I hope you all had a great holiday week. I was able to use the time to recharge with my family. I hope you all were able to spend the time exactly the way you wanted. This week I am writing about infrastructure and its importance to staying relevant through growth. I am sharing it through the parent/child relationship so it is relevant to all. In time, I will share more specific matters to the topic, but for now, I hope to jump start some creative thought on your framework for your goals.
“The basic underlying foundation or basic framework (as of a system or organization)”. This is the simple and clear way Merriam-Webster defines infrastructure. There are endless opportunities for creative design in infrastructure. The required element in successful, sustainable infrastructures is keeping the main things, the main things. Lack of experience and know how, time, and energy are all understandable reasons for not building the right infrastructure. I find myself being very understanding and empathetic towards people who do not have what is required and helping them through it. I am evolving my belief to be more along the lines of understanding why they are falling short, but not condoning it. The journey matters. So do the results.
Over the last couple of weeks, I have been looking at my personal infrastructure very closely. I have been wondering if how I spend time with my kids will give me the loving, close, and sustaining relationships that I so desperately want with each of them. Do they spend time with me in a way that is going to help them develop this loving, close, and sustaining relationship with me? Sometimes I get the sense that too much of my time with them is spent disciplining them, while at other times I believe I am having my eldest help with her younger sister more frequently than she believes she should. The enjoyable feeling like I am building the right relationships with them does not happen frequently enough. Something about the way we are choosing to connect is off, the infrastructure of our time together is not what it needs to be for me to feel fulfilled. Should I get an A for effort despite falling short? This conundrum will be explored in future posts.
There is no set blueprint one needs to follow to build the right infrastructure, allowing creative freedom for all. Taking this lesson back to our company I realize that a growing company needs to ensure its infrastructure is centered on what will help it sustain itself – the value it delivers to its clients. To keep the focus on being relevant to our clients, we need a solid foundation with repeatable processes that will make it easier to deliver consistent value to them. We need a forthright contingency plan for when things go sideways, and we need the open mindedness to learn from our new experiences to get that much better. I can see there is a lot of work to be done to get our framework to a level where I love it, believe it is closely linked to the vision, and is going to be sustainable.
As I go through and examine our infrastructure, I am keeping an eye open for things that have good results, but do not get easier each time we do them. There is a lot of uncommon sense buried in these situations. When our formula for success includes intentionally stopping so we can grab insights from our experiences, a whole new world of opportunity opens up. This past weekend I found myself amazed at how engaged my daughter was when she was asked what she thought about something. She carried on a conversation with a table full of adults, adding insights that others had missed. At nine years old, she was a meaningful part of the conversation where the average age was over 35. This differs greatly with the level of her engagement when she is asked to do something. I guess its the acorn and the tree thing…I realize that something in our framework needs to change, and I need to ask her for more mental contributions to our lives if we are going to build that great relationship that means so much to me.
Good luck and I hope you have a great week!