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Freedom-Centric Leadership

Freedom-Centric Leadership

Freedom-Centric Leadership

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

 

I was looking to find a way to bring the freedom-centric culture of my previous company, to the public. A group of us started to put together some meetup groups four years ago with the intention to educate companies and people about the value of freedom at work.

We wanted to share the impact freedom can have on the quality of life for people, as well as the health of the bottom-line.

Before I knew it, I was co-founding a movement we’ve called Radical alongside some of the world’s best thought leaders on future of work culture, emotional intelligence, and leadership.

The Radical movement is more than just a noble notion, we are introducing and raising awareness to a new operating system for how companies can operate in the 21st century, centered on human-dignity.

As we began to develop the manifesto, many of us wrote what we individually believe is needed in the workplace to inject human dignity in how work is organized.

The problem with work today is that most people have a need to be duplicitous. One way at the office, and another at home. This isn’t working to serve our needs as human beings.

“The word work has a negative connotation for most people, but it doesn’t have to. Work can be a source of pleasure, fulfillment, and excitement.”

We simply desire to not have to “act” one way at the office, and another at home. Can’t we just be ourselves, all the time?

This is the future of work I personally believe represents the full expression of human dignity in the workplace.

Freedom-Centered Beliefs

I believe in equivalence, transparency, empathy, and above all human dignity. People come first, period!

The future of work is about people-to-people, recognizing that relationships are the most important aspect of business.

Being free means being yourself all the time. Not needing to wear a mask, needing to act differently at work than you do when you are at home.

I believe companies should have purpose behind their existence, focused on creating universal values. Values that benefit the individual, society, the world, and use natural sustainable resources.

“Freedom-centered companies are purpose driven. Committed to honesty, authenticity, and treating everyone as equals.”

While working for a company isn’t the same as being part of a family, employees should be supported to be successful and keeping with the belief of being empathetic and treating everyone with human dignity.

I believe when an employee is undergoing challenges in their lives, all reasonable accommodations should be made to enable them to get through it with dignity and integrity.

I believe people have a responsibility to be accountable to their companies by delivering value, proactively making a difference, and taking all the necessary steps to address any personal issues that may get in the way of doing so.

I believe there is mutual accountability needed between employees and employers to maintain equivalence, transparency, empathy, and human dignity.

I believe in values-based work output. People are responsible for delivering value based on their mutually agreed expectations with the employer which align with their self-established monetary worth.

I believe leadership is a function of serving the greater good of the collective and is an earned role, not given.

I believe hierarchy is a function of organizational value, not controls and much like leadership it forms organically by choice of the people.

I believe authority should be shared, and budgets decentralized across all functions.

I believe in co-ownership and the active participation in the co-creation of the well-being of all company members, which includes the financial health of the company, purpose of the company, and contribution to the betterment of humanity.

I believe companies also have a responsibility to give back to the community, and the purpose of a company is to add value to society by offering products and services that make the world a better place.

I believe in embracing all people regardless of race, color, gender, beliefs, lifestyle, education, and economic background, and that all people have a right to pursue their own fulfillment.

I believe while no one owes anyone anything, interdependence is natural and healthy when it’s centered around the principle of equivalence, freedom, and human dignity.

I believe the concept of the command-and-control organization is outdated and no longer serves the need of an evolving human experience towards a more loving, compassionate, equivalent, and empathetic world.

“It is a basic human right to be treated with dignity in all dealings of life.”

Radical Leadership

In an environment where freedom to deliver value on your own terms is the normal operating system, the role of leadership changes.

It’s no longer centered on getting in front of an organization and being the motivator, the one standing on the soap box.

The role of leadership in a radical freedom-centered organization will be about inspiring people to be themselves. Leadership will be about Inspiring freedom.

Imagine an environment where you don’t have to feel like you put on your work hat at the office, but rather it is an extension of who you are, and you are surrounded by people who not only value who you are but encourage it.

This kind of transition will not be easy for many people who have been working in a traditional hierarchy.

The role of leadership will be to inspire people to be themselves. It will encourage and reward vulnerability. The focus will be on authenticity and having a growth mind set. Success will not be defined by simply win or lose outcomes, but rather growth and learning.

