Archive for October, 2009

A Wise Message To All Leaders

What can you learn from Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s former and first Prime Minister, about leading your organization?

Lee Kuan Yew is the person who inspired Deng Xiansheng to lead china to open its market and create large scale economical changes. His reflections about Singapore in his conversation with Charlie Rose carry a wise message to all leaders:

Lee Kuan Yew says about Singapore:
“It has to be a place that is useful for the world, otherwise it wouldn’t exist. We have made ourselves relevant to the world.”
Asked: “How do you maintain relevance?”
“You keep on changing. You cannot maintain relevance by just staying put. The world changes; watch it and ride the surf.”

When asked: “what’s the most important thing you’ve learned in the last 20 years?”
Lee Kuan Yew replies: “The impossible can happen.”

The message for leaders:
1. How is your world changing?
2. How must you and your organization change to stay relevant and be useful for the world?
3. What “impossibles” will you make happen?

© Aviv Shahar

The 2020 Questions – Twenty Two Questions For A Threshold Decade

“What will this next decade be like?” We asked at a recent future-think-tank meeting. It quickly became clear we are looking at a Threshold Decade.

Why is the run up to 2020 a threshold decade? Our think-tank articulated key big questions that converge in an unprecedented way. Consider that during the coming decade, most of these will be addressed and possibly answered in one fashion or another:

  1. Energy – Are we on course to stop burning things to produce energy? Have we found elegant, ubiquitous and affordable energy-harvesting solutions (solar, ocean, algae, ammonia, thermal, wind, vibration and kinetic harvesting, and more)?
  2. Nuclear – Has a nuclear event (terrorist or state sponsored) been averted? Have we secured the world from nuclear weapons? Or are we back in a new, yet similar, mutually assured destruction balance-of-terror?
  3. Capitalism – Has Capitalism updated and renewed itself? Has it found a more sustainable and wiser path? Did market economy evolve to credibly embrace and benefit the other four Ps in addition to profit (People, Planet, Progress and Purpose)?
  4. China – What role has China taken on the world stage? How is the China experiment unfolding? Is the Party able to promote market economy and sustain its control?
  5. Middle Class – Has there been a resurgence of the Middle Class in the US and Europe? Is the Middle Class growing in China, India, Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia, Russia and other countries? This is likely to determine the stability of the democratic framework and how democracies evolve around the world.
  6. Currency – What is the new currency regime? Has it taken the form of a basket of currencies? Two or three universal currencies? A new dollar arrangement? Or a complete fragmentation of the system, leading to pockets of bartering economies?
  7. Islam – Are Moslem women enjoying freedom and equality? Has there been a credible moderate Islamic leadership that captured popularity and harnessed the hopes and aspirations of engagement and progress? Have younger generations chosen a moderate Islamic leadership or followed a militant path?
  8. Global Institutions – What forums serve efficaciously global and planetary needs? How effective is the China – America collaboration? How are the G2, G8, G20 and other global institutions producing results?
  9. Middle East – Has there been a Middle East resolution that gave hope to Israelis and Palestinians? Or are we entrenched in non-solutions and demographic impossibility?
  10. Health & Medicine – What is the evolving integral understanding of health? What are the new game-changers in medicine? How is personalized medicine evolving and is it delivering on its promise? What forms of integrated medicine are embraced and bring results?
  11. Obama – What has become the Obama legacy? Has he fulfilled or disappointed the young generation that brought him to the White House? How have the relationships of citizenry with the state changed, or not?
  12. Culture – How have culture and beliefs about life, wealth, wellness and what’s valued shifted and evolved, or not?
  13. Women – With the battle of the sexes over, have we moved to a new quality of leadership and creative collaboration between the genders? Have we transcended the gender equality battle and the love/hate syndrome that accompanied this struggle to mature negotiation, ready to explore anew the significance of the genders working in creative mutuality?
  14. Philosophy – What ideas and thinking can narrow the chasm between science and religion and offer relevant guidance to political and social debates? Are we able to hold a coherent integral conversation about the divisive issues of the day?
  15. Poverty – Is Muhammad Yunus’s vision of eliminating poverty (and creating a poverty museum) any closer? Can the planet’s resources support a continual population growth? Or is the trend reversed and the population is shrinking?
  16. Africa – Which countries in Africa were able to emerge and begin to escape the history of pillage and failure? What meaningful and hopeful game-changing breakthroughs are seen in Africa?
  17. Education – Modern education was first shaped by the industrial age and was then aligned to meet the technological age – what education templates best integrate and prepare the whole-person to realize their creative and spiritual potential in the age of transformation?
  18. Climate – What are the conditions at the poles? Is there global agreement about climate questions? Have there been definitive global policies enacted?
  19. Spirituality – What forms of spirituality answer the needs of the time and the calling of new generations? Are the impulses of self as source, universal consciousness and conscious evolution emerging and capturing mindshare, or not?
  20. Time – How are people using and applying increasing freedom and time? What are they doing on their fifth day?
  21. Galactic Life –How are we exploring anew nearby and distant space? Have we made contact with intelligent life outside our planet?
  22. You – How have you transformed your world?

© Aviv Shahar

What Is True Success Podcast

You do not have to be Sir James Galway to play the flute and you do not have to be Sergey Brin or Larry Page to start a successful company. You do not have to be Michael Phelps to swim. You do not have to be Kristi Yamaguchi to get on the ice. You can do all of these things.

Listen to an excerpt from our seminar: Discover Your Sweet Spot.

© Aviv Shahar

Unhappiness Epidemic At Work

The Economist writes this week in Hating What You Do about the epidemic of unhappiness at work. It claims “the most obvious reason for the rise in unhappiness is the recession, which is destroying jobs at a startling rate and spreading anxiety throughout the workforce. But the recession is also highlighting longer-term problems.”

