Chris Tomlin has a song called God of This City¹ that I like. In it, he says that “Greater things have yet to come, and greater things are still to be done in this city.”
The reason that “Greater things have yet to come” is that God is alive, and is working out his plan and purposes. Having that perspective certainly helps me maintain a better view of the big picture. It helps me get out of my own myopic, self-centric way of seeing my situation.
Bodybuilders will be quick to tell you “No Pain, No Gain”. While that may be true in the realm of workouts, it’s also true that “one must be willing to endure some inconvenience or discomfort in order to achieve worthwhile goals.”¹
It’s just stuff. But how quickly we become attached to it!
When we opened our new office building in 2005, I loved everything about it! We had planned, designed, and finally moved into the space of our dreams. I loved the open studio that was so conducive to collaboration and creativity. I loved having clients join us for a working lunch in our new conference room. I loved it when we hosted our Open House for and had it catered – such a fun time. I loved our staff. I loved having interns from the cold north come down to sunny Florida to be mentored and continue their education.
We tend to fall into the trap of thinking we are in control of our own destiny. Some people believe that “if you can dream it, you can do it”. Yes, it is true that it takes lots of effort and commitment to be successful in business, but there is more to it than just being focused, dreaming big, and putting in long hours. Success involves more than
There’s a story about a guy who is really doing well – he had such a good crop that his barns couldn’t hold his bounty. So, he thought to himself, “This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones”. It’s reminiscent of how many of us were just before the recession hit. If we leveraged ourselves to the hilt, took on significant levels of debt (knowing that things were going quite well for us) – we probably had a rude awakening!
Back when my son Jared was a boy, we enjoyed the adventures of Royal Rangers together. The Ranger motto was "Ready." The meaning of the motto was that we should be ready for anything! Ready to work, play, serve, obey, worship, live, etc.
John Wooden, the great basketball coach, said that "When opportunity comes, it's too late to prepare." You must prepare ahead of time to develop your skills and decision making so that when an opportunity presents itself, you will be READY¹.
Any football coach will tell you that attitude is everything. A bad attitude from even one guy on the team can become infectious. But the good news is that the same is true for a good attitude.
Good attitudes on a team do not guarantee its success, but bad attitudes guarantee its ruin¹," according to best-selling author and leadership expert John C. Maxwell.
In the book Natural Capitalism, I stumbled upon the Japanese term muda, which means "waste, futility or purposelessness". Talichi Ohno, father of the Toyota Production system, defined waste as "any human activity which absorbs resources but creates no value." This can take the form of repetitive stops in the production of design documents which could be streamlined, and services that don't really meet the needs of the client.¹