So often we miss the moment. Moments like the one in which a photographer took a photo of birds flying in the sky. She was attending a memorial ceremony in Orlando when the birds caught her attention and she started taking photographs. Only later, when the photographer returned home and looked at the picture, did she count the birds in the photo. She couldn’t believe her eyes. She counted 49 birds flying in the sky, one for each of the 49 people gunned down in a gay nightclub who were being memorialized in the service she was attending. How is that possible? Could it be completely random or could we live in a world where synchronistic moments like this happen all the time?
Moments, seemingly insignificant in the course of time, but so immensely powerful, that if we were to see them, would not only change us but change the way we do what we do. Let me give you an example of something that happened just the other day.
A client of mine asked me to come as an advisor to a meeting they were having with a big potential client. My client, an innovator in a field that is changing the way companies do business, knows what they bring to a business and knows businesses want what they have.
They have been meeting with a lot of companies, and though they give good presentations and companies love what they are doing, they have not been closing the business they know they can. So they brought me in to observe the meeting and tell them why.
As I sat and watched, I saw something my client didn’t see. My client lacked spontaneity. Caught up in his presentation, my client was not spontaneous enough to see the pivot he needed to make, from the presentation he had prepared, to the one that was now needed. These pivot points happen very quickly—a questioning look in the eye, a change in body language, a thought that needs to be expressed—and they are so easy to miss. It happens in a moment and, because my client didn’t see it, it created a disconnect. The more he continued with his presentation, the more every moment moved him further away from the desired destination.
I waited a few moments before I interrupted the presentation and asked if I could share an observation. Over the years I have been consulting, I have seen and been a part of many situations like this one. So often companies get stuck in trying to achieve the big result that they don’t see the moments that lead to it. I have watched as these moments changed the direction of a project, or the look and feel of a new product, the culture of a company, or in this case the sale of a service. It is so essential to be aware of the fluctuation of each moment and to be spontaneous enough to be able to respond immediately.
Each moment has the power to either continue or disrupt the moment before. When the action of this moment continues the action of the moment before it, it creates momentum. When the moment disrupts the action of the moment before, it creates change.
I saw from the moment of their pivot, the company had been signaling their desire to communicate something to my client. Once I acknowledged and validated their desire to communicate, they chose to share confidential information with my client that was essential to have in order to personalize his proposal to address what they specifically needed.
I helped them repurpose essentially the same information into a completely different meaning, which allowed them to have a different endgame that only my client could deliver to this company. This opportunity would have never been activated if we had not been spontaneous enough to go off script and be present.
How spontaneous and present in the moment are you and your company? What business might you be leaving on the table because of your focus on the endgame rather than the moments that take you there? What are you not able to see, because you are looking at what you do see?
This is the Mosaic. Spontaneous connections, that activate new possibilities that, until this moment, were unseen.
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