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Reflections Magazine : Reflections Magazine Issue 54
REFLECTIONS • GOWRIE AUSTRALIA • AUTUMN 2014 - ISSUE 54 15 I have also been in the opposite environment where a staff member brings people to life, energises them to be great and unlocks their passions. These experiences are summarised in the notion of, 'you reap what you sow'! Three questions always help me when I am preparing tasks and considering relationships: 1. What am I going to sow into me? 2. What am I going to sow into others? 3. What am I going to sow into my workplace? When I am purposeful around these questions there is a greater chance that I will reap greatness and my 'wake' is purposely inspired. The question I have for you is, 'Which will you be'? Will you lead yourself and others from good to great, or will your interactions and behaviours leave them deteriorated and lifeless? The great thing is YOU get to decide the outcome. You and you alone! With these thoughts in mind here are some ideas to help you make some changes where they are required: 1. Have a mind that is open to everything and attached to nothing. We need to let go of the instinct to be right all the time, or the desire to win at all costs. We need to have an open mind which resists these attachments, so that we can see what might be possible, rather then insist on what is currently available. 2. To solve a problem, a new mindset is required. We need to change the way we think about challenges. If our thoughts are filled with problems, it is highly likely that we will perpetuate them. 3. Justified resentments = zero, nitch, nil. There is never a time when it's okay to hold on to resentment. Anytime we are filled with resentment, we're turning the controls of our emotional life over to others to manipulate.There is no wisdom in this action! 4. Activate passion. The passions that bubble inside us, urging us to take risks and follow our dreams are the intuitive connections to the purpose of our hearts. We must remain true to who we are. We must let it flow out of us and be the change we want to see. 5. Invest in strengths. Rath and Conchie (cited in McMolitor, 2012) observe that when an organisation fails to focus on an individual's strengths, the chances of an employee being engaged are dismally low. However, when the focus is on staff strengths, the odds soar. What a turn around in one simple step! 6. Understand the needs of your team. Rath and Conchie (cited in McMolitor, 2012) identify four basic needs of team members. These are: trust, compassion, stability and hope. As we develop and demonstrate these characteristics within ourselves, so we develop them in others. 7. Ontology (the study of the nature of existence) matters. Our sense of self and who we are is so important. We must know what inspires us and what draws us on. We need to be able to measure our being, becoming and belonging. When these three elements are in balance and have traction in our life we will have a new sense of purpose and resilience. 8. Pursue excellence. What we pursue will determine the paths we travel, the people we associate with, the character we develop, and ultimately, what we do or don't leave behind. The manner, method, and motivation behind any pursuit will determine our 'wake'. A great list to get us on track includes values like: excellence, elegance, truth, the 'what if', courage, values, quality relationships, service to others, knowledge and something bigger than oneself. These ideas, when applied deliberately and consistently will have an amazing impact upon your tasks and relationships, and ultimately your 'wake'. In my experience, applying these ideas has resulted in significant growth within myself, while those around me have found new possibilities in our relationships and in the tasks we turn our hands to collaboratively. It is time to be brave, to look over your shoulder and see what you have left behind. If you really want a challenge, ask your co-workers, teammates and family the following question: "What 'wake' do I leave in my actions and in our interactions?" Start with those who care deeply for you so that you can learn and grow but remain safe and cared for too. Then start on the more challenging job -- those whom you are challenged by, or with whom you have strained relationships. This kind of critical reflection is a deeply personal one with the potential for powerful, life changing results. It's time to check your coordinates and position so that you can move actively and strategically ahead. If you want your ship to be on course to great things, then you must look back, check your 'wake', and actively make the right adjustments so that all future relationships are deliberate, purposeful and effective. Rod Soper leads the research and professional learning teams at Semann & Slattery. His expertise and research interests include critical thinking, transformational pedagogy and leadership design. References: McMolitor, M., (2012). What's Left in the Wake of Your Leader- ship Style? http://nectarconsulting.com/whats-left-in-the-wake-of- your-leadership-style/ Accessed 12th January 2014. Mertz, J., (2012). What Type of Wake Are You Cultivating? http://www.thindifference.com/2012/05/03/what-type-of-wake- are-you-cultivating/ Accessed 12th January 2014.
Reflections Magazine Issue 53 Summer 2013
Reflections Magazine Issue 55 Winter 2014