Feed on
Posts
Comments

WideEyed 393x400 Wide Eyed and Electrified   What does it mean to be On Purpose?

“Without purpose we would not exist…
It is purpose that created us…
Purpose that connects us…
Purpose that pulls us…

Purpose that guides us, that drives us, that defines us….

Purpose that binds us.”

  (Agent Smith from Matrix Reloaded)

Sometimes things stick fast in our memories. They just never seem to go away. One such moment was 15 years ago in my first Power of Your Purpose Workshop based on the book The On-Purpose Person by Kevin McCarthy.

By way of introduction to the workshop I asked the participants what they considered a person might look like, sound like and feel like when they were on-purpose.

I mapped the answers from participants on a Y chart. One I have never forgotten.  ‘John’ had no hesitation in sharing his thoughts!   “Wide eyed and electrified!” he exclaimed. 

There was spontaneous applause from the small group as his words resonated and echoed around the room.  This phrase has now become a bit of a “household” answer from some family members and close friends when asked how they are going. Yes, you guessed it!  ‘Wide eyed and electrified!’  

Of course, being on-purpose is more than this. Typically people use words such as fulfilled, energized, mojo, in the flow, focused, whole, meaningful, hope, purposeful, and significance to describe what being on-purpose means to them.

I have been using the term on-purpose and asking that question so often in workshops, training and coaching that it is easy for me to assume that everyone has a common understanding of the phrase.

When we are on-purpose our hearts, head, hands and feet, as well as our ‘gut’ and throat are in alignment. They are connected. These body parts represent our Purpose (Being), Vision (Seeing), Missions (Doing) and Values (Choosing) respectively.  Purpose comes from the heart, forms a vision in our head, takes action in our hands and feet all within the values that bind and connect these four aspects of our lives.

Also, as the figure below shows, when you are “on-purpose,” there is alignment between your purpose, vision, mission, and values. According to Kevin McCarthy, the author of The On-Purpose Person and The On-Purpose Business, on-purpose is sparked by purpose, inspired by vision, performed through missions, and governed by values. Your being, seeing, doing and choosing are all aligned and connected.

PurposeValuesVisionMission Wide Eyed and Electrified   What does it mean to be On Purpose?

When you are on-purpose in this kind of alignment, you will feel like you are in the ‘flow’ and one with your body, mind and spirit. You are engaged in meaningful work and you know why and how you are making a difference in the world.

When you are on-purpose you are ‘on track’.  Your purpose is like a homing beacon that keeps you focussed on the things that matter most in your life and business. It ensures you keep doing more of what you do best.  It prevents you from being distracted. It governs your thoughts, feelings attitudes and behaviour. Like a light house it keeps you from going astray.  It ensures that your core wants, goals and priorities are in alignment with your Purpose.  The decisions you make will be through the filter of your One Purpose.

From the above it is clear that being on-purpose means that we have clear direction in our life and that we live out our life intentionally – on-purpose.  We acknowledge that there will be occasions when we will be taken “off course” but with a clear focus, a clear sense of direction and purpose, we will keep returning to or being pulled back to the things that matter most in our lives.

Work-life balance is not something you seek when you are on-purpose.  You see your life more in terms of being integrated and holistic (Spiritual, Family, Financial, Vocational, Mental/Intellectual, Social and Physical/Health) rather than areas you try to balance by giving them equal importance.

People who are on-purpose will be proactive and make things happen, rather than live their lives reacting to events and circumstances.  Because they know their Top Priorities and Core Wants and have developed clear action plans to achieve these, they will have less stress and less clutter in their lives and be able to make confident decisions. They take ownership and responsibility for their lives.

By understanding that our Purpose is our spiritual DNA, we can accept that our two-word purpose statement ‘defines’ us in a special way.  Our parents gave us a biological name.  But once you discover your Purpose and give it a name  (as I outlined this in my previous Blog on The Power of Your Two Word Purpose Statement – e.g. Releasing Potential; Liberating Greatness; Igniting Enthusiasm (Mine); Celebrating Freedom; and Rejuvenating Spirit) you have in fact named your true “I”denity – your True Self.

So being on-purpose also means that you ‘Be’ your Purpose. Being on-purpose is an outward and visible expression of an inner calling on our life. In this way our Purpose defines our past, present and future. It is ‘been’, ‘being’ and ‘becoming’.

On-Purpose people understand the importance of building their lives from the “inside out”.  They know that without a strong spiritual, physical, emotional and intellectual inner core, they will not achieve long term authentic success.

Finally, being On-Purpose is a journey, not a destination.  Those of us who embark on this process are On-Purpose people in creation.  We never completely arrive. It is an ongoing process of growth.  On-Purpose therefore, is about who we are “being” and “becoming”.

 © Dr Edward Gifford, On-Purpose Partners Pty Ltd, July 2012

muddled thoughts    The Multi Tasking Myth

“ A man who chases two rabbits catches none. ”
v                                            - Roman Proverb

It may surprise you to hear that people who multi-task are actually less productive than those who just concentrate on one project at a time. (Yep, that’s us blokes. Haven’t you heard the ladies say: “He’s a man! What do you expect? He can only do one thing at a time.”)

For both men and women, our brains are not built to multi-task. They are designed to focus on one thing at a time and bombarding them with information only slows them down. (If you don’t believe me, try listening to your car radio when you are driving to a new location on a busy road. The volume is invariably turned down or off).

 

“… when people think they’re multi-tasking,
they’re actually just switching from one task to another …”

The research of Bergman (along with MIT neuroscientist Earl Miller) notes that our brains are “not wired to multitask well… when people think they’re multitasking, they’re actually just switching from one task to another very rapidly. And every time they do, there’s a cognitive cost.” So, if you think you are good at multitasking you are simply good at being faster at switching back and forth between two things.

Why multi-tasking is bad for us

A Harvard Business Review post claimed multi-tasking leads to as much as a 40% drop in productivity, increased stress, and a 10% drop in IQ (Bergman, 2010). Here’s some of the research around this.

Produces addictive habits

The constant task-switching encourages bad brain habits. When we complete a tiny task (sending an email, answering a text message, posting a tweet), we are hit with a dollop of dopamine which is our reward hormone. As our brains love dopamine we’re encouraged to keep switching between small mini-tasks that give us instant and constant gratification.

This creates a dangerous feedback loop that makes us feel like we’re being really productive, when we’re actually not doing much at all (or at least nothing requiring much critical thinking). In fact, some even refer to email/Twitter/Facebook-checking as a neural addiction.

Lowers performance and reduces productivity

Multi-tasking makes it more difficult to organize thoughts and filter out irrelevant information, and it reduces the efficiency and quality of our work.

