Thomas Friedman is right about our need to focus on our own learning. He wrote a terrific column in the New York Times about exactly why owning our own future is so critical. Based on his thinking, our message to one and all in the workplace is that it is time to choose ourselves as our number one “coaching project.”
While as recently as a few years ago we may have stressed coaching others as number one, Thank You for Being Late – An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations, Mr. Friedman’s latest book, has convinced us of his core argument in the book: that we must continue our focus on our own learning no matter what we already know.
Basically, Thank You for Being Late is about identifying and helping readers understand the three big accelerations that are occurring in our world. These are:
- Moore’s Law — which addresses the increasing speed of change in the technology area.
- Globalization and market change.
- Climate change.
Our goal, of course, is to understand these accelerations and to steer our learning journey to those areas where we need more insight and clarity.
But the phrase that kept drawing us into the book was/is “thank you for being late.”
- Why this particular phrase?
- Why was Friedman suggesting we do better in life right now by being late to anything?
As we discovered, Friedman is not really suggesting lateness as much as suggesting pausing, thinking, and reflecting on what is happening around us for a very sound reason.
While the world is moving at a dizzying pace, our being dizzy all the time won’t help us thrive and handle all the challenges that come with rapid change. But if despite the accelerations we can manage to slow down our thoughts, and consider both the good and lesser goods of changes, our paths moving forward can include the best choice of action for ourselves.
In other words, we need to slow down and think in order to get better at dealing with rapid change and setting our own professional and personal path.
We have developed and re-created our online coaching tool QwikCoach to help people do just that. Our tagline Discover Success suggests that each person start and continue a journey of self-discovery and self-learning. As our self-awareness unfolds, the places we need help and support become clearer. QwikCoach content and resources serve as starting points to deeper thought and personal, self-directed action.
There are few not convinced that the workplace needs more coaching and support. What QwikCoach wants to emphasize is that any effort to increase coaching is best served when it starts with a commitment to coach ourselves.
Each of us needs to make this commitment despite the challenge. Whatever our level of education and experience – minimal to great – we all need to keep reflecting, adjusting and growing – both personally and professionally. QwikCoach very much hopes that you will join us in this life-long commitment.