Recently I was on a vacation in Northern California and I was struck by how much we depend on technology to ensure we never get lost. We plug in our destination before we head anywhere and our map app guides us there perfectly. This made me think about how different this is than just 5 years ago but also on how this translates to so many other things in our lives.
In our Performance Mindset discussions we talk about some of the key qualities our clients need to create their Sustainable High Performance. Commonly being a learner, being open to new challenges, being a problem solver, focusing on those things within your control, being creative, and reflecting on your positive experiences and learnings come up. Where are these things developed more than when we are lost?
When we follow our perfect script, stick strictly to our business strategy, and take the common path to our journey, we may arrive safely and efficiently but we learn very little, we broaden our understanding and experience very little, and we greatly reduce our ability to create something new and exciting. This is one reason why many new thinkers in how to win in today’s business environment are recommending throwing out the old business planning and instead creating a new mindset that is built on freedom, agility, and constant learning. When we are lost we discover new ways of approaching a problem, of seeing a client’s needs, and of seeing the world.
Recently, while working with a group of professional football coaches, they experienced a day where a group of players were making mistakes. Historically, this would have created intense frustration as clearly these players were off track. Instead of accepting this habitual response, we stepped back and asked ourselves what can we learn by being lost. The answers fascinated us. We discovered better ways to teach certain skills, we discovered better ways to support player learning, we discovered how our own coaching style doesn’t always resonate with every style of learner, and most important we realized that we will be much better in the future because these players were lost.
When you look at almost every great invention, it was the product of getting off track of the current thinking and finding a new path that created new insights. Creativity is a product of an agile and open mind being fed new, exciting, fresh ideas. This week I encourage you to get off your normal track and risk getting lost somewhere. Allow your brain to enjoy the feeling of not knowing where you are or what you are doing. Most important, enjoy the insights you gain from the new perspective. As always, we would love to hear your thoughts.
By Scott Peltin
Founder & Chief Performance Officer