Radical leadership will redefine what success means, by focusing on relationships vs. transactions, expansiveness in culture, vs. conformity, and the meaning of success will be focused more on generating universal values.

Does this blog resonate with you? Join the Radical movement. I would like to hear what you believe the role of leadership needs to be, to inject more human dignity in the workplace.

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The Power of Forgiveness

The Power of Forgiveness

The Power of Forgiveness

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Our priorities frequently become scattered and filled with conflict, as we try to juggle too much at once.

I’ve discovered that by choosing a single life’s goal of sharing, or giving or being of service, I become better able to focus my energies and priorities. This in turn has enabled me to find true lasting fulfillment in all I do.

This ability required a major shift in consciousness from hyper critically judging every outcome of my life, to observing and accepting them, even when people were not kind.

One of the greatest sages of all time said: “What good is in loving those that love you? Where’s the gain in that? Love your enemies as you love yourself.”

What is the meaning of this?

If we start by loving and accepting people instead of judging them, it will become more apparent that “other people” do not have to change for us to experience fulfillment.

This also requires being able to forgive people, and that includes being able to forgive yourself.

Forgiveness

What is forgiveness? Forgiveness isn’t what we perceive with our limited five senses. It isn’t what religion teaches, that we have the power to forgive other wrongdoings.

What makes us better than the person we are to forgive? What empowers us to forgive them, as we know forgiveness to be? Even if we did have such a power, the purpose of forgiveness is not about the other person.

Forgiveness is about taking responsibility for our feelings, our reaction to how others may have wronged us.

Forgiveness is removing the blame for our own feelings from others. It is no longer blaming another person for our own reactions.

“When you forgive someone, you set yourself free from the power you have given them over you.”

Forgiveness is about recognizing in ourselves the opportunities for improvements. It is about realizing that others who push our buttons are performing a great thing for our own good.

When you look into a mirror and you see a scar, do you blame the mirror? Do you say: “I hate you mirror for causing the scar?” All the mirror has done is given you a chance to see what a part of you is. The mirror is just the messenger.

Often people who seem to wrong us, push our buttons, challenge us, they are messengers unknowingly helping us recognize where we need to transform.

The saying: “It takes one to know one” is very much true.

“What bothers you about others is true about yourself. You can’t recognize in someone what you are not.”

Choice

Sometimes we become so busy with life and complications that may have resulted from choices that didn’t go as planned, that it’s easy in these moments to believe we don’t have choices.

This belief is also a choice we are making. Everything we do is a choice. No one is a victim, but there are some simple questions to ask yourself to identify if you are choosing to love or fear to direct your life.

These are the questions you can ask yourself:

  1. Do I choose to find ways to love, or find faults in others?
  2. Do I choose to be a giver, or a taker?
  3. Do I express gratitude, or do I complain?
  4. Do I seek collaboration, or control?
  5. Do I encourage opinions and vulnerability, or do I avoid intimacy and relationships?
  6. Do I act worthy, or do I settle for mediocrity?
  7. Do I believe in myself, or do I let doubts kill the warrior inside of me?

“We are what we believe. We are always either expressing love or fear.”

Fear and love cannot be experienced at the same time. By choosing to love more often than fear, we can change the nature and quality of relationships in our lives.

A man seeking inner peace once asked Mother Theresa if he could fly with her on her way to Mexico City, with a gentle smile, she replied: “I would have no objection about your joining me, but since you said you wanted to learn about inner peace, I think you would learn more about inner peace if you would find out how much it costs to fly to Mexico City and back, and give that money to the poor”. What a powerful lesson in giving and receiving.

“In order to receive, we must give. To be loved, we must first love. To be rich, we must first enrich others.”

Our ability to find love or anything we desire is in our ability to create an opportunity for it to enter our lives. We create luck. We create love. We create happiness. We create peace.

“We create everything we want by sharing it with others first.”

Next time you blame your mother, father, upbringing, your job, your wife, husband, or your children for your problems, think: “Is my ego excusing me from taking responsibility for where I am, so I don’t have to do anything about it? Am I just trying to avoid the real work I must do to overcome the problems I have? Is the past just a way to excuse the work I need to do towards the future? I am avoiding being accountable for my own life?”

