Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Three Questions to Assess a Person’s Profundity

A profound mind is like a big ocean, deep, but also open. 

At today’s “VUCA” digital dynamic, businesses become over-complex and hyper-competitive, the leadership bar has been raised, and employee professionalism is part of your business brand. So it is crucial to encourage deep thinking and it is also strategic imperative to bring wisdom in the workplace.

 The maturity of both individuals and an organization as a whole depends on how thoughtful they are - to make effective decisions or sound judgment; and how deep they can go - to gain the insight or cure the root cause of complex problems. Indeed, profundity is one of the crucial traits to differentiate average, mediocre, good, great or extraordinary person. But how to assess a person’s profundity via questioning:
Are you knowledgeable, insightful and understanding? Back to the root of the word “profundity,” it means insightful and understanding. Climbing Knowledge-Insight-Wisdom pyramid is a thorny journey with all critical steps in gaining profundity. It’s not just about knowing, but in-depth understanding; it requires a person's ability to grasp or comprehend information, too often assumptions and prejudices get in the way of understanding. It is the responsibility of each individual to examine themselves and to make sure they are open to true understanding. Assumptions and prejudices are due to a lack of deeper understanding. So far wisdom and knowledge have evolved in humans with their eyes and ears open to understand. Understanding has happened to a human, which is a reflection of the intellect that has evolved. The opposite of profundity is superficiality: If you always categorize people via physical identification at skin level, you are not profound; if you only read the content without contextual intelligence, you are not profound; if you only capture the symptom, but not dig through the root cause, you are not profound. Knowledge is neutral and can be used for good and become beautiful -- or it can be used to harm others and becomes ugly. It is unfortunate when we become so narrow in our view that we have to put others down. This is not understanding, this is not knowledge, this is ego! Putting others down reflects superficial understanding and knowledge that has happened to the ego and neither deep understanding nor wisdom. Hopefully, knowledge and understanding lead us to the divine, beauty, truth, and empathy.

Can you master multi-dimensional thinking processes? A profound mind is like a big ocean, deep, but also open. It can leverage multiple thinking processes in dealing with varying situations wisely. For example, critical thinking is the mental process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating information to reach an answer or conclusion. Learning critical thinking is also about un-learning bad thinking habits and mistakes in reasoning. If you are referring to the ability to make judgments and to see the big picture, it is true that some people do this naturally. Critical thinking also has been described as "the process of purposeful, self-regulatory judgment, which uses reasoned consideration to evidence, context, conceptualizations, methods, and criteria." On the other side, creative thinking also plays an instrumental role in developing a greater understanding self, others, and the world, or in short, profundity. However, there are far too many who do not fully harness their creative ability when it comes down to defining and in some cases refining their own thought process. Ultimately, creative thinking requires a profound degree of intrapersonal independence and there are far too many people who stand as too intimidated and fearful of harnessing an independent platform in fear of not being good enough in the eyes of others. If we do not direct gradual strides toward its attainment, then we will never know what its substance can do for the potential of our livelihoods. Creativity also helps see problems in multiple dimensions and solve them with passion and innovation.

Do you bring wisdom to the workplace? Wisdom in the workplace is to have positive mindsets and build an innovative culture. Often at traditional business settings, the noisy wheel gets greased, leadership is more about “loudness,” or fixing the symptom; and workers compete via the easiest, but the unprofessional way. Wisdom in the workplace means accountability to accept the responsibility for what you DO but also what you SAY -no rumor-mongering, no backbiting. Wisdom in the workplace means grooming and mentoring potential leaders now to close cognitive and skill gaps, to have the right people at the right position at the right time. Wisdom would necessarily be concerned with knowing what to say when to say, how to say, whom to say, where to say..as well as knowing what not to say, when not to say, how not to say, whom not to say, where not to say. Wisdom and humility go hand in hand. The more you know, the more you know you don’t know and admit unknown unknown. You become wise when you are humble enough to be aware of and admit what you don't know and share what you know. Wisdom= f(Applying what we think we know, Experience, Learning and unlearning, Sharing Knowledge and Experience).

A profound mind is deep, but not depressing; sophisticated, but not complicated; knowledgeable, but not arrogant; creative, but not naive; critical, but not negative; mature, but not outdated. With "VUCA" characteristics of digitalization, Talent Management will see the urgency of being innovative - to see your talent people via different angles.


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