chapter  8
14 Pages

Aspiring: Engaging Your Creative Potential

When faced with complexity, we make life easy by making things routine. After all, it makes good sense to use our brain's natural capacity to form routine patterns of thinking and behaving. Unfortunately, routines maintain the status quo. When we are in the business of out-innovating our competition, aspiring is an effective way of interrupting our routine patterns, causing new conversations to take place about exciting new possibilities. Once identified, these possibilities illuminate the gap between where we are and where we want to be. Aspiring defines what is missing, and the strategy and operating philosophy for success. It establishes a context for your work, a common sense of purpose and valuing among those invested in that success. It provides the focus, force, and direction required for our enterprise to fulfill its potential. Five key elements are viewed through the Aspiring Lens:

LISTENING The fictional detective Sherlock Holmes attributed his exceptional powers of detection to observing. As he told his

faithful companion Dr. Watson, "ordinary people see, but I observe." Listening is concerned with exploring, investigating, and collecting clues. The process of listening is about gathering information and discerning patterns of opportunity before anyone else. In most organizations today, listening has taken a back seat to the more predominant practice of telling. Power partnering is an attempt to reverse this trend by turning down the volume on your inner dialogue, speaking only to gain clarity and listening to people in ways that bring meaning to seemingly complex streams of ideas.