Personally, I found fulfillment in my life when I became accountable for it. When I stopped blaming circumstances which I was in, due to my choices, I became free to be fulfilled.

I found fulfillment when I traded in my victim card, with the “I am the captain of my own fate” card.

The first step towards lasting fulfillment is to own and acknowledge that you are the captain of your fate, the creator of your reality, and you have the power to direct your life however you want.

The second step is to forgive those who have wronged you, including yourself. In other words, set yourself free from the power you’ve given away to others by playing the victim.

You are the captain of your fate and the director of your life. You and only you. When you accept this fully, you become powerfully unstoppable, fully accountable for your destiny.

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The Future of Work Is Purpose Driven

The Future of Work Is Purpose Driven

The Future of Work Is Purpose Driven

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Customer experience has become a top focus in recent years for most companies. It’s no longer a build it and they will come world.

Consumers want memorable experiences.

How people relate with the world around them can have significant implications on how a company serves them.

With the volume and different types of data we have available today companies can run more sophisticated analysis in more granular ways. The rich data available can help a company offer personalized experiences based on individual needs and preferences.

However, the customer experience starts with the employee experience with the company.

What are companies doing to create memorable experiences for the people who make it all possible?

How are companies using employee data to better serve them? Does your company operate from a mindset of making the employee’s life better, alongside that of the customer?

The Employee Experience

Companies have evolved in their ability to gather input from consumers by means of many social media channels today, but how well are they gathering input from employees?

Sadly, most company are a total failure when it comes to really understanding their employee’s needs.

“Most companies are still operating from a command-and-control paradigm focused on getting output from employees, instead of input”

The conflict between the demands of the present and the requirement of the future lies at the heart of why a shift in how we work is needed for at least three reasons:

  1. The environment is which tomorrow’s success will be earned, is likely to be quite different from the environment that confronts organizations today.
  2. To succeed in the new environment of tomorrow, organizations must undergo significant and radical change.
  3. Adapting to change places and extremely heavy burden on the leaders of organizations, but more so in command-and-control environments.

Winning in the marketplace is heavily influenced by how well an organization makes and executes its choices around customer needs.

Customer needs are always changing and evolving. It has become commonplace to note that one of the hallmarks of today is change.

Change is our constant, therefore flexibility and quickness count as much as vision and strategy.

“Flexibility inside, enables flexibility outside of the company.”

When people feel their needs are being met, they will be more open to better serve the needs of customers.

Empathy is becoming a strategic weapon to understanding the needs of people within the company and adapting to them.

“Whether you are a B2B or B2C company is irrelevant. Companies need to evolve to the people-to-people business.”

Major corporations have economic platforms that are as large as some national economies, yet most executives and scholars think of people as resources to be managed with centralized controls.

Moving resources about like a portfolio of investments, dictating which units should sell which product at which prices, and setting financial goals.

Becoming Purpose Driven

Companies are becoming more and more automated and mobilized, and so are people. Mobilization means more choices, more freedom, and more innovation, if you know how to make use of it.

Rather than the traditional organization of permanent employees working 9–5 within the fixed confines of some building, the future of work will be comprised of a virtual organization made up of people who work together from anywhere, focused on a common purpose.

This future of work movement is almost as if robust ivy were growing over a building, destroying its aging mortar and old bricks, and leaving only the vine as a supporting structure.

“The replacement of hierarchies to social enterprise models is needed in order to meet the needs of people.”

People are customers, and people are employees, and both don’t want to be commanded and feel like they are owned like property.

Leaders can best prepare for this by learning to make a mental shift from hierarchy to enterprise. Shift from managing to leading. Shift from controlling to serving. Shift from command to shared authority.

We are witnessing not only a dramatic increase in the need for emotionally intelligent leadership but also a transformation in what we call leadership.

We need to change where and how leadership is practiced.

For example, by collapsing hierarchies you can respond to faster-paced markets and push decision making further and further down into the organization.

There are many technologies that are enabling customer personalization, such as AI, but the real advancement will only come from a shift of context.

The context shift is to move from organizations serving the needs of the masses, to people serving the needs of people.

Nonhierarchical companies also mean that most of us will have to be across more functions and be sitting on more project teams throughout our careers.

This will create more learning, more expansion, more experience, and more engagement, translating to more loyal employees.

