in Twogs

My day: The best app ever, meetings that work and The "Us and Them" messages in companies

Today was awesome. Here  are just a few things that I experienced.

The Best App Ever

I wrote the best app ever. Well, I tried to. My friend Violeta and I are working on something together and we prematurely decided to code something. As I started getting the decks clean for this new thing, I was really irked by the need to do it. Not only would it take time  – relatively little, to be fair – it would have led us to software things versus people problems and learning. So we had a quick tete-a-tete and decided to call it off.

Just like that, I got 4 hours of my day back and I wrote the best app ever  – the ‘No App’ App. It took  almost no time and  is entirely bug free. Yay!

Meetings that Work

I have lots of conversations, people call them ‘meetings’, I really don’t care what they are called as long as they are purposeful, engaging and everyone leaves feeling better than when they came. It helps if they are feeling happy too. Happiness goes a long way.

Today I met with some folks I am collaborating with in Norway on my remote coaching experiment. I joined the call and noticed just how chilled and happy they were. Everyone was smiling and the vibe was awesome.

We started with one agenda but a discovery early on into the conversation meant the agenda totally changed. We called it and regrouped on what we should do instead and once we agreed – the conversation continued with purpose. It was a wonderful experience to talk and explore with these 3 people and it brings it home to me that meetings are not inherently bad, they are like any conversation. We ended the conversation with what happens next and when we would meet again to see what progress we made on the things we agreed to do.

I think all conversations need happy collaborators, a clear purpose and closure. It helps focus if the conversation is time constrained and the best ones I’ve attended has participants who feel they can help move it on and are equally concerned that we get value from it. This session today had great closure – we knew what was happening next and it felt like the things we were exploring – although not resolved – were satisfactorily tied off, at least for now.

Us and Them Messages in Companies

As I was driving back up the mountain to our village, I mused on the ‘About Us’ of a company I’m working with and thought how curious it was that it was very much like a lot of many other ‘About Us’ pages in one remarkable way.

The management team is presented first. Often exclusively. The pictures of executives and their bios take pride of place and the top of the content as they do at the top of the organisation structure. I don’t know what message – if any – was designed, but I know what message I was getting.  I was definitely getting:

we are the bosses of everyone, the most important people at this party. There are others but you don’t really need to know anything about them.

As I considered this curiosity, I wondered what would have been a more effective way of presenting the structure that both showed responsibilities but without the hierarchical structure? I’ll share that in a blog post. I also wondered how else the ‘Us and Them’ mentality manifests in companies.

That was my day – a totally mixed bag, but all great. I’d love to hear about your day. Comment or tweet. I’ m all ears.

What do you think?