged, it becomes easier and easier to describe our vision to potential clients and affiliates.

But one comment my partner heard recently brings us back to what Jim Collins calls the "Brutal Facts of Reality" when we're brainstorming and dreaming about the possibilities. When my partner recently told someone about our plans for creating strategic plans for people development within organizations, the comment he got was "oh, wouldn't that be nice." It seems resignation and cynicism are still alive and well in the workplace.

How much time do we allow ourselves to dream of the possibilities of bringing our whole selves to work - or getting our employees to want to bring themselves to work and what that might look like? So often our inner critics get the better of us with that old familiar "but they would never let us do that," or "we can't afford that," or "that will never work," or "we tried that before."

What I notice for myself is that when the "yeah but"comment pops into my head, it's usually because I have a need to be right, and that perfectionist squashes any chance of hearing something new. I'm deciding for myself that that isn't working for me anymore, so I'm having a much easier time being open to new ideas and new ways of thinking.

I'm realizing that my job with my clients and potential clients is to help them dream and vision and brainstorm the world their companies and organizations could create in a land of "wouldn't it be nice" by allowing them some safe space to create solutions and possibilities. There's nothing stopping any of us from achieving whatever we want to achieve if we just get out of our own way. As we step into our individual and our collective geniuses (thanks to Dick Richards for that term), we allow others to do the same.

I worked with a client this morning on a half-day leadership retreat called "Building Your Leadership Capacity" and the results we created and allowed were pretty amazing. Our capacity really is unlimited when we set our minds to new pathways.

How might you be holding yourself back from stepping into your own personal POWER (Purpose, Open-Mindedness, Wisdom, Energy, Responsibility)? What might shift in your life - both at work and at home - if you take a baby step in a new direction, and commit to that new direction for more than a couple of days?

Lisa Haneberg's new book just came out - it's called "Two Weeks to a Breakthrough: How to Zoom Toward Your Goal in 14 Days or Less" and it really is a must-read if you want to jumpstart yourself or your team in a new direction. I'm honored to be hosting Lisa here in Fargo on her motorcycle tour in June - and I plan to have a story to tell about how I used her ideas to catalyze a breakthrough for my business.

Think about an area of your life that you've thought "wouldn't it be nice ...." What's stopping you? Lisa's ideas will give you the kick in the pants you need to allow it to happen - and within 14 days!!!


At 1:22 AM, Blogger Lisa said...

Jodee - thanks for mentioning the book and my visit - I can't wait to learn about Fargo.

Also, about your post, I think there is another point that might be interesting to throw into the pot.

The debate about blue sky thinking and "reality" is pertenant if you assume that one goal of creating a vision is that it ought to be right.

But based on our experience and chaos theory, we know that we will not be able to accurately predict the future.

So if being right is not a goal, then the goal of a vision or mission or even long term strategies, is to 1)steer and 2)energize. Which approach will best service these needs? I agree with you that the "yes, but here's the reality" argument is limiting - and it likely will neither steer or energize in the way we want.

When I am working with a team or company, I am looking for focused velocity as an outcome.

The topic of how much time to spend in blue sky land is certainly relevant and I would again return to the purpose - only spend the time needed to steer and energize. Lisa Haneberg

At 3:48 PM, Blogger Jodee said...

Lisa: This is a great response and gets me to think more about the purpose for blue sky thinking. I like your term - "focused velocity." I'm also reminded of our typical busy schedules at work which sometimes limit the time we think we have to spend in blue sky land. We do need to concentrate on "focused velocity" - and only allow enough time needed to get to the steer and energize phase; however I think we still find it difficult to find even that time. Actually, we probably won't "find" the time - we will have to rededicate our efforts.

Thanks for giving me new ways to think of this process!

At 4:20 AM, Anonymous Ragupathi said...

It's a good article I understand the business people more useful to this process. I used her ideas to catalyze a breakthrough for my business. If you are interesting visit the site business brainstorming

At 7:43 AM, Blogger Jodee said...

Thanks for your comment, Ragupathi. I'm looking forward to meeting Lisa in person on her motorcycle tour as she comes through Fargo in about 3 weeks. I'm glad her process worked for you! I'm going to get focused next week so I can be on the second week of my breakthrough when I meet her!


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