Meditation has profound benefits. But, when you stand up from your cushion, where does your mind go when it’s confronted? If it runs from challenge, the meditation has weakened you. If it avoids chaos, your meditation has failed you. If your mind is not more powerful, more capable of handing chaos, challenge and confrontation of your ego, you have spent your time on a cushion going backward. That is why I teach mobile meditation, so whether you’re running a business, making a date, standing in front of an audience or competing in an event, you will have access to the benefits and power of meditation, no cushion required. No need to run, escape or avoid, That’s mobile meditation, real life meditation.
1. Embrace Incompetence – Off Line
To evolve at work is to embrace incompetence because while we stay within the safety zone of competent performance we do not stretch the genuine boundary of our technology, we simply refine and develop within a known circle. If we refine and develop within a known circle we grow at the same rate as our competitors .. peers and external job applicants, and therefore become part of a mundane group of “me-too” individuals, differentiated only by personality, a non value add commodity. Incompetence is best explored in a simulator we call coaching. In coaching, your evolution is challenged offline and therefore, incompetence is celebrated in the language of ideas, inspirations and visions. In mountaineering parlance, using a climbing wall to learn new skills is safe because a fall is not life threatening, and yet the climbing moves are outside the current scope of competence of the individual.
2. Fear of Conflict – Embrace
Because HR departments have become confused about conflict in the workplace many individuals are invested in compliance and agreement, as a measure of interpersonal communication. However, in reality conflict, disagreement, war, distaste, friction and aggression (verbal) counterbalance compliance to create and cause growth. We evolve at the border of chaos and order and an individual who becomes obsessed with lifestyle and life balance will find the challenges of “confrontation” counter cultural. If a domestic environment becomes “compliant” and agreeable then typically the workplace for that individual will become confrontational. Every human faces the balance of nature. The more extreme they wish to sustain one side of that balance (peace and balance) the more confronted they will be with its opposite (essential duality of nature.)
3. Intrapreneurship – Hierarchy
The fifth law of nature is the law of hierarchy. It means things that are greater in consciousness are less in number and rise to the top. We call this leadership. However, sometimes that consciousness is measured in fragmented ways which leads to struggle and stress., An individual might be promoted to the #1 Violin position in an orchestra, their competence and consciousness in violin mastery is second to none, but they might be the most unconscious of the whole orchestra in health, relationship, social engagement and spiritual development. Hence, those in the orchestra who are looking for more than a great violin leader, looking for a social network, a healthy workplace and a spiritual component of their teamwork, will feel superior to the leader and harshly treated by that person, unfulfilled. What one must understand is that in specialist areas of life people lead in their specialisation and do not get measured on their overall consciousness. If we are in a hierarchy and the person above us is not as spiritually, mentally, socially, financially, family conscious as we are, we need to be humble to their place in the hierarchy of work and expect nothing else. Then, we remain humble and forgiving, grateful for their mastery rather than resentful of their ignorance. We become an intrapreneur and learn how to create inspiration within teams.
4. Reverse The Abuse of Time
The lowest hanging fruit on the tree gets picked first because it’s easiest to reach. The lowest hanging fruit of work is time. We use time to do more work when in fact, it is not an efficient or effective approach to increasing work load. Process is. Any job we repeat more than once, even just twice, must become a system. A system is a checklist, a computer programme, an APP, a pre arranged format so the third time we do the same thing, we’ve narrowed the error rate, learned from experience and refined the process into a system. Unfortunately, we would rather throw time at repetitive tasks than automate. My clients work 4 hours a day – but they get 112 hours work done. They do so by refining their focus, working on top priorities, delegating low priorities and by getting out into nature each day for a few hours and clearing their inspired brain parts. Clear thinking is far greater than long thinking. I use the DO, DUMP, DELEGATE PROCESS… Ask me about this
5. Letting go Emotion
A person who sits on their bum all day, doing absolutely nothing except watching action movies or romance movies on TV all day, will end up hungry, tired and exhausted. Nothing has been achieved. Nothing has been done. Nothing has improved. Only emotion has been engaged. 99% of business people do nothing to exhaust their body all day but they come home exhausted. That’s because they are frustrated, bored, or over excited – emotional all day. Emotion is great. Emotion makes love, causes nice things. But emotion and evolving at work are in conflict. Why allow emotion to exhaust you? Nothing is missing, there’s no one to blame. Take the power back by evolving continuously at the border of support and challenge, and smile because there’s two sides to everything. There’s always order in the chaos (emotion)
