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Firehoses, Blackholes, and Deserts

Firehoses, Blackholes, and Deserts

By: Ross Paterson

Almost every modern author writing on the subjects of motivation and team performance reference the work of Edward Deci. In layman’s terms, like the physical body’s needs for food, water, and air, we all have social/psychological needs for AUTONOMY, COMPETENCE, and CONNECTEDNESS.

The Firehose of Autonomy: I was talking with a friend who was buying a business for the next chapter of her professional life. She asked me what it was like owning a business. “It is like all the autonomy and freedom you could ever imagine, and simultaneously carrying an overwhelming burden of responsibility.” I think most small business owners can relate to the idea of drowning in our autonomy.

The Blackhole of Competence: We think we know what we are getting into when we start or acquire a business, but we really have no idea. I was a successful military officer, then had a fast-moving career at GE. I never felt more incompetent than I did the first 2-3 years as an owner. SO. MUCH. TO. LEARN.

The Desert of Connectedness: The third social/psychological need is being in relationship with others while striving for a common cause. SMB owners can be in constant contact with employees and customers seven days a week and never really have this need met. Our employees and even our spouses don’t understand our daily stresses and fears. It can be very lonely.

So, if you are drinking from the firehose of autonomy, being sucked into the blackhole of competence, and lost and alone in the desert of connectedness. This is not an uncommon experience.

We have made it our “Just Cause” to relieve the burden, shorten the learning curve, and put you in community with others on the same journey.

When we do our job, you will love doing your job, and thrive in XtraMile results. Don’t just take our word for it.

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