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Why?


“If you hire people just because they can do a job, they’ll work for your money. But if you hire people who believe what you believe, they’ll work for you with blood, sweat, and tears.”…Simon Sinek

I am not a difficult person. Really, I try not to complain much, I work as hard as possible for as many hours as it takes, and I usually am flexible. Everyone has motivation and motivation is what keeps them engaged in what needs to be completed. Discovering and capitalizing on someone’s motivation is the key link between happy employees and corporate growth. In my case, it isn’t money that gets my blood pumping. Nor am I excited by a sense of accomplishment, as many people can accomplish formatted tasks. What makes me willing to get out of bed in the morning is the “Why” of the company in which I work. What is the “why”? I am so glad you asked because without your question, this article would probably have to end here. So, let’s explore the “why”, shall we?

“People don’t buy WHAT do you do, they buy WHY you do it.”…Simon Sinek

start with why coverOver the years, I have worked for companies where I know exactly what they do, how they do it, and have been a part of teams which produced the end results. In other words, I was there to get a paycheck. Once the interest or challenge waned, it was time to move to the next project or company. Oh, the life of a consultant. However, I have also been on a job where what the company or team did was not as important as why they did it. Those situations are the inspiration for me to come to work each day with the desire to do everything in my power to make it successful. Simon Sinek discusses the why in his book “Start with Why”. Haven’t read that book? Well, you should because it dives into the motivations of successful companies such as Apple Inc. and Southwest Airlines, which were not just founded on their why but shared it with the world. They created a culture with their customers which then pulls them in making them want to be a part of the culture. Customers purchased these companies’ products not because it was the cheapest, as anyone who purchased the new iPad or a MacBook Pro in recent years can attest, but because they wanted to be involved in the culture of the company, the WHY. This idea is the difference between collecting a paycheck and being driven to success at work. Instead of me rambling on about the benefits, I would suggest reading Sinek’s book. Now back to my point, stay with me here.

What happens is the company that started with a powerful why surrenders to the what they do? When process, the all-powerful bottom line, and goals become the driving force, the company forfeits the culture which made them strong. The work environment becomes a place where procedure reigns supreme and organizational structures hold higher importance than the morale of the teams. In short, the business loses its soul and with it, the hearts of the employees.

why2In the fast-paced world we have with instant gratification and everyone- gets- a -trophy, who cares about the soul of the company? Well, I for one do. I am a customer of many of these businesses. From airlines to fast food, I have to interact with a person who is getting a paycheck and not actively participating in the company. The bored, slack-jawed mannerisms make every interaction with another person in business infuriating.

The time of pride in one’s work seems to be lost forever, leaving only the collection of the meager paycheck remaining. . Even in this, there is contention as the entitlement mentality has infected all aspects of our culture. Not only have our companies lost their why, but our culture has as well. We are no longer going to work because we love our jobs (why), but because we just want the paycheck (what). Where once we would proudly answer “I am a (fill in the blank)” we now tell people what we do, “I push papers all day”. To add insult to injury, we are passing this new legacy on to our children who will grow up with an even darker view of the world around them.

So, what do we do? I wish I had the answer for everyone. It is a personal quest you must embark on to find the answer to why you do what you do. Only you can answer the why. Maybe, there is a remote chance, a sliver of hope if you will, where everyone seeks out understanding and searches for why, it may become infectious. Maybe, it will change the world around us. Maybe, you will walk into work and each of you will have a new sense of why we do things and not what we do. Maybe…

Until next time…

jerry b

© 2014

 

 

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2014 in Editorial, Life

 

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TTMM Weekly Wrap and A Suggested Read


TTMM Weekly WrapIt has been quite a while since I have posted enough to have a weekly wrap. My absence has been due to this nasty, but glorious little thing called Life. I have spent the past eight months travelling for my job as well as spending as much time with my family as possible. Throughout this sabbatical, thoughts would bounce around in my head but never make it to the keyboard. I have tried to keep track of them but it was similar to trying to grapple with a greased pig (I have been waiting years to use that cliché). At the moment, I have had some opportunity to get the thoughts out of my head and into a medium where I could share with my readers. It must have something to do with the Transit of Venus or another celestial event that allowed me this rare “brain dump”. For the record, I have missed everyone and all of your comments. I hope that my readers have not fallen out of interest of the little trip we take through my mind.

Before we go further down the passages of our weekly wrap, I want to share with you another blogger that has not only caught my interest but has given me many moments of intense laughter. I discovered this site through one of my posts this week and have become a fast fan of the daily posts. I spent last night sharing the site with my son as we both sat with our smartphones and read different posts. At points, we had our “WTF?!” moments right before we busted out in laughter. Without further delay, let me introduce you to “Joe’s Shitty Ideas”. The author knows this boy named Joe and as you can tell from the name of the blog; his ideas are not exactly stellar. I will admit, I am envious of the delivery and humor the author has the ability to deliver. Most of all, I can relate to some of the moments and feel like I know this Joe more every day. So, please, take a moment to visit my fellow blogger’s site and enjoy: Joe’s Shitty Ideas.

