BBS020 - Commitment, Dogma and Changes : focus for 2016?
Jan 25 2016
G'day, this is Ken Simpson, and welcome back to Beyond the Black Stump for 2016. Despite January being almost over, I guess it is still appropriate to wish listeners a Happy New Year. This is Episode 20 of the show that I launched back in September last year. This episode was originally supposed to be published 2 weeks ago on the 8th of January - but I have been a little slow getting back into things this year. Traditionally many use this time of the year as a trigger to reflect on the last 12 months, and to plan for the year ahead. That's what this week and next weeks shows are about - ideas about how we view, plan and achieve our objectives. First, and most importantly, Thank you to all those who have listened to the show during 2015, and a special thank you to those who have offered feedback. You are the people who make it all worthwhile. Also thank you to those practitioners who took the time to talk to me and share their ideas and experience with the wider community. When I checked the stats on 21st January there have been 1,352 downloads of the show, and the randomness of what show is downloaded and when highlights the value of this on-demand content. It doesn't matter when I record or release the show, it is there when you want to listen. The most popular shows, or perhaps the most popular or best connected guests, have been Episode #9 with Jason Gotch (102 downloads), closely followed by Episode #5 with Rina Bhakta (101 downloads), then Episode #3 with Nat Forbes at 95 downloads. Even the least listened to show drew 40 downloads, which is still good to see. And of course that show, and all the others are still there for anybody to download and listen in the future. When I started my blog back in 2009, if I got any hits on a post it was special. Today I have over 300 posts on my blog, and if I get 40-100 hits on a post that is still pretty special. So thanks again for your support. It was also great to meet so many people in the real world this year. I was fortunate enough to get to three really good conferences and took those opportunities to discuss ideas face-to-face. In April I got to catch up with US colleagues at Continuity Insights Management Conference, which has been a great event both times I have attended. Then towards the end of the year I was able to get over to the BCI World Conference where I had the opportunity to present and discuss old and new ideas around the future of our practice. Great to see so many international people at that event - and a very much improved event over my previous visit. In between there was the Australasian BC Summit - which frankly has grown into one of the best international events. Plenty of different and challenging ideas presented, and we can learn a little about what is being planned for the 2016 conference on the show next week with Glen Redstall. But enough reflection, let's start thinking about 2016 - and here is a challenge to you for your own development. Have you looked at your personal development plan for the year? Have you planned to attend any conferences? More importantly, are you planning to attend any conferences or development opportunities outside the discipline? A narrow focus will ensure you build fragility and vulnerability - even if that narrow focus is on the discipline of Business Continuity. Resilience is a multi-disciplinary endeavour. Let's focus back on what we want to achieve in the next 12 months - we all get the same allocation of time, 525,600 minutes. In fact in 2016 you get a bonus 1,440 minutes as it is a Leap Year! What do you want to achieve with your allocation? Have you made a "resolution" to change or improve some aspect of your thinking or practice in 2016? Recently I read an article in the Washington Post reporting some research that about 45% of people have abandoned their "New Year Resolutions" by the end of January. I hope you are not one of them. I guess I was always fairly bad with those resolutions - vague and aspirational things like "I am going to get fit this year", or "I am going to lose weight". About 6 years ago I heard about an alternative method, which has worked for me and you may find the idea useful. It is a technique I picked up from a guy named Chris Brogan, and will I link to several posts where I have written about the idea in the Show Notes for those who want details. Instead of the traditional "resolutions" identify 3 words that you use to focus your efforts, thoughts and activities each day. The words are brief and can be read quickly. The value is in the meaning that you, and you alone, have assigned to those words. Let me use my own focus words for 2015 to illustrate the technique. Remember this is about the meaning that we assign to our focus words - the words do not have to have the same power for anybody else. For 2015 my three focus words were; 274 Time Value Ok, technically 274 is a number but this is how it works. It reminded me everyday (because it is at the top of my Daily Review checklist) that my first focus in 2015 was to create a significant body of work. I defined that to myself as 100,000 words, which breaks down to 274 words every day. At the time I was thinking mainly around traditional writing and publishing. But during the year I resolved to launch this show, it became