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new direction & thanks giving

taking a new direction (Tuesday, November 15, 2018)

The who’s who of skilled people breaking free from the high cost and complexity of building Oracle Hyperion solutions is interesting.  Two directions of change taken frequently are conversion to OneStream and getting Connected Planning (Anaplan).

To think about such change as we head into Thanksgiving, followed by the first days of Winter, seems natural. The holidays should provide a shift in tempo that lends itself to breaking free of haphazard introspections that breed human mediocrity. Careful scrutiny of outcomes during this time of shift leads to more fully realizing our own powerful human potentials. But this time of shift can be suppressed if we have not kept the foundations of a life well-lived.

3000-hour years support healthy financials, but one or more of the other  foundations will suffer. New directions are needed if we are to maintain physical, mental, spiritual & financial freedoms. In (the last 7 years of) consulting so many colleagues achieved professional success with Oracle Hyperion implementations while creating personal failures in maintaining healthy body, healthy marriage, healthy family, healthy adventures, and healthy working relationships.

The work we do requires an intense personal commitment to building systems that work and to making our customers successful without exception. Yet, so often that commitment prevents us from getting into the gym every morning, before getting to the office by 7:30 AM. Frequently, that commitment leads to marriages dissolved with divorce. Universally, that commitment leads to birthday’s celebrated on FaceTime, and more than one colleague has raised a family with phone calls and FaceTime. Over and over, that commitment shows up in unused PTO balances at the end of every year as  colleagues are unable to schedule and enjoy the time off from work they have earned. Is such imbalance a requirement of intense personal commitment to our work?

Until the four foundational freedoms are consistently cultivated, the opportunities for healthy love and healthy adventure remain marginalized. The terms healthy love and healthy adventure in this context describe a disciplined life that occurs as we devote not only intense personal commitment to financial freedom, but also personal commitments to cultivating physical, mental & spiritual freedom.

don’t complain

Maya Angelou wrote a compelling summary of work and change.

“There were people who went to sleep last night,
poor and rich and white and black,
but they will never wake again.

And those dead folks would give anything at all
for just five minutes of this weather
or ten minutes of plowing.

So you watch yourself about complaining.

What you’re supposed to do
when you don’t like a thing is change it.
If you can’t change it,
change the way you think about it.

Don’t complain.”[1]
― Maya Angelou, Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now

To paraphrase Ms. Hepburn[2], we see consultants who blame the vendor, the software, the client, the management, the resources and myriad other things on the way to “professional success” but it is none of those things, that create imbalance. Only a fearless commitment to everything in balance will create the love and adventure our work is capable of infusing into our lives. As Andy Dufrenes said to Red, “I guess it comes down to a simple choice, really. Get busy living, or get busy dying.”

When I think about people I respect most (among them, Chris Schulze,  Scott A. Smith, Cameron Lackpour, A. Chris Boehmer, Kathryn Watkins, Bill Lovelace, et al) now building solutions with new technology, I wonder how many of them are finding what they do makes a difference. I look forward to hearing their thoughts on that.

thanks giving

In the meantime and between times, I am thankful to my colleagues for the great commitments I have seen them make to each other, to their work, to the clients. “It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”[3]

Make it the best Thanksgiving e v e r ! !


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Posted by: Jon H. Williams
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“We are taught you must blame your father, your sisters, your brothers, the school, the teachers – but never blame yourself. It’s never your fault. But it’s always your fault, because if you wanted to change you’re the one who has got to change.”
― Katharine Hepburn, Me: Stories Of My Life

“You give but little when you give of your possessions.
It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”
― Kahlil GibranThe Prophet

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