Tout a mentor’s role, while novice talents are mostly ignored and you’ll foster tired traditions that prevent new advances where you work.
If your organization supports mentoring, you’d be interested to know it can literally defeat advantages you hoped for, such as community building or new advances people run with.
Change often feels anything but easy …
Ever ask with that popular poster, How can you fly with eagles when you work with a bunch of turkeys?
It feels as if your brain is hard-wired more for chipping away at endless daily routines that tank your talents. You suit up to lead lofty adventures, yet too often ruts keep you pecking away like turkeys, day after day. Do you ever wonder why you slide back so easily into doing the same boring things that spin your wheels but go nowhere? It may seem reasonable once or twice. But over and over again?
Some people blame their supervisors, others say lack of funds keeps them down in the dust.
Are you aware though, that blame robs creative oomph, drowns change and leaves you stuck in ruts? Fault finding blocks focus from seeing those game-changing horizons that complainers only crave.
It doesn’t have to be that way, and your success often depends on how you handle detractors. When Gordon, a British Columbia School Superintendent, tried to involve parents in the daily interactions of his large district, several secondary school faculty threatened to quit.
Cynicism trumped his changes at every step …
Protesters insisted that when outsiders (namely parents) try to control their classrooms, they can no longer teach effectively and test scores suffer. Critics countered even small suggestions to include parents, with anxious retorts that parents know nothing about secondary school content, yet act as if they’re in charge.
For months Gordon tried to win over detractors, while a vocal few spread cynicism across schools averting any progress toward collaboration. Nothing worked and gloom spread across change suggestions like the aftermath of nuclear fallout spreads across a once-vibrant village.
Allies opened spigots of hope …
Then Gordon called a meeting with four highly-respected teachers.
After a few hours of brainstorming they’d integrated four disciplines under one umbrella topic – LIGHT. Each of the four classes met learning standards and yet lessons also included student-led topics that teens enjoy.
Enthusiasm carried that first meeting into shared pizza and late night noodling ….
Are you relying on people moving into new waters, wwithout oars to move? For instance, people in toxic workplaces may need help to interface with innovation.
Infighting results in shutdowns or shotguns that eliminate the innovation many value and still crave.
One newly introduced skill -mindguiding – draws from right and left brains to convert infights into inventions. How so?
In today’s New York Times, Steve Lohr crowned Steve Jobs as Master of Design.
Countless writers and commenters agree to Job’s genius that changed our world with technology.
Lohr’s post points to Job’s growth from mentor in his earlier years – who …
… was notoriously hands-on, meddling with details and berating colleagues.
Yet later, Lohr reflects, at Job’s second stint at Apple he differed, in that he
… relied more on others, listening more and trusting members of his design and business teams.
Mentoring in today’s corporate culture looks a lot like hands-on meddling – that tends to replicate past possibilities and miss genius gateways forward. Have you seen it?
Those who refuse to unpack idols worshiped in the past era, struggle to risk innovative alternatives for the coming era. We still tend to worrship 10 barriers to innovation …