You know those catch up conversations that start with"How are you?" and the the one word response is "Busy".
My version of the above question is to ask: "What has been keeping you busy this week ?". This usually leads to a more detailed discussion of what has been going on in that person's life, whether that is a challenging week at work, holidays, family events, an unfinished project that is finally moving forward , or as simple as an update on how your sporting team did.
I decided to expand and go deeper and tell stories and write essays about what has been keeping me busy.
There are several themes or threads which keep me busy:
The plan is not to write about all of them, all of the time, some are private and very family orientated and there are plenty of blogs about parents and the cute goings on of their offspring, and what to do when they are not so cute.
I belive that with family you can try and do too much sometimes you just have to be in the moment and experience what happens. My parents told me for years that having kids can bring you the most joy. For years I ignored this, even when I was married, the idea of kids and being a parent did not fill me with joy. Of course once, my wife and I had children and experienced the highs and lows of being a parent and the sheer joy of being a parent and being a part of your child's life, your realise that maybe your parents were right. But it is not necessairluy something that you can tell or teach someone, it just has to be experienced.
In this 24/7 ever on and always connected world, sometime we need to just experience life....and then maybe write about it and share it !
Why a travel diary
Growing up I read Jules Verne, Ian Fleming, F.Scott Fitgerald, Jack Kerowac and Ernest Hemmingway. Although my writing will never be in their league (pun intended) I feel that that after a day of big game fishing "Papa" would have written a travel diary.
I have done a lot of traveling and have had a wonderful life so far that has allowed me to live and work in so many great locations including, Russia, Africa, Europe, Asia and the Carribean. For 10 years I lived and worked overseas as a management consultant working on telecommunications start up projects during the first wave of de regulation of the telecommunications market and the creation of the mobile phone and internet industry that occured as a result.
Since returning to Australia I have continued to work as a consultant focused on helping to put together technology deals. Often this is not just about the technology but also involves the commercial model or business case, managing the process of chnage within an organisation and getting the technology to help the business to better understand their customers and so serve them better, either with more targetted offers or a just a better customer experience.
Putting all of these pieces is about telling a story. When my son was younger he would ask me what I did for a "job". He was really into pirates and I explained that I was like the pirate captain who had a treasure map, but then had to organaise all of the other pirates to join me on this adventure to seek the treasure. Sometimes the pirates fought amongst themselves and never managed to reach treasure island. Sometimes other pirates reached treasure island first and got all of the gold and sometimes the navy stopped the pirates being bad (hello internal due diligence teams). My son's only question though was "Did I get to fire the cannon ?".
The analogy works in some cases but the point is that often in business, particularly technology enabled businesses is that the art of story telling is an important part of creating a successful project. Whether that is being able to convince a customer to take on the project, or how an investment will evolve, or encouraging a delivery team why they should work on your project, the business of story telling is key.
The badly described and not always followed basis of my life philosphy is to work hard and to be open to new opportunities. The work hard thing comes from the protestant work ethic which envelopes much of the western world. Work hard and you will be rewarded.
On the work hard side I have always been an advocate of the work smarter to be more effective. This is not about working longer hours but involves priortisation of what is important and removing the crazy busy stuff that can sometimes pass for work but is just other people's agenda crowding out your own effectiveness.
I have a another blog where I write about projects and start ups, you can read more here.
You can also some of the videos I have made and posted to youtube here.
The second pillar is to be open to new opportunities, decisions are made by those who turn up. So being involved and being open can lead you to new and exciting adventures. Of course this should be tempered with a healthy dose of skeptism. Nobody wants to be taken for a fool. But you have to be in it to win it.
Along the travel through life you learn some things about yourself and some life lessons which you may deem worthy to pass your friends, family, children or other interested travelers.
This is my travel journey and take what you like from it and enjoy.
Sydney March 2015