Are you leading like a spider?

I’ve talked about spiderwebs in the past – about how we as trailblazers clear the spider webs for others. But last week, my perspective moved. The spider became our first-person narrator, the focus of our attention. What changed my point of view? Two massive spider webs that I met on my weekend jog. I didn’t destroy them by running straight through them, no, they were wisely built above human height, but still in a high-density traffic area when it comes to attracting insects of all kinds. Clever. These are four spider-inspired gold nuggets around Foundations, Staying centred, Leading and growing our businesses effortlessly AND the added bonus insight of Learning and moving on. Too good to not share with you all here in a blog – and of course, because I’m not a biologist, it’s all metaphorical for how we lead, live and grow our businesses. 1) Foundations. The reason I spotted the two, big spider webs was a massive cicada caught in one of them (cicadas are very large, noise-creating insects found in warm climates). It made me realise how fascinating it is, that light and flexible material like what the spider web is made of has the strength to … More Are you leading like a spider? »

Get on which horse??!!

‘Get back on that horse’ is what some of us are telling ourselves around this time of year. If you haven’t found the motivation or drive to get things moving, to bring the best version of you to work yet. You may be stuck in holiday mode still, or this year we have a new variant: why bother planning or applying myself, last year proved it’s to no use?!! Here’s the thing: it’s not that we should NOT plan. It’s not that we should NOT get back on that horse. It’s not that is NO use. It’s defining clearly WHICH horse we want to get on – and planning for it in a way that motivates us. Motivation comes from within. And when the vision and the reason why is clear, there is no stopping us. On the other hand, I can teach you all kinds of strategic planning tools to help you set a direction and plan it out – it will make no difference if you’re not feeling it. If you’re not tapped into a meaningful vision and purpose. So, if you’re still waiting for that motivation to appear, here’s the sad news: it won’t. Not by magic … More Get on which horse??!! »

Undergang or Overgang??

Those of you in change management know that it’s not an overnight change. Whether it’s introducing new systems, merging two businesses or changing culture, it’s a process. The red ribbon day where the new businesses become one may be the official date where the new entity starts to exist, but everyone ever involved in mergers knows that it’s only the beginning. Of years of integration of people, systems and culture. What if we applied the same reality to ourselves, our businesses, our communities, our families? If we make today the first day of our new way of being – where will it lead us? Many of us may still have remnants from the year passed. Stuff that’s holding us back, shading our outlook. If that’s the case for you or your business, let’s reframe it: what if some of the stuff that happened was not the end of the world, but a transition? At the Danish Christmas service last year, the minister had a theme that inspired me. She spoke about how it’s nearly rude when we tell each other “it’s not the end of the world” – because, in those situations, the one who has lost their job, a … More Undergang or Overgang?? »

The perfectionist puncture!

You may have heard me talk about high standards before. That high standards AND fun is a possible combination. Here’s an important distinction: high standards have NOTHING to do with perfectionism. You can’t be a perfectionist and have fun. Happiness and perfectionism don’t go hand in hand. If you’re proudly presenting yourself as a perfectionist, it may be best to stop reading right now. If it’s working for you, don’t change it, rock on! IF for some crazy reason you have realised it may be about time to let go of some of that perfectionism – keep reading. In business and life, high standards are amazing, they keep you, the team, the clients, the family and everybody else on their toes. But most often, there is no added value continuing the trajectory from high standards to perfectionism. Most often, it detracts value instead. If you’re right now wondering: what is she talking about? I let myself down constantly, there is just one broken promise after the other. Then your focus for the next month is simple: pick one daily standard to get you started and stick to it. The simple example is “I need to exercise more”. If you then … More The perfectionist puncture! »

What’s the point?

Feeling flat. Like the battery has gone to red and then empty. Needing to pull the plug. Running on an empty tank.  All of these sayings may ring true for you right now. Or for someone you know, someone in your team, in your circles. This is NOT the time to ask the big questions: what’s the point? Who do I think I am? Am I really in the right job? Should we forget all about that strategy? Or big statements like “that’s it, finally it’s clear to all that we’ve been faking it” or whatever your version of fraud, imposter or wanna-be is. There is only one way if you pull out those questions and statements at that moment: further down the rabbit hole. This is NOT the time for drastic decisions.  Instead, do what’s not natural to a lot of us. Accept a little pause. Accept that the battery needs recharging. Don’t make it a bigger deal than that. Take the pressure off just for a moment. It is what it is. Make that the point right now. Nothing bigger, nothing smaller. Simply accepting. Aaaaaaah, that’s a much better rabbit hole. Rabbit holes aren’t ideal for great decisions. … More What’s the point? »

Do you want sauce with that?