Ophir, Nass, and Wagner (2009) discovered that people who reported multi-tasking more frequently (heavy multi-taskers) were actually more prone to being distracted compared with those who reported multi-tasking less frequently (light multi-taskers). Heavy multi-taskers tend to have a hard time filtering out irrelevant stimuli from their environment, and are distracted by the multiple things that they’re trying to allocate their attention to.

In essence, heavy multi-taskers may be “sacrificing performance on the primary task to let in other sources of information” (Ophir, Nass, & Wagner, 2009, p. 155).

So multi-tasking reduces our efficiency and performance because our brain can only focus on one thing at a time. When you try to do two things at once, your brain lacks the capacity to perform both tasks successfully.

You might believe that you have a special gift for multi-tasking.

Here’s what the Stanford researchers concluded. They compared groups of people based on their tendency to multi-task and their belief that it helps their performance. They found that heavy multi-taskers—those who multi-task a lot and feel that it boosts their performance—were actually worse at multi-tasking than those who like to do a single thing at a time.

Lowers IQ

In addition to reducing your productivity and performance, multi-tasking lowers your IQ.

A study at the University of London showed that subjects who multi-tasked while performing cognitive tasks experienced significant IQ drops. In fact, the IQ drops were similar to what you see in individuals who skip a night of sleep or who smoke marijuana. Now that’s a terrifying consequence!

An IQ drop of 15 points in multi-tasking men lowered their scores to the average range of an 8-year-old child. So, think twice the next time you’re writing your boss an email during a meeting. Remember that your cognitive capacity is being diminished to the point that you might as well let an 8-year-old write it for you!

Causes brain damage

It was previously understood that cognitive impairment from multi-tasking was temporary, but new research suggests otherwise.Researchers at the University of Sussex in the UK studied the effects from the amount of time people spend on multiple devices (such as texting while watching TV). From MRI scans they found that high multi-taskers had less brain density in the anterior cingulate cortex, a region responsible for empathy as well as cognitive and emotional control. So multi-tasking has a negative impact on our Emotional Intelligence also.While more research is needed to determine if multi-tasking is physically damaging the brain (versus existing brain damage that predisposes people to multi-task), it’s clear that multi-tasking has negative effects.Neuroscientist Kep Kee Loh, the study’s lead author, explained the implications: “I feel that it is important to create an awareness that the way we are interacting with the devices might be changing the way we think and these changes might be occurring at the level of brain structure.”So every time you multi-task you aren’t just harming your performance in the moment; you may very well be damaging an area of your brain that’s critical to your future success at work.

Summary of learnings about multi-tasking

If you’re prone to multi-tasking, this is not a habit you’ll want to indulge—

  • It slows us down and decreases the quality of our work. People who multi-task are less productive/efficient than those who simply concentrate on one project a time.
  • We don’t actually “multi-task” because our brain switches rapidly between handling one task and then another.
  • Allowing ourselves to multi-task will exacerbate any existing difficulties we have with concentration, organization, and attention to detail.
  • Multi-tasking in meetings and other social settings indicates low Self and Social Awareness -two emotional intelligence (EQ) skills that are critical to success at work.
  • TalentSmart has tested more than a million people and found that 90% of top performers have high EQs. If multi-tasking does indeed damage the anterior cingulate cortex (a key brain region for EQ) as current research suggests, it will lower your EQ in the process.

How can you change?

Essentially, in the work environment of today, we are talking about time management. At the obvious and basic level, to avoid switching try to implement the following routines into your day.

  • Simplify your life and your tasks and do fewer things better.
  • Don’t allow your inbox to dictate your day.
  • Set specific times for writing and reading emails.
  • Switch off those annoying and demanding electronic distractions which notify you of incoming emails and messages.
  • Make priority lists daily (before switching on your laptop)

At a deeper level, I suggest doing a lot more to stop these bad habits and insidious distractions impacting your brain and performance.

  • Become more self-aware. Notice when and why you switch from one task to another. Are you doing it out of procrastination, to alleviate boredom or to avoid doing something more difficult and demanding? Or has it now become a really bad habit?
  • Practice mindfulness at work. When you are in the middle of a project or an important task notice what is going on for you. When you are “in the flow” or “in the zone” time seems to race by. Notice the energy, the intentionality and sense of purpose flowing through you when you are mindfully engaged. In these times you are on-purpose and you will be less inclined to multi-task.
  • Live and work in the now. Our lives are over fragmented. Next time you are out with family, friends or a colleague (even for coffee) stay focussed and enjoy the moment. (I have noticed even in restaurants, that people are engaged with their electronic devices and not with each other). This is tragic and producing a “head down” society increasingly unable to meaningfully connect and engage with each other. Notice when you are doing this and stop it!

Final Notes

So, next time someone tells you they are great at time management because they multi-task, perhaps you have something to share with them!

If you would like to improve your productivity and performance in the work place please shoot me through an email or give me a call.  I’d love to assist you.


Dr Edward Gifford

Managing Director On-Purpose Partners
Principal Consultant Executive Career Move

arrowfeet Freeing Yourself from Divided InterestWhen do I say “yes” and when do I say “no”?

Having recently had another birthday I got thinking about life, time and what I might do with the remainder of my earthly time frame.

None of us knows what this time frame might be but as we get older we sure know that our time on earth goes very quickly.

It’s a bit scary as well as sobering and challenging!

What I do know is that each of us has a Purpose and we are called to live this out in all aspects of our lives whether it is work, family, relationships, finances or in our physical, intellectual and spiritual life accounts.

I also am aware that confusing and divided interests have a high cost.

… The more divided our interests, the more
diluted our lives can become …

Every relationship we nurture, every activity in which we engage, every cause we get involved with, and every decision about what we will own and where we will live has a time, energy, concentration, and often financial cost attached to it. They all require some investment of life. The more divided our interests, the more diluted our lives can become.

To use a business analogy, the advice consistently received and given at business marketing seminars and workshop is to ensure your target market is “an inch wide and a mile deep”. Using a scatter gun approach to business is costly both in terms of time and money. A laser beam is more effective than a fluorescent light when it comes to focussing on your target market!

… Knowing your number one core want or top priority
is exhilarating and freeing …

I don’t want to push the analogy too far. But I am suggesting that our life in general should be like knowing our targeting market. We need to use a laser beam when it comes to investing our time wisely and intentionally in each of our seven life “accounts”. Knowing your number one core want or top priority for each, is exhilarating and freeing.

Your life will no longer be “out of control” nor will you get pulled in a thousand different directions as you live up to others’ expectations.

 

anonymous Freeing Yourself from Divided Interest

Here is an example of someone who undertook this process as part of the On-Purpose® Personal Leadership and Coaching Program.

