For any of you that have seen George Clooney's latest film "Up in the Air" you will know that he delivers a presentation where he talks about what's in your rucksack?  It's really a metaphor for reviewing the baggage that you might be carrying around with you that is dragging you down.

It got me thinking.  Many people in business face the same issue – they operate outdated procedures, employ staff that are not performing- yet not challenged to improve or change, and operate in the same way as always, just because……

Now I am not advocating change for no reason, but it's very useful to challenge your business or the other leaders in your organisation on a regular basis asking questions like:

  1. If you were looking back 10 years from now and telling the story of our company’s greatest success, what would it be and why?
  2. What does the company always need to remember, or forget?
  3. What prevents us from succeeding?
  4. If you had the power to do just one thing to change this business, what would it be and why?

These types of questions, are open and wide-ranging which encourage people to say what's really on their mind, without judgement of your performance. 

It is such a liberating experience, when you are freed up from something that drags you or your team down.  Just after Christmas, I decided to get rid of my TV (partly because we wanted make space for a new one).  It was snapped up immediately on Freecycle and since then we have not replaced it.  Something interesting occurred in doing that.  I immediately felt a sense of freedom, and with more space the room seemed much bigger.  In the evenings now, there is no temptation just to sit down and relax in front of it, and yes I still relax, but often now listening to the radio, or reading.  Last week I stayed in a hotel, and looked forward to the notion that there was a TV in the room as it seemed like a treat, not just something that you take for granted.

So ask yourself some searching questions, what could you or your business do without?  What sort of change would make a real impact?  Sometimes by doing the thing you fear most, it can be very liberating.