It is time to review what you might have missed from this week:

I hope you enjoyed this week and look forward to many more.

Until next time…

jerryb

© 2012

Related Post: TTMM Weekly Wrap and a Special Thank You

 
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Posted by on June 9, 2012 in Weekly Wrap

 

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So You Want to Be a Motivational Speaker


Previous: So You Want to Be A Blogger

Since the launch of your blog, life has been going well. So well, you feel that you should share your insights with many others. After gaining popularity with the twelve people following your fascinating blog, many hours of Bejeweled logged during your writer’s block, and a collection of Starbuck’s paper cups filling your new office, it is now time to take things to the next level. How could you top your blogging success? Time to take your vast knowledge on the road- you want to become a Motivational Speaker.

The Look

In order to be successful, you must have the right look. You need to throw out every bit of your current wardrobe and start over. Start by checking your spouse’s credit card balance, as your credit cards have been maxed out from your blog launch. However if your balances are unable to accommodate the “new” you, you might need to find another source of funding like new credit cards or a benefactor. Image is very important! Only the very best will project the level of success needed for your protégés. Who would pay big bucks to see someone wearing a worn suit from Men’s Warehouse? Don’t forget to get the right shoes for the outfit, a proper Motivational Speaker must tower above the rest of his followers.

Now is time to rid yourself of the yellowed, coffee stained teeth acquired over your recent Starbuck’s addiction. One hugely important aspect all motivational speakers and used car salesmen share is a bright winning smile. Your face will be plastered all over billboards, which means your teeth will be the size of poster boards. Spare no expense getting those pearly whites capped for the brightest smile possible. At this point you may need to check on your mistress’s credit limit –you know the mistress you hooked up with over the internet while you were writing your blog. Once you have the look, you need to get the message ready for the masses.

Creating the Right Pitch

Dale Carnegie could tell you how to “win friends and influence people” and Tony Robbins has been “unleashing the power within” over the years, so you need a new message that speaks to the masses—a message that will have them lining up around the block to be in your presence. Time to do research. Thankfully, YouTube has all the necessary pirated video clips of the most popular speakers so you can memorize the delivery and approach. You quickly realize all the great motivational stuff seems to have been said before.  Your post-it notes cover the walls of your office in multi-colored greatness as you try to figure out what to say to the crowds. Then it dawns on you. Why recreate the wheel? Gather up all your post-it notes and start copying all your notes into your new spiel. With your new mash-up of catch phrases, it is time to start your world tour.

Time for the Buzz!

All great motivational speakers on tour have marketing material and swag for sale. Since you have already maxed out your spouse’s credit cards, both of your mistresses are in financial ruin, and the guy that comes over to cut your grass loaned you his last twenty dollars, you decide now is the time to reach out to your parents so they can invest in your multi-million dollar endeavor. Since their house is paid off, it will be easy to mortgage it and build your media kit. No simple instamatic camera will do for your pictures, it is time to hire the best photographer and graphic designer around to create the posters, website and DVD covers. It is time to hire a public relations company to handle your career.

At this point, you need to get in the studio to record your amazing prose for your new CD and practice your delivery. Though ordering the first 10,000 copies seems steep, it will be well worth the investment when the public sees your pearly white smile on the newly designed cover art.

Time to be great.

Time to be great.

Unleash the Person Within!

You have the look, the catch phrases, the bright white smile on the cover of your over-priced CD, along with all the people behind your new career. As you sit in your newly expanded office, with your image plastering the walls, your mistress in her role as your new secretary, you rock back in your chair and wait for the word to spread about your stunning message.

You pick up your phone, asks your secretary to fetch you a Starbuck’s and smile to yourself about how clever and far you have come since you left that job to become a blogger, now an aspiring motivational speaker. What could possibly be next…

Until next time…

jerry b

© 2012

Related Articles:  Warning Signs of a Bad First Date; Five Winning Ice-breakers For The Office;

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2012 in Humor, Writing

 

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TTMM Week In Review and Special Thank You


Oh, it’s Saturday and time for a week in review. It has been a while since I have had enough published to actually have a summary of all that you may have missed. We started the week in silence but came out from the dark mid-week. It seems we have had a frustrated rant on zombies, a discovery of the “muse blocker”, and a new guest to round our week.  For those that might have missed anything, here is a glimpse of the week. Please feel free to click on the link to catch up, think about and comment.

