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Tulipa “Grand Perfection” CC0

Some of us are perfectionists by nature. Others have been taught to be sure that everything is 100% right before turning it in, releasing it, or handing it off to a client. But we may be shooting for perfection based on assumptions that may not be complete or correct. How can we prioritise and deliver good outcomes? Maybe there is another way.

Often when developing a project, product, or initiative, our goal is the perfect solution. We think, we tweak, we revise, we polish until we believe we have reached perfection. That is a worthy goal. However, how often do we know everything we need to know to make that happen? …


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There is simply no way to overestimate the power of narrative and storytelling. Perhaps it is counterintuitive, but even in our hyper-connected digital world, storytelling has become more critical than ever.

Information and data can travel fast, but narratives have still real impact. As humans, we tend to always ask, “why?” than “what?” or “how?”. The “why” is the story behind everything we do and everything we want to achieve. We may not think much about it, but narrative sets the framework for our understanding. It helps define what is normal and what is legitimate. …


We make tens of thousands of decisions every day. Fortunately, most of them, like which shirt to choose from our closet, have no life-altering implications. However, we all face more impactful decisions that can affect our lives, work, and even the lives of others.

Unfortunately, decision making has no simple rules and is as much art as science. Making things even more difficult is that our decision-making process is often flawed from the very beginning. This is because of the assumptions we make, often without even knowing it. …


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We all make the occasional bad decision. For some of us, like me, that poor choice is often related to a lack of patience. Our lack of capacity to tolerate delay can lead to poor decision making and often causes us to fall into common decision making traps. Let’s try to reflect more on our (im)patience.

Some research relate patience and risk aversion to intelligence and overall cognitive ability. In the most basic terms, higher-IQ individuals seem to be more patience and are more risk-averse than those with a lower IQ. But if you are impatient, you are obviously not automatically stupid and the research doesn’t go as far as saying that intelligent people are always patient or always make risk-appropriate choices. …


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Can you even remember? Do you think you actually ever have? Let’s change that!

Our smartphones have become an integral part of most of our waking hours and nearly all aspects of our lives. Phones can be useful tools that give us access to a wealth of information and allow us to communicate instantly with nearly anyone in the world. But, they certainly have a downside. When our phones are on, they demand our attention. Rings, chimes, and buzzes pull us away from where we are and what we are doing to shift our focus.

Even when we turn off all the notifications, there is a constant temptation to check email, read the latest news, or browse social media. The marvels of technology can quickly become a source of stress and distraction, stealing our focus and time, preoccupying us, and keeping us from being present in our life and work. …


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For as long as internal combustion engines have been a part of our daily lives, petrol stations have been part of our landscape. It didn’t take long for the owners of these stations to realize that they could sell more than just petrol. The service station concept was quickly developed, offering oil changes, car washes, tires, and batteries. Eventually, station owners realized they could provide even more convenience to customers by providing food, drinks, and even groceries. The first gas station “convenience store” was opened in 1927 in Dallas, Texas, USA, eventually becoming the American favorite, 7-Eleven. But all of these concepts were based around petrol refueling, which is a relatively fast process. That meant that all of the offerings were intended to be quick as well. …


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In the midst of this world-changing, life-altering pandemic we call COVID-19, it is getting hard to remember what life was actually like before. In the context of our lifetimes, we really haven’t been stuck in our homes that long. However, it has been long enough that we might need to take a moment to try to record a glimpse of what the old normal was.

Most of us are still working from our homes, staying inside except to run out for groceries or take-out, not allowed to go out and do the things we enjoy. This might be a perfect time to think back to what normal was actually like. We read every day that „life will never be the same.“ …


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For many, the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to the most significant period of uncertainty in our history. From both a personal and global perspective, there is an unprecedented level of ambiguity. We face a lack of clarity about what is happening and what will happen over the coming days, weeks, and months. At the same time, there is no lack of information. Anyone with a smartphone can access seemingly endless amounts of news, information, data, and opinion, much of it is conflicting, and some of it flat out false.

In the midst of this uncertainty and while facing overwhelming amounts of information, for most, there is one thing lacking: a sense of control. Many people are living in areas that are locked down, facing limitations to the rights we take for granted. We can no longer go where we want when we want, and we may have trouble finding food, paper goods, and other necessities. …


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When was the last time you truly stopped to celebrate, as an individual or as a team? We may have forgotten the essential nature of celebrations, especially in uncertain times. Today’s fast-paced, always-on, hyper-efficient culture full of threats often ignores the fact that celebrating is an integral part of how we live in community together. It is also how we recognize the ebb and flow of life. If we look throughout history and around the world, humans have always invested time and resources in celebration. …


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Parental leave is a strangely still a controversial topic. Some corporations and governments, especially in the United States (one of three countries in the world which does not have any federally mandated parental leave), resist leave policies as too burdensome or expensive. Others, like Germany or Sweden, have generous policies (f.e. German Parents can apply for parental allowance as a state financial support) but they are still tying women to the home.

In reality, employers who have embraced paid family leave have found that it is, in fact, quite the opposite. They find that giving employees parental leave, whether by choice or regulation, has at best, a positive impact on productivity and profitability, and at worst, no impact at all. Companies that offer generous family leave options also report increases in overall employee retention, loyalty, and satisfaction, which, in turn, increase productivity and profits. …

About

Christian Heise

Christian is a manager, activist, author, lecturer and curator. https://christianhei.se

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