As interviews with key decision makers ensued, Sylvia and Bala were sharpening their view of strategy they needed to employ. Gathering the team over a drink they liked to keep things informal. Hunkering down with flip charts and I-pads to discuss findings from their numerous interviews, this would pave the way for the entire Culture Alignment program.
Overall their job was to help employees understand their operating system;
All food for thought that would leave them reflective for some part and raring to go at other times. Real life stories of success stories would be the centre of discussion.
Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius, the man who defied all odds and shattered his physical limitations, sentenced to five years imprisonment for culpable homicide. Tried for the murder of his girlfriend, South African model Reeva Steenkemp this was a widely publicised case.
As the case went on and his life was laid bare, a striking paradox surfaced from this man’s public persona. It appeared that for all his superhuman feats, he was also a very vulnerable and insecure man.
The sad thing was that many people commented on his ‘aggressive and reckless behaviour’, unfortunately after the fact. They also made observations of his pattern of ‘possessiveness and control’ over Reeva and previous girlfriends. It was obvious that unconscious patterns of behavior were driving him. The worst part? He didn’t know what they were.
Suffice to say that metaphors like this would be enough to open the door of employees to the workings of the unconscious mind. Many human tragedies stem from this type of emotional programming. This was just one which happened to get huge coverage in the media. From a more human, practical and day-to-day perspective, we as a society could avert such negative endings by getting to know ourselves better and healing from these occurrences.
This of course seen by corporate people is a result at the extreme end of the scale. Consequences produced by corporate people probably rest at a more moderate level. But then again we never know. Cases of ultra horrible bosses who abuse their people emotionally over years which may not sound as bad but have a hugely negative impact on employees.
This is where Sylvia and her team were going to make a massive difference. All trained in Neuro Linguistic Programming, a model effective for interrupting emotional programs, they were set to make a difference.
With many years of corporate coaching experience they could easily spot patterns and mental programming in people. A truly valuable resource to have, inherent also in leaders and parents, this ability to recognize patterns of at the workplace was fundamental.
Change tools would then eliminate these patterns swiftly and replace them with new, more empowering ones. Most people did not realise their operating system, let alone examine if it was helping or hindering them.
A boss dictator, a timid colleague who can’t say “No”, a friend who never offers to pay the bill or a parent who claims to know everything. They all had one thing in common. They were driven to behave in a certain way by some belief, idea or value which most likely was installed at a very young age at school or in the family.
The dictator boss could have internalised a belief that if he / she was not strict, people would take advantage of him. The timid co-worker could have learnt to say “Yes” to requests because his Mum did that. The friend who never offered to pay a bill could have come from a family tight with money. It was no surprise that they were subjected to parents’ conditioning!
There was no escape! From birth, everyone was bombarded with well-meaning albeit erroneous conditioning from parents, teachers, society, religion, culture. It was time to be accountable and face up to these patterns. The faster the better for then the future was ahead and the sky was the limit.
The power lay in being aware of these patterns. It was easier than most people thought. Sylvia and team got such a buzz when they saw people turn around results right in front of them. They had been down this path. Today they were fueled by fulfilment, satisfaction and contributing to others.
The question for each employee was this. Do you live in a set routine where your programmes control you or are you aware that the choice is yours to make good decisions and live the life you want?
Sylvia Fernandes is the Founder & CEO of VIA Frontiers established in Sydney in 2002. She is a corporate NLP trainer and consults in creating effective people in the Asia Pacific Region.
She is also the author of Bye Bye Black Cat – Turn Your Luck Around to Realise Opportunities – launched in major bookstores in Singapore on the 23rd October 2014. Go to www.viafrontiers.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Sylvia is a qualified Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) Master Trainer. She started her business in Sydney and is now based in Singapore.