After brainstorming his wants in each of the seven life accounts (usually around 12 to 16 for each life area) he developed his ‘core’ or number one want for each. These were his heart’s desires and reflected his current season of life. (Our wants and priorities do change as we find ourselves in different circumstances and as we transition to different life seasons).

Life Account (LA): Vocational/Career
Core Want or Top Priority (CW): Work to be a creative expression of my life’s meaning

LA: Spiritual
CW: Be closer to “god”

LA: Family
CW: Become a stronger leader in my family

LA: Physical/Health/Recreational
CW: Feeling radiant

LA: Social/Friends
CW: Invest time with those who energise and uplift me

LA: Intellectual
CW: Being creative – researching, writing and sharing

LA: Financial
CW: Develop wisdom in my attitude and use of money

LA: Other
CW: Honestly confront my relationship with “Tammy” (alias)

Now you might see this as a fluorescent light across his life but over 100 “wants” were lasered down to one for each of his life accounts. Through using the On-Purpose® Tournament Process he was able to move from confusion to clarity. (Each of these was turned into an On-Purpose® SMART goal with accompanying action steps to achieve these).

This process can give you profound insights into your life and confidence to move in the direction of your chosen visions, missions and values.

These of course are not your Purpose but they nevertheless should align with it.

… We can live with clarity and not in a state of confusion …

So when we get clarity around what matters most in our life, we no longer need to march to the beat of other people’s drums. We can live with clarity and not in a state of confusion.

What will be certain is that you will not be heard to say …“my life is out of control” and that is because you are free from divided interests.

You will be able to confidently, clearly and more consistently say “yes” to your carefully considered top priorities and “no” more often to those things that take you off track, drain your energy and distract you from aligning your life to your Purpose and core values.

… your life is too important to be left to chance …

So, how about undertaking an “audit” on your life? Divided interests are costly and your life is too important to be left to chance, distracting projects and unnecessary anxieties.

Maybe it’s time for you to re-examine your relationships, vocations, activities, commitments, possessions, and living arrangements and to find what you want most from life.

Are you up for the challenge?

As Socrates once famously said, “The unexamined life is not worth living!”

Maybe right now you are wanting to manage your life better and get the important things done; have more time with your partner, family and friends; unshackle the thinking that has held you back; set clear, purposeful goals in your seven “life accounts”; do the things you really want to do and get more fun back into your life.

… be clear about what you want, prioritise these,
action them and implement them …

Our On-Purpose® Life Planning and Coaching Program will lead you to your core wants in all areas of your life.

Our unique tools and processes ensure that you will be clear about what you want, prioritise these, action them and implement them.

You will gain a clear vision for each of your seven life “accounts”, you will have clear missions for your life and values that are in alignment with your purpose, visions and missions.

Now how powerful is that?

So if you are sick and tired of being sick and tired or if you would like clarity, wisdom and support in planning a life that is on-purpose, we would love to help.

For more information about how this can become a reality for you please send me an email or give me a call.

Dr Edward Gifford
Principal Consultant and CEO (Chief Enthusiasm Officer)
On-Purpose Partners Pty Ltd
0416 260 448

mousetrapped e1431301024443 Are You Caught in the Work Trap?

What are you doing with your weekends?

Three things promoted me to write this article.

First, the realisation that I need to get my working life into perspective and to practice what I preach!

Second, an article I recently read by Travis Bradberry on ‘How successful people work less and get more done’.

Thirdly, a few weeks ago I had a complete weekend off – went boating, caught some fish, walked and talked with my wife Angela and our chocolate brown labrador – Poppy, (yes, dogs talk too) and generally chilled out.

Nice!

So much so that Angela and Poppy (pictured below) have talked about it nearly every day since!

251f24e7 0a18 4386 9850 7c1b1b20a664 Are You Caught in the Work Trap?

And I want to do that more often as increasingly I’m working longer hours and often over weekends too! (Those of you who own a business or have high responsibility as an employee know how easily it is to get trapped into 24/7).

I think there is a serious condition called the Work Trap and we need time to ‘unplug’ (no longer ‘unwind’) from the day-to-day to get more perspective, think more deeply and reflect on the bigger picture of our lives.

 … people who work as much as 70 hours per week
only achieve the same amount as people who work 55 hours

A new study from Stanford found that productivity per hour declines sharply when the work week exceeds 50 hours and productivity drops off so much after 55 hours there’s no point in working any more. Apparently, people who work as much as 70 hours per week (or more) only achieve the same amount as people who work 55 hours.

Successful people know the importance of shifting gears on the weekend to relaxing and rejuvenating activities.

Those who have participated in our Power of Your Purpose programs, will recall the activity where we work together on building your ideal On-Purpose day or weekend. Both of these create space and quality time for the things that matter most – your core wants and top priorities which align with your Purpose and Values.

This might be less difficult than you think!

familypicnic 400x265 Are You Caught in the Work Trap?

Creating Life Integration on Weekends

Activities that successful people do to create life integration on weekends

So, drawing on the post by Travis Bradberry, here are practical things that successful people do on the weekend to re-enter work on Monday morning feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

1. Disconnect
Disconnecting is the most important weekend strategy on this list, because if you can’t find a way to remove yourself electronically from your work Friday evening through Monday morning, then you’ve never really left work.

Making yourself available to your work 24/7 exposes you to a constant barrage of stressors that prevent you from refocusing and recharging. If taking the entire weekend off handling work e-mails and calls isn’t realistic, try designating specific times on Saturday and Sunday for checking e-mails and responding to voicemails. Scheduling short blocks of time to attend to emails will alleviate stress without sacrificing availability.

2. Minimise chores
Chores have a funny habit of completely taking over your weekends. When this happens, you lose the opportunity to relax and reflect. What’s worse is that a lot of chores feel like work. So if you spend all weekend doing them, you just put in a seven-day work week. To keep this from happening, you need to schedule your chores like you would anything else during the week, and if you don’t complete them during the allotted time, you move on and finish them the following weekend.

3. Reflect
Weekly reflection is a powerful tool for improvement. Use the weekend to contemplate the larger forces that are shaping your industry, your organization, and your job. Without the distractions of Monday to Friday busy work, you should be able to see things in a whole new light. Use this insight to alter your approach to the coming week, improving the efficiency and efficacy of your work.

4. Exercise
You have 48 hours every weekend to make it happen. Getting your body moving for as little as 10 minutes releases GABA, a soothing neurotransmitter that reduces stress. Exercise is also a great way to come up with new ideas. Innovators and other successful people know that being outdoors often sparks creativity.

