July 27, 2021
We have been trying to make progress with sorting out our garden this summer.
It’s not going very well.
The big problem is that we aren’t really sure what we want to do. We have an idea, then another one. Then we go back to the original one. I’ve started a bit of DIY patio restoration, then decided we should get someone in to do it. It goes on like this.
We have actually got some things done and it does look better than it did a couple of months back but we haven’t progressed anywhere near as much as we could have done and there’s been a lot of wasted effort.
In truth, it’s not that important to us and it’s certainly not urgent (and wasting a bit of time in the garden can be good for you)!
When we find the same thing happening though in areas of life, including work, that are very important, this becomes a problem. Question is, what’s the solution?
We can try hard in every individual situation to exercise our best planning and problem-solving skills or we can find / create / customise a system that helps guide us through the process of ALWAYS creating clarity on ALL the things that matter most.
What am I doing with my life?
What am I doing today?
What’s the purpose of our organisation?
What’s the purpose of doing this specific task?
With clear direction we can create a clear plan. With a clear plan we can take positive action. Without clarity, we can never achieve what we want and are capable of.
As Brené Brown puts it,
Clarity is kindness.
It can take a lot of effort to establish your system and more so to turn it into a habit, but it’s absolutely worth it.
June 24, 2020
Motivation is a really big deal.
If you can understand yourself and what motivates you then you can make choices that enable you to live with more energy, enthusiasm and happiness, as well as generally getting better results in whatever you put your hand to.
If you can understand others’ motivation, then you can help them do the same and that’s powerful.
One way to experience high levels of motivation is to be consciously connected to the value of what we’re doing.
This is important because…
If you can’t complete that statement above in a meaningful way for what you are currently doing – both from a ‘big picture’ perspective and in the nitty-gritty of your current tasks – you are most likely feeling demotivated.
This leads to two options – either there isn’t a good reason for doing it and you should stop. Or, and this is really common, there are mulitple good reasons for doing it and they’ve just been forgotten or drifted out of mind.
Here you should definitely stop and revisit the purpose that was there in the beginning.
Blank piece of paper. Big heading, “This is important because….”
It will make a world of difference.
October 8, 2013
Meeting an absolute legend!
The weekend before last I attended the National Entrepreneurs Convention at the ICC in Birmingham and had one of those genuinely awe-inspiring “don’t-come-round-very-often” experiences.
Sir Chris Hoy, the most decorated British Olympian in history, was the guest speaker and I was transfixed! This guy has made me shout, jump, sweat, scream and even well up a little (I’m not too proud to confess!) on more than one occasion as I’ve watched the Olympics and cheered him on to victory as if it was actually me winning that gold!
Sir Chris shared the story of when he was 15 and his coach asked the club he was part of to go away and think about what the big goal was for each of them. Chris wasn’t even the best in that group of fellow young cyclists at the time, but he was the only one who came back and said he wanted to win Olympic Gold. The rest, as they say….
It challenged me, and I thought I’d share that same challenge with you, to identify the single most important goal in my life – the equivalent of my Olympic Gold. A goal that is so motivating, so important and stirs my passion like nothing else. A goal that generates for me absolute clarity about what I should be doing and what I shouldn’t be doing, enabling me to answer with sincere honesty the question, “Is my current behaviour congruent with my goal?”
A little time, a little thought, a little ink on some paper used answering this question has really helped me a lot. I hope it does you too.
February 20, 2012
Later this week I am beginning the LMI ‘Effective Strategic Leadership’ programme with a company in Coventry so I’ve been brushing up on the course content and, in the process, the course content has been working its work on me!
Its a five lesson programme which is in essence very simple –
- The power of strategic leadership
- Strategic purpose: why we exist
- Strategic assessment: where we stand now
- Strategic development: where we want to go
- Strategic execution: making strategy happen
Take the middle three lessons and you have incredibly important questions that have been causing me, and perhaps you as you read this and think about your own situation, to consider carefully the very foundations of why I do what I do.
Whatever you are involved with, implementing a great strategic plan is crucial – but only one you’ve clarified why you exist, where you stand now and where do you want to go.
As you do this, you may well find, as I have these last couple of weeks, that the drive, the energy and the desire to get on and do more, to do better, grows stronger than ever as your core purpose is made more crystal clear than ever before!
Once this step is completed, you can effectively communicate it to others which is always a key to seeing levels of engagement, motivation and productivity soar.