Are you missing some of the best solutions to tough problems challenging your business right now?
In working with teams to generate break-through approaches to problems; with executives to visualize critical issues or with meeting leaders to ignite innovative discussion, I found the common denominator for success was “360-degree Vision” – the ability to see new things and to see things in new ways.
What Gets In The Way Of 360-Degree Vision?
It’s our blinders! And we all have them!
Here are the three of the most common ones and the ways to eliminate them.
- We Tend to Avoid Change: Then Break Your Routine.
The more often you break your routine the more likely you are to have new ideas. Some suggestions: Sleep on a different side of your bed, take a new route to work, sit outside when trying to solve a problem, listen to different kinds of music, etc. Anything you do to make some part of today different from yesterday is a step in the right direction.
- We Tend to Fear Criticism: Then Occasionally Be a Maverick.
If you are constantly worried about other people’s perceptions of you, it’s unlikely you’ll let your creative juices start flowing. The best way to overcome fear of failure is to start taking little risks. When you see that you’ve survived and that nothing horrendous has befallen you, it will be easier to share bigger and riskier ideas with others.
- We Tend Over Relying On Logic: Then Think Wildly.
Whenever you find yourself bogged down with formal, technical solutions, pause for a little wild thinking. At meetings, encourage free-wheeling discussion, outrageous ideas, and answers outside normal channels. Get to the point where you can exclaim, “I’m never afraid to say anything because I know people won’t think it’s off the wall.”
Twenty-five managers of a skiing resort were divided into 6 teams. Once a week for a month, each team would spend half day in different areas of resort operations. They were told to act like a visitor – who is a natural sightseer and looks at things with open eyes. They were to observe everything and ask as many dumb questions as possible about things they didn’t understand.
For example, why do you arrange supplies in that order or why do you put that yellow garnish on a dish? In a follow-up meeting, hundred of naive questions resulted in dozens of new ideas. One idea, a change in ticket sales procedures, saved thousands of dollars. Other ideas lead to improved guest services.
Smart Moves Tip:
Instead of focusing on the “tried-and-true” methods of the past, step back to view the full richness of a situation before making a decision. Force yourself to see two or more strikingly different solutions to every problem. Get input from others. Look for multiple possibilities. Only then, come to a well thought through conclusion.
My Motto Is:
If you do what you always did, you will get what you always got. Therefore, MOVE outside of your comfort zone; that’s where the MAGIC happens.” To bring that magic to your leadership and business, subscribe to Marcia’s monthly Execubrief: with insights, inspiration and intelligence on how to build great businesses that matter- those that do well and do good.
Did You Know That a New Kind of SMARTS is Needed? 75% of leaders are derailed for reasons related to emotional competencies, including inability to handle people problems, unsatisfactory team leadership during times of difficulty or conflict; or inability to adapt to change or elicit trust. – Center for Creative Leadership. Do you want to boost your emotional and social intelligence and be a more effective leader? Let me help you do it.