Whether you’re running, walking, cycling or gardening, exercise leads to endorphin-fuelled introspection. The key is to find a physical activity that does this for you and then to make it an important part of your weekend routine.

5. Pursue a passion
You might be surprised what happens when you pursue something you’re passionate about on weekends. Indulging your passions is a great way to escape stress and to open your mind to new ways of thinking. Things like playing music, reading, writing, painting, or even playing with your kids can help stimulate different modes of thought that can reap huge dividends over the coming week.

6. Spend quality time with family
Spending quality time with your family on the weekend is essential if you want to recharge and relax. Weekdays are so hectic that the entire week can fly by with little quality family time. Don’t let this bleed into your weekends. Take your kids to the park, take your spouse to his or her favourite restaurant, go to the movies and go visit your parents. You’ll be glad you did.

7. Schedule micro-adventures
Buy tickets to a concert or play or get reservations for that new hotel that just opened downtown. Instead of running on a treadmill, plan a hike. Try something you haven’t done before or perhaps something you haven’t done in a long time. Studies show that anticipating something good to come is a significant part of what makes the activity pleasurable. Knowing that you have something interesting planned for Saturday will not only be fun come Saturday, but it will significantly improve your mood throughout the week.

8. Wake up at the same time
It’s tempting to sleep in on the weekend to catch up on your sleep. Though it feels good temporarily, having an inconsistent wake-up time disturbs your circadian rhythm. Your body cycles through an elaborate series of sleep phases in order for you to wake up rested and refreshed. One of these phases involves preparing your mind to be awake and alert, which is why people often wake up just before their alarm clock goes off (the brain is trained and ready).

When you sleep past your regular wake-up time on the weekend, you end up feeling groggy and tired. This isn’t just disruptive to your day off, it also makes you less productive on Monday because your brain isn’t ready to wake up at your regular time. If you need to catch up on sleep, just go to bed earlier.

9. Prepare for the upcoming week
The weekend is a great time to spend a few moments planning your upcoming week. As little as 30 minutes of planning can yield significant gains in productivity and reduced stress. The week feels a lot more manageable when you go into it with a plan because all you have to focus on is execution.

Final comments

Trying to implement all of these at once will be overwhelming. So next weekend pick one or two of these to get you started. Commence with the ones that will give you the most meaning and fulfilment. Start planning your weekends intentionally. None of these will happen unless you are really serious about breaking the Work Trap.

While you are planning your next weekend, get some overall perspective back into your life and ask the big questions:

  • What is the ultimate purpose of my life, work or career?
  • What am I living for?
  • What do I want my life to be about and stand for?

Wait for the answers to emerge from deep within you. They will come. Just give them time and space.

One more tip. Start observing yourself more. Watch your actions and thoughts as you develop deeper self-awareness about your life and work. We are all so self-absorbed we give little time to being self-aware.

So now it’s up to you but many people find a coach useful for accountability. If you need some assistance to get you going, please give me a call or send me an email.

This is too important to be left to chance.

© Dr Edward Gifford, On-Purpose Partners®

happy man Being a Top Performer Part 3    Where Mindset and Actions Align & Mastery and Mojo Meet

In my previous two posts on being a TOP (The On-Purpose) Performer I talked about the difference between having a Think Inc! / ME Inc! Mindset (Thinking Incorporated) and a Stink Inc!/ ME Stink! (Stinking Thinking) mindset.

TOP Performers have a Think Inc! mindset and are also motivated by the satisfaction that comes from being “On-Purpose” – they understand how they fulfil the needs of others and they find meaning in what they do.  They take their job to the next level by thinking like the owner of an organisation.

The mindset position you take will make a crucial impact on your performance and productivity whether you are a business owner, manager, team leader or team member.  It has a profound impact on your career and job fulfilment and satisfaction.

In the diagram below, Kevin W McCarthy shows four main types of people in businesses and organisations in terms of their performance.  As you can see here, TOP Performers have high levels of technical expertise and motivation.  They have “High Technical” as well as “High Tingle”.

Which quadrant are you in?

This is a crucial question to ask yourself if you want to excel in your position, business or career.

 Screen Shot 2014 07 29 at 5.47.36 pm Being a Top Performer Part 3    Where Mindset and Actions Align & Mastery and Mojo Meet

Where Mojo and Mastery Meet

In my model below, I explore how “Technical” and “Tingle” powerfully impact your performance, contribution and sense of Purpose. This is captured through the words Mastery and Mojo.

If Mastery has an impact on Mojo, what are the psychological and behavioural implications of this in your workplace and career?

I like developing models and after a bit of ‘doodling’, I came up with the following.  For want of a better name I have called it the M2 Energy model.

 Screen Shot 2014 07 29 at 5.47.50 pm Being a Top Performer Part 3    Where Mindset and Actions Align & Mastery and Mojo Meet

Quadrant 1 – Mastery:

I see so many people in this quadrant.  They usually are highly experienced, have high skill level but have lost their mojo. Many are tired, they are often bored and lack self-motivation.  Their energy is gone. They are no longer engaged in their work or business.

Maybe you have been in the one position or business for too long, or you are managing people like this.

If you are (or you have staff) in this quadrant there are serious implications for management, careers and job satisfaction.  The cost to you, your team and the organisation is high.

I strongly recommend you consider the following to help move you to Quadrant 4 – High Mastery and High Mojo. Your behaviour is governed by your thinking so it’s imperative to change your thinking patterns.

  • Start noticing your thoughts and behaviours.  This is the first step to changing your thinking and in-turn your behaviour. Are you spending too much time “below the line?”
  • Ask yourself the questions – “what do I want to do with my life?”  “What do I want my life to stand for?”
  • Invest time into being mindful. Become focussed on self-observation rather than self-absorption!
  • Reignite your vision and write some SMART goals for your career or business.
  • Get a coach or mentor to help you set and keep goals. You coach will also help you form new habits and break unwanted ones. There is a wise old saying “We are what we repeatedly do”.  There is another old proverb which goes something like this… “As a person thinks in his/her heart so he/she will become”.

Over long periods, our patterns of thinking become etched into the billions of neurons in our brains, connecting them in unique entrenched patterns. The first step to changing your thinking is to observe your thinking.  TOP Performers practice mindfulness.

So start noticing those thoughts and see just how they are serving you and others. It may come as quite a shock to you.

You may not realise it but your lack of Mojo, despite your high level of competence, has a draining and detrimental effect on others in your work-place. It’s impossible to plateau for long.  You are either “green and growing” or “brown and dying”.

Quadrant 2 – Meaninglessness:

Where there is low mastery and low mojo there is a serious problem.

I was in this quadrant once, not because I was useless but because it was the wrong job fit for me.  It was the most off-purpose time of my working life.  I was trapped, hugely troubled, very stressed and wondered if I could ever survive the trauma.