Part of the challenges moving in this direction stems from the education system which was built on the assembly line concept, to support command and control hierarchy.

“Traditional hierarchy will not serve the needs of the future. The relationship of skilled workers needs to change and be organized around a purpose, instead of an organization.”

Supporting a purpose allows you to accomplish great things without needing to worry about the next project. This approach to work will give birth to an explosion of independent contractors, freelancers, and flexible alliances. This is already happening.

The Shared Authority Enterprise

The consumer pyramid has been turned upside down. The boss is the consumer. The next step in this evolution towards a purpose driven economy, is to turn the pyramid upside down inside the company.

“The future of work is to be in the people-to-people business.”

Co-managed teams can be treated as internal markets. Most people initially resist the internal markets viewpoint because it breaks so sharply from the traditional hierarchy. This concept represents a different mode of organizational logic needed to thrive in a world where people come first.

Rather than think of organizational units as divisions, departments, and other traditional hierarchical concepts, the logic of internal markets re-conceptualizes how we work.

The internal enterprise can provide the advantages of free markets. Internal enterprises become accountable to performance in return for freedom of operations.

This shift in how we will work, does not change the need for hierarchy, but it does remove the need for one person to be in charge.

“The command-and-control paradigm we’ve been operating under for far too long, needs to be replaced with a shared authority model.”

In a shared authority model of work, hierarchy happens organically, and by selection of the people those leaders are willing to serve.

In a purpose driven organization, I could be the leader for accomplishing a set goal, or purpose for a period time, and someone else can step into that role for another.

The team shares the accountability and decides who will lead that can best meet the needs at that given moment in time.

The need for bosses, or control becomes obsolete in a purpose driven — people to people business.

“In a shared authority purpose driven company everyone is responsible to each other, and everyone acts as an owner.”

Oddly enough in a command-and-control world, one person must keep tabs on everyone, people can and often do find ways to hide out, and coast while making little to no positive contributions to the organization.

In a shared authority purpose driven company, there is no hiding out. With the immense freedom of operations, comes the need to act as mature adults and contribute ongoing to the success of the team.

“Sharing authority creates unity, and unity enables teams to accomplish great things in record time.”

Companies operating under the old command and control way of doing things struggle to organize internally to best serve their customers.

Purpose driven companies with shared authority based co-managed teams, have strong internal alignment. That kind of unity enables them to succeed at anything they decide to focus on.

The future of work of purpose driven enterprises not only benefits the people, but it makes sound business sense that will give companies a significant competitive advantage.

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Happiness Is Key to the Success of Your Business

Happiness Is Key to the Success of Your Business

Happiness Is Key to the Success of Your Business

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Productivity enhances a person’s sense of self-worth, self-esteem, accomplishment and need to make a difference. Being productive isn’t just about getting things done, it is an essential human need, which fulfills our desire to be co-creators of the reality around us.

The ability to co-create in turn enables one’s happiness, and happiness attracts success in every aspect of life, including wealth. Often, we reach a crossroad in business and in life where we begin to have fears, most of the time evolving around thought patterns such as:

Can I do this? What if I fail? I don’t think I have what it takes. What will others think? How will this impact my future? How will this impact my family? What if I don’t have what it takes?

These fears have nothing to do with the actual reasoning going on in the mind. These are simply the chatter monkeys in the brain, we all have them.

Most people think that what we fear is failure, but I am here to make an argument for the opposite. We fear becoming a success or becoming “the go to” person.

Why would anyone fear becoming successful?

Because when you become that person, there is no turning back. You must be willing to take criticism, which is where you learn a great deal about yourself. You will get a lot of compliments too, which can be a slippery slope in making you think you can stop growing.

Balancing knowing you are amazing with humility and acknowledging that everyone is amazing too, is important but it is also equally important to realize that all you can ever accomplish is on loan to you from the Universe, to manage accordingly.

Most truly successful people exude gratitude and know that they are channels in this world, ambassadors of Light.

“Without gratitude, happiness will only be short-lived.”

Gratitude is the first guiding principle that drives us to give back, without it, it would be like building a house without a foundation — it will hold up only until the storm hits.

The fear that often kicks in, is in our ability to be a channel of such a Light in the world. It’s a big responsibility to step into that role.

