Choose your tribe, don’t let it choose you

In her remarkable book, Daring Greatly, Brené Brown remarks, “We are psychologically, emotionally, cognitively, and spiritually hardwired for connection, love, and belonging.” It’s a deep primal call to be part of a group, a tribe, that nurtures us and protects us. That’s how we managed to evolve and survive successfully as a species: tribes helped us stay safe, cooperate, collaborate, and learn together.
[Read more…]

What Do You Stand For?

There is deep freedom in expressing our personal truth. In his remarkable TED X talk, Simon Sinek  explains, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” But beyond influence and building a tribe, claiming our personal truth, declaring what we stand for, is a tonic for the soul, and a true expression of leadership.

So here goes.

According distractify.com, we spend 10.3 years of our lives, on a 24 hour basis, working.This is an awful lot of time at work, and I believe we ought to ENJOY it – enjoy the work, and enjoy the people we work with. Life is too short for hating Mondays.

I’m passionate about HUMANS, and helping organisations become more human. And that means inviting the Soul to work. Here’s what I mean:
[Read more…]

The Performance Formula

CC License - Tom Kelly, Aerials Sprint US Freestyle Champions, flickr.com

CC License – Tom Kelly, Aerials Sprint US Freestyle Champions, flickr.com

Alisa Camplin was the 2002 Winter Olympic Gold Medalist for aerial skiing. What’s remarkable about the story is that she did not know how to ski when she decided she wanted to win gold in that sport.

How did a non-skiing Australian (aka land of sun, desert, and beaches) woman become the Olympic Champion in a sport that needs mountains and snow?!

I listened to Alisa tell her story at an event a few months ago and a couple of things stayed with me:

One needs to be closer to the extreme end of obsessive compulsive to see through years of rigorous training and nutritional discipline to achieve an Olympic Gold medal. You’ve got to want it. A lot. Like, really, A LOT.

However, there are some aspects of her story that fit neatly into taking an champion attitude and strategy to our own personal and professional goals.

It boils down to this:

[Read more…]

Reinvent The Hero In Leadership

Heroes-RandyRobertsonWe’ve all grown up with stories of Heroes – from the comic book characters of Superman, Spiderman, and WonderWoman through to fairy tales of the dashing prince saving the damsel in distress, through to religious icons like Jesus and Mohammad. The Hero story pervades our psyche.

Joseph Campbell writes extensively about the common pattern of the hero story across human cultures. It’s part of who we are, how we think about life and its challenges, and what it means to have a life of purpose.

But the hero has gotten a bad rap of late in leadership thinking.

The idea that there is one person – usually male – who can save the day, make things better, and bring hope to the world is rife. US Presidential candidate races are run on this premise – it’s all about the individual.

We idolise and make much of the person ‘out in front’: the army general, the CEO, the politician.

Why has this now been seen as a problem?

[Read more…]

3 Mistakes In Choosing Your Quest Word For This Year

What’s your Quest for this year? I love the beginning of a year as it has that sense of freshness, of embarking on new adventures and discoveries.

Adventure is one of my core values. It’s taken me up mountains, down many miles of wild rivers, across hemispheres and cultures, and through the darkest rabbit holes of my own psyche.

I bring adventure in to all aspects of my life and work. It’s not always ‘extreme’ like running a marathon or going back country skiing, but it is intentional and deliberate. It’s how I keep enjoying the ride, as well as ensuring there is a ride to be had!

Each year I choose a new ‘quest’ theme word to help frame the nature of my adventures. Last year’s word was “Joie de Vivre” – I wanted to savour all the moments of a busy and brilliant year. It helped to remind me of how to approach my day, my projects, and my reflection time. It’s not so much what you do, but how you do it. And I wanted a change from ‘hard’, ‘struggle’, and ‘tense’ that is my Achilles’ heel in the stress management department. “Joie de Vivre” helped remind me to say yes to fun, and no to crap – crap attitudes, crap decisions, and crap in general.

Choosing a quest word is rife with pitfalls, and I urge you to choose wisely as it will saturate and steer your life experience this year.

The obvious pitfall to list first is not to have a Quest word at all. This is like drifting through the year without a keel. You get taken – and dumped – by the current of events. So let’s take a look at the other challenges.

[Read more…]

Inspiration: The ‘I Believe’ Manifesto

The Clan is gathering

* The Clan is gathering

Simon Sinek in his remarkable TED Talk of 2009 said, “The aim of business is not to do business with those who want what you have, but the aim of business is to do business with those who believe what you believe.” And few people invest energy to interrogate what they believe, at their core, the WHY they do what they do.

And so, if you’re to be a member of this clan, the Inner Compass clan of exceptional leaders, I believe you need to know what I believe, and see if it lights your socks on fire like this manifesto does mine.

I believe:

[Read more…]