From jaw-dropping feats of athleticism to heart-warming stories of sacrifice – it was inspiring to watch Olympic dreams unfold in Sochi. On a stage where winning and losing is separated by the thinnest of margins, it takes more than peak physical conditioning to bring home the gold. The body and the mind must be in total coherence. That’s why many top athletes – from snowboarders to NFL superstars – are moving away from tough-love, type-A training tactics and embracing a more holistic approach.
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Meetings. We love to hate them – but we can’t stop holding them. The daily status meeting, the weekly project meeting, the monthly budget meeting – it’s a never-ending, but necessary cycle. Most professionals know the “golden rules” for an effective meeting – be very discerning with the invitation list to respect others’ time, start and end on time, have a written agenda, assign action items, encourage all members to participate and contribute. Yet, despite our best intentions, meetings often become unproductive time wasters.
Hollywood’s stereotypical drill sergeant, who relies on mental humiliation and physical punishment to browbeat his troops into submission, may be getting an extreme makeover. And this change isn’t just for the big screen.
As business leaders, we are taught to think logically and analytically. Best practices are our security blanket. We worship at the altar of the data-packed PowerPoint presentation. It’s comforting to know that we can justify our actions and decisions with hard facts. After all, there’s a lot riding on what we say and do.
A recent HBR article on the post-merger rebranding of two Latin American airlines — Avianca and TACA – made us sit up and take notice. Yes, the new red and grey uniforms and freshly painted aircraft were striking. The ad campaign was slick. But isn’t that what we expect from a major commercial company? What really intrigued us wasn’t the re-brand, but the fact that it had been 3 years since Avianca acquired TACA. Three years of maintaining and paying for two brands in the market. That’s unusual.