From Mercenaries to Missionaries

A favourite quote of mine is Buckminster Fuller’s, “You never change things by fighting against the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the old model obsolete.” I’ve been looking for a way to implement this philosophy into my work.

I spent some time with overseas intelligence officers last year, teaching leadership. For amusement I used the opportunity to subversively challenge their worldview under the guise of improving decision-making skills. By challenging them to argue for their enemies’ viewpoint, it soon became apparent that both sides had ideas worthy of consideration. People are complex beings. Ultimately though, the officers realised that after leaving the course, they would hit the paradigm inertia present within consolidated organisations and governments and have to continue working on the assumptions they held before.

So, upon my return I wrote a book called ‘From Mercenaries to Missionaries’. It’s a fusion of

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experience, observations and research whose purpose is to help business owners evolve into leaders who can unleash more of the purpose, passion and potential of the teams in growing businesses. Within society entrepreneurial people are creating wealth by selling products and services. To be successful they have to compete for their place in the Universe and bringing a product to the marketplace often requires a Herculean effort.  I realised by working with business owners, that once they achieve a certain measure of success, they can be persuaded to challenge the present paradigm, much like I did with the intelligence officers.

Businesses usually follow the ‘growth for growth sake’ mentality. This leads to growing teams of people who become less engaged, trading their time for money, constantly in need of a pay rise to maintain the levels of dopamine they get from opening their payslips. It’s the mercenary approach.  It becomes soulless and frustrating working in mercenary organisations as people become widgetized to remove uncertainty. But I help leaders harness the complexity and creativity within the team, not hide from it.

To challenge this paradigm in larger, consolidated organisations, is possible but it meets more paradigm inertia. So, this book helps founders and entrepreneurs develop high performing, intra-dependent teams who can make ecological decision which don’t sink the ship. This then allows the entrepreneur the freedom to solve other more meaningful problems and they can be guided to help their communities thrive too. I would say:

‘Inspirational leadership is ordinary people doing extraordinary things in a constantly shifting world. Leading themselves and, by example, others into a better world for everyone. A world which is environmentally sustainable, socially just, and a personally fulfilling place to live and work’.

Until we change the way we operate in society, I’m on a mission to challenge the entrepreneurial lifecycle helping them become purpose focussed instead of purely profit driven. By unlocking more of the potential of the team’s collective intelligence, organisations can become platforms for developing a new world which makes the old world obsolete.

Martin Murphy

Available on Amazon: http://www.tinyurl.com/ELITETEAMCONCEPT

 

SOAR to Success Thinking! Make having brilliant ideas easy

Our normal day to day working life or even just life itself can leave us feeling mentally confused. When we find ourselves so caught up in the whirlwind we often cannot see the wood for the trees.
In this fast-moving mental state, our brains are very capable at using past experiences to make a decision. In these situations, we make decisions intuitively and mostly this works okay. The more successful experiences we have built up over time in a particular field, the better our decision making will be when we face similar challenges in the future. That’s why experience counts in business. READ MORE

LEADERSHIP: Are you carrying or influencing your organisation?

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When I ask business owners the above question, they’ll often ask me what I mean. So I qualify the question with another one. I ask them:

“Could you go on holiday for four weeks, have no contact with your team whilst you’re away and know that the organisation can still thrive?”

Mostly the answer is a resounding “NO!” READ More

 

Learn the 3 R’s of RESILIENCE

stocksnap_7ph22tt1mx-800x533I’m sitting here at five AM, reflecting on my family’s recent journey as my partner and son sleep fitfully upstairs. After a month of planning and preparation we packed all our belongings into a trailer along with our yellow Labrador and set off for a new destination abroad. We had a dream just like Martin Luther King did. ‘Who dares wins’ they told me in the Special Air Service and we did. We dared and we worked and we failed. After six months of work and discomfort, just as we were about to launch our new project, the partners pulled the metaphorical carpet from beneath us, and pulled out.

So here I am sat in the darkness, feeling the huge responsibility of protecting my family. We’re homeless, we’re dreamless and considerably poorer as a result of this adventure. I still have hope though. READ More

RESILIENCE… Oxford’s word of the year for 2017?

stocksnap_0dtifdzwy8The Oxford English dictionary announced after much discussion and research, that the word of the Year for 2016 was post-truth.

It described post-truth as an adjective defined as

 ‘relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief’.

The word post-truth has been around for decades, but its usage spiked recently as a result of the Brexit referendum and the US elections. These two events combined with other daily news makes us all wonder if our environment, economy and society will survive. READ More

Developing Creative Brilliance in your Team (Part 1)

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The story goes that Einstein was daydreaming about travelling on rays of light and this led to his famous theory of relativity. But you don’t find many leaders asking their team to daydream. Leadership that unlocks the creative potential of a team requires some courage. It’s easier, one could argue, for giants such as Google to set aside 10% of their employee’s time for creative thinking. This strategy has reaped big rewards for Google but smaller firms struggle with doing this.

Creativity takes time and it also means letting go of control which is another challenge for some leaders.

READ More…

Make Better Decisions with Universal Intelligence

meetingSo imagine these scenarios. A group of Bankers are sat in an office and they are wondering how to extract more money from the public so they can all claim bigger bonuses. So they come up with what they believe is an ingenious solution. They wrap up some dodgy debts into some triple ‘A’ packaging. The rest is history, the effects of which are still reverberating around the world today.

Let’s take another meeting. A group of corporate leaders thinly disguised as politicians say to themselves:

“Let’s start a war in the Middle East, using a recent terrorist attack to unite public opinion, because we’re bound to win quickly and we’ll get all the contracts to rebuild the place and make gazillions.”

We all know how that’s still playing out. READ More:…

Paradigm Shifting to Success

 

“The biggest paradigm shifts happening right now are ironically the increasing awareness of the existence of paradigms…”

In his Book ‘The Sparadigm-shifttructure of Scientific Revolution’, Thomas Kuhn wrote that advancement was not evolutionary but rather a “series of peaceful interludes punctuated by intellectually violent revolutions” when “one conceptual worldview is replaced by another”.

These ‘paradigm shifts’- a term Kuhn created – are best thought of as a transformation driven by agents of change. Examples of change agents through history include the invention of mechanical automation, electrical technology and more recently the digital revolution. The next paradigm shift, known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution, will probably be the advance of ‘Smart’ technology which will unleash the potential of communities.

Paradigms themselves are useful as filters for problem solving and decision making within a particular system. They represent the existing worldview. But as Kuhn observed, clinging to the wrong paradigm means you can miss the blindingly obvious.  Read More:

Overcoming the Leader Wall

 

leader wallWatching the Olympics, I’m reminded of the fact I should go out and do more exercise.  At the moment I resemble the couch potato character ‘Denis’ played by Simon Pegg, in the movie ‘Run Fatboy Run’. In the movie Denis attempts to prove to the girl he jilted at the alter, that he can transform into somebody worthy of her attention again, by running in the London marathon.

There is a great scene in which, after many exhausting miles shuffling along the dark streets of London, Denis suddenly hits a brick wall. In his delirious state Denis can’t quite understand what the wall is. The wall symbolises the marathon runner’s wall or ‘the bonk’. It’s a stage when the glycogen stores in the liver and muscles are depleted and the runner literally runs out of energy.  To continue the runner must rely on other types of physical and mental processes to continue because the mind and body unanimously want to quit.

I think this is a great metaphor for entrepreneurs who get to a certain stage in their business life cycle….. READ More