As I sit on the shore of Cape Cod Bay writing this article, I am reminded of how complete I feel here. It’s a place in which I feel totally relaxed, there is no chatter going round and round in my head. Normally, I am a person who needs to be doing something. Here I can just be, I can enjoy each moment for what it is. All my senses feel alive here including my intuition. Everything is different in this most gorgeous place. My mind feels open and spacious, creative thoughts emerge and I feel peaceful. It is a place I call my Truro Perspective in reference to its location.
One way the dictionary defines perspective is “The state of ones’s ideas the facts known to one; the state of existing in space before ones’s eye”. The key word here is “one’s”. One tends to see what is right in front of their eyes both literally and figuratively. What one sees is translated by the brain which assigns meaning. One tends to believe in these meanings strongly and behave accordingly without making room for alternative meanings or perspectives. It is only in quieting the mind and creating space to access the more open and creative parts of ones’s self that we can see other perspectives both from within ourselves and from others.
The best thing about perspective is that we actually have the power, within ourselves, to choose what perspective we want to be in at any
point in time. The challenge is most of us either don’t know, don’t believe it is possible or are aware but don’t know how to do it. The
good news is that it is possible to learn.
When I am feeling stuck, confused or anxious, I employ my Truro Perspective. I bring myself back to this place, no matter where I am
physically, and see what comes to me, what I need becomes more clear and it works each and every time.
I can imagine some readers may be wondering why I am writing about something personal and, seemingly non business related, in the business section. There are two reasons. First, a recent survey found that 60% of workers in this country hate their jobs. That, all by itself is a recipe for a poor economy and , most interestingly, is prevalent in a weak economy. People who hate their jobs, are not motivated, do not pay close attention to what they do, they are not committed to the purpose of the company and have a lack of respect for leadership. Bottom Line, they put in their time, collect their pay and remain uncommitted to the outcome. Alternatively, they are afraid of losing their job if they are not the highest performer so they work themselves to burnout sacrificing their personal lives in the process. In either case the company and the bottom line suffer. Secondly, in the opinion of this writer, unless and until we bring humaneness back into the workforce, these survey results will only get higher and productivity will continue to slide.
Let us consider a Leadership Perspective. Leaders notice what drives individuals and each individual is driven differently. Leaders take the time to truly listen to people, without judgment. Leaders ask questions they don’t give commands nor do they treat everyone the same. People are not the same, each one of us is unique. Leaders know this and they can see the importance of treating people in a way that brings out the best in them individually. Should this same person encounter some challenges the leader will see it as a coaching, learning or development opportunity rather than a problem. This is what energizes and motivates people, it is what creates a culture of being valued for contributions made. Failure must be an option in both life and business or there is no growth and the courage to fail is only possible in a positive and supportive culture.
Here is the golden nugget. Leaders understand the critical connection between highly motivated people being the most important factor in a healthy bottom line. The place for growth in our economy that needs more emphasis is encouraging a Leadership Perspective. No matter how big or small your company is, whether or not you are an owner or have an official leadership title, when the focus is singularly on the
bottom line and it is all people hear about, it sounds and feels desperate, it creates the culture of fear described above. The bottom
line is that the bottom line will continue to be a self limiting perspective and limited growth becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.
Not surprisingly this applies to all parts of ones life not just business not just career but every part of life. The more aware we are of the state of our ideas and the existing space in front of our eyes the more able we are able to look objectively at where we are and
determine what perspective we want to choose the our healthier line is and the more fulfilled we feel.
If you are feeling stuck, not sure what to do next, take some time to notice your current perspective. Find the place where you feel quiet
and peaceful, go there either physically or figuratively, draw on that to find what you need to be the best leader you can be.