Bill Jensen is a returning guest to Inside Personal Growth.  This time he joins me to discuss a book he published sometime ago called The Simplicity Survival Handbook.  Simplicity is something that we all need a bit more of in our lives. We have become more inundated with complexity in our world as a result of the speed of transmission of information, and the devices that keep us tethered every minute.   We are spending more time on email, distracted by social media not to mention that the devices are “always on” which leads to us being so distracted that we are not paying attention to our most important relationship–our family.

Simplicity is the power to do less (of what does not matter), simplicity is the power to do more (of what does matter), states Jensen. Bill guides the reader on how to reduce email clutter, write shorter emails, go to fewer meetings, how to quickly communicate with anyone more effectively, how to leave shorter voicemails and much more.

If you are like most technology workers your day is filled with emails, voicemails, texts, meetings and attempting to put out fires and solve problems.  Now this is what you are probably paid to do, but what if you could shift some of those activities to more productive and creative endeavors?  Imagine the value you would bring to your organization, and how much better you would feel everyday.

I encourage you to listen to and implement some of the thirty-two techniques that Bill Jensen writes about in his book “The Simplicity Survival Handbook“.  You can learn more about Bill Jensen by clicking here to be directed to his website.  You can also watch a presentation on the Future of Work Bill did in 2015 by clicking here.

 

I really love business books that provide value to the reader, and this book “Rocket Fuel” is an easy to read book that is chalk full of value.

In my interview with author Mark C. Winter we explore one of the most important realizations by successful entrepreneurs and that if you want to develop a business it takes someone in the passenger seat, and that person is called an Integrator.  An “Integrator” compliments a “Visionary” and the right combination of these two people is imperative for the success of any business.

What you will learn by reading “Rocket Fuel” is that “Visionaries” have certain characteristics as do “Integrators”. When each person knows and plays their role in the organization you obtain “Rocket Fuel” as the book suggests.

Mark also discusses with me something he refers to as the “Accountability Chart”.  This is not just a normal organizational chart, the “Accountability Chart” helps you define the functions of the organization but to compliment that is defines the five (5) major roles of each of the people in the organization.  When you accomplish this task, it make everything much clearer and allows for leadership team to function with clear lines of communication.

What I appreciate most about “Rocket Fuel” and Mark C. Winters is the fact that all the techniques and tools outlined in the the book are tried and true tools.  Mark’s co-author Gino Wickman is the founder of EOS (Entrepreneur Operating System) out of Detroit Michigan.  EOS Worldwide provides the reader with amazing free resources as well as an opportunity to hire a business coach called an Implementer.

If you want to learn more about Rocket Fuel please click here to be directed to the book website, if you want to learn more about EOS Worldwide please click here to be directed to their website.  

I particularly enjoyed this animated YouTube Video titled “Why Entrepreneurial Companies Need a Visionary and an Integrator.”  I hope you enjoy my interview with Mark C. Winters.

 

I don’t think that there is an entrepreneur on the face of the planet that doesn’t understand the challenges of starting-up a new company. Most startups are faced with a myriad of issues, not to mention one of the biggest issues of finding capital to drive the new venture forward.

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Hap Klopp the founder of North Face, about his new book entitled “Almost-12 Electric Months Chasing A Silicon Valley Dream“. Our interview is a must listen too for those who are in business, and especially if you might be seeking funding for your new venture. His book tells the story about the issues that a company by the name of “Ardica” in the Silicon Valley had in finding funds, and the dynamics of the personalities working in the business. Hap, was the marketing director and was on the board of directors of Ardica. It is a wonderfully told story about a group of very bright engineers attempting to revolutionize the energy business, and in the process finding obstacles at almost every intersection partially due to the disfunction of the organization and the other as a result of a cash burn rate that was exceeding income.

I hope you will take the time to listen to this great interview with Hap Klopp about his new book “Almost-12 Electric Months Chasing A Silicon Valley Dream.” If you want more information about Hap please click here to be linked to a great article from the Stanford Business School.  You can also learn more about Ardica by clicking here to visit their website.

 

How many of you have ever experimented with mind mapping?  If you haven’t explored mind mapping, then you are in for a real treat in listening to this interview with Chris Griffiths the author of “GRASP the Solution“.

