Business management consultant with an aim to create brighter futures for individuals, companies and countries through transfer of expertise, life skills and insights gained from executive management careers in financial services (insurance and finance), transport, education (management and leadership) and engineering (power and transport).
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It was just some months ago that social media was under scrutiny for the negative effects it could engender in society.
How times have changed as it is being lauded as the saviour in these unprecedented times of social distancing.
Communication has never been so accessible and welcome as is now.
Imagine going back in time and experiencing how life would have been in yester-years when messages had to be relayed…
490BC – Pheidippides, the Greek soldier, ran 25 miles from a battlefield near Marathon, to Athens, to announce the defeat of the Persians to the anxious Athenians.
Word of mouth communication through toil, sweat and tears!!!
1775 – The US Postal Service is established by the Second Continental Congress and mail distributed. Origins of a postal service could be attributed to the Persian King Cyrus the Great in 550BCE and the Egyptian Pharaoh’s in 2400BCE.
I cannot see you, but I can read what you have written.
1830’s – Samuel Morse invents the Morse code and telegraphy through code makes an entrance in communication.
I can decipher what you want to say. I neither see you nor hear you.
1876 – Alexander Graham Bell invented the first working telephone.
I do not see you, but I can hear you loud and clear.
1895-96 – The first practical radio transmitters and receivers was invented by Marconi from Italy and radio went commercial in 1900.
I can hear the news of the world but only hear you if you become newsworthy. My world has suddenly opened up.
1950’s to 1960’s – Television evolves to become an international phenomenon developed simultaneously in many countries.
I can see and hear the world news and see and hear you if you become newsworthy. I now feel part of a wider world.
1971 – Ray Tomlinson invented the email.
I can communicate instantaneously with you but cannot see you.
1997 – First social media site, Six Degrees, created by Andrew Weinreich.
Our world has changed forever. I can see, hear and communicate with you in real time.
Thanks to all those wonderful inventors, who have made our life so bearable in this current crisis.
Information in this post has been sourced from Wikipedia.
In recent times, there has not been any global event that struck with such stealth, speed, venom, and fear as has COVID 19.
The health and welfare of so many in the world has been shattered, gloom and doom pervades as reports of so many people succumbing to the deadly virus comes to light from countries far and wide. Companies have shut down operations resulting in unemployment rising exponentially, the jobless figures soars, stock markets have crashed, the financial institutions are under strain, and more countries have gone into lock-down, closing their boundaries and restricting people to their homes.
It is hard to see any silver lining to an event that has yet to play out its deadly course.
Yet, we need to ponder and reflect on how such events will shape our future.
We need to ask ourselves how we may all need to change our way of life, our values, relationships and see the world, people and nature in a different light.
Foremost in thought, must be how we will interact with people close to us, our family, friends, our neighbours, our country folks and indeed the world at large.
Too often, in the hurly burly of life, we do not find time for our family as we take them for granted – after all, we think, our main purpose must be to earn a livelihood to be able to take care of the needs of our family, and only after amassing what seems like a reasonable financial position, do we then think of spending quality time with them.
With aging parents and the infirm, we may think that there will be time to catch up. The forced isolation teaches us that destiny may choose otherwise.
We must seize every moment, every opportunity to show our loved ones that we care, and no amount of work or other chores should take precedence over caring for them.
COVID 19 has been non-forgiving and non-discriminatory. It has not looked at wealth, position, nation, village, status, and has chosen its victims with disdain for any contrived pecking order that nations and people have created over generations of existence.
It has leveled the wealthy with the poor, the disadvantaged with the advantaged, the sick with the healthy, the haves with the have-nots, and taken on a path of destruction that appears to have no quick end in sight.
The stock market crashes spiraling out of control should be a wake up call for all to realise that the unrelentless pursuit of wealth for its own sake, or for domination, or status has its downsides. The need to live within ones means should be a lesson for us all.
Peace of mind and the dog eats dog attitude of some that capitalise on the misfortune of others should not continue. Ethical and moral living must be the norm.