(I did by gaining a position in my preferred career and with an employer of choice and location of choice). How that happened is another very interesting story!

If you are in this position (or you have staff in this quadrant), the personal and professional cost is enormous. Up-skilling, retraining, moving into a role that aligns with your Purpose and skill set or just being made redundant are some options. There is no room for complacency here. Massive and immediate action is required. Applying the action steps outlined in Quadrant 1 will also assist you.

Take action! Become “refired” or be “fired”.

Quadrant 3 – Mojo:

You are such a great prospect when you have the right attitude, are self-motivated, enthusiastic and have high “tingle” or high mojo.  For many recruiters and employers, this factor is often the one first sought.  It’s easier to teach mastery than to instil mojo.

Many people start their career or businesses from this quadrant.  They are full of excitement, passion and are quick to learn.  Despite the high mojo, there is tentativeness here.  New skills need to be developed.  Knowledge has to be gained.

If you are a small business owner or in a new career position, a mentor or coach is vital.

If you are a manager and have people in this quadrant, don’t be fooled by their enthusiasm and natural desire to excel.  They may be stressed because they lack the technical expertise to do the work.  They need coaching and training and careful management through this start-up period. A learning and development plan for continuous improvement is essential.

Quadrant 4 – Mastery and Mojo:

When mastery and mojo meet we are engaged in meaningful work and are at the TOP of our game. Our mindset and behaviour are in alignment. We are On-Purpose! We are a TOP Performer! We’re in the flow. And as one of my clients put it – “we are wide eyed and electrified!”

We also just love what we are doing and are great at it. We have a high sense of contribution and invest a lot of time and energy into our work. We are passionate!

If you are in this quadrant then that is fantastic.  But be warned!  You are a prime candidate for burnout.

More than anyone else, you need to work on your life and career plan and ensure your business or career fits this.  Work-life integration is essential.

If you are managing people who are in this quadrant, your responsibility is huge.  So many top performers leave their organisation because of burn out or being taken for granted.

Managers often ignore this group because they are doing the job so well – everything is ‘rosy’!  While they are highly engaged, they still need ‘a sense of belonging’ and want to be told they are valued and appreciated.  Ongoing training, extension, new challenges and goals are very important to this group.  Like all highly effective people, they need a coach to extend them, hold them accountable, be a sounding board and be their ‘cheer leader’.

Take time to look at this model and to review where you (and your individual team members) are at.  It will have profound implications for your energy levels, your job satisfaction and your general well-being.  If you are managing staff or teams, this will also be an important diagnostic, evaluative and generative model for you to improve the purpose, productivity and performance of your people. Take action today as you choose to become and stay a TOP Performer.

© Dr Edward Gifford
CEO (Chief Enthusiasm Officer)
On-Purpose Partners

businesswoman Being a TOP Performer Part 2 – The Characteristics of People with a Me Inc! Mindset

In the previous blog in this series, I defined the difference between a Me Inc! or Me Stink! Mindset. As an employer, business owner, employee or team member you will usually demonstrate either one of these in the way you consistently serve your customers and clients. With a Me Stink! Mindset you react below the line nearly always blaming rather than taking responsibility for your thinking, feelings attitudes and behaviours.

By contrast, when you respond to your environment with a Me Inc! Mindset, you proactively respond above the line, assuming responsibility and acting as if you were the owner or manager of the organisation.  You see yourself as having a business within the business.

In this blog I would like to explore further the characteristics of a Think Inc! or Me Inc! Mindset.

If you get this, you get life!  There are no losers here and it’s more than a win – win.

Here are a few hints and check points for you to ponder and hopefully action.

When you have a ME Inc! or Think Inc! Mindset you:

1. Take Responsibility for Your Thinking, Feelings, Attitudes and Behaviour

Wow, that’s pretty big and pretty hard to do with so much negativity and “blaming” going on around us. Consider how you score against these check points. Do you usually…

  • Display a high degree of self-responsibility, accountability and ownership for your thinking patterns, attitudes and behaviours?
  • Treat negative outcomes as learning experiences, not failures?
  • Respond in an optimistic way to day-to-day challenges?
  • Seek ways to help your employer or manager accomplish their goals? (You can do this by figuring out how your employer can make money, save money, grow sales, create a better working environment, improve customer service and innovate).

2. Develop a long term perspective

Do you usually …

  • Take a long term perspective and think beyond the present to secure a successful future?
  • Think about being successful, profitable, and sustainable long term?
  • Maintain perspective through the pain and pleasure of work and life and not quit when things don’t go your way?
  • Seek new opportunities to learn, develop and grow personally and professionally?

3. Seek to Add Value

Now I know you might think that this is not your business and you will get paid at the end of the week anyway.  If you are just exchanging your life for a pay cheque you have a Stink Inc! not a Think Inc! Mindset. Adding value really makes the world go around and will hugely benefit you, your employer, manager and organisation.

Do you usually…

  • Seek to add value by constantly looking to improve the situation, solve problems and continually seek to make a difference.  You and or your team will always benefit because you just make life better. A TOP performer with a ME INC! Mindset continually looks for ways to add value to relationships and business. What can you do in your position or business to add value?
  • Seek and create opportunities for yourself or your team to serve, influence and grow?
  • Think as a team player and use your strengths to complement other members of your Team?
  • Display an honest, passionate, open-minded, creative and committed attitude? (At the end of the day, with a ME INC! Mindset you seek to serve yourself and others in meaningful work.

4. Adopt a sales and marketing mindset

I hear so many people say that “I’m just an admin assistant” or “receptionist” or “plumber” or “a nobody” or “I just work here”.  When you think like the owner of a business or if you were to pretend to come back into your role as a consultant, what would you do more of and do less of?  One important characteristic of a Think Inc! Mindset is to always be on the look out to promote your business or organisation.

Do you usually…

  • Treat everyone you meet as a customer, a potential customer or someone who could refer a customer?
  • Think that whenever you are in the front line delivering a service to customers you are in a sales and marketing position regardless of what you do? (I heard the other day in response to this – “I’m just a plumber, it’s not my job to seek business for my employer”. That is Stinking Thinking or having a ME STINK! Mindset. Try to reframe your Mindset to one of running your own profitable business within the business.  Unless the business or organisation is productive and profitable, you will soon be out of a job or your business will go broke).
  • Seek to be ambassadors for your business or organisation? (Think about the way you talk about your employer, the way you dress, the language you use and the ideas you express)

Stop and take a moment to think.  Is this a lot of croc or what? Who actually benefits when you have a Me Inc! or Think Inc! mindset?

