According to the words of Luís Monteiro Simões, our speaker, there are many countries whose work culture is solely goal oriented. It is common for employees to structure their work process around goals they want to reach and this can foster some negative results.
Let’s imagine that we have a meeting scheduled some time in our day. During that day, it is natural that we will be preoccupied with preparing for the meeting as best as we can, so much so that we dedicate any available time to study for the meeting. Unforeseen events that may show up in the course of that day will be much more exhausting to deal with, because they present themselves as obstacles to our goal of having a well-prepared meeting.
As such, it is reasonable to expect that those unforeseen circumstances will leave us stressed and frustrated, which will impact our performance during the meeting we are so preoccupied with. Our speaker points out that this is the problem with an exclusively goal oriented mindset. Our tendency to only look towards the goal leaves us unprepared for deviations that may occur until reaching our destination. Instead, Luís Monteiro Simões suggests that we extend our notion of preparation beyond that of simply achieving the goal – we should prepare for the path as well.
By path he means all of those previously unforeseen circumstances that would otherwise stress us out. By preparing for those, we are training ourselves to be proactive in the face of change rather than reactive. This makes all the difference in our performance and mindset as employees because we are less likely to be mentally deterred or incumbered when facing our everyday obstacles. Thus, preparation for the path gives us more flexibility – we are no longer vulnerable to sudden roadblocks, we can now deal with them on our own terms by making conscious and thought-out choices rather than hasty on-the-spot decisions.
It also makes us more effective since we are not rushing to think about how to deal with unexpected obstacles. By preparing for the path, we can make the decision to study for the meeting much sooner, which in turn will make the obstacles less aggravating and, so, we will enter the meeting more relaxed and ready for a productive session.
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