Many people fear being successful, becoming who they are meant to be, not failing. Besides, failing is not such a bad thing, especially when you realize what it really is.

“Failure is just another learned ineffective approach towards your success .”

If science feared failing, we would have made no advancements at all; science finds solutions in the process of discovery through elimination.

“Failure is built into the success equation of science, and it should be no different in life, and in business.”

Happiness Is a Choice

Whatever the challenges, whatever the circumstances it is critical to choose to be happy in whatever process you are in. Your ultimate success towards your chosen path of productivity focused on generating values for others, depends on you making this conscious choice day in and day out.

Your business mindset needs to be powered by happiness. Why? A study about gamblers discovered that those who were the happiest won the most money.

“Happiness is a magnet for success, no matter how challenging a situation is, you can still choose to be happy.”

Be happy to be engaged in productive value creating work, and in turn this will attract the right staff, the right customers, and ultimately wealth.

“Truly wealthy people are not happy because they are wealthy, they are wealthy because they are happy”.

Wealth is not just defined by money, because the currency of wealth includes health, family, friendship, love, understanding, compassion, self-esteem, happiness, money, and time.

“True wealth is multidimensional, it’s in living richly in every aspect of life.”

Today many companies have the idea that they can create happiness by providing employees with fun perks, free lunches and dinners, and flexible work schedules, great benefits, and good pay.

All these things are great, and important, but let’s be honest, they are designed to help companies compete for talent, they are not designed with the employee’s fundamental needs in mind.

What are the fundamental needs to be happy?

Productive work is the foundation for all abiding happiness. The ability to co-create enables one’s happiness, therefore you need to engage employees to honestly tell you what it means to them personally to co-create.

Why is happiness so important in business?

Seven Reasons Happiness Is Key to the Success of a Business

 

  1. Happy customers and employees talk to more people about their positive experience
  2. Unhappy customers and employees talk to the most people about their negative experience
  3. Happy customers become repeat customers
  4. Happy customers will gladly pay more for the better experience
  5. Happy customers and employees are very loyal
  6. Happy customers and employees will drive your marketing for you, through social media and word of mouth
  7. Happy employees are more productive, creative, innovative, open to change, loyal, and profitable

The Pillars of Happiness

(According to the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, published by the American Psychological Association (APA) 2007)

  1. Autonomy

Feeling in control of one’s surroundings, understanding one’s own resilience, and feeling of empowerment.

  1. Competence

Confidence in one’s abilities, knowing one’s strengths, feedback from others on one’s performance, learning and growing skills, self-actualization and doing meaningful work.

  1. Relatedness

Interacting with others, connecting with people, and connecting people, giving to others/being generous, feeling loved, emotional security, acknowledgement, and support (mentorship and volunteering).

  1. Self-esteem

Your natural confidence level, something you can work on through cognitive behavioral therapy, meditation, self-realization, spirituality. It cannot be influenced from the outside world.

Five ways to create feelings of autonomy both with your employees and customers

  1. Give people tools to personalize their experiences
  2. Build tools that democratize previously inaccessible industries
  3. Offer clear and attractive choices
  4. Be open and transparent
  5. Don’t lock people in

Five ways to increase feelings of competence both with your employees and customers

  1. Create simple entry point to more complex systems
  2. Allow ways for mentors to interact with newbies (create rewards)
  3. Build consecutive levels of achievement into the experience
  4. Plant ‘Easter eggs’
  5. Don’t talk down to your customer or employees (never do it)

Five ways to increase relatedness both with your employees and customers

  1. Build-in multiple ways to interact; social media is perfect for this
  2. Have many collaborative experiences
  3. Create simple ways for customers and employees to share with a friend
  4. Design for generosity, give back to the community not just money, but time. This involves both employees and customers
  5. Create online/offline meeting experiences; again, social media is perfect to enable this

Five ways to increase self-esteem within your employees

  1. Put an emphasis on positive achievements, and reward calculated risk taking
  2. Set reachable goals by having them participate in the process of setting goals
  3. Be ok to open criticism as a leader, to enable employees to see it as part of the culture instead of taking constructive criticism personally
  4. Assist in handling workplace pressure by encouraging mindful meditation, yoga, exercise, and better nutrition, but don’t make rules about it
  5. Provide training on leadership to all employees, not just managers, the more a person learns about leadership principles, the more they will develop self-esteem

“True happiness is tied to freedom. Freedom and happiness are intertwined.”