No longer should we have respect for those that merely pursue or have the monetary wealth without any social conscience. Those who have the wealth and do good for society, need to be respected. Those that scavenge and strangle others in the pursuit of their wealth must be chastised by society.
We need to take a long and hard look at how we are treating the environment and acknowledge that climate change is real. Whilst there are still so many that argue whether it is instigated by the actions of the human race or not, the floods, droughts, famines, intensity and increased duration of bush-fires, weather pattern changes require us to take whatever steps are necessary to reduce our contribution to the disastrous changes in the climate.
The need to look at increasing the use of solar, wind and wave energy to power our grids makes more sense in a world in lock-down, as solar and wind plants operate with minimal human intervention.
We all need to review the distribution of work, the distribution of opportunity and the distribution of wealth for all. Work should not be the prerogative of those with connections, or education levels, but a striving by governments to reduce unemployment to minimal levels.
A review of the working week and days for earning must be fast forwarded so that there is the opportunity for the currently unemployed to gain employment. The three day working week should be instilled in the workplaces so that the other two days can provide the opportunity for the currently unemployed to be part of the workforce.
Work should consist of times for earning and giving, and leisure and the pursuit of that which matters to one, seamlessly blending in the working week.
It is seven years since I began advocating for a change in the way we look at life and work and extol the benefits of working from home.
Today, working from home as a result of COVID 19 is a reality.
Today, finding ways to keep ones mind active during forced shut downs is the challenge.
Today, social media has enabled us to stay connected and work from home.
If ever there was a time for the world to look at new models of work and life, it is now. COVID 19 has pushed us to a new life paradigm.
Let me advocate for a world of change.
Let the 3+1+1=10 Earning, Learning and Giving Life Work Model that I embarked on in April 2013, be a challenge for the world to think differently of how work should be post COVID 19.
Quantum leaps of change come out of significant life events.
Let us not waste this opportunity to change the world of work and make life to be more meaningful for all.
The unfinished business of publishing my book, Dare to be different , Dare to be you on management and leadership with my life experiences and journey wound in, is yet another aspect of what age enables one to do more of – reflection.
Stepping into the unknown world of starting one’s own business can be daunting- until one reflects back on why it was that important to you.
Six years on, Business Transformation Solutions has morphed into a lifestyle, with ideologies blending in with a sense of purpose, making choices on who to work with and what to work on and where to work, advancing causes that one always wanted to pursue- all this whilst earning to match the new needs of the chosen lifestyle.
With the guiding light of the Earning, Learning and Giving 3+1+1=10 Life Work Model, for the very first time in my career, I am not accountable to anyone, nor is anyone accountable to me- true freedom- and I am enjoying every waking moment of it.
Ambitious goals have been met. Importantly I have completed writing my book “Dare to be different, dare to be you” and am in the final stages of editing before reviews and hopefully publishing. Reflecting on all the careers in the various fields and countries, and including my take on #management and #leadership through the eyes of my personal journey and life, has been so fulfilling.
One ambitious goal remains-seeing that we all can live a life of choice, rather than necessity, of giving rather than getting, and a life that brings out the essence of oneself.
I had not thought about the power of radio for broadcasting messages and to date, Business Transformation Solutions has focused entirely on social media, public speaking and other marketing mediums for creating awareness of the “Earning, Learning and Giving” 3+1+1=10 Life Work model.
It was a truly inspiring meeting, visit and tour of the 89.9 Light FM radio station at Mitcham, Melbourne at the invitation of Jobby Mathew, Business Development Executive, that opened my eyes to this medium of communication as something I will need to now consider.
Destiny plays it part in life, as the chance meeting with Jobby at the Whitehorse Business Group event at Deakin University, was as a result of my acceptance speech at the 2017 Whitehorse Excellence in Business award night, as 89.9 Light FM were the sponsors of the Micro Sole Trader Business Award.
It shows that all forms of marketing need to be considered as the values and beliefs of BTS and its focus on social and community issues and goal to “create better lives” and come up with models to alleviate the issue of unemployment and underemployment in Australia, so very neatly aligns with what 89.9 Light FM is about.