  1. You benefit – you are excited at being engaged in meaningful work and feel fulfilled, satisfied and are more productive and able to achieve results. You are making a difference!
  2. The team and your co-workers benefit by being more productive, engaged, considerate and cohesive. The team is  making a difference!
  3. Your family benefits.  You don’t come home each night and kick the dog as you walk through the door.  The positive ripple effect of you being happy at work and on-purose is enormous.
  4. The business owner, manager or CEO benefits. Financially the business is growing and being more productive and purposeful. With the business being more profitable, you, by default have greater job security. Business owners are encouraged to see staff growing, uniting and excelling. They become more confident with the success of business and can plan for future growth.
  5. If you have suppliers then they will benefit also.  Makes sense doesn’t it? They are guaranteed continuity of their product or service.
  6. And of course Shareholders will benefit through great profitability, performance and productivity

So being a TOP Performer with a ME INC! mindset is transformational.

In my next blog I’ll explain how develop this in the workplace.

Bye for now and be sure to ‘watch’ and observe your thinking and decision making over the coming week.

Dr Edward Gifford
CEO (Chief Enthusiasm Office) On-Purpose Partners
0416 260 448
edward@on-purposepartners.com

PS If you are seeking to engage, motivate and change the mindset within your team, business or organisation, please give me a call to find out about our One Day Workshop.

man thumbs up Being a TOP Performer Part 1   Me Inc! or Me Stink!
I have participated in a number of significant business forums recently.  These have included discussions on why customer service in our business community is below par, why business owners are reluctant to engage in training, mentoring and support and why employers and employees don’t seem to take responsibility for their future success.

Now I know this does not apply to you because if it did, you would not be reading this.

Whether you are a business owner, manager, team leader or team member your performance and the performance of your team is key to having a successful, profitable and fulfilling business or career.

This is the first of a series of articles/blogs on how to ensure a more positive mindset for both yourself and for your team.

Being a TOP Performer

One of the keys to you being a top performer is your mindset.  You can either Think Incorporated (Me Inc!) of have what is often called Stinking Thinking (Me Stink!)

The term “top performer” usually describes someone who works hard, delivers results and exceeds expectations.  Top performers excel in their careers and are sought after by industry-leading organisations.

But…They are also motivated by the satisfaction that comes from being “on-purpose” – they understand how they serve the needs of their customers or clients and they find meaning in what they do.

They take their job to the next level by thinking like the owner of an organisation. When you have this mindset you are a TOP (The On-Purpose) Performer.  I first came across the Think Inc! mindset from Kevin W McCarthy’s book The On-Purpose Business.

Me Inc! (or Think Inc!) is to do with “above the line thinking. You take ownership, accountability and responsibility for your thinking, feelings, attitudes and behaviours.

With a Me Stink! mindset you nearly always blame others, make excuses and are usually in denial about your thinking, feelings, attitudes and behaviours.

By contrast Me Inc! occurs when you begin assuming responsibility for your job as if it were your own business.  You are the CEO or the Master Franchisee.

me inc me stink Being a TOP Performer Part 1   Me Inc! or Me Stink!

For example, if you are employed as a plumber, think like the owner of the business.  Pretend that this is Your company or that you are a plumbing consultant.  What advice would you give to your “client”?  If you are a receptionist, rather than say “Oh, I’m only a receptionist, with a ME INC! Mindset you “own” your own business.  You adopt the mindset of a PR consultant and act as if you were a receptionist consultant.  If you are working in the public service, you have your own business within the business. Would YOU hire you?

In my next blog on this subject I will explore in more detail the characteristics of Me Inc!/Think Inc! Mindset

Bye for now and be sure to ‘watch’ and observe your thinking and decision making over the coming week.

Dr Edward Gifford

CEO (Chief Enthusiasm Office) On-Purpose Partners

0416 260 448

edward@on-purposepartners.com

PS If you are seeking to engage, motivate and change the mindset within your team, business or organisation, please give me a call to find out about our One Day Workshop.

 64 Putting Magic back into Marriage (2)

Building Belonging

Much of the above will also foster a sense of belonging – the other variable essential for positive alignment in a relationship.  While some wisdom literature would encourage us to ‘detach’ and not be dependent in any way on others for our happiness, humans have a “conditioned” basic social need of being loved, accepted and valued for who they are.  As in the corporate world where team work and acceptance are essential for a positive work place culture and staff morale, so too do these need to be evident in a marriage relationship. Whilst the following suggestions may seem very behavioural and thus superficial, we sometimes forget that even the simple and small things can make a huge difference in the way we feel valued, appreciated and accepted.

 

Try ‘Thanks’

Thank you seems to be an undervalued word these days.  Just as “saying sorry” can be so powerful in fostering stronger relationships, so too can the two words thank you.  When was the last time you thanked your spouse or partner for something they have done, no matter how small?  A lack of mutual appreciation often characterises marriages that are out of alignment.  Be unconditionally thankful and grateful.

 

Sing ‘Sexy’ Songs

In the book Song of Songs (4:1-7) there are a number ‘sweet tunes’ men and women like to experience.

Women desire caring, understanding, respect, devotion, validation, and reassurance.  Men desire trust, acceptance, appreciation, admiration, approval and encouragement.  All pretty old fashioned stuff.  Try it – you’ll be surprised how this will help you return your relationship to the heights of ‘your first love.’

 

Demonstrative Deeds

Be demonstrative towards your partner.  It’s not enough to assume that they know you love them.   Show them in small ways that you do.  A short note tucked away where they will find it, a five minute back rub (no strings attached guys), a single flower from the garden, a homemade dinner or breakfast that you took time to prepare,  – all demonstrate your attitude towards your partner.  Recall that communication is 70%-80% non-verbal, so a lot of our communication is not from words.  Touch is a primary human sense, and through gentle touch we can show how much we care.  Remember about your appearance also.  Too often couples stop feeling the need to look good for their partner.  If you don’t care what you look like, your partner may find it difficult to care about it too.  The danger of course is that you only love the person if they “do” these things.

 

I’m not a marriage counsellor, but this year we reach our 43rd wedding anniversary. (Yep, that’s right – we were just kids when we got hitched!)  I often fall short but am beginning to understand the power of love and the many small ways it can strengthen significance and belonging in relationship.  Let me know if any of this works for you?

 

© Dr Edward Gifford, Nov 2012

 

 65 Putting Customers First

The ultimate expression of our Purpose is to serve –ourselves, family, friends and customers/clients and the wider community. In business, serving customers is the lifeblood of the organisation and successful businesses, small or large, make customers their central focus and a part of their team.

Having a customer service policy and a set of procedures is essential and helpful. But behavioural strategies will not lead to long term sustainable business. An integrated model upon which all of your CS is built is needed.

