I admire analytical minds and am honored to work with many of them- my own is not necessarily one of them. The analytical mind thinks like a chess player (which I do love to play) who has the patience for the game (which I actually don’t). I love to plan and play in my mind several moves ahead of the game, I just have a hard time waiting patiently for the moves to play out. That being said, there are some strengths associated with getting to the point, which I will explain.
In the world of business, I make it a practice to read many books and find wonderful applicable truths in most of them. Many of them these days are compilations of hundreds of authors work and experience; you have to filter through a lot of minutia to get to the morsels. I was really thrilled to find in my last read, “The Art of the Start” by Guy Kawasaki, his formula of cutting through to what matters most. It was like playing 30 second chess.
He read my mind when he talked about mission statements: “The fundamental shortcoming of most mission statements is that everyone expects them to be highfalutin and all-encompassing. The result is a long, boring, commonplace, and pointless joke.” I remember when mission statements were a big deal in business- and we created one; but I could never relate to a long drawn out statement (as pretty as the words were arranged) and couldn’t express it with conviction because it was both too long to remember and too boring to keep ones interest even if I could remember all of it. I was always more about a rallying cry, which Guy Kawasaki calls a “Mantra.”
In the past year, our company has gone from a long vision and values statement (mission statement if you will) to a simple vision, which clarifies our purpose. We were also recently searching for an “Over-arching” goal or rallying cry that would add meaning to our existence on a daily basis. We invited the company to participate and received many great suggestions. In the end, it was apparent that everything we were trying to do was improve and excel on a daily basis. “Exceeding Expectations” has now become our mantra and mission statement all in one. I love simplicity. In both business and personal quests, a “Mantra” can have a great impact and purpose. Here are some examples of good Mantra’s:
● Authentic athletic performance (Nike)
● Fun family entertainment (Disney)
● Rewarding everyday moments (Starbucks)
● Think (IBM)
● Exceeding expectations (US-Reports, Inc.)
If you have not yet developed some mantras in your life—I invite you to embark on this experience.