Receiving the 2017 Whitehorse Excellence in Business Micro Sole Trader Business Award at the Vogue Ballroom, East Burwood, on 13 October 2017 was the highlight of four years of dedicating Business Transformation Solutions (BTS) to the development and trialing of a life work model that can be a starting point in the quest to addressing the issue of unemployment and underemployment in Australia.
The ABS media release on 14 September states that “The trend unemployment rate in Australia remained at 5.6 per cent in August 2017, and the labour force participation rate increased to 65.2 per cent, the highest it has been since April 2012.
The quarterly trend underemployment rate remained steady at 8.7 per cent over the quarter to August 2017 from a revised figure for May 2017 quarter”.
There is no doubt that the era of full-time work is on the decline. Technological displacement of workers will continue at an unabated rate, and will exponentially rise in the years to come.
The discussion on work life balance continues to preoccupy the minds of many, but with fewer workers on the books, and contracting on the rise, those left in full-time work see work life balance as a distant utopia that is receding as time goes by.
Those without work or in part-time work spend an inordinate amount of time applying for jobs and getting rejected. This leads to loss of confidence, and generally a decline in health when the future looks bleak. Life is not in balance without meaningful work.
It was within this context that BTS was created. Whilst there has been a lot of discussion on post work eras, and the need for work life balance, to date, there has not been any model that has been proposed.
BTS created such a model- the Earning, Learning and Giving Prosperity model (3+1+1=10) and the Director has been leading the way in making life work balance a reality as well as discussing the model with other entrepreneurs and inter-generational personnel and fine tuning it along the way.
This model will not be for all and arguably may be for those who have been in managerial roles or have an entrepreneurial streak within them.
It can be tweaked to suit ones stage in life, or financial position, or otherwise, but is a start in tackling the future of work- now.
The key to the model is seeing that one is not dependent on government support and enables one to pursue the things and multiple careers that appeal to individuals.
It enables the spark of work and life to continue well beyond restructures, age, or other personal challenges.
Awards such as the one just received, makes the journey that much more exciting and gives one the energy and drive to continue to work on models that will lead to the future models of life and work.
Further details on the Earning, Learning and Giving Prosperity model are in the website:
Colin Powell when asked about the “Essence of Leadership” stated that advice from his sergeant at infantry school was very powerful and had a great impact on him – “Lieutenant, you will know when you are a great leader when people follow you if only out of curiosity”.
Indeed, leaders seem to draw people to them as there is a sense of intrigue, anticipation and hope and being part of something larger than themselves.
Leaders inspire others to follow them as they have a strong sense of what lies ahead and imagine futures that are brighter, and something worth striving for as they are able to articulate a vision so clear and simple that people can feel the road-map ahead, even though the challenges may seem insurmountable.
Roselinde Torres in her research on “What it takes to be a great Leader” found that “Great leaders are not head down: they see around corners shaping their future not just reacting to it”. This characteristic of leaders is one that is nurtured over years of development and self-reflection, of looking at possible futures and using their intuition that is the accumulation of what they have read, seen, assimilated and reflected upon. They use their head, heart and gut to see around corners and have the courage to do something about their beliefs.
Collins in “Good to Great” found that great leaders have courage and humility and the steely determination to follow through on their intuition despite potential ramifications on their lives. They believe and follow through: action follows thought.
All this comes with a potent combination of Emotional Intelligence, empathy, trust, authenticity and energy.
Leaders have great intrigue, intuition and imagination and attract people to them.
The world is a better place because leaders dare to dream, and dream big, but importantly take action to ensure that they give hope to all.
The power of learning through travel is amazing and awe-inspiring and where possible, should be considered on our agenda to understand what makes people and different cultures tick and generally have an appreciation of how various cultures had their moments of glory and how transient these moments may be.
We have been geared to value learning through reading (studies and education), reflection (double loop learning), doing (action learning) and the benefits of experiential learning have been lauded.
