I was listening to The Tim Ferriss Show and his guest was Ricardo Semler. He is the former CEO of Semler Partners and he grew his father’s business from making four million in 1982 to 212 million in 2003. He now has a podcast called Leadwise that challenges what we think about the way we live our lives at home and at work.
When he joined his dad’s company, at age 19, he didn’t understand why they did things they way they did. He talks about asking three whys and how by the third why, many find they aren’t really sure why it’s done that way at all.
He released the entire company leadership team when he started and began again. He asked people if they wanted hours that balanced family life, and he stopped the protocol of searching employees as they left their shifts to ensure they weren’t stealing the valuable products they were selling. Loss of inventory through theft plummeted.
He also said if you ask an employee how many widgets they sell a week and they say 53, remind them that they can sell them however they see fit. And if they have sold them by Wednesday, they can go to the beach on Thursday and Friday.
He said, “Once employees feel challenged, invigorated and productive, their efforts will naturally translate into profit and growth for the organization.”
What processes can we question in our own lives to see if they can be changed? Why do we move through our days the way we do? Who wrote the rules we follow and can we write some new ones?
How can we motivate ourselves and those around us to do the same? What lights our fire and how can we use that flame to make our daily job something that keeps us secure and makes us feel like we are making an impact?
Life is all about choices. Which choices will make us flourish?