In this blog, I offer for your consideration, a fully integrated customer service strategy for your organisation. One that will be the basis for exceeding expectations, developing long term relationships, ensuring your customers become advocates and referral partners and that you are “first call” in their hearts and minds.

The model builds from the bottom up. It is heirachical and developmental and even cyclic. (I acknowledge the influence and work of Kevin W. McCarthy and his book The On-Purpose Business for the basis of this idea).

CustomerServiceModel 400x164 Putting Customers First 

 

 

 Significance

Strong alignment comes when each team member knows that they are significant and that their contribution is meaningful to the Purpose of the organisation. They understand how and why they are making a difference and why and how they are serving customers. When the Purpose of the Individual is aligned to the Purpose of the business/organisation (PI<->PB) all customer service functions from a position of shared interests, outcomes and solutions. Poor customer service is a result of non-alignment of Purpose, poor planning, an inadequately trained team, inefficient and ineffective systems and a lack of clear criteria from which to measure organisational and customer service performance.

Strategy

Without a clear strategic plan and engagement of both internal and external customers to the plan, customer service will be ad hoc, situational and left to chance. Both staff and customers not only need to know why the business exists (Purpose), they also need to understand where the business is headed (Vision), how the Vision will be executed (Missions) and the “lived” values that will govern the behaviour and decision making in the business. Most often, the strategic planning is seen as the domain of the management team and any “sharing” of this is often top down without true engagement of the team. Everyone in the organisation, from the board room to the mail room needs to be engaged in the strategic direction of the business at some level. Ensure that you take time to communicate “what is going on” in the organisation. Importantly, every team member will need their own strategic plan including their professional and personal goals- all of which will be in alignment with the business.

Staff

Every organisation/business needs the right staff to implement the Purpose and the Strategy. For customer service to be effective, each staff member will need to know how their Purpose and Plan aligns with that of the organisation and with the customers they serve.

They will also have a mindset of ‘owning their own business’ within the business. Questions like “How is your business going?”or “What is happening is you business today?”will engender and encourage a sense of ownership, accountability and responsibility in each team member. In this way, each staff member will have a sense of high belonging and the potential for making a significant contribution to the job. Such engagement will result in high Mojo and high Mastery as they seek to add value to the both internal and external stakeholders.

At the end of the day, the staff are the major drivers of profit. Happy people make happy staff, make happy teams make happy customers, (make happy shareholders). Loyal and committed employees increase productivity and customer service performance.

Systems

Without effective and efficient customer service systems (processes and procedures) the positive impact of alignment of Purpose, engaging staff in the strategic direction of the business and having high peforming teams, will be lost. Effective systems help the organisation /business function by ensuring that work is done effeciently and effectively.

This will include customer service systems and processes. When was the last time you reviewed your customer service policy and procedures? Does each member of the team have clearly written down steps and do they know the standards by which quality CS is judged?

How have you addressed CS in your induction of new staff? What systems do you currently have that are working well and not working well? What needs to be changed or dropped? What new CS systems do you need to put in place where your business will be “first call” in the mind of your customers.

Success

The previous four levels of Significance, Strategy, Staff and Systems position and support the business/organisation for success. This is the level where performance is measured and all direct customer contact takes place. Success is not measured by a singular KPI. (Other criteria will include Financials; CS; Staff morale; Quality of products and services; Market share; and Ability to compete with competitors).

When customers are being served and satisfied in alignment with the organisational Purpose, success is attributable to the ground work laid by the previous four levels. Poor customer service can be tracked back through each of the proceeding levels in the CS Strategy.

To what extent do all team members know what the needs and wants are of the customers they serve? How well do they understand how the products and services offered by the business meets their customers’ needs? Are the words customers used to describe the products and services offered in alignment with how the business wants to position itself in the minds of customers? As an organisation, are you clear about where to invest your resources for long term performance improvement? And finally, how well are all your staff trained (not just sales and marketing staff) to sell your products and services to ensure that you gain and maintain your customers/clients?

Customers

I will conclude by referring to my opening statement. The ultimate reason for any service model and HR strategy is to enhance service to customers/clients. Many organisations and the people within them become so focussed on the day-to-day operations that they forget this. All previous levels of the Purpose Centred Customer Service Model build to create the success and performance that serves customers. That means all staff will have a clear knowledge of their customers, a vision for who their future customers could be, knowledge of how their service benefits customers and a clear understanding of why customers do business with the business. Do you need to give more focus to your CS strategy?

© Dr Edward Gifford, November 2012

 64 Putting Magic back into Marriage (1)

 

Central to being On-Purpose is the living out of the Purpose Principle which brings meaning and purpose to relationships at home and at work.  This is about aligning the Purpose of the person with the Purpose of the organisation (Pp<->Po).  The organisation, of course, can be a home, a marriage, a business, a government department, a country and so on. Central to this alignment is significance and belonging.  Where people feel their contribution is not meaningful and they don’t feel valued and part of a team, then this alignment is missing.  This means that people, by definition, are Off-Purpose in that environment and relationship.

 

In this blog, I want to suggest ways of strengthening this alignment in marriages and partnerships.  Nearly half our first marriages are failing (43%) and this figure rises (67%) in second marriages.  Clearly, the Purpose Principle is not evident in these statistics.  The high cost of divorce and relationship breakdown is seen not only in the break-up of the family but has ripple effects financially, socially, emotionally, physically and spiritually.  It’s a national disaster as it touches nearly all of us personally at some stage and in some way.  Just as the discussion on global warming and its effects may be an “inconvenient truth”, so too are the effects of relationship breakdown equally “inconvenient.”  It’s time that this topic is elevated to the sustainability debate also.  

 

If you find that your marriage or partnership is not as strong as you would like, or if you would like to restore romance back into your marriage, you may wish to consider some of the following strategies as ways to make your relationship more On-Purpose. You do not need to make huge changes to see encouraging results. 

 

Strengthening Significance

 

  1. Marvellous Memories

Remembering the past good times is a great first step.  Wind back the DVD of your early times together.  Walk down memory lane together. Talk to your partner about how you first met, your first restaurant meal together, a special place, your first movie together, where you have been, where you have come from, what you have experienced together.  Sharing those significant and meaningful past experiences and history is powerful and bonding. So make a date and reminisce.  Bring out the old photo albums and videos and remember the height of love from which you may have ‘fallen’.  Some of you may believe the height of the fall to be so great that it would be impossible to climb all the way back. Not true!  Many people have in fact climbed back and made a success of their relationship and in fact are more able to love now than they ever were.  Memories also assist couples to weigh up the gravity of their decision to divorce.

