Naseem Javed: Are you Softmental?
Back in the last century, if you were the CEO of a major Fortune 500 organisation, you commanded from your huge office from the very top floor of one of the tallest skyscrapers in the city. As the oxygen of the organisation was sucked upward, you and the rest of the team knew with certainty that this was the center of the universe. Of course this worked wonders, and this format also provided the best of the best business minds to deploy the best ‘hardmental’ strategies of the period.
THE HARDMENTAL PHASE
Hardmental thinking is a state of mind where the mind acts like a goal keeper, catching nicely baked generic ideas as they are shot into the net. Hard asset centricity played a key role; it built factories to produce and move goods. The hard mentalists applied special skills sets to deflect some ideas but catching the right projectiles. The execution styles were based on choosing the right hard asset based strategies from the very top floor and trickling those ideas as downward flows. The land was hungry and too many great ideas were flying around like bees. The happy dawn of America and Western image supremacy was assured on the Hardmental thinking clock.
Symptoms of Hardmental Thinking: when mind can only see ‘hard assets centricity’; for example when a bicycle maker considers a ‘motorcycle’ or ‘car’ as part of their manufacturing plan it would
July/august 2016 be an out of scope taboo. This model is locked into brick and mortar mentality.
THE FOOTMENTAL PHASE:
The layers of time and the spinning of world polished new thoughts and free flow of ideas.
These wonders forced the CEOS to come down from the clouds to the ground floors and deal effectively with issues on the office and factory floors. Footmental thinking is about the ability to immediately sort through business realities in real time—it is being on your feet and in the trenches of every element of the organisation. It is more like facing the live music and discovering the various dancing styles of decision making.
Creative and complex business decisions making and strategic execution of such decisions demand very extensive skills. It also requires stamina for running around and continually seeking answers. This means you get out of the office and do some desk hopping, consensus building, crisscrossing floors, and doing a lot of listening. Success results from the constant in and out of regional offices and branches, and triumph will be assured when you are flying across cities and continents. The face to face cumbersome meetings and the constraints of the 9-5 work time segments ruled.
This was the era of ‘footmental’ style of operations where agility of feet and stamina to run around assured rapid and quality decision making. The footmental practice created agility and the modern age of business erupted.
Symptoms of Footmental Thinking: Out of control running around where being lost like headless chicken is considered very hard work. Being overly diluted and tired in traffic jams while pushing away old establishment agendas brought on a severe case of busylepsy.
THE SOFTMENTAL PHASE
Softmental is a state of limitless, boundary less, timeless free flow thinking on ‘soft power asset management’ issues. In this new global age, it’s more about the unique mental stamina needed to process all kinds and types of information, with hundreds of interactions going on at the same time. The parties involved are scattered all over the nation or globe and challenges are processed in real time. Month long trips and seasonal reviews will give way to answering questions and solving issues in one single day and frequently every single day. Softmental thinking is more like being a conductor of the orchestra and while playing complex all kinds of global styles of music but all from one concert hall. The mental powers are tested by creating new music while being attacked by multi-directional sounds in different tempos all the times. If you pay attention right now and close your eyes as you sit in your large office, you could possibly hear the highs and lows of those ‘jambalaya notes.’
During the good old days to start a mega project founders build factories