In a famous 1976 experiment, psychologists in Connecticut gave residents on one floor of a nursing home the freedom to decide which night of the week would be “movie night,” as well as the freedom to choose and care for the plants on their floor.

On another floor of the same nursing home, residents did not receive these choices and responsibilities. The first group of residents quickly showed greater alertness, more activity, and better mood and a year later their mortality rate was half of the residents on the other floor.

In the end what people really want is freedom to pursue being fulfilled. Fulfillment is the ultimate happiness. Give people the freedom to add value on their own terms, to make mistakes and grow, and see the kind of magic previously unimaginable your company will create.

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Eight Ways to Adopt Radical Innovation

Eight Ways to Adopt Radical Innovation

Eight Ways to Adopt Radical Innovation

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

As each of us make progress in our careers and lives we learn all kinds of ways to doing things. We learn to apply best practices and processes that often serve to help us avoid risks and do things right.

At the heart of true innovation, however, is the need to continually birth new ideas, and new ways of doing things. That’s accomplished by having a practice of self-reflection and challenging the status quo on an ongoing basis.

Is it enough to adopt best practices in your everyday business processes? Do they always work? What about innovation, how does it get applied if the focus is on best practices? What’s the difference between doing things right and doing things great? Don’t you have to do things right to accomplish great things?

“Doing things right is all about following a process, and procedures that have been well established. Doing things great is what turns ordinary companies into innovative leaders, who shape markets, and sometimes create completely new market opportunities.”

At some point every company that wishes to continue to stand out in the market must ask this simple question: How do I avoid being another dime a dozen company? That question is usually followed by more questions:

How do I shape and own a segment of the market? How do I create new market opportunities? Who do I want participating along with me in those new markets, and why? What kind of culture do I want to create and sustain and why?

Radical Innovation

Innovation is born out of the willingness to discard old ways of thinking and doing things and exploring entirely new ways of seeing and exploring reality.

Innovative leaders use creative problem solving to achieve the new vision of the future. Radical innovation requires creativity, courage, and the ability to synthesize information in novel, bold and unusual ways.

Innovative companies tend to have customers, and employees who appreciate the values the company is putting forward in the market, and the world. They are focused on building communities of like mined people.

Radically innovative companies are groups of individuals who dare to not only challenge the status quo but are willing to write the new pages of history.

They question everything. They are passionate. They are emotionally charged. They have courage. They are fearless, and they speak their minds. They tap into a stream of consciousness that focus on universal values.

How do you shift your way of thinking to become a radical innovator? Here are eight simple ways that can contribute to shifting your mindset from just doing things right, to doing things great.

Focus on Details

If you are a skimmer you cannot tap into the energy of a market maker because you won’t be able to catch the gaps in thinking others have made. There are incredible opportunities waiting to be discovered in the gaps of the market that have yet to be fulfilled.

Pay attention to the finer details, question the approach to everything — from a place of truly caring about the collective of all involved. Your consciousness must be focused on creating universal values. It’s not about you.

Challenge your peers, your boss, and your company to become better. Not just better for you, but better for the sake of being a great company, a great team of people focused on accomplishing the goal of creating universal values.

If this kind of thinking isn’t welcomed where you are, you might just have to move on to a company that really values innovation or start your own.

Have Certainty

If you are the kind of person who finds faults by nature in others, you might be operating from the framework of being focused on doing things right instead of opening yourself to finding ways to do things great.

“When you stop fault finding you discover a self-power that gives you certainty in all you do.”

Certainty makes you turn the impossible into I am possible. It’s natural to find faults, to complain, to find every reason why something is broken; sadly, it comes from an animalistic consciousness based on survival that assumes you don’t need to take responsibility for anything, if you find fault in something, or someone.”

You want to be sure of where you are heading? Stop blaming things outside of yourself for what is happening around you. Be in control of your fate.

“Be the cause of change, not part of the reason for why change is needed.”

Lead from the Heart

The best innovative leaders first learn how to follow. As a leader you will always be a follower because you will follow a set of principles, beliefs, or a vision.

