I strongly believe in remote working. However, today let me take it a level further. For now let’s call it “WorkAnywhere”, as the idea of remote working still implies a paradigm where there is a central point of focus for a business, an office or “head office”.
We don’t need that paradigm anymore, it does not serve our thinking and so our practices. Technology has shrunk the world and enabled many of us to be able to work almost anywhere, anytime and with even more effectiveness than if we had to travel to an office or even place our focus around such a place. That said, I also believe that it is a “both/and” conversation, that often we miss the huge value of creating and building meaningful relationships by being “offline”, by being face to face with people.
So, to me, there are wonderful lessons in the book “Remote” that I will touch on later, yet my core message is that many of us can consciously operate a “WorkAnywhere” model, going beyond the idea that we can work remotely from a central office or HQ.
For us to WorkAnywhere, we then leverage both the power of remote working with online tools as well as recognising the power of actually being in the same room as people and so investing in that time (and travel to do so) as a core element of WorkAnywhere life.
Today, then, I’ll tell my own quarter-century long story of how I have evolved to my own WorkAnywhere model.
In that, I’ll share some of what I have learned along the way to support that work model, including some thoughts on the book “Remote” and the lessons from the huge success Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson have had in building and running their remote business (that itself offers remote tools for collaboration).
I have been focussed for many years on the overlaps between coaching sports and coaching individuals and business. I am privileged to count as a dear friend one of the swimming worlds all-time great coaches, Ian Armiger (who shared this article me too).
I’ve learned as much or more from top sports coaches about human behaviour as any business or leadership thinker, speaker, consultant or coach.
So many nuggets in this powerful article, but one that truly stands out from me and is so, so relevant to all forms of coaching, mentoring, management, leadership:
“As a coach, start connecting with the players, even if they’re as young as six. Don’t tell and yell — ask.” ~ Wayne Goldsmith
He then goes on to explain that most coaches spend 70% of their time commentating and otherwise being unconstructive, only 30% being of true value. Oh, and that a calm coach is far more valuable than one who yells.
Enjoy the article and I hope you take at least two or three things from it you can apply yourself in your life, work, family. If you are a sports coach, perhaps you too can learn specifics from Wayne Goldsmith too.
Oh, and as to family, the final part of the article talks about swim parents not allowing their children to take self-responsibility for what they need and need to do. How often do we do that as leaders and managers too? Allow your people, your kids, your community to step up rather than you jump in to fix things. You may be powerfully amazed at what happens.
So, enjoy the article, the bold type parts are my contributions to highlight certain sections. I give you just one here:
“Creativity comes from difference. Being able to see different connections. Constantly rejecting what is and looking at what could be.”
That article puts forward that it is time for a new triple bottom line, one that creates:
“a “Righteous Flywheel”, where the unerring focus on Purpose+People+Planet as drivers allows the corporation to make Profits, which mean it can then focus more on Purpose+People+Planet and so make more Profit, and so on in a “virtuous circle”.”
It also links to three further articles, each with a case study of a company of scale that has lived this and proven that it creates the righteous flywheel.
At the time of writing, I noted that I’d love to create a graphic to represent this. Well, with the creative skills of Martha Rowe (who has done all the graphic and web design for me for some time), now we have one here. Thank you Martha!
Put as a formula:
Purpose + People + Planet = Profit
However, the formula looks like an endgame of profit, whereas the flywheel graphic highlights that it is a cycle.
I’d love to talk to you about this, and to get more examples of companies operating in this way!
The #BeMoreYou page on this site is there to help leaders assess if I am the right person to support them and if they are the right person too. Words like bravery and transformation are peppered through the site, and this phrase from the page is apposite to today’s post: “My commitment is that our work together will facilitate the greatest possible impact for you, your business, and the world.”.
In my work, many of my clients over the years have been leaders of large organisations and they bring me in to support them with transformational change, to amplify their own already high impact, to put an even greater dent in the universe, so to speak.
Today I’ll share an excerpt from a recent article on transformational change I found valuable in an understanding of just what it takes to move from idea to execution of transformation.
In this, I’ll also distil some of my thoughts around the themes in the article, including how you can create a conversation around “dropping pebbles” to create an effective strategy to effect “complex contagion” and so real transformation throughout the organisation. (more…)
A story today around one of my favourite leadership phrases:
A leader is someone other choose to follow
The picture above is of quite the unattractive muddy pond, huh?