Chris is a thought leader and the person who alongside  Tony Buzan has accelerated the use of mind mapping into the business world, and continues to be a pioneer.  OpenGenius his organization based in England are the software developers of two amazing pieces of software called iMindMap 9 and Drop Task along with numerous training courses.

In my interview with Chris about his book “GRASP the Solution” we discuss what gets in the way of people tapping their creative genius.  Chris states that creativity can be learned, and it is not something that is foster in the business world, even though businesses always say they are looking for more creative and innovative people.  As a matter of fact it’s the people that are putting out the fires and jumping from one task to another that get the most attention, while the people that are thinkers, and are tapping their creative genius are frequently overlooked.

The acronym GRASP stand for the four types of thinking that are the foundation to how one approaches a particular task.  “Generative Thinking-is how we generate thoughts and ideas, Reactive Thinking-is how we react to existing influences and ideas, Analytical Thinking-is how we analyze ideas to reach a solution, Selective Thinking-is how we validate and implement a potential solution, Proactive Thinking-is the strategy of thinking that utilizes all of the previous types of thinking.

Mind Mapping is the technique invented by Tony Buzan for optimizing how we use our brains.  It is a visual format that is not linear that supports the creative problem solving skills, making is more intuitive and easy to capture our thoughts while mapping them visually.  This process can be completed on a big sheet of paper, or can be captured through software such as iMindMap 9 and or Drop Task.  Below is an image showing you an example of the iMind Map 9 and Drop Task screenshots.

imindmap_computer_screens

 

I hope you enjoy this wonderful interview with author and thought leader Chris Griffiths.  If you want to find more about OpenGenius and the software and trainings that are offered please click here to be directed to the website.  If you want to join the Facebook group for OpenGenius please click here.

 

Every organization today is attempting to get the greatest engagement and productivity from their employees.  In my recent interview with author Joan Kingsley the author of ” The Fear-Free Organization” we discuss the important characteristics required to create a fear free organization.

Leadership and trust are obviously a key characteristics that that help to build confidence in the employees, but  neuroscience shows that individuals and organizations are more successful when people are encouraged to take risks, to explore new ideas, and to channel their energies in ways that work for them.  In my interview with author Joan Kingsley we explore how to make your organization less fear driven and more fearless.

I hope you enjoy this wonderful interview with Joan Kingsley about her new book entitled ” The Fear-Free Organization”  You can learn more about Joan and the book by clicking here to be taken to her consulting organization website.

The new book Holacracy-The New Management System for a Rapidly Changing World is a book that will get anyone in business thinking about how to organize their company.  As a matter of fact, many major companies have embraced Brian Robertson’s Holacracy System including the forward thinking organization Zappos.

In my interview with Brian we take an in-depth look into how to design an organization with this new management model.  Holacracy is a combination of individual accountability, team transparency, and flexible, face-paced tactical meetings to help in creating greater levels of efficiency, adaptability and productive operations.  Holacracy also develops absolute habits of making commitments about when you will deliver a particular project or action.  For instance in tactical meetings you capture next action, but do not attach deadlines or commitment to them.  You might be asking why?  Committing to deadlines has downsides and obscures a more dynamic, reality-based approach.  Brian states that by accepting the next action item in your role, is by definition making the commitment to continuously track the action, and to consciously do the action as soon as it becomes the most important item among your possible actions.

I encourage you to listen, take notes and learn from Brian Robertson a man on a mission to transform how organization run, and how the cultures are transformed.  He has a fascinating approach and one that is worth your investigation of time to understand.  If you want more information about Holacracy you can click here to be directed to his book site, or click here to be directed to Holacracy.org.

I recently interviewed author Ron Friedman PhD the author of a new book entitled “The Best Place to Work, The Art and Science of Creating an Extraordinary Workplace”.  As many of you might be aware the levels of engagement in the US workforce is abysmal with levels of disengagement at about 71%.  So just why do we have such an amazingly high rate of disengagement from employees?

The answer to this question and many more can be found in Ron” new book ” The Best Place to Work“.  Ron spent years studying the best places to work, he interviewed people and heard stories. He researched motivation, creativity, management, behavioral economics, neuroscience and combined this into his new book.  In my interview with Ron he provides insights into what is required to create the “Best Place to Work.”  It is not an easy formula for their are so many factors that affect how people perform and engage at work.  Autonomy, Purpose, Meaning, Fun, Play are just a few of the many elements of the workplace formula that Ron and I discuss in our interview.