my primary vehicle for delivering that significant body of work. The focus remained, the goals and activities needed to deliver changed. For those of you who are wondering - yes I hit well over that target over the year. If you want to delve into the meaning I attached to the other words, the blog post is linked in the Show Notes. For 2016 I have modified my focus and chosen 3 new words. Content Community Professionalisation As I said earlier, last year I started to move away from the written word (primarily my blog and the Resilience Ninja Newsletter) to an audio podcast as a primary platform. This year I want focus on a range of different forms of content, more Webinars, some online courses and perhaps some video podcasts. "Content" also works as a reminder to focus on the audience and what they might find useful. David Linstedt who you met in Episodes 10 & 11 of the show has some good video podcasts you might want to check out. Link is in the show notes. And that is an example of my second focus. Community - is both the focus to build a community around the show, the newsletter and the ideas being discussed in the various content - plus a focus to promote the idea that no single person, profession, discipline or body of knowledge can build a resilient organisation on their own. No single discipline owns the concept. To borrow and adapt a slogan - It takes a village to build and maintain resilience. Encouraging thinking and removing the limitations we impose on our own ideas - the core objective of this show - is an essential enabler to breaking down the barriers and silos between the various disciplines that sit in the resilience field. This year that will mean talking with more practitioners from outside the legacy BC space, and sharing their ideas and thoughts around the concept of resilience and how to progress it. Perhaps we may even encourage a "community of practice" to grow around resilience. Finally, and this is probably going to be the controversial one, Professionalisation. I have never viewed BC as a profession, I still don't. But perhaps it is time to focus on what the professionalisation of BC would look like, or what changes might need to occur for that to happen. This last focus are is inspired by the theme of the BCI Australasian Summit – from practice to profession. This focus word represent a research project for the year. I don’t know yet what the goals and steps along the way might look like yet. More about this focus area in future posts as the project unfolds. Next week on the show I will be talking to Glen Redstall about the 2016 Australasian Summit and he will be sharing 3 words that he thinks could be applicable across the discipline. What is your focus for 2016 and what will tools or techniques you use to guide your actions? If you have suggestions come and add them to the show page on the Black Stump LinkedIN group. Whatever you want to achieve here are two ideas that might help you. The first idea is best explained in the word of Ken Blanchard; “There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when it's convenient. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses - only results.” If really want to achieve change in 2016, you need to be committed to it, not just thinking it might be a good idea. You also need to ensure you can maintain your commitment to your commitment! It needs ongoing work and effort. If you need ideas to take things down a level and focus on specific goal setting and achievement than subscribe to the Resilience Ninja Newsletter, it is free, but the content is not available to non-subscribers. The second idea comes from Steve Jobs. It is about finding your own voice and your own ideas. It is hard to remain committed to an idea or practice you never really accepted or saw the value of. This quote is from Job's famous 2005 Commencement speech at Stanford University - and rather than me read it, here is the quote from Jobs himself - Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. The entire speech is worth listening to, and I have linked the YouTube video in there Show Notes. Finally, this month saw the passing of David Bowie. In 1973, as a 17 year, I lived and worked in London for 18 months which was an amazing contrast from life as a high school student in Melbourne. One of the vivid memories of that time was seeing colour TV of the first time, and Bowie in full Ziggy Stardust personae on "Top of the Pops". Bowie's career offers some worthwhile guidance for our efforts to build and maintain resilience - it requires constant review and re-invention to stay relevant. He didn't simply publish a single style or "body of knowledge" and think it would remain relevant forever - he constantly reviewed and changed his approach. Not surprising that this is perhaps my favourite Bowie track - until next week, take care on your journey. And these children that you spit on As they try to change their worlds Are immune to your consultations They're quite aware of what they're going through Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes (Turn and face the strange) Ch-ch-changes Don't tell them to grow up and out of it Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes (Turn and face the strange) Ch-ch-changes Where's your shame You've left us up to our necks in it Time may change me But you can't trace time