Now imagine you are a squad of young soldiers on army training. It is cold, wet, you’ve been out in the field for days. You are exhausted, tired, hungry. All you want to do is get back to base, shower, get into dry clothes, eat and get warm.
You and the other squads in the company have been marching back to base when you are brought to this place with a series of ponds, one for each squad.
The 20-year-old officer cadet in charge of your squad has just been told that, before you get to go home, a surprise. The squad must complete what is typically called a “command task”, to get each of them across the pond, using what seems like far too little equipment (a few planks, a little rope, some empty barrels).
He explains it to the group, and clearly, nobody has the first idea about how to cross the pond, The officer cadet is very “green”, he also has no idea what to do, but the key thing he observes is a bunch of unmotivated men who are simply thinking “I don’t want to fall into that muddy pond and get cold and wet”.
He could work out what to do himself and then give orders to complete the task, yet with the exhaustion and demotivation he sees, he immediately and instinctively an opportunity for leadership rather than management.
In order to make failure possible, you first have to try, to commit, to go where it may scare or even terrify you, to be vulnerable, to say “this might not work” and do it anyway.
Very recently I was disappointed to witness this first hand in someone. They were presented with a real opportunity, yet my sense is that it felt too scary to them to try, so instead, they creating a rationale for them to choose to back away and shut down. Rather than risk failure, they chose not to commit, to make the effort, to try.
By making the choice not to try, as Cate Campbell notes (see letter below) that person “let the fear of failure destroy the possibility of success”. We all have our own journey to go on, our own choices to make, and reflecting on that experience, today I’ll riff on this with lessons from two leaders. (more…)
Between October 2017 and June 2018, I published weekly posts of three Movies with Meaning. The full list of movies over that time is featured here. Since June 2018 I have chosen to publish a post about movies only as the spirit takes me.
As I write this post today, it comes from having just received a message from a friend that inspires me to write about this movie, Life is Beautiful, or as the Italian title goes, La vita è bella. (more…)
This is a personal mantra for me now and is the reason why the two photos above could happen.
I used to be known to plan life with great detail, packing the diary days, weeks, months and even years in advance. I also stuck rigidly to whatever was planned. Would you believe that until 2017 I had never cancelled or changed a trip plan ? Truly.
So, I chose to change that approach, and it created the two magic moments above. (more…)
CEOs are responsible for the performance (and, one would hope they recognise) and the wellbeing of all the people in their team. Often, though, they do a poor job of supporting one key member of that team. Themselves.
So, as you are the CEO of your own time and energy, how often do you consider how well you support yourself and your own performance?
Today let me share with you some ideas and a story about the power of managing time and energy. I hope it has value for you for your own performance and personal happiness and fulfilment, it certainly did for the client in the story. (more…)
Why Hell Yeah though? To answer that, let me take you back to a trip I made in April 2018 to Baja Mexico, where I had the privilege of meeting Chip Conley and be part of the beta of the Modern Elder Academy. (more…)
What is the dent you wish to make in the universe?
How can you make that dent into a crater?
My answer today?
Surround yourselves with people, thoughts, ideas that stimulate you to live your own purpose and you’ll make your dent a crater.
Let me give you my own example, one that is very much current.
Many readers may only come to this site to read my daily writing, so today feel to share that the whole site has been totally refreshed with all new copy, aimed to make clear who I love to work with and what I do to help them.
I’ll then leap into inspiration from four writers that have inspired and continue to inspire me.
Today, a rare “shameless plug”. As I’ve written about on numerous occasions, the amazing Chip Conley’s Modern Elder Academy is now “open for business”!
The first two week long residential immersive workshop experiences are November 4-11 and November 11-18 in Baja, Mexico. Applications are now being accepted and will sell out fast! At US$5,000 (scholarships available, see the site), this is a stunningly powerful investment in yourself and your future life and work.
Trust me… I was part of the beta programme, my week there was truly transcendent!
You can tell by all the exclamation point that I am excited about this, huh?
People are my library, my daily writing a way to discover what’s in it: ideas, inspiration, wisdom, and a little fun. As your humble librarian, I invite you to subscribe to check out a digest of daily emails emailed twice each week. No late fees, ever.