Tag: Wisdom

You waste years by not being able to waste hours

michael lewis undoing project

The secret to doing good research is always to be a little underemployed. You waste years by not being able to waste hours. 

~ Amos Tversky

Michael Lewis, author of such books as Moneyball, Liar’s Poker, The Big Short and more, wrote “The Undoing Project” about the friendship of Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahnemann, two academics of massive influence to the field of Behavioural Economics.

In his book David and Goliath, Malcolm Gladwell talked of the Tversky Intelligence Test, a joke among academics about the intelligence of Tversky. The test?: “The faster you realized Tversky was smarter than you, the smarter you were”.

So, with all of that intelligence, I love this quote, one of a series of thoughts noted by Michael Lewis in his book that Tversky kept to hand as reminders to himself.

As I wrote yesterday referencing Warren Buffett, “Busy is the new stupid“.

As I often advise clients who are CEOs, Business Owners etc: “the less you do, the more valuable you are to your business”.

Do Less. Create Space. Pause. All themes I’ve written about here in past posts.

Don’t take my word for it that this is of value to leaders, listen to Amos Tversky and Warren Buffett.

Busy is the new stupid

reflective thinking

As the image above notes,

“Reflective thinking turns experience into insight”

As a Sounding Board to Leaders, what I do for clients isn’t rocket science.

I take time with people.

I listen.

After listening, I reflect back to them what I heard them say, sometimes with my own insights from my own relatable experiences and knowledge.

Then? I listen some more, and so on.

Basically, time with me helps my clients turn their own experience into insights.

In the last week or two, I’ve spent time with clients on calls and in-person meetings where they have all been so busy that the time they spent with me is really the only time they take in their diary to reflect.

The only time they take to reflect is the (typically) few hours a month they spend with me on various calls and meetings.

This all reminds me of learnings from one of the greatest investors of all time and the phrase “busy is the new stupid”. (more…)

Golf Trips and Collaborative Leadership

Iceberg principle

Collaborative Leadership:

“the process of engaging collective intelligence to deliver results across organisational boundaries when ordinary mechanisms of control are absent”

Oxford Leadership – Collaborative Leadership White Paper, 2011

The other day a dear friend of mine, a top elite sports coach and voracious learner and networker around leadership and behaviour, sent me this white paper.

Within it are some powerful learnings for leading collaboratively, yet, as so often, I wonder why corporate leaders and their consultants need to speak in such overly complicated ways.

Today let me endeavour to use Oxford Leadership’s version of the iceberg principle (ie the image above, captured from their white paper), to make a few simple points for leaders to anchor upon if they choose to lead collaboratively. (more…)

When to fight, when to accept?

fight-it-or-accept-it-fear-it-or-control-it-40276863

I recently learned a powerful lesson from someone close to me who has a disease that they are choosing how to address.

They shared with me that they learned from their doctor that this was not something you “fight”, as to approach it from a “fight” mindset means that you are not giving your body permission and highest capability to heal. Instead, adopting a level of acceptance of “what is” can allow that healing to be strong, thus giving the highest chance for the body to be strong and so allow the medical team to take on the disease to the fullest extent.

Today some thoughts on when to fight and when to accept, whether when one has a disease, or in terms of learnings from martial arts, then around leading at times of crisis. (more…)

Brave Thinking and Big Ambitions

kengo-kuma-vanda-dundee-opens-architecture_dezeen_2364_hero2-852x479

The V&A Museum opened in Dundee in 2018, design by Kengo Kuma

Today am inspired by a conversation this week about brave thinking and big ambitions.

I love to work with brave leaders. One of the four characteristics of people who choose to work with me (see the BeMoreYou page) is that they are brave. At it says on that page:

Be Brave.
Bravery means you’re open to being uncomfortable, to stretching, as that’s where the growth lies. If you’re not uncomfortable, you’re playing it too safe.

Bravery is a virtuous circle. When you embrace your full potential (discomfort and all). Your vision becomes clearer and your confidence increases, even in the face of uncertainty.

So, let’s talk today about some examples of Brave Thinking leading to Big Ambition for organisations and businesses. May it inspired your own brave thinking and help you conceive and achieve your big ambitions for yourself, for your organisation. (more…)

Change takes bravery and belief

entrepeneur build plane cliff

A few days ago I shared learnings from Mike Driver in : “Where Entrepreneurialism comes from“. Basically Mike said that it can’t be taught:

““..entrepreneurialism can’t be taught and the library full of books attempting to teach it are a waste of time. Short of travelling back in time and putting your childhood self through some sort of trauma you cannot ‘become’ an entrepreneur.”

