Being Effective in Achieving Your Goals

The challenges of operating in a changing world

The ‘old school’ as some would say with regards to being in business, has a lot to do with hierarchy. Domination of a sector ensures success and how much money you have enables that to happen even faster. Business owners sell most of their business to investors in order to bring life to their dreams, politicians kowtow to backers losing their morals and their concern for citizens in the process, and people sell their future earnings to companies for the privilege of taking care of their basic needs from day-to-day. As I was watching Les Miserables last night I thought of how people in the future would look to our current situation in disbelief and grief in the same way I viewed Jean Valjean. How could that possibly be ok that someone went to prison for stealing the bread to eat? Can easily turn into today’s predicament → How could someone not have a place to live when there are empty houses? Or → How could the government let that happen? Continue reading “Being Effective in Achieving Your Goals”

Called to Council

Receiving the call to Tulum rang strongly in my being.  What resonated was the request to come for a Vision Council or perhaps it was the unwritten call to the fibers of my being.  Frankly, the location could have been a slum for all I knew.  That being said it was mid-winter in New England and most places to the South would be a dream to visit that time of year.  The greatest draw was the council’s purpose of progressing and “holding the vision of creating a gathering where elders, teachers and lineage holders from around the world come may together to share and integrate wisdom.”  From the point of receiving that first email from Paititi my soul’s song grew louder and more beautiful as our council to discuss what has come to be known Weaving Wisdoms drew closer.

Continue reading “Called to Council”

Fixing Poor Policy

Reversing poor policy decisions is not only possible it is necessary for the health of your business. While it is often easier to start from scratch, sometimes things need to be changed mid-stream. And you should consider it.

As a business owner take a minute to think about the established system of your business.  What are the indicators that you are getting from your employees?   What are the possible reactions of the system to your policy? How will it positively and negatively affect the environment and the culture?  Is the failure or mistake a symptom of something that is under your control?  Regular communication with employees about topics both inside AND outside the company can help.

As an example : If you have open and regular communication you know that Suzie’s overeating might be because of a recent breakup, but what if you don’t?  A potential cause for a change in is that your employees aren’t getting enough exercise.  There are also all sorts of dietary possibilities.  I’ll tell you this, if I had an employee that was gaining weight I’d be concerned that they might not be getting enough breaks as well since sometimes going to food is an experience of needing to step away from what they are doing.

This has many other potential applications, but what it comes down to is that our businesses are small communities.  The more conversation that happens and the more pieces of the puzzle that you have the better when it comes to making decisions to everyone’s benefit.

Hitting the Reset Button

Having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day like Alexander?  The first thing you need to do is recognize that the plan aren’t isn’t going the way you’d hoped.  Maybe the meeting stalled, maybe collaborators started being more gruff than helpful.  Next thing, Stop everything.  Take a minute to yourself to think about whether or not you want to see the project or work progress.

Don’t get down though, it is possible to turn a bad day into a good one.  To make a meeting where fighting is happening into one in which a lot gets accomplished.  Press the reset button so to speak.  So, if you are banging your head against the wall and nothing is changing, take a minute to determine if you can get past the hump.  Don’t forget that is also alright too to put something aside, since sometimes the best move is to walk away, but first try one of these… Continue reading “Hitting the Reset Button”

You’re Not Alone and Success is Possible

As I hung up the phone with the Director of Sustainability of a small liberal arts university, I was struck by the number of times that I have heard the same challenge articulated. The challenge – we have no money to work with- is a common one since schools that are fiscally conservative often have a small to non-existent budget to put towards sustainability initiatives which leads their Directors to face what feels like a huge wall.

The seemingly insurmountable needs – resources, manpower, support – feel like they grow larger over time since the Director does what they can, in many cases continuing to identify more and more that needs to be done around the school.  Overwhelming for certain.

I am going to propose a solution, or even better, show you that there is no insurmountable wall in front of you, there is simply a challenge that you have yet to overcome. Continue reading “You’re Not Alone and Success is Possible”

Yes, and…

One of the rules to improvisational acting is to never say ‘no’ or ‘but.’  Why?  Well ‘no’ stops the flow of creativity.  It stops momentum.  The trick is to say ‘yes, and…’

Just like a good improv, brainstorming is facilitated by always saying yes.  Gathering all the nuggets of information and ideas before determining which is best or suits the situation the best.  Continue reading “Yes, and…”

Redefining the Heroine

Traditionally the hero/ine was the achetype that comes in and saves the day when something has gone wrong or justice needs to be done.

To me, through the lens of sustainability and environmental justice, a heroine is a support for people who know they need help.   She enables organizations and groups of citizens, through facilitation and training, to create a better world for themselves. A better world which is based on the shared values and culture of the community and not what someone else thinks they should be. Continue reading “Redefining the Heroine”