Intriguing thought from a Disney World bathroom

Have you been in one?  I was in one today and noticed something was different?  It took me a little while to recognize what it was but eventually I realized why this bathroom was so different: there were NO mirrors above the sinks.  In order not to be a total creeper I refrained from taking a picture, you're just going to have to trust me.  The only mirror was a small one hanging by the entry/exit. I tried to find out why on Google but couldn't find any reason for the lack of mirrors.  My first thought was less time in the bathroom meant more money in the park but I don't think that is it.  Can having too much time looking at yourself affect the amount of fun you're having?  

Is that what happens to you?  Are you passionate about something?  Are you creative in some type of way that's a different from others?  Have you discovered something new that you really enjoy but you don't feel like you have absolute support on?  

I suggest you take Disney's advice, walk away from the mirror and get back out there and have fun.  The longer you look in the mirror the more you're going to find something wrong and the more distracted you're going to be from doing what you truly love and enjoy.


The pursuit of more

As a leader is the pursuit of everything being bigger exhausting you? There is a new four letter word that is haunting most leaders I see: MORE. The pursuit of bigger, or the pursuit of more, is the new hamster wheel.

We've been sold that if you just had "more" all the problems would go away but the problem is "more". This more you are looking for is elusive because once you think you have arrived, more gets bigger.

"We need more people."

"We need more revenue."

"We need more marketing."

More is to leaders as crack is to an addict. Are you addicted? Here are the signs you are:

1. Every problem is solved with the thought, "If only we had more (blank)."

2. When you have to report numbers you feel like you're failing.

3. You wake up to pressure, you go to bed to pressure.

4. You aren't having fun.

5. You're eyes are always on what someone else is accomplishing.

If this list describes your life it's time to trade in bigger for better. Do what you're great at. Have fun. Reflect more on what you have and what you can do to make it better instead of being addicted to what someone else has.

Adults need recess, too.

Can you pull up your human hard drive (ie. your brain) and remember how good it felt to go to recess as a kid?  As a boy, it felt like a tiger being released from a cage to go run...or pummel someone in the face with a dodge ball...or with a wrench? [youtube 0iXP9yoc4VY]

My point is simple, if you want people to work hard you have to have a system that allows people to play hard.  Just because we get older doesn't mean that we no longer need or enjoy breaks from what we are working hard on.  Opportunities to stop and play.  Believe it or not, play can be a critical component of getting work done.  Did you know that there are companies out there (Google and 3M) who provide employees with an entire day at work to be creative and play.  The rewards from this time are huge!  For Google, it lead to Google Maps, Google Voice, Google Calendar, etc...  You get the picture.

Don't confuse time off with time of play.  I literally mean to take time from working and play together.  When was the last time you took your people and went together to do something fun?  And this is critical, it has to be something THEY ENJOY.  I know a leader who plans to do things only they enjoying doing, not activities their team enjoys.  The hard truth is that the team only does it to make the leader happy, so everyone ends up making deposits from their emotional bank accounts because, really, they hate it.  LAME.  Do something that 80% of the team would enjoy and you'll have a team that works hard together.