This week I find myself working with a client leadership team looking to lead transformative behaviour change in their government department.

What they need, at some level, is entrepreneurial thinking, but if Mike is right (and I do agree with him), what can be done to support them around change? (more…)

Where Entrepreneurialism comes from

mike driver

“..entrepreneurialism can’t be taught and the library full of books attempting to teach it are a waste of time. Short of travelling back in time and putting your childhood self through some sort of trauma you cannot ‘become’ an entrepreneur.”

The 17th and closing tweet in a thread posted this week by Mike Driver of Convex.

In short, Mike’s Twitter thread is concise, incisive and brilliant. Yes, it concludes that entrepreneurialism can’t be taught (so don’t bother trying to learn how to be an entrepreneur as an adult), but in his thread, he explains where it comes from.

As I put it in when sharing his thread onwards on Twitter:

“deep thinking around source from evidence in practice, allied to comprehensive and wide-ranging reading around relevant topics. Aligns closely to my own findings with many hundreds of entrepreneurs”

Today I’ll share his tweet thread (presented as a short opinion piece in this post for ease of reading, as well as my thinking around why I use Twitter.

Please read it.

Oh, and if you are thinking of embarking on a course of study on being entrepreneurial, don’t 🙂 (more…)

To see ourselves as others see us

DFW this is water quote

picture credit Sloww.co

Today I am reminded of the difficulty of seeing ourselves how others see us and the power of critical thinking both for that and to truly see and understand others.

These are universal challenges for each of us. For those who lead others, the “self-leadership” part is at the core, then the layers and dimensions simply expand, to the people in our organisation, the values, beliefs and cultures consciously and unconsciously present. The opportunities for understanding and exploring are endless as we then look at societal, systemic, structural issues.

For this reason, we often look to understand such issues through philosophy and also art, including writing.

Today I’ll share teachings from this from two great authors, David Foster Wallace and Robert Burns, I hope this supports you in looking at what you can do to see yourselves as others see you, as well as to look to understand and see others more clearly. (more…)

Mark Hollis – Learn how to play one note

Mark hollis

“Before you play two notes, learn how to play one note, y’know? And don’t play one note unless you’ve got a reason to play it.” ~ Mark Hollis

Yesterday Mark Hollis died.

He was the leader of Talk Talk. Their music really touched me in different ways, then he stepped away from music and fame completely, at the top of his game. Last night, then, I spent hours listening to that music to mark his passage.

The quote above also says so much about how he evolved and grew as a musician over time, distilling to essence.

Learn how to play one note.

(more…)

Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards

life-can-only-be-understood-backward-but-it-must-be-lived-forward-49

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

Today a simple thought around living life.

Learn from the past, analyse it, study it all you will so you can learn more about yourself, others, your business, your leadership.

When it comes to the future, however, trust yourself.

Like the kid on the skateboard, he knows what he has learned about riding a board so far, now he has to just go for it!

Today sharing (not for the first time) my favourite speech of all time, as the first of three themes within it is all about this. (more…)

Cascading Leadership – Engage, Align, Enrol

TM Cascading Leadership Graphic v1_F

Recently I wrote : “Cascading Leadership – a new way for transformative change“. That post is a synthesis of many years of learning and practice in supporting transformative change. Please do read the full post, but for today I highlight:

“Which comes first, to Engage or to Align?….the answer is to iterate this repeatedly so that there is no “what to do first”, but a virtuous circle of engage, align, engage, align repetitively, each iteration deepening both elements and building more and more trust in the overall organisation for those within it as they truly feel part of the vision”

From this, I felt to create a “virtuous circle” graphic to distil Cascading Leadership to one simple drawing. Many thanks to the amazing Martha Rowe for creating this from my description of what I wanted. Martha is quite brilliant (she also handles my website aesthetics and more for me), and I highly recommend her!

Oh, and I believe in sharing widely and freely anything I may have that is of value, so note that this graphic (and anything I write) is for you to use, to share onwards freely.

As for applying Cascading Leadership, in addition to my writing, I am retained by a limited number of clients around the world to support them with their leadership and transformative change. Am always happy to talk to you about how I might support you.

Aligning corporate and personal purpose

drive-motivation

A few weeks ago I wrote “Purpose, People, Planet – the new triple bottom line“.

That article is a synthesis of learning from many years of building businesses and supporting leaders of businesses and other organisations. In short, I said “we need a new triple bottom line, one that puts Profit as an outcome of focussing on the Source drivers of Purpose, People and Planet”

Today I am reminded of what drives the People of that triple bottom line, so let’s link the two. (more…)

Thank you for visiting my website

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.