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  • Renato Zane

Spread Your Wings

One of the challenges of the modern work environment is that our days are often dictated by project lists, competing deadlines, to-do requests and meetings of all kinds. Do you have time to think more broadly about the direction of the organization you serve, your personal progress, lessons learned, innovation, your working life in general?

I hold in my mind an image. It's of days in the 1990s and early 2000s when I was invited by my boss to visit him in his office. These were periodic chats with no agenda. He had an easy chair and a couch. We would just sit and talk. He was genuinely curious about everything. He appeared oblivious to the clock. We relaxed. He asked how I was feeling emotionally, what I was working on, who were the people in my department who were shining in their roles, what I was wrestling with, how I perceived the business, the company, my role and so on.

He wasn't on a fishing expedition for intel; he was just a creative humanist who understood the importance of holding space for thinking, curiosity and creativity. He was a disciple of Edward De Bono, one of the pioneers of brain training and thinking as a skill. He used the effective communication and imaging tool that is the white board to its full potential.

In that safe space, we did some interesting problem-solving, personal assessments, strategizing and direction-setting. It was non-stressful and uplifting. It was natural and organic. And it was good for both of us AND for the company.

What he did for me, he did for a lot of my colleagues. We all performed with more confidence and collectively achieved some amazing results.

On Sunday afternoons, away from technology (he was never a slave to it), he would carve out some thinking time for himself and think broadly about the business, then set out his tasks for the week.

What he did for me, I now try to do for others. I am a curious, confidential listener for people who want to improve their performance at work.

If you don't have a thought-partner at work and feel that that this type of mentorship coaching could be beneficial to you, just get in touch with me.

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