"I noticed a pattern. All of the people I went to highschool with had no idea what they wanted to do. They moved day by day through their courses hoping for a career epiphany. When graduation finally arrived they were forced to choose a university program. This would decide what their future would look like, even though they had no idea what the world offered. No one was solving this problem. So I created Sokanu." —Spencer Thompson-CEO, Sokanu
What do you want to do?
It doesn’t seem like that big of a question. Perhaps you already know the answer. You may already know what you like to do. Maybe you have a bucket list of all the things you would like to achieve in your lifetime. Another question may be: What do you want to do with your life?
This is the question most of us heard when we were children spending our time on playgrounds making new friends with schoolmates. Some people know inherently what they want to be and figure our how to get there. Not everyone knows.
I always thought finding my perfect career would just “click” one day. I would discover what it was I needed to do and the adult version of myself would figure it out. The question “what do you want to be when you grow up?’’ came from my parents, grandparents, and my teachers. Not long into Grade 10, I was sitting in a career office with my classmates and sheets of paper before me. We were told to check off boxes that would begin to forge the path to our careers. The classes I chose would decide which direction I would go. That direction would decide what university programs I would take and those university programs would decide which jobs I would apply for. What I thought could be put off until I was an “adult” was suddenly laid out in front of me, requiring a signature that said, “Yes! This is what I am meant to do.” I didn’t even know what options existed out there, just that I had to decide on something.
As I moved through high school, I still had no clearer picture of what it was I was meant to do in my life. And what confused me more were the mixed messages from the adults in my life. “You have to pick a direction to take!” all the way to “You have lots of time to decide.” Who was right? The more I listened to everyone else the less I could hear myself and the more confused I became.
How should a person decide what they are meant to do? This is a huge problem that needs to be solved—so where does one begin? It starts with understanding who you are.
As you grow, so will your experiences, which in turn begin to shape you as a person. You learn what you like and dislike, things you might like to pursue, and you cultivate new relationships with people you want to have in your life. Somewhere during all these experiences your character starts to develop and you start to have an understanding of yourself and who you are. This is when you begin to discover the pathways that may lead you to what you are meant to do.
Sokanu exists because we want to help you understand who you are as a person. We’ll hold the mirror up for you so you can see with greater clarity who is looking back at you. And while we’re holding the mirror for you, you will be freed up to go after those things you need to pursue.
We believe there is something inside you that intrinsically knows what you need to give to this world. Not because you need to prepare for your financial future, or learn a set of skills; all of these things are important. On a more meaningful level, there is a part of you that needs to give of itself to this world for the sake of giving. We are all meant to contribute something. We want to help you discover what that is.
Think of a situation where you had bulletproof facts, reason, and logic on your side, and believed there was absolutely no way the other person could say no to your perfectly constructed argument and proposal. To do so would be impossible, you figured, because there was no other logical solution or answer.
And then the other person dug in his heels and refused to budge. He wasn’t swayed by your logic. Were you flabbergasted?
This is similar to what many negotiators do when they sit down at the table to hammer out a deal. They come armed with facts, and they attempt to use logic to sway the other party. They figure that by piling on the data and using reason to explain their side of the situation, they can construct a solution that is simply irrefutable—and get the other party to say yes.
They’re doomed to fail, however, because decision-making isn’t logical, it’s emotional, according to the latest findings in neuroscience.
A few years ago, neuroscientist Antonio Damasio made a groundbreaking discovery. He studied people with damage in the part of the brain where emotions are generated. He found that they seemed normal, except that they were not able to feel emotions. But they all had something peculiar in common: they couldn’t make decisions. They could describe what they should be doing in logical terms, yet they found it very difficult to make even simple decisions, such as what to eat. Many decisions have pros and cons on both sides—shall I have the chicken or the turkey? With no rational way to decide, these test subjects were unable to arrive at a decision.
So at the point of decision, emotions are very important for choosing. In fact even with what we believe are logical decisions, the very point of choice is arguably always based on emotion.
This finding has enormous implications for negotiation professionals. People who believe they can build a case for their side using reason are doomed to be poor negotiators, because they don’t understand the real factors that are driving the other party to come to a decision. Those who base their negotiation strategy on logic end up relying on assumptions, guesses, and opinions. If my side of the argument is logical, they figure, then the other side can’t argue with it and is bound to come around to my way of thinking. The problem is, you can’t assume that the other party will see things your way.
What the negotiator can and must do, however, is create a vision for the other side to bring about discovery and decision on their part. In the end, your opponent will make the decision because he wants to. Getting him towant to, using the step-by-step methodology that is part of the Camp System, is the job of the negotiator—not trying to convince him with reason.
You don’t tell your opponent what to think or what’s best. You help them discover for themselves what feels right and best and most advantageous to them. Their ultimate decision is based on self-interest. That’s emotional. I want this. This is good for me and my side.
There’s a detailed and systematic way to go about building vision the right way. But in general, if you can get the other party to reveal their problems, pain, and unmet objectives, then you can build a vision for them of their problem, with you and your proposal as the solution. They won’t make their decision because it is logical. They’ll make their decision because you have helped them feel that it’s to their advantage to do so.
* * * * * Jim Camp is founder and CEO of The Camp Negotiation Institute, with more than 400 students from 24 countries enrolled in its Team Member courses. He is author of two bestselling books published by Crown, Start with No and NO: The Only System of Negotiation You Need for Work or Home, which have been translated into 12 languages, and a new 6-CD audio program “The Power of No,” produced by Nightingale-Conant. He was recently a featured panelist at Harvard’s 2012 Negotiation & Leadership Conference.
What have you done when someone says thank you? What motivates you?These motivations light up inside you when you’re engaged in a task you love. I think we’d be doing more of what we love, if we weren’t so bad at it taking a compliment….Read the rest