If a company’s culture is shaped by its leader, then here are my personal mantras that are shaping the culture of Elliance.
1. Greatness doesn’t only belong to others.
It’s our birthright too. In every project, produce something special that makes others wish they had created it. Greatness often comes from ideas in unrelated disciplines applied to your domain. Study greatness in other fields.
2. Do hard things. Do consequential things.
Create mountains, not hills. Fear nothing. Do things that matter, that touch/change lives, and that make a meaningful difference.
3. Be a merchant of hope.
The light of hope moves life forward towards our ambitions, destinies, and lifetime achievements. Hope makes us try harder in overcoming the obstacles we’ll inevitably face. Back hope with thoughtful, intelligent and strategic actions.
4. Romance people.
Create great experiences. It shows you care for people and respect them. It shows your commitment to help them in their hero’s journey. It honors the risk they are taking in choosing you and believing in you.
5. Stay astonished.
Make the love of learning a central force in your life. Read a book you would never read. Sign up for a class on a topic you know nothing about. Experience something you never thought you ever would. Befriend someone unusual. You’ll find wonder everywhere you turn.
6. In every disadvantage, there is an advantage.
And vice versa. Trace back anyone admirable and you’ll find a desire to overcome a personal history filled with adversity, scarcity, inadequacy, deficiency, and hunger – and mentors who believed the person could overcome it.
7. Build bridges.
Learn multiple languages. Learn the language of multiple disciplines. Devote each year to learning one new language. This will open up new terrains, new relationships, and new connections. Creativity lives at intersections.
8. Embrace beauty.
God is beautiful and loves beauty. People are attracted to beautiful things. Just like great artists, architects, designers and writers, infuse beauty in every artifact and every experience you create.
9. Focus on the unsaid, the unseen and the unheard.
Only half of reality is visible. Half of all communications are stated. Rationality only looks at the visible, the tangible and the stated, but Wisdom takes into consideration the invisible, the silent and the whispers.
10. Abandon yourself to the strength of others.
What we can’t master, we marry, hire, befriend or give birth to. If you surround yourself with good people with complementary mindsets, skills and outlooks, then every collaboration will be filled with learning, surprises, adventures and new discoveries. At times, it’s going to be frustrating and uncomfortable, but persevere because we are truly good alone but better together.
11. Follow the poetry of your soul.
Just like a lotus flower, every person has an inner gift yearning to unfold. Feed your passions. Follow your intuitions. Trust the natural process of your soul slowly revealing itself.
12. Love the last 2% of every project.
That’s when magic happens. Persevere when everyone else is exhausted and ready to call it done. The last 2% transforms good into something great, admirable, and share-worthy.
13. Cultivate integrative thinking.
Aristotelian logic created simplistic “either/or” polarities. Buddhist “both/and” or “yin/yang” reasoning enables balancing of multiple perspectives. Think and live integratively. It reduces conflict and unlocks a wealth of creativity.
14. Play. Laugh. Imagine.
Foster play. We’re at our best when we’re playing. Play the trickster and the fool. Laugh. We are most comfortable with ourselves and others when we are laughing. Imagine new possibilities, combinations and realms that don’t yet exist.
15. Periodically reinvent yourself.
Shedding old skins is nature’s way of stretching us to become our fuller selves. Get comfortable with it.