When a Good Idea Goes to Hell

Doing some research for a new blog project, I realize that there are some things that aren’t exactly right out there..

A Writer’s Muse-ic

Realization comes at strange times. After a long dry spell, I might have found my Muse-ic.

A Special Thank You

A little over a year ago, a fellow writer recommended moving my post to another media. I looked at a few and found a home at wordpress.com. After a little time adjusting, I have settled into my new home on the web. This week marks the one year anniversary of Trip Through My Mind. It hasn’t always been a smooth trip. Life and writer’s block, careers and families, have contributed as the source of my inspiration and to the deterrent of my availability to write. The learning process of what works and what does not, has been a journey that I hope to continue.  With over 50 post in the past year, a couple of guest contributors, and new ideas each day, I hope that next year will bring about new discovery and many new friends to join us as we explore those darker and sometimes funnier corners of our mind.

I want to take this opportunity to thank those that were here in the beginning and welcome those that have just stumbled onto this site. Writing is something that I feel I do for myself, share it is because of your support. Thank you.

Until next time…

jerry b.

© 2011

 

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2011 in Weekly Wrap

 

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A Writer’s Muse-ic


But your thoughts will soon be wandering
the way they always do
When you’re ridin’ sixteen hours
and there’s nothin’ much to do
Turn the Page ~ Bob Seger

What happened to me? I was cruising along on my creative highway, seeing inspiration through the windshield when the creative world went dark. It wasn’t a road block. The highway just vanished. Darkness closed in and not even the headlights could penetrate. First the frustration, then the fear and finally resignation that it was gone. That was nine months ago.

I had high hopes for creating a series of muses to share each week. It would go in cycles and then the cycles crumbled, not to return. Through all the pressure I tried to put on myself to hit the publishing deadline, I felt I was forcing it. Some of the writings that were published showed the effects and eventually, even the attempts ended with a blank screen. Throwing my figurative hands up, I let days, weeks, and then months pass without attempting to write more than a project plan or email. The creativity had gone into hiding and I let it go. The muse had abandoned me, or had I abandoned the muse.

Last year, I started enjoying audio books on my somewhat long commute to the office. As the year wrapped up, I was deep into many series that I would have never had time to read in the normal sense. The hour long trip to the office or back home was enjoyable. I would avoid phone calls (before you scream at me, I have a hands free system in my car), and just slip away in the fantasy world of Heinlein, Abercrombie, and others. My drive time was filled with enjoyment that only good stories can produce.

A few weeks ago, I was waiting on a business call on my commute and didn’t want to get into a story only to stop in the middle. I turned on the music of my iPod and let my mind drive. The darkness that was encapsulating my creative muse started to fade. I listened to the lyrics and an idea crept to life. I played the song again and built on the idea. By the time I was in the driveway, a story was born. The darkness cleared to a murky shadow and words flowed out of me to the screen once again.

It seems that in my enjoyment of the audio books, I was concentrating on the stories so much that I was not letting my thoughts flow or develop. I was escaping into their stories without working on my own. This isn’t necessarily bad but stifled the creativity that not only helped to produce thoughts like this but also my writing and planning in my job. My muse had now returned.

I will not give up my audio books but I am going to work to temper them with times of creative thoughts and to ration out the stories of others with my own voice and expression. My writing started back up a few years ago from listening to music and pulling thoughts from the lyrics. The first few published posts from over four years ago were based solely on that style of writing. I forgot my muse. I lost my way in the darkness. Let the light shine again and the words flow out.

Until next time…

jb

© 2011

 
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Posted by on August 25, 2011 in Music, Writing

 

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The Age of Audio Books


Discovering a new method to enjoy books.

There are many ways to get your reading fix throughout the day. In our modern age of technology, there is something to be said about the ability to listen to a book while driving along through rush hour or to be sitting with your computer and reading your favorite novel on the screen.  Now, you don’t even need your computer to read eBooks, since the release of items like the Kindle and Nook.

About 13 years ago, I was working in the music industry and the artist that my company was managing was signed by a label that also owned an audio book company. It was the first time I had seen them and through our meetings, we were allowed to get a few books for ourselves. I have always been an avid reader but this was the first time that I had listened to a book. I was reluctant to try the books on tapes so I stored them back on the shelf for a couple of years. Then I had a position that required me to drive for over an hour a day and I found that the books came in handy. This began my journey to a new obsession.

Audio books added a new depth to the stories. I found that stories that ordinarily wouldn’t intrigue me in the written word from were somehow fascinating when I listened to them.  Perhaps one of the main reasons for this was how the narrators brought the story to life. It may have also been that since my eyes weren’t engaged and I was only listening, I could slip into the author’s world easier than following it on the pages. The only drawback I found was that the media of cassette tapes was frustrating when it came to checking them out from the library. After listening I would listen to seven of the eight cassettes and becoming completely engrossed in the story, the final tape would invariably break or be ejected from the player, leaving me with a trail of black audio tape mess, a broken heart and no conclusion to the story.  After a few of these let-downs, coupled with and a shorter commute, I lost interest. In time, another technological improvement came along, the iPod.