Whilst all these modes of learning are vital and an integral part of life and necessary for our development, a recent trip to China opened up avenues of learning that I could not have imagined possible. It brought home to me something that I inherently valued and treasured- travel- but it has probably been the first time that I have looked at travel in the light of a mode of learning. Previously it has always been in the realm of experiences and awe rather than learning.
One has read about the remarkable Ming and other dynasties, the Great Wall of China, the Three Gorges Dam Project, the Forbidden City, the Terracotta Warriors and other major highlights of China. We have even seen videos and photos of the sites. However, immersing oneself in the moment, and going back in time to reflect on what made the Emperors and other rulers visualise such monumental thoughts makes one understand modern China. It also allows one to see how countries and people have ambitions for bigger and better things. Seeing the largesse and overpowering Three Gorges Dam opened my eyes to why a country can think big- after all, this was the country that built the Great Wall- so ambitious projects and undertakings must be in the countries psyche.
Reflecting on this and other experiences, I now can see why environmental conservationists have this burning desire for preservation of nature for generations to come. Seeing the whales and seals swimming and basking freely in the icy Antarctica waters and the penguins coming up to humans without fear, as it is their habitat and they know it, I realised the confluence of humans and nature and the need to cohabit without destroying nature and other beings.
Reaching into the wilderness of the Andes and coming upon the sight of Machu Picchu made me realise the ambitions of Incas to reach to the stars and build such a wonderful monument in the remoteness of the jungles of South America. The experience was so uplifting that no amount of reading about the archaeological site would substitute for breathing the air and stepping on those mystic grounds. Immersed in the pure air of the lofty mountains one could feel what air quality must mean to us in an industrialised world.
How can one not be in awe of the Egyptians when one sees the pyramids, the Indians when one first sets sights on the Taj Mahal, the French when one sees the Eiffel Tower, the Canadians when one goes atop the CN tower, the Americans when one sees Cape Canaveral, the Arabs when one sees the transformation of the deserts into modern metropolis such as Al-Ain and Abu Dhabi, the Romans when one sees the Colosseum or the Dutch when one sees the Zuider Zee.
And how can one not wonder at the power of nature when one sees the Grand Canyon, the Himalayas, Uluru (Ayers Rock), the East African Rift Valley, the Ruwenzori Mountains, the Niagara Falls, the Three Gorges and Antarctica.
Zebras, lions and giraffes co-existing with their natural habitat in Africa, butterflies fluttering from flowers to flowers in Uganda, the beauty of the wilderness, untouched by humans, is something one needs to treasure and find ways to preserve.
But behind these natural and man-made wonders comes the real message- we are here to co-exist with nature and preserve the natural and man-made wonders for future generations. Behind every culture are stories of ambition and achievement, but also of destruction and decay.
Can we learn from the highs and lows of the various civilisations?
There will always be the debate on what is right- the damming of the waters of the Yangtze River and majestic Three Gorges must be weighed against the needs of the energy, flood mitigation, navigation needs of a country in the throes of phenomenal development. Seeing first-hand the needs of the country and immersing oneself in the moment, makes one comprehend the immensity of the decision- and its positive and not so positive outcomes. Tasmania saw the battles to save the Gordon and Franklin Rivers flora and fauna from the effects of building dams for power generation, and a sight worth beholding for future generations.
By walking through the historical sites, one cannot help but feel the need to do something to make this a better world- to understand cultures, people and learn to appreciate the diversity in human beings- and play an active part in this preservation.
Walking through the crowded streets in mega cities of the world, I understand why people migrate to other places for a better life, why they leave behind family and friends and have to fend for themselves in countries at first alien to them.
I see the need to assist those newcomers into foreign lands to assimilate into the culture of their chosen country. I also see the need to build confidence for those who may feel that their culture is being eroded through migration.
This has been the most powerful outcome of travel to me.
I am not sure why it has been this trip to China that has triggered such deep emotions in me as I have always felt invigorated and uplifted by every journey I have made over six decades.
Maybe age (and hopefully wisdom) has played some part in this revelation.
It has been revealing enough for me to add travel in the Learning component of the “Earning, Learning and Giving” 3+1+1=10 life work model ( climpacheco1.com ) that I now live and advocate.