Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Rise Above

Your definitely don't learn this in school, but important nonetheless.

In fact, there are a lot of lessons in life (business life) that you can't or don't learn in school. You just have to get out there, get job and learn by trial and error. And so I hope to spare some of you learning this one the hard way.

Learn to Rise Above.

Learn to Rise Above the politics. The pettiness. The immaturity. The fray.

Learn to Rise Above the chaos. The indecision. The safe.

You all have seen these types of things in action. You've seen meetings where the politics start taking over. Or immaturity starts leaking into people's actions. You've seen it I am sure.

Once you've seen it and learn to recognize it, it then becomes easier to know when to Rise Above it.

You'll want to engage in it most likely because that's the easy thing to do. When people are being catty, it's easy to join in. When people are becoming argumentative, it's easy to fight right back. When meetings are going on and on in their usual indecisive ways, it's much easier to keep your mouth closed and sit there doodling.

I know. Easy is our default action.

So I am telling you: Rise Above.

Rising Above requires courage and action. It requires you to stand up and say something. Something like, "why do we have this meeting? it seems redundant to that other one we have?" Instead of week after week of non-productiveness.

Rising Above sometimes hurts egos and feelings. People will want to protect these at all cost.  Rising Above sometimes requires change and newness. People will want to keep what they are familiar with.

Rising Above requires you to NOT add to the gossipy conversation going on. Which I know is hard. It requires you to treat your coworkers with respect. Though I know it is easier to make fun of them. It requires you to be bold in your decision making, confident in your abilities and respectful of everyone's skills and contributions.

I know this is hard. It's hard and takes practice. Ultimately you'll learn a skill worth having, worth envying.

Rise Above folks. The air up there is so much better for you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

29 ways

This is short and great.


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Mike Scioscia's Rear View Mirror

One of the really cool things about working at Oakley are Fireside Chats.
An athlete/someone famous/inspiring/passionate comes in to speak to employees.

Last week Mike Scioscia was here. First, that man should be a stand up comedian. We were laughing practically the whole time. Second, as someone who knows absolutely nothing about the man, I left respecting him immensely.

One story he told was worthy of re-telling. Mike talked about the people in his Rear View Mirror.

Now if I didn't have a slight case of Alzheimer's from raising 2 kids, I'd remember the coach he was referring to, buuuuut. . . .that doesn't matter. Mikes' point was that as you look back on your life, reflect into your rear view mirror, there you see the people who helped get you where you are. You'll see the people whose impact on your thoughts, your actions and, ultimately, your career is profound.

Mike was recalling a certain catching coach who he sees in his Rear View Mirror. Mike said he wouldn't have gotten where he was without this man. This coach was like a second father to him, he mentored him in numerous untold ways and taught him so, so very much throughout his career.This coach was standing boldly and profoundly in Mike Scioscia's Rear View Mirror.

My own mirror: perhaps less profound, but mine nonetheless.

In it I see Mr. Christenson, my 6th grade teacher who gave me an early appreciation of the arts. Pete & Sonja Tripodi, my first bosses in the real world who taught me everything my young brain could absorb. My Dad, who in his own quiet presence, taught me and my sisters we could pretty much accomplish anything in this world. My list goes on.

Think about your Rear View Mirror. Who do you see?

It goes without saying that we get where we are with the help of others. Remember those who've taught you a thing or two. Who've guided you subtlely or overtly. And, as Mike Scioscia did, appreciate that you got where you are because of them.