I know that you will find my interview with author Ron Friedman to be enlightening and give you new perspective on what companies are doing and can do to develop environments in the workplace that foster  more productivity, creativity and innovation.

I hope you enjoy my interview with Ron and please check out his book website for the book by clicking here, you can also follow him on Twitter, and learn about his consulting organization called Ignite 80 by clicking the link.

 

Alan SheltonI recently had the opportunity of interviewing author Alan Shelton who’s new book entitled “Awakened Leadership-Beyond Self Mastery” it is a great read.  The book has lots of Alan’s personal life story, but weaved into the content are life lessons that we can all learn and benefit from if we apply in our life.

Alan comments in the preface of the book about being in a “seekers hole”, a term that I personally can appreciate and relate to from time to time.  I don’t know a soul on this planet that is not seeking, and at times we all get frustrated and dissatisfied with the journey.  In essence we forget that we are spiritual beings having a human experience, vs. human beings having a spiritual experience–big difference.  The key to enjoying our journey is as all times to remember who we are, and why we are here-easier said than done right?.

Alan points out that we are not the center of the Universe, even though at times we think we are.  Yes, our ego’s do take control and we think that we are it!!  Alan reminds us that a life awakened is beyond self-mastery, the belief that we author and control our own reality.  He points out that to become a more effective leader we need to understand what it is like to express our authentic self.  In essence,  not to put on false pretenses or allow our ego to attempt to control or have a negative impact on our relationships.

“Awakened Leadership” is about leadership, and what it takes to become a compassionate and effective leader.  Alan cites author Joseph Jaworski the author of “Syncronicity: The Inner Path of Leadership” by saying ” Institutions of all sorts are facing profound change today, with complexity increasing at a speed and intensity we’ve never experienced before.  Jaworski came to realize that traditional analytical leadership approaches are inadequate for dealing creatively with the complexity.  To effectively face these challenges, leaders need to access the Source from which truly profound innovations flows.

If you would like to learn more about accessing the Source, and what is necessary to become a leader in our business world today, then Alan’s new book “Awakened Leadership” is a must read.  If you would like to learn  more about Alan Shelton please click here to be directed to his website, or you can watch a great book trailer by clicking here.

I hope you enjoy this wonderful interview with Alan Shelton.

 

 

Michael HollaufI have recently been doing podcasts with organization and authors that have productivity tools that I believe are excellent personal growth and mastery applications.  I was introduced to Michael Hollauf the founder of MindMeister through Gerald Aquila the founder of FireTask, and we speak in this podcast  about an amazing cloud based application for mind mapping that he developed with his team called MindMeister.  This application is  so popular that within less than 6 years his user base has grown to over 1.6 million users.

If you are not familiar with mind mapping, it was made popular by British psychologist Tony Buzan.  What is important to remember about mind mapping is that it allows our non-linear brains that normally  think randomly to be able to capture the wonderful ideas, thoughts and inspirations on paper or the computer in a visual map.

Mind Mapping and the use of computer technology over the last 10 years had really excelled, and the cloud based application that Michael and his team has developed is a wonderful example of a collaborative cloud based application that makes the job of capturing ideas and thoughts with a team of people a snap.

A mind map starts usually with one central word or idea, then branches out from this initial concept. The branches then turn into sub-branches and you continue to develop the mind map as your thoughts flow and are recorded onto the mind map. It is like a cognitive map of sorts.  I have links to some of the samples that MindMeister clients have shared just to give you an idea of what is possible using the MindMeister cloud based application. Just click here for a few examples.

The practical tools that would not be available using paper vs a cloud based system are that you can link notes, hypertext links to website, video, graphics, pictures almost anything that will help you in developing your brainstorming session and making it more comprehensive in nature.   The best part about MindMeister is the ability to share your ideas with others on a team and publish your map for their feedback.

If you are in business or a student, then utilizing a cloud based mind mapping software is a wonderfully practical tool.  I highly recommend the MindMeister cloud based system.  If you want more information or would like to watch a few training videos about how to use the system please click here.  You can also download a 30 day free trial by clicking here.

I hope you enjoy this great interview with the founder of MindMeister Michael Hollauf.