6. Getting More Done in Less time.
If you work 3 days a week it really means doing five days work in three, not three days work in three. If you do one day a week it means getting 5 days work done in 1. People make the mistake of thinking there is a fixed productivity for a day and if they reduce their work hours they reduce their expectation of productivity. That’s an old fashioned notion where time equals money. Time doesn’t equal money anymore – results do. My clients work less hours by working out how to get more done in less time. Not by working out how to survive on less hours with less output. That’s crazy. So, there are three words I share with my business clients to achieve this: ORGANISE, SUPERVISE and DEPUTISE… What do they mean? ORGANISE: You get your shit together and you know exactly the priorities in a day, month or year that will get you what you are expecting. You focus on organising which is leveraged by DO, DUmp, DELEGATE and your measured output. SUPERVISE: Here you are so mastered at what you do that you start to teach some team members how to do what you do by modelling it, writing about it, clarifying it to teach it. If you can’t teach what you do you are not ORGANISED. Then, finally after you’ve supervised others you deputise. That means, once you have watched over their shoulder, hand held them through your Supervised, you DEPUTISE. The purpose is not to release you from work, but to allow you do focus more on your priorities, to increase your output but decrease your workload.
7. Taking The Middle Road
If I added up the money I’ve seen wasted on business plans, powerpoint presentations and vision branding for corporate America I could fund a third world country like Nepal. Creativity has its place and we can live without it, but there are certain business principles that, if you work to them, provide guaranteed results, not temporary guesses or aberrations. I remember standing in a qantas queue waiting for a flight and getting into a conversation with a businessman about the same age as me. After some small talk, and realising we were both change agents, me a business turnaround expert and him an entrepreneur who bought distressed business, turned them around and resold, got into a great chat. He asked me for my three principles of changing a business, I shared mine. Then his were: a big cheque book, a big cheque book, a big cheque book. The first was to pay out 50% of the staff of any business he bought. The second was to give the wages of the paid out employees to the remaining employees. And the third was to do that again, every 12 months until the business sold. He’s right. When I ran my global consultancy in World Competitive Manufacturing I would start every brief with a three day retreat for the top 30 individuals from factory floor to CEO. My opening statement was “50% of you will not be working for this company in 12 months. I don’t know which 50% but it will be those who preferred the company the way it was, the ones with their foot on the brake, who will be unwelcome in the future.” In over 200 programmes run in just three years, i was never wrong. There are some basic principles of strategy for business. Follow them and the rest is about creativity and that’s great fun.
8. Neanderthals are a dying breed
The big fat cats of the 80’s and 90’s are still around. Bulbous, overweight, wrinkled and heavy drinking execs still grace the hallways of some companies, but they are a dying breed. The new exec I meet is thin, fit, athletic and upright. They play sport, love family time and get plenty of sun. They respect their diet, probably do a bit of yoga, meditate and love their work. They’ve broken the link between results and long hours. They leave the office at 3.00pm most days to train in their sport, get home, have dinner and probably do a bit of writing before bed. Most of the execs I meet get up way early in the morning, spend time stretching, do a little exercise, get a massive output done on paper rather than computer before most people even think about waking up. It’s super smart because mornings are our most valuable thinking time, so why waste it running for three hours?
9. Micro Balance is the new Work Life Balance
Balancing life with work is a stupid idea someone thought of while playing marbles. Why would you balance your work with your life? Or your life with your work. It’s a Got to, clumsy, self-depricating process. Instead, micro balance is the formula. Micro balance means you balance the minute, not the day. You balance the hour, not the week. You balance the day not the year. When you hear someone say “I can’t wait for a holiday or the weekend” you know they’re living in a fantasy world. If you are not balanced at work, then the quality of your work will dimininish and the demand for time off will skyrocket. Consequently, you’ll come home exhausted and want to be treated with kid gloves, which means you are not really arriving home as a contributor, just a needy, exhausted individual. That’s unsustainable. You can take it from tens of thousands of divorces, people who subscribe to work life balance, fail at both. You don’t want balance. You want to be devoted to your work, imbalanced. Then you want to be devoted to your family, imbalanced. To to this, you need to turn up, doing whatever you do, balanced. That’s not half balanced, that’s not waiting for balance, that’s not saying “gee I look forward to balance” it’s balanced. Being the same you and turning up. Then you can forget recovery weekends and holidays and start living great weekends and going on adventures. And you turn up for those you love, rather than use them to balance your incompetence at self-management at work. It works like this: A fat lady came to see me for a diet. I said to stop eating. Then charged her $10,000. She complained that my solution was too simplistic and wasn’t worth the money. So, when I say to you micro balance your life, don’t get out of balance so you don’t need to balance your work life, do you think the advice is too simplistic too? It’s not.