Let’s agree what success looks like at work. It’s simply ‘better outcomes for those you serve’. It’s about improving on what was done yesterday. Machines can ‘do’ many things but they can’t imagine. People can be made to work like machines but unlike machines their ‘parts’ can’t be replaced easily when things start to fail. However people can be replaced. If you exist to ‘do’ things that could be done more efficiently or more profitably you will be replaced perhaps not today or tomorrow but soon enough. If your boss doesn’t sack you, one day in the foreseeable future you will walk out when it all gets too much to bear.
So your real value in whatever you do is the ability to add value and to do that reliably and sustainably.
Think of a time when you landed that job, made that discovery, found that break through, solved that problem. Could it all have been different? What if you had failed that exam? What if you had succumbed to that virus? What if you hadn’t met that key partner? What if they hadn’t supported you? What if the funds hadn’t been available? What if you hadn’t attended that course or crossed that road? What if Fleming hadn’t gone on holiday or noticed that Petri dish?
Often described as a careless lab technician, Fleming returned from a two-week vacation to find that a mold had developed on an accidentally contaminated staphylococcus culture plate. Upon examination of the mold, he noticed that the culture prevented the growth of staphylococci. Endocrine today.
What if the egg containing your genes hadn’t been fertilised? Your life by statistical computation is a miracle.
If you go back 10 generations (250 years) the chance of you being born at all is at most 1 divided by 6 x 10100 or
1 in 60000000000000000000000000000000000 00000000000000000000000000 000000000000000000000000000000000000.
In gambling, even a chance of 1 to 100 is not worth a gamble. Hooge
You don’t really ‘do’ anything other than join the dots, but first you need to see the dots. There is nothing you have including life that couldn’t be taken from you in an instant.
At this time of year, for many people, there is an opportunity to invigorate that part of the brain that is the crucible of creativity. For best results flood the senses with new experiences; listen to new songs, read, taste different food and let your brain prepare to solve problems by making room for new ideas. De-clutter, let go the oars and do that for the sake of those you serve if not yourself. So say to your boss this is the most important thing you are doing for him this year- sharpening the saw.
Do you believe this sound conducted by Morricone is the product of a mind focused on the banal? You too have done some extraordinary things this year- big things, little things, all of which point to your potential to improve this world. What you believe about where the ideas come from doesn’t matter because they will continue to flow into our experience notwithstanding your convictions. What will matter to your boss in January is that you have an active problem solving capacity. So take a holiday. Enjoy!
Picture by Claus Rebler