I look back with gratitude to be exposed to the world of business. Sometimes small and local, other times large and global. Not to forget publicly listed companies and sometimes joining A-listers at glamorous events.
While I won’t reveal any private or personal details about any one person or company, I will reveal that often what lays behind the glossy business magazines, news articles and publicity write ups is far from the reality of behind the scenes, the closed office and board room doors.
Business brands are often presented with rosy perfection to the world, when the reality can be dirty and muddy. In some ways ‘reality shows’ are impacting this, yet editing and airbrushing still seems the norm.
And this causes a problem. When business people compare themselves, it often amplifies the ‘I’m not good enough’ syndrome.
The young student or intern, the budding musician, the talented young manager is deterred. This can stifle the entrepreneurial spirit. Thoughts of ‘who am I?’ ‘I’m not qualified, or good enough to go it alone in my own business or step up in my career’.
This is a great shame. Why? Because there is a gap between what’s real and what’s false. False impressions make a weak foundation for people’s self-view and self-concept.
The great comparison (of the leader-self, to a fantasy leader figure that doesn’t even exist) is a source of false expectations, failure, frustration, anxiety and often mammoth career disappointment.
The gap between what’s real and what’s not is also a great source of unhappiness in management teams causing disruption and upheaval via high people turnover, culture and low morale.
In the past 20 years of sitting across from powerful CEO’s and leaders, it never ceased to amaze me how even the most successful of leaders and executives were debilitated by self-doubt. A type of self-doubt often triggered by unsupportive environments, envy, ruthless competition, mind games and an inability to speak with truth in meetings when it counts most.
The frequency of this reoccurring self-doubt pattern in all of these humans I worked with was noticeable. Seemingly an epidemic of continuous undervaluing or underestimating self was taking hold. Was this a lack of will to self-care or was this a lack of skill? And what was the trigger?
Over time, I discovered the main trigger to be what other people think. I soon realized that if a string of self-depreciating thoughts turned to minutes, hours, days, weeks, even years in the mind of the leader or owner – then a setback, a dip, a correction or a crash would inevitably occur and be experienced by the business they lead. They’d experience the loss of an important account, a major change in staff dynamics, lost trust at leadership level, a product fault or a PR disaster.
Did the crash cause the confidence dip? Or did the confidence dip cause the crash? In my view, the latter.
There is a private ‘mindset economy’ inside every leader. Its health is determined by the keeper of this mindset. I asked myself – who or what keeps this ‘mindset economy’ healthy? I began to examine this.
Economies rise and fall on confidence. Fear and greed are invisible forces. So too are love, generosity, support and belief.
It is my hope that this book serves to encourage and enhance the not always obvious idea that sometimes the most substance, and what really lasts forever, is actually invisible and good.
It is within the power and influence of every business leader’s success or failure, to impact the lives of many people.
I observe at the heart of this power (or even perhaps it’s the source) the degree to which the leader can truly believe and appreciate their own intrinsic value.
This shapes their ‘mindset economy’ and the way they show up for themselves, the business and others.
I believe business is a noble undertaking, especially when it is established by good hearted, healthy minded people.
My vision is to see more good hearted people succeed and create wealth.
Power and wealth often pair, and before power comes belief. Whether the power is used for good or evil, lies in the holders understanding of their own intrinsic value. Whether they choose to see themselves from a higher order or lower order place is the key.
If they see themselves muddied and spoiled rather than the shining diamond that they are, they’ve not yet had their Private Value Breakthrough. An inner value breakthrough takes digging, it takes work. A diamond, even if it has mud on it, is still a diamond. What it looks like on the outside or in the mirror, isn’t always the best indicator. Conversely mud wrapped in shiny paper, is still mud. We can do our best to whitewash our companies with the best in external branding, but mud is still mud.
There is a feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment that comes with calling the best forward in someone and that person really deeply seeing and appreciating themselves in that moment.
As a leader you have a wonderful opportunity to see the diamond in others. Even if and when they can’t.
Rather than leaving this to the realm of external consultants of coaches, what if you the leader were the catalyst for a value breakthrough in your company? A value breakthrough where everyone who worked with you and for you, felt their best selves and brought their best selves. Not because they felt obliged, not because they were being paid to, but because they chose to.
And, they were able to finally do that because you the leader helped them truly deeply appreciate themselves.
Doable? Let’s see”.
If you would like this book you can get it HERE