Time for Deep Reflection

In April, the Velvet Chainsaw team practiced what we preach and conducted our own internal strategy session. One of our ongoing quests is to grow our strategic thinking muscles. The stronger and more creative they are, the more value we bring to our client gigs and projects.

Strategic thinking is a complex and opaque topic.To add focus, we brought in an expert on sociology and systems thinking to facilitate our learning experience.

Our team had many aha moments that will help us improve and grow. One of the biggest aha’s for me was that as a team we were doing a lousy job of reflecting on client projects once they ended. Like many, we were too busy jumping from project to project to take a breath and critique our process, learnings and collective performance.

Deep reflection is a big deal. In the first article below, Daniel Patrick Forrester claims that leaders spend less than 5% of their time reflecting and $650 billion is lost each year because we don’t give ourselves time for reflection.

As we design our conference education and networking experiences, it’s important that we realize how critical it is to build time into the agenda for reflection. If attendees don’t make the time to consider how they can apply learnings, no performance improvement will be realized in the workplace. 

October 2017
Michael Leonard: How successful CEOs transform companies through reflection
"Getting the big ideas rights" is just one of Daniel Patrick Forrester's recommendations for successful organizations. "Only through reflective thinking can leaders know if ther big ideas will work and if the organizational culture can support idea implementation."
Most conferences emphasize the spoken word. But how often do we use the power of silence and solitude in a conference experience? How common is it for the conference to provide opportunities for reflection, meditation and deeper thinking without all the background noise?

Vince Dooley, legendary coach of the Georgia Bulldogs college football team, says when his players are off the practice field, reflection comes in to play: It's one of the simplest but most effective ways to instill deeper learning.

Attention is a payment of the brain’s resources. It requires that we adjust, engage and sustain each of our nine brain areas involved in attention. That’s why it’s not easy to do. Here are five ideas to help your attendees.