It took me a few years to see the benefit to these devices beyond listening to music. It wasn’t until I discovered the website Audibles.com that I slipped back into the audio world of stories.  With a small monthly fee, I was able to download a book a month for the cost of lunch and listen on my way to and from work. I would find myself disappointed when I would arrive at my destination because I would be lost in the moment of the story.

This year alone, I have covered more books, by listening, then I would have had time to read. In addition to the printed novels that I have experience, I have covered over six book series and went back to many classic works that I didn’t have time to read the traditional way. It has opened up a new time to enjoy authors, my drive time.

So, if you are looking for a way in increase your ability to enjoy more books, getting lost in a story, I would recommend you give audio books a try. With the narrators giving depth to the story, the ability to use time that might have been lost, and the accessibility to stories that you might have missed all make this medium a nice addition to traditional reading.

Until next time…

© 2010

 
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Posted by on October 17, 2010 in Books

 

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Where’s the Effort? A Trip to Higher Education


 “you dropped a hundred and fifty grand on a f*ckin education you coulda got for a dollar fifty in late charges at the public library”

 Will from Good Will Hunting

In my previous post I mentioned being back in school. This isn’t a new thing for me, even at the advanced age. I have always wanted to be in school to get my degree. It wasn’t from the lack of desire or motivation; I just have lived a, how should I say unusual life. I spent many years working in an industry that you didn’t know from day-to-day where you would be waking up. After leaving that world, I thought I would try my hand at the “normal” life and walked into the wonderful world of information technology, commonly called IT. It wasn’t a career I chose but one that I fell into when I needed steady employment. I began this new career thinking that I would have more time to go back to school.

I wasn’t embarrassed when asked where I went to school at in the beginning. I would proudly say the University of Borders. Why pay $1200 dollars for 3 credits when you could get more information from $200 of books at the local Border or B&N. I thought it was a cute way to respond until I realized as my experience grew in my field, I was hitting the glass ceiling. You know, the one here you look up at all the asses above you and think, I could do better. Well, my schedule normalized and I wavered more than a politician on whether the time was right for me to go back and finish the degree I desperately needed. I made my choice of schools that worked with my schedule and bit the bullet (can I use any more clichés here?). I was a college student again.

 I had high hopes of being surrounded by higher thinking individuals; people who might challenge me to think of bigger and brighter things. By surround, I meant in the virtual world of online classes. You would think that anyone that can make an entry into a college level course that requires the use of a computer and internet would have some brain power to put together a thought or two. It just goes to show you that higher education does not mean higher intelligence.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not an elitist and think that I am smarter than anyone else in the expansive world we live in. I believe that others in my class are potentially just as able to use their minds as the next person. What I found were people who had the ability to do the work but the drive to barely get by. How can you inspire to be a better person through education and still do the bare minimum? I see this as a chance to learn new ideas, methods and expand the mind to have personal growth at a price tag that will choke even the monetarily blessed. If you are paying the amount we are for an education, why can’t you grab it for all it is worth? This isn’t high school anymore. The education isn’t free just because you are not paying for it now. The bill will come due. 

 The daily review of my classmates makes me wonder why they bother with doing it at all. They lack the effort to correct even the simplest grammar mistakes. Not that I have the best grammar but how can you not catch mistakes like “that would be the word I would of used.”? Instead of using the tools to communicate and share ideas, they simply log on and post “checking in” for attendance. Nothing and I mean nothing, irritates me more than someone who is lazy and unmotivated. You do not have to be smart or well read but you do have to try.

 Classrooms and discussions are supposed to be about the exchange of ideas and the sharing of thoughts between people with a common goal. If I wanted to just pass my time in this life I would have went the way of Dante and Randall and worked at the convenient store all my life.  I could have spent my entire day exchanging sophomoric rhetoric with other with a like mindset. At least then I would have been able to share thoughts with people.

 My disenchantment with the laziness of our current society will probably poke its evil little head out to rant from time to time. It seems the further we evolve, the less motivation we have. Everyone wants a handout and entitlement. What happened to working for it? I am where I am at in life for two reasons, I worked hard to get here and I didn’t work hard enough to be further along. I have nobody to blame but myself. I do not need someone giving me anything that I am not willing to work to get. Why do my fellow classmates think that doing the minimum will give them the degree they seek. Was there a special on a degree at Wal-Mart or something?

 Until next time…

 
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Posted by on August 12, 2010 in General

 

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