 

  1. Three Things Today

For years now my wife and I have practiced reflecting on positive things which happen each day.  At night around the dinner table or before retiring, we ask each other “What are three positive things that have happened today?”  (It’s interesting that the benefits of this activity have been supported by the positive psychology work of Dr Martin Seligman).  Include your children in this too if you have any.  No matter how insignificant you think things are, speak about them to each other.  You will be amazed at how this will strengthen your relationship. Allow time for discussing “not so good things” too as children in particular need to commence building psychological flexibility and resilience from a young age.

 

  1. ‘Playtime’ with your partner

Everyone is busy including you and your partner.  There are always dozens of things to be done on top of work.  If you fail to invest time into your relationship ‘account’, it will become bankrupt.  You cannot afford to neglect investing time with your partner.  Try some of these ideas.  Spend an hour together each night before retiring, have a weekly date, catch a movie, curl up together on the same sofa, go for a walk, cook a meal together, go ice skating, have a coffee or do something new together or something unexpected.  Creatively ‘waste’ time together. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Take pleasure in the moment, and enjoy the “now” and have some fun together. Such activities are important in developing significance in your relationship.

 

  1. ‘Real’ relationships

Significant relationships are transparent and open.  So often we think that if we can change the behaviour of our partner we will be happy.  Take your focus off the ‘sins’ of your partner and start looking at your contribution to the success of the relationship. Take ownership, be responsible and accountable for your own feelings, attitudes and behaviours, not your partner’s.  Keep your ego in check and say sorry when you ‘muck up.’  Marriage is not about being ‘happy ever after.’ Dynamic marriages are made up of two growing people.  A relationship is only as good as the two individuals make it.  When we see the flaws and weaknesses in our own behaviour, (not our partners) we are in a stronger position to love, be honest, extend grace, communicate, solve problems and resolve conflict.

The big love ‘breakers’ in marriage are angry outbursts, disrespectful judgements, annoying behaviour, selfish demands, dishonesty, domineering spirit of control, unfaithfulness, abuse, desertion, and passivity.  Your role is not to find these faults in your partner and to apportion blame but to see if you exhibit any of these yourself.

So, in essence, the greatest thing we can do to develop a significant relationship is to take a good look at ourselves, face the reality of our own failures, begin to grow and solve problems and learn to practise unconditional love.  When things aren’t going well, we need to look in the mirror for the source of the problem.

 

  1. Personalising Purpose

In our Life Planning Programs we work with our clients to develop their own Purpose Statements.  This includes developing their Purpose and aligning their Vision, Missions and Values to their life Purpose.  We do this at the macro level and also for each of the seven life accounts – Family, Finance, Spiritual, Intellectual, Physical/Health, Social and Vocational.    Have you done that for your own life?  Have you worked through this together and shared your Purpose, Visions, Missions and Values with your partner?  This is powerful and gives a level of meaning and significance that you may never have experienced before.

 

 

© Dr Edward Gifford, Nov 2012

 

 

Superhero 2 The Energy Quadrant   Where Mojo and Mastery Meet

I regularly catch the train from Coomera to Brisbane. It’s about a 55 minute trip and useful “thinking” time.  This week I was reflecting on Daniel Pink’s great TED talk on what motivates and engages people at work. It’s been a while since I reviewed this but Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose were three key factors.

If Mastery has an impact on Mojo, what are the psychological and behavioural implications of this in the workplace and with careers? I like developing models and after a bit of ‘doodling’, I came up with the following.  I have called it the M2 Energy Model. 

 TheM2EnergyModel 361x400 The Energy Quadrant   Where Mojo and Mastery Meet

Quadrant 1 – Mastery: I see so many people in this quadrant.  They usually are highly experienced, have high skill level but have lost their mojo. Many are tired, they are often bored and lack self-motivation.  Their energy is gone. They are no longer engaged in their work.

Maybe you have been in the one position or business for too long, or you are managing people like this. If you are or you have staff in this quadrant there are serious implications for management, careers and job satisfaction.  The cost to you, your team and the organisation is high.

Quadrant 2 – Meaninglessness:Where there is low mastery and low mojo there is a serious problem. I was in this quadrant once, not because I was useless but because it was the wrong job fit for me.  It was the most off-purpose time of my working life.  I was trapped, hugely troubled, very stressed and wondered if I could ever survive the trauma.  I did by gaining a position in my preferred career (and with an employer of choice and location of choice).

If you are in this position or you have staff in this quadrant, the personal and professional cost is enormous. Up-skilling, retraining, moving into a role that aligns with your skill set or just being made redundant are some options. There is no room for complacency here. Massive and immediate action is required.

Quadrant 3 – Mojo:You are such a great prospect when you have the right attitude, are self-motivated, enthusiastic and have high mojo.  For many recruiters and employers, this factor is often the one first sought.  It’s easier to teach mastery than to instil mojo. 

Many small business owners start their businesses from this quadrant.  They are full of excitement, passion and are often very skilful at what they do but are totally unskilled in running a small business. Despite the high mojo, there is tentativeness here. 

For the small business owner, a mentor or coach is vital.  If you are a manager and have people in this quadrant, don’t be fooled by their enthusiasm and natural desire to excel.  They may be stressed because they lack the technical expertise to do the work.  They need coaching and training and careful management through this start-up period.

Quadrant 4 – Mastery and Mojo:When mastery and mojo meet we are engaged in meaningful work.  We are on-purpose! We just love what we are doing and are great at it. We have a high sense of contribution and invest a lot of time and energy into our work.

If you are in this quadrant then that is fantastic.  But be warned!  You are a prime candidate for burnout. More than anyone else, you need to work on your life plan and ensure your business or career fits this.  Work-life integration is essential. 

If you are managing people who are in this quadrant, your responsibility is huge.  So many top performers leave their organisation because of burn out or being taken for granted.  Managers often ignore this group because they are doing the job so well – everything is ‘rosy’!  While they are highly engaged, they still need ‘a sense of belonging’ and want to be told they are valued and appreciated.  Ongoing training, extension, new challenges and goals are very important to this group.  Like all highly effective people, they need a coach to extend them, hold them accountable, be a sounding board and be their ‘cheer leader’.

Take time to look at this model and to review where you and your individual team members are at.  It will have profound implications for your energy levels, your job satisfaction and your general well-being. 

If you are managing staff or teams, this will also be an important diagnostic, evaluative and generative model for you to improve the purpose, productivity and performance of your people.


Click here to get assistance with your Life Plan

Click here to get assistance with your Career Plan

Click here to get assistance with managing and engaging your team

© Dr Edward Gifford, On-Purpose Partners Pty Ltd, September 2012

 

Older Posts »