You acquire wisdom one enlightened moment at a time. For me, 2011 marks 30 years since I began working. That’s a lot of opportunities for learning. Each December, our e-newsletter focuses on the Top 10 lessons I learned during the year. Here is #10 for 2010:
Innovative Idea – Patrick Lencioni, author of “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team,” coined a term this year: creatonomy. He defines it as leaders encouraging employees “to do their jobs and satisfy customers in the most effective and charismatic way possible.” Think: Southwest Airlines, Chick-fil-A, In-N-Out Burger. In Lencioni’s view, “Their employees are passionate and committed and take complete responsibility for their work, consistently turning customers into loyal fans.” How does the time you spend defining your products and services compare to the coaching you provide the people who deliver them?
Recently, a client said he wants to start a blog… yet he has no idea where to begin when it comes to creating content. “You’re a writer, I’m not,” he said. “I’m worried I won’t be able to come up with any ideas. Help me.”
That’s a quandary many folks face when they try to develop thought leadership material on a consistent basis. Since this is my first blog posting in three weeks, you might think I suffer from a similar challenge; however, the reality is I took a vacation, traveled out of town to work with a client’s executive leadership team and stepped back into my former life to produce a series of videos for a client. It’s actually been finding the time to write, not a lack of inspiration, that’s disrupted my plan.
So here’s the approach I recommended to my client to help him get over that ‘writer’s block’ mental hump and, hopefully, allow him to share wonderful ideas with his desired audience. First, keep your eyes open for insights that appear before you. These may come from reading an article, having a discussion with a client or friend, or reveal themselves in a late night dream. The key is to connect the dots with a “that’s something I would like to write about” realization.
Second, keep an ongoing list of these ideas near your keyboard. Then when you’re ready to write, you won’t have to sit down and stare at the screen hoping some idea pops into your head. Third, and this is a new awareness I’m testing today, block time to write four or more entries at once. Then you simply have to schedule them to post at regular intervals. That’s going to be my way of preventing long interludes between musings.
Finally, and this is the most important lesson on writing I learned – and it came in the fourth year of creating my monthly E-Newsletter – never worry about what your readers think. If it’s well thought out, true to what you believe and comes from your heart, then your part is complete. Allow your viewpoint to resonate with those who are open to receiving it.