You can’t lead if you don’t know how to follow. The best followers also make the best leaders worth following.

“If you want to become an innovative leader, a market maker, first practice being a really good follower.”

Expect Greatness

It’s one thing expecting greatness from others because you have the power to, if you are “the boss”, it’s another because you care about the individual’s well-being and growth.

If you don’t care about people’s success deeply, you can’t expect them to care about yours. This also applies with clients.

Helping clients win is a calling, not a job. If you have difficulty caring about anyone but yourself, get some therapy or better yet volunteer.

Volunteering helps you develop the “care about others” muscle and expands your capacity for compassion and understanding, the reward is also increased emotional intelligence.

Make People’s Lives Easier

Make your employee’s life easier, your client’s life easier. If you put people in a place where you got a good deal out of it, but they did not, you can’t become great that way. Being great isn’t about being self-serving, and it isn’t about self-sacrifice either.

Forget operating from a win-win perspective, it’s limiting. You want to operate from a giving state of being, a sharing for the sake of the betterment of humanity’s perspective. It’s bigger than winning, it’s about fulfillment, both yours and that of those receiving from you.

“When others gain value from you, you receive positive energy from the experience that can be applied to accomplishing great things.”

Serve Others

Serving others is simple when all you can think of is how to be a giving leader, however it also means knowing when to let people fall, pushing them along to discover things about themselves they need to see to grow.

Have the courage to call people out when they are being either robotic about following procedures, or they are simply not paying attention to details.

When it comes to clients, this also means at times being able to walk away from those who are not well engaged with you. Every relationship must be cyclical and serve the needs of both parties.

Make Time for Yourself

Stop and smell the roses, the coffee, or whatever works for you. Make time to sit still. Turn off your phone, pc/mac, and think, meditate, and journey within your thoughts and ideas.

Find something that brings you joy, and do it often to recharge your batteries, and to maintain perspective on life.

Your ability to do things great is tied to being in your greatest most optimal frame of mind. Take time for you to do something that is fun for no reason at all, other than your own well-being.

Be Present and Authentic

Be authentic, honest, and caring for others success. Certainty is not a mental exercise — its connected to the heart and it only works when you are present and in a state of authenticity.

How does one become present?

There are books upon books that discuss this — I will share my own experience with you of what has worked for me.

Give back, go do something for a charity where you have nothing at all to gain from it. You’ll discover how that can contribute to developing certainty if you have not done so already. When you are focused on others, you receive energy that empowers you to tap into a stream of consciousness full of ideas, even dare I say magic.

Some things you can’t learn reading about them, some things you must experience. I’ve learned that when I am of service, I am most present. I wish for you to discover what works for you if you have not done so already.

We are All Unique

When you are present you can hear, feel, and see what’s happening around you and you can begin to sense what’s needed to differentiate yourself in the market, but more importantly you’ll see the gaps to provide universal values.

This does not take away the need for market knowledge, analytics, and the standard block and tackle of having a compelling strategy, however being present allows you to quickly swift through the noise and uncover the gems that can make your company great.

Always ask yourself if there is a better way that can leapfrog your company forward vs. just move you along. This isn’t an exercise done annually or quarterly, this is a state of consciousness you want everyone to embody every day.

Dime a dozen companies are always playing catch up with competitors. Market leaders set new standards others emulate.

“Market leaders focus on doing things great and aren’t afraid to be disruptive.”

The key to radical innovation thinking is that you must believe there is a way to leapfrog the competition, the way you serve clients, and the way you go about managing your market. It’s not about discovering it, its’ about stepping into it. That’s the mindset of an innovator.

Finally, if I leave you with nothing else today, it’s this one idea that will serve you for many years to come.

“You will always tap into certainty when your actions are tied to authentically wanting to improve people’s lives.”

Break a process, test if there is a better way, get creative in how you go about solving problems and finding solutions, and get comfortable with being uncomfortable.

“Nothing truly exciting happens in life, until you go beyond your level of comfort. Want to do great things? Embrace living in the grey where the magic happens.”

Does this mean get rid of the black and white processes necessary for order? No. It’s about striking a balance between getting comfortable with the status quo that works, and proactively stepping outside of it to continually evolve and thrive.

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