We make about 35,000 remotely conscious decisions each day (in contrast, a child makes about 3,000). It makes sense to get good at it, combined with creating simpler businesses and lives. Thirdly, we must set up routines and standards for as many areas as possible, so that questions and answers are not needed every time. In our cul de sac with 17 houses, there is a plethora of decisions happening every day behind the gates, front doors or in an open conversation in the street. One person selling after 40 years and where to move. Young ones pondering about education. Should I take that extra piece of cake? For both big and small decisions, what matters is to make the right decision. For you. The decision your future self will thank you for. It is not easy. Not in business nor in your street. With so many decisions, big and small, every day. We each run a different decision-making strategy, based on our macro patterns and subconscious entry/exit triggers. Whether we are aware of it or not, whether it’s working well for us or not. We can get overwhelmed with decisions and end up in the indecision roundabout. When we … More Do you want sauce with that? »

Prioritising the good stuff??

When did you last carve out time to thank someone, tell them they’re doing a great job or how they’re helping you? Strangely enough, as human beings, business owners and leaders we prioritise follow-up calls, reviews and meetings to tell the mistakes being made, things that are not yet working as it should, policing or notifying suppliers, staff and clients of shortcomings. How weird is that? Here’s a crazy idea: prioritise your to-do list and meetings differently the next week! Put first the actions of appreciation, a short thank you call or message, praise of a staff member for how what they did impacts you and the business – thank one of your clients for being an awesome client?!! Give time and focus to what you want more of. I did it earlier this week without thinking and realised how different it sets up your day. Puts a smile on someone else’s face – and get you focused on helping create more of that good stuff. Do you want to join me in this experiment? Let’s get really curious about when we ourselves think it’s much more important to be bossy and correcting – and what it would mean if … More Prioritising the good stuff?? »

Tiny top-ups or chunky change?

Sometimes, we need to empty the tank fully before it makes sense to fill it up. Yep, I’m talking about the petrol tank on our car, our mobile phone battery, our own energy and our business projects. Do you recognise any of these “tiny-top-up” patterns? – just putting 20 litres in the tank because the “the price is so high this week” – plugging in the phone for 10 minutes for a bit of juice before running out the door – closing the door to the bathroom for 5 min to have a bit of space before rushing to the next thing – getting the team to work on the 20 projects that all need work right now It’s ok in the short run with top-ups, but in the long run it will keep your mind constantly aware that “I need to fill up again soon – what’s the petrol price doing…??”. Every open project and thought is adding another open loop to the 20 loops already running in your mind. This is what causes overwhelm. For us and our teams. In your business, where are you and the team doing “the little things” – simply because tackling the bigger … More Tiny top-ups or chunky change? »

Nature rocks!

I love a good model. And when it’s inspired by nature it’s an added bonus. Half a year ago I used the Create-Maintain-Destruct model with all my clients, and it’s overdue to be dusted off again. Lots of reactions from business owners and individuals are telling me that the dust is settling from the last half-year. A business audit and a mental spring clean could be timely and make good business sense. The Create-Maintain-Destruct model creates the framework for your audit. Take your business offer and processes through it – as well as your staff, clients, suppliers and your own leadership. How? Create a matrix with Create, Maintain and Destruct as the column headings and the categories mentioned above as the rows (clients, staff, offer etc). Now for each row, list what and who is worth Maintaining (or restoring), what it is time to Destruct, stop doing or challenge – and which new things you would like to Create, be it through new staff members, new clients or new ideas that are jumping at the bid to add value. Align it with the long-term vision of your business – and make it clear to yourself who YOU need to be … More Nature rocks! »

Let go of everything you knew worked

This may sound scary. It definitely scared me. But I did it anyway, and great clarity and focus came from it. I thought it may inspire some of you, too. “What if I let go of everything I knew used to work??” So many of us are getting to a point right now where we are realising that parts of our businesses or lives never will get back to exactly how it was. We may have been patient, accepting, lucky, or whatever the last half-year, but now you can’t keep pretending that “all will be back to normal” anymore. “New normal” may not be as attractive to you, your business, or your deeper, inner knowing as “old normal” was. If this is resonating, it may be a good idea to ask yourself the question I put at the start. Letting go. Fully. To allow yourself to start fresh. With a new piece of paper. A new canvas. A new business plan. A new road map. Based on what IS, not on what could have been. This won’t be easy, there may be even levels of grief as you do this work. But it will be worth it, giving you a … More Let go of everything you knew worked »