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Wednesday
Aug242011

Management by Awayreness

Awayre (adj. n.) The Way of Awareness

For thousands of years, we have ignored the most crucial element in business management: human awareness. Management by the way of awareness brings this crucial element to business management in a systemic and a fundamental way.

Most business leaders and managers are intuitively aware that their team, business, or business-unit is not performing at the level it’s capable of performing. Studies have shown that most businesses operate at about 33% of their capacity.

The way of awareness is about recognizing the untapped capacity of human beings - their awareness - and channeling it in a way that makes them come alive, become emotionally engaged to their work and produce with effortless efficiency.

When this awareness is unlocked, harnessed and channeled through a business process - by the way of awareness - a team, business or organization can achieve what was never in its realm of possibilities.

Anatomy of Awayreness

Most businesses and organizations operate in one of two modes: 1) a disorganized, ad-hoc, seat-of-the-pants mode or 2) a structured, lifeless, soul-less, “well-run” mode. Both have their shortcomings.

Realistically speaking, a typical business is a mishmash of the two modes. In some of parts of it, it operates in the first mode. In others, it operates in the second. Sometimes the business swings between the two modes, looking for a “groove” that it sometimes finds but in many cases, does not.

First Mode: Ad-hoc, Seat-of-the-Pants Mode

In this mode of management, there is no consistent philosophy, methodology or structure for managing the business or organization. Things are managed as they happen with no forethought, planning or strategy. A consistent, shared vision does not exist, nor do shared purpose, goals and a sense of charted course. As a result, the business lacks the discipline it requires to succeed in the marketplace. 

People often feel spontaneous and creative in such businesses. However, they could also feel disoriented, anxious and insecure. Employees often lack clarity, focus and confidence in their work. Owners, leaders and executive don’t have the sense of predictability and control over the business’s growth, profitability and longevity. 

Such a business is typically an under-performing business with high turnover, anxious people and even more anxious leaders.

Second Mode: Structured, Lifeless Mode

For most businesses, the problems of the first mode are resolved by putting in place processes, systems and structures. When taken to extreme, the business becomes a lifeless machine where human creativity, wisdom and talents are stifled, even crushed. People live a frustrated work-life because their full potential is not unlocked and realized. The business operates at a fraction of its optimum performance because does not utilize the full potential of its people.

Such a business is also an under-performing business with high turnover and mediocre profitability and slow growth. A business typically starts in the first mode and then “graduates” to the second mode as it becomes successful in the marketplace. Yet, such success is not lasting as there is always another business that will take advantages of its weaknesses and outperform it.

Third Mode: Awayre Mode

There is a third mode. This mode is not a combination of these two. It’s not even a balance between these two. It’s a different approach altogether.

In this mode, the Awayre Mode, intelligence, wisdom and talents of people are used to create dynamic systems, processes and structures. The processes and people rely and build on each other. In fact, there is no differentiation between processes and people. They are one and the same. Processes are a part of the people. People are an integral part of the processes.

When done skillfully, a business gets stability, predictability and control of the structured approach yet retains, even enhances, the creativity and productivity of its people so that the business can grow profitably and endure for generations to come. 

What Makes Business Habits: Awayre Layers

I have been researching this subject - the best business practices and habits for a successful business - for over 12 years. Some of what I have found is simple common sense. Some of it is truly ground-breaking. And much of it seems ground-breaking but is common sense.

Over the years I have developed a model, called Awayre LayersTM, that brings these findings together in teachable, repeatable patterns and systems that also allows freedom for a business to customize it for its own use.

Awayre Layers build on the simple fact that people have the ability – consciousness or awareness – to deal with habitual structures that collectively form Business Habits in a business. Simply stated, we have power to break old Business Habits that don’t work and replace them with new ones that do.

Habits are developed over time. Some habits take a long time to break. The good news is that there are dormant human faculties that can come to aid in breaking old habits and developing news ones. When we bring these faculties into alignment with each other and apply them properly, powerful forces are unleashed that allow us to go deep into old habitual structures and build new ones.

Awayre Layers could be thought of as 7 concentric circles, one inside the the other, like ripples of waves from a water drop. Starting from the innermost to outermost, these layers are:

1. Inspiration Point is the core of our existance as human beings. 
3. Knowledge/Wisdom is that which we tap into when we look for answers and solutions.
2. Identity is the conceptual framework that gives us a sense of “I’ or “Me.” 
4. Intellect is our logical and cognitive reasoning ability which consists of thoughts.
5. Emotions are what we feel largely due to our thought processes. 
6. Energy is the vital force that gives us dynamism and mobility. 
7. Actions are what we do with our bodies. 

When a business’s management foundation is as deep as the Inspiration Point of its people, it performs at levels unheard of before. When a business’s boundaries are defined by consistent, habitual, aligned actions - Awayre actions - of its people, it can predictably and consistently repeat that high performance over a long period of time.

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