Value_abc_resolutions

ABC Resolution: value

Value

What if the things you received were the things you really wanted?

Value is your business litmus test. The little strip of paper that changes color, telling you whether what you produce is just for the money or also for the betterment of your customers and compatriots. The good value of your product or service turns your work litmus paper the correct color. This intrinsic worth drives the vision, mission, goals and accomplishments of the business.

The litmus test for value tells you the importance of something other than its price. This test puts quality over quantity, ranks human benefits over human harm and lets you know whether your intentions are good or if you are making money at someone else’ expense. Good-colored value strips add purpose, guide daily decisions toward beneficial and bring principled intent to the organization and its people. Value is a tangible beyond mere money that can be quantified, measured and acted upon.

You need to fix what you do if you can’t find real, true value in the work you produce, whether for the business yourself and, especially, your customers and clients. For real and long-lasting success, make or give something worth the money, something with more than monetary value. If your business litmus paper is the wrong color, it’s time to reassess, re-imagine and redesign. Only good work brings forth the true color of value.

resolve to: add worth
Untether_abc_resolutions

ABC Resolution: untether

Untether

What if you could create your own orbit?

An object in motion stays in motion unless another force is applied. A moving object will maintain its motion in an orbit around a larger mass by the pull of gravity from that object and its own velocity and acceleration. The shape and size of the orbit is determined by the proportional masses of each and inversely proportional to the distance between them. By example, Mercury, with a small mass and close to the Sun, has a smaller orbit. Earth, larger and farther away, has a longer, elliptical orbit. Comets are small in mass, but they are under the influence of other masses. Thus, their orbits enter our solar system less frequently.

There is a popular myth that if people untether from the corporate ship, they will drift away like a planet loose from its sun or an astronaut whose umbilical cord has been cut. But the laws of gravity and motion tell us otherwise. In fact, the laws that govern objects in space also apply to business. Understand these forces and you can make them work for you.

To keep customers, employees, colleagues, consultants, investors, et al orbiting the business, a company has the responsibility to create sufficient mass to keep all objects in motion around it. Too much mass and the objects will get too close, crash and burn. Too little mass and objects with greater mass, such as the competition, will pull them away. Generate a good level, and variety, of mass and all objects will travel freely, under their own velocity and acceleration, in appropriate, productive and engaged orbits.

resolve to: leverage gravity

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We all orbit our work and business in some manner. In order to physically untether yourself from your corporate planet or ship and successfully create your own orbit, you must be cognizant of how these universal laws of gravity work in a given situation. The first awareness is Continue reading

ThinkSystem_abc_resolutions

ABC Resolution: think system

Think System

What if all the answers were already in our heads?

Remember Professor Harold Hill’s ‘Think System’ from The Music Man? Think about how to play a musical instrument and we can do it. In business and sports, we call this concept envisioning. In life, we call it dreaming. We think, imagine in our mind’s eye the idea, goal, the way. Then we are able to do it. What a wonderful concept.

Sadly, we are often taught not to think new thoughts but to memorize old ones. Take others’ ideas and processes, not as advice, guidelines or jumping off points, but as rules and mandates. We are commanded to unquestioningly obey in our institutions and enticed to blindly buy in and by our corporations. ‘Follow the Leader’ as ‘Simon Says.’ Behaviors learned in childhood games at a young age.

What if, instead of being asked to remember the correct answers for a test, we were given the answers and then asked to puzzle out the questions? This is the real beauty of the Professor’s Think System. Not only are we enjoined to see the vision, but then we are asked to figure out how to fulfill it.

Hill gave the children something more important than music lessons. He gave them the will and confidence to think, try, or as it’s called today, hack it out for themselves. To trust in their own innate abilities and powers of discovery. They didn’t let him, or themselves, down.

resolve to: release your brain

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Only time will tell whether the switch to technology will ultimately be better for humankind. Having been an early adopter for over thirty years, my hindsight raised may concerns. My biggest Continue reading

Sailboats_abc_resolutions

ABC Resolution: sailboats

SAILBOATS

What if you could pilot work like a sailboat, in any water or weather?

During our great Industrial Age, huge ships were the image of success. From ocean liners to oil tankers, big was better. Load them full, crank the engines and set them on their course. But as the Titanic is the perfect metaphor for the supposed unsinkable as sinkable, its inability to perceive a problem, in time to change course fast enough, is a lesson for us all.

Lo, the lowly sailboat. More maneuverable and swift, a sailboat can easily change direction in a windy business climate. Smaller-to-small has many advantages. Steer a small boat and your chance of evading obstacles, like icebergs, is greater. You are forced to tack and make course corrections more often, thereby plotting strategies and visiting outcomes regularly. On a small boat, everyone on board counts. Each role is evident. Contributions to success are clearly identifiable and everyone is of value and important.

There are many types of sailboats. Some are easier to rig and some easier to sail. Some carry extra sails to unfurl before the wind. Others have the ability to keep choppy waves from breaking over the sides and some are better balanced for calmer waters. Smaller, easily maneuvered boats are best for the flexible, agile and mobile work of today’s businesses. Pick your boat’s style and rigging with conscious intent. The set sail. The tide has turned.

resolve to: catch the wind

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Using sailboats as an analogy is an old, but still valid tool. Besides choosing the boat style, rigging and sailing the boat, sometimes the most important and hardest part of any voyage is the point where you set sail. Continue reading

Risk_abc_resolutions

ABC Resolution: risk

RISK

What if taking chances were well-rewarded and everyone took them?

We risk every day. We risk when we walk out the front door, drive to work, put food and water in our mouths and breathe the air. We risk just being alive. This is what life is – Risk. Risk in in our DNA.

Some risks have good results, some bad. Our modern-day world has evolved complex systems of governance that define bad risk and protect us from harm. Our tax dollars at good work. Yet for all our protections, we can still be at war, drink bad water, buy harmful products and eat chemically poisoned food. We now see our modern world of well-intentioned actions killing us and our planet. Ending the very existence our risk mitigation processes are meant to safe-guard.

We now operate as if all risk is bad and anything to stop risk is good. Fear has hi-jacked our common survival senses. Assessing risk is innate to all entities on the planet. But as humans, we have seemingly ignored the risk imperative. Choosing to eliminate all risk and die a slow death in faux safety — a uniquely human ability. Fear and die. Or risk and live. The choice is ours.

resolve to: Step Out

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Risk is a reflexive word. I have seen people Continue reading

Query_Egg_jpeg

ABC Resolution: query

QUERY

What if ‘what if’ mattered?

Query, to simply ask questions. Recent human development research states children no longer ask ‘why?’ as early as age six. Unfortunately, most children have been so ignored, disregarded, shot down, shut down and even punished for being their natural, curious selves, they have learned that asking questions is a really bad thing. But by query is how humans grow. Simple curiosity allows our species to survive and thrive.

It appears rote learning and memorizing has left most of us devoid of curiosity. So much so, we appear to be devolving, just as the hue and cry to evolve and innovate has become deafening. Flipping learning on end, we now seem to value the right answer over the provocative question. We have forgotten, as important it is to know of something that occurs, it is exponentially more important to know why.

The next time someone ask ‘why?’, whether young or old, support their curiosity. Listen and ask questions in return. Encourage and reward critical thinking and conversation toward mutual validation and respect. Keep all discussions open-ended. Most importantly, don’t lead others to your predetermined hypotheses, assumptions and conclusions. Query is what leads to invention, continuous learning and the ongoing evolutions of people, business and society. We are designed to never stop learning and exploring.

resolve to: be curious

dare to grow what's possible in business & life