I am very excited to initiate this opportunity to connect with you outside of our professional settings. This forum is not intended to be another technical how-to blog. It is meant to be a vehicle for reflection.
We often feel imprisoned, caught in patterns of thought and behavior that doom our best efforts to garner the same results. Here we will question those patterns. We will grow our awareness of the reflexive patterns that surface during times of duress. We will learn how to put ourselves in a position of clarity to make better decisions through deep and creative problem solving. We will find the strength and inspiration to liberate ourselves from the structures that we unknowingly put in place.
These are big lessons that can’t be tackled in a single blog, let alone a lifetime for most of us. That’s why I’ll be sharing brief and accessible new insights throughout the year to assist you in creating lasting and meaningful change. If you want to get different results, if you want to get more of what you want, you have to change your mindset. With a Fresh Perspective, you’ll learn ways to create a future that doesn’t resemble your past.
I’d like to begin with a powerful story. A few months ago I had the fortune of dining at a restaurant in Denver, CO called Ocean Prime. We were a challenging party, peppering our lovely waiter with endless questions.
“Can we eat the appetizers as a main?”
“Of course,” he answered.
“Can you change the base of the soup from meat to vegetarian?”
“Do you have Coke Zero?”
“We don’t but that’s not a problem. We’ll get one for you.”
There was nothing we asked that he couldn’t do. In fact, when one woman in our group asked the waiter if he could turn up the heat, he wrapped a freshly pressed pashmina around her shoulders. Dumbfounded, I asked the waiter, “What is going on here?”
He pulled a booklet out of his shirt pocket and answered, “It’s very simple. Our corporate philosophy is “The answer is yes. What’s the question?”
When we feel strapped for time or resources, “no” often becomes our automatic, default answer. What happens when we turn that no into a yes? We may not know the way to get there, but in saying yes we say we’re committed to getting there, or at least willing to try.
Adopting a positive mindset is not just something that happens in an instant. We need constant reminding. At this restaurant, every employee wore a pocket size, illustrated version of the corporate philosophy on their person. Many companies write these documents and relegate them to employee handbooks or wall hangings. But how is the transmission of those values altered when we and our employees literally wear them? How does this intimate rendering impact our ability to adopt a new, more generative mindset?
This story is certainly relevant for all of us who are in the service industry. But on some level, all of us are in the service industry. We can all benefit from a mentality of service, especially as it relates to our more challenging clients. Sometimes getting to yes feels impossible. But with the right mindset, we can shift from what’s impossible to what is possible. We can move to a place of curiosity and creativity in finding a way to make it work. The answer can be yes, regardless of the question.
Your Take Aways:
Check your reflexes: what’s your default response?
Carry your mission: how can you better infuse your corporate/organizational values?
Dive deeper: take these questions back to your team with a training session.