We find the analysis superficial and narrow minded. The recession is a big trigger for anxiety but not the cause for unhappiness. Unhappiness is an expression of multiple factors and currents in the lives of people. These include:

  1. Loss of the sense of control
  2. Unpreparedness to adjust one’s expectations
  3. Inability to cope with change and adapt through transitions
  4. A sense of disenfranchisement, isolation and lack of support
  5. Energetic depletion
  6. Chemical imbalance
  7. Loneliness, alienation and missing companionship and intimacy
  8. Inability to connect with and impact your environment (work, social, culture…)
  9. Loss of autonomy and the sense of dignity
  10. Spiritual deprivation and hunger for meaning and significance

Happy teams and happy organizations are able to integrate and foster the five Ps. In addition to Profit they benefit and help: People, Planet, Progress and Purpose.

© Aviv Shahar

True Success

True success is not simply getting to the top. You do not need to win a gold medal. Not at all. True success is doing what you love to do and doing it fully well to create results that last beyond you. Success is to find your sweet spot and express your passion and capabilities in ways that make a difference and create significance.

To succeed is to do what you have chosen to do and to be free to do it fully.

© Aviv Shahar

The Future Is Not Reasonable

The future is not reasonable. How CAN it be?
Your reasons are based in what you know and what you understand. The future is not. What is emerging now is not just beyond your reason. It’s beyond reason. The age of reason is over. Sense-making can no longer be based on what you know. But what can it be based on?

In 2020 at least a fifth of the workforce will be engaged in jobs that do not exist today, addressing needs and problems not identified as yet and applying technologies that have not even been thought about yet. A sense-making function based on what you know is a dead-ender. You cannot expect to reason your way out of change, crisis or chaos. The future is unthinkable. It is unreasonable. And yes, it is unbelievable.

Problems and opportunities do not present themselves as givens. They show up from seemingly unconnected dynamics and from shape-shifting circumstances and puzzling, unrelated continuums. You cannot reason your way through a rapidly shape-shifting picture. You engage, you inquire to open doors to discover and to participate, learn, acquiesce and co-create.

Entitlement is a brick wall washed away by the flood of a new day. Yesterday’s rationale is not permission granting in a new now. What was is different. Your task is to find now, to discover how you are different in it.

The future is not reasonable. You cannot unlock it with history. You cannot manage it through pride. Change happens in the blink on an eye. It happens during sleep. You go to sleep in one world and wake up in another. The answer is not about never going to sleep. It is to be fully alert and engaged when you are awake. And then, it is to keep one eye or your mind’s eye open when you are asleep. Every day you wake up to a new and different world. Yesterday has no entitlement today. Today is not its continuation. It is not an overrun of yesterday. Today appears out from seemingly nowhere. It is a tomorrow that has been unveiled.

You become a shape-shifter inside a shape-shifting change, not to surrender your core but to become mutable and adaptive in your methods and ways. Your core values, capabilities, talent, passion and purpose are not invalid. They are more important than ever. They are your glue for tomorrow, your future bound viscosity. It’s the delivery system and engagement format that needs updating. Think RNA instead of DNA. As the world around you changes you need to RNA yourself anew inside it.

© Aviv Shahar

Discover Your Sweet Spot Tele-seminar – Are You Joining Us?

Discover Your Sweet Spot Tele-seminar – Are You Joining Us?
We’ve added 50 lines to our Mastery Tele-Seminar this Friday, October 9th 2:00 p.m. EDT – Discover Your Sweet Spot!
I will share with you original insights that helped transformational leaders create results. You will gain new insights to:
• What is the sweet spot?
• How do you find your sweet spot at work and in life?
• What are the strategies you ought to employ in the short and long terms?
Please join us. Email me at aviv(at) for tele-seminar details!

We’ve added 50 lines to our Mastery Tele-Seminar this Friday, October 9th 2:00 p.m. EDTDiscover Your Sweet Spot!

I will share with you original insights that helped transformational leaders create results. You will discover:

• What is the sweet spot?

• How do you find your sweet spot at work and in life?

• What are the strategies you ought to employ in the short and long terms?

Please join us. Email me at aviv(at) for tele-seminar details!

© Aviv Shahar

The KEY: The Ten Faces of Leadership

Discover the Ten Faces of Leadership and reflect on your leadership strengths. Identify the most critical leadership capacities you must now focus on and exercise. Lead your teams to create the future.

Leadership is situational. The requirements of each situation are unique. Needs and opportunities change and are based on circumstance. Great leaders are adaptive and versatile – they instinctively assess the requirements of the situation, adapt and frame their style and modus operandi to best serve. Here are the Ten Faces of leadership, coupled with the five-color learning code.

© Aviv Shahar

Where Else?

Where else can you drive a little over an hour and have a private mountain lake?

Where else is the beauty and the replenishing power of mother-nature so abundant, well looked after, guarded and ready to offer its embrace?

It’s the Pacific Northwest!

Here are a few shots of yours truly, keeping the annual summer pledge to dip in a mountain lake, swimming in the cold water of Dorothy Lake.
Dorothy Lake blog

Dorothy 1 09

Dorothy Lake 3

From Boulder Canyon Falls

Boulder Canyon 1

Boulder Canyon 2

Creating Your Own Bull Market – Your Fifth Progress Measure

The fifth measure of growth and progress in how you apply your precious assets – Time, Energy, Relationships and Focus is found in the Bull Market principle.
Learn about:
– What defines a ‘bull market’?
– How to create your own bull market?
– How do you apply this idea in your customer service?

© Aviv Shahar

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