“Bicycletic” Benefits

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Recently I joined the globally popular group of two wheeled self-propelled transportation riders commonly known as cyclists. As I sojourned along the picturesque bike paths of Melbourne that are strategically divorced from the motorised road system, I observed numerous behaviours in my fellow riders that have direct application and benefit in the corporate office.

Leadership
As a cyclist, you are indeed master of your own destiny. There is no point following the person riding in front of you, regardless of how attractive and cute that rear view may be, as this will only result in you reaching their goal, not yours. However, if you are happy being a follower, and not a leader, then make sure you enjoy the ride!

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
Yes, there are many needs in this hierarchy, but to me, the most applicable and important one relates to the Physiological. After many hours propped vertically on your bike, bottom comfort is a mandatory requirement and a padded seat needs to be a pre-requisite. If not, walking, and other forms of social interaction in the corporate office following the riding experience becomes most awkward and potentially embarrassing.

Status
Riders need to dress for success and to portray that perceived professional appearance of looking like they know what they are doing, regardless of whether they actually have no “bicycletic” clue. Here’s where a stunning riding outfit embellishing the appropriate corporate logo, complimented with an equally expensive road bike with all the latest GPS navigational gadgetry becomes a necessity.

Emotional Control
Being polite and courteous in the corporate office is a must for any manager, regardless of how annoying and frustrating your colleagues may be. Similarly, an emotional outburst at a fellow rider, or daydreaming pedestrian, that gets in your way should not be tolerated. However, for that selfish pompous cyclist that stopped suddenly in front of me yesterday as you answered your mobile phone, I do not apologise for my verbal onslaught as it was absolutely warranted! (yes, you know who you are!)

Safety
All cyclists fully understand that they are smaller than a car and that when it comes to a clash of momentum, they will come a most definite second. HSE guidelines demand that a suitable helmet be placed correctly on your head, regardless of how it may impact your hairstyle. But, there is a place and a time for the use of your bell, and protocol dictates a subtle delicate ring when approaching and passing a slower rider, or walking hazard. But, a high frequency of bell ringing is just annoying and may lead to you being ostracised by your bike path community.

So next time you are experiencing the pleasurable joy of the sound of wind rushing over bike helmet, let your mind wander a little as you contemplate the above “bicycletic” thoughts. However, shutting your eyes to increase your concentration will have a negative side effect and may negate any corporate benefit.

Dream Communications

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Sometimes it’s difficult to tell whether you are dreaming, or actually in a dream. In this instance, it was not a dream, I was wide awake and fully conscious.

My doubt about dream authenticity started yesterday when I was looking at the young woman sitting opposite me in the coffee shop. I was thinking thoughts, and she seemed to respond ‘verbally’, but there were no words or facial expressions exchanged. Yes, we were communicating, having a conversation that only we were privy to, well, I thought we were, or was it my imagination? So I decided to test the theory and commenced an unspoken thought conversation of triviality about the benefits and negatives of colonising the moon with soy milk chai latte drinkers! After a few minutes of what seemed ‘mindless dialogue’, she stood up from her comfortable cafe seat, straightened her skirt, flicked her long blond hair back and smiled directly at me. She then to my surprise said, “Chai lattes do need honey, but are there bees on the moon?” She then handed me her business card and suggested that we ‘chat again’! Yep, I had my proof!

Now this might have also been a dream, but let’s not worry about the semantics of truth as the concept gave me an idea for the corporate office.

What if we could train ourselves to dream, but in a way that we communicate with colleagues on a particular topic that needs to be resolved or progressed, but only in our subconscious mind? The workplace and the people concerned could be role played in our thought whilst we slept?

Taking the concept further, what if you could ‘suggest’ an issue that your colleagues could also ponder and work on in their minds whilst they also slept?

Now for the interesting and really exciting next step, what if we could get your mind, and the minds of your colleagues sharing the identical dream at the same time, exchanging learnings and experiences? Following on from that idea, why not add other people that you don’t yet know from different companies, cultures or countries, into the dream for an exponential group thought enhancement experience?

Those readers in HR will I’m sure now be realising the training and innovation development opportunities, particularly from a regional or global perspective?

For those of you struggling with all of the above, may I suggest you go into a coffee shop and order a soy milk chai latte (with honey) and just let your thinking go with the flow. And, should a blond woman appear to respond to one of your thoughts whilst you quietly sip your drink, just mention this blog post and I’m sure you will be surprised by the response!

Problems Solved via The Dream Solution

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As we were now at 35,000 feet, the Virgin Airlines cabin crew inflight service announcement was eagerly welcomed into my ears, as I desperately needed a source of mental stimulation to solve a tricky business problem that had been troubling me for the past few hours.

I was seated in seat 3F and was soon greeted by the superbly smiling Flight Attendant named Louise who asked whether I would like coffee, tea, water or a “virtual dream enhancement”? I immediately chose the last option, and enquired as to the choices of dream selection. Louise advised that Virgin had recently expanded the range to include dreams of sporting prowess, intergalactic travel panorama, rock star status, romantic interludes, or the very popular random experience of surprise.

As I had a business problem to solve, I chose the “random experience of surprise” upon which Louise handed me a small vial of a dark blue viscous liquid that I quickly drank. About 30 seconds later, once the tingly peppermint sensation on my tongue had started to wear off, I could feel my body going to sleep and my mind gradually awakening. As with all dreams, my mind quickly experienced a variety of unusual scenarios, people, clothes and the breaking of many laws of physics that are not humanly possible. However, as I was a well-travelled Virgin Frequent Flyer of the Platinum class, I knew how to best utilise these virtual dream enhancements. To do this, I strategically “pre-positioned” my business problem in the front of my mind so it was instantaneously captured and was weaved through all of my random experiences of surprise.

No, I’m not telling you about my dream, as these visual insights into my personality are private, but you will be pleased to know that on arriving at my flight destination, I did indeed have an innovative solution to my business problem.

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Yes, the above is indeed fantasy, but is it? How often do we awake in the morning following a night of dreams in which we encountered ourselves performing an array of activities that we had no idea that we could achieve? And, it all seemed so real! Unfortunately, we tend to quickly forget the euphoria of these dream experiences and happily get back into our daily activity regime.

Next time you have a business problem to solve, why not invoke the use of the dream option? However, make sure you have a small notebook located next to your bed so you can quickly capture those numerous and uniquely distinctive creative ideas to assist you in your work activities later that day.

And should any Virgin Airlines management be reading, please let me know when your do actually introduce the “random experience of surprise” as I can’t wait to try it!

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