Children are naturally adaptable because that is how humans are born– flexible and curious.
As we grow up though, we become inflexible and rigid in thought. Why isn’t it the opposite?
Here’s my thinking: We should provide a training regimen to keep our minds flexible. It’ll make us better business people and human beings, and will make our world better.
Edward de Bono taught us that routine thinking destroys creativity. We need tools like Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies cards and de Bono’s Po to keep us on our toes.
Humans tend to solve problems the same way over and over again, so we need to teach people that the best answer isn’t always the one that comes first. We all need to learn that, once we get one solution, there can (and often is) a better one further along the path… if we keep trying.
Those who stay adaptable despite their age need appropriate reward mechanisms that show others that staying flexible is a valuable goal. I don’t know if we can do this financially, but in some ways we’re often doing the opposite– media calling those who change their views flip-floppers, for example, does nothing but start unneeded controversy.
The faster a workforce and a company’s executives is to adapt to a new environment or situation, the faster they can thrive when things are turned around on them. Companies need to incentivize those who move fast.
Humans are naturally submissive in a lot of ways. We habitually look away from people when they look at us, and we shy away from leadership because we fear making mistakes. But mistakes are the stuff of life– it’s how we learned not to touch the burner on the hot stove.
This actually deserves its own post, now that I think about it, but there’s a real problem with the way we’re brought up. We learn by making mistakes, but those mistakes also teach us to fear a lot more than we need to. We need to find ways to absorb the idea that the worst will usually not (or never) happen. How can we do this?
Anyway, those are three ideas to start you off, but I want to hear what you think next– write a post about this and link me, this needs to be talked about.
(Hat tip: Bob Goyetche)
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