From time to time, Mediolana’s Creative Director & CSO Asad Yawar – arguably one of the business world’s more upbeat personalities – is asked what he does to stay mentally positive. With much of the developed world in some kind of economic perma-freeze and good news of any kind seemingly restricted to escapist pursuits, we at Mediolana sense that it is high time to address this vital question; what follows are four of this company’s tips for keeping things frankly stratospheric:
1. Think Slim. Far too many entities create their own pressures which are objectively needless, and this is true for corporations large and small as much as it is for individuals or societies. Companies should solemnly evaluate exactly which of their liabilities are essential or favourable for success – and then divest themselves of the remainder. Reducing or eliminating office space and slashing salaries and payroll obligations – with the pain felt by those at the top – are moves rarely countenanced until things get out of hand and the day-to-day grief of running a failing project boils over. But a slim, highly-focused business model should be the default paradigm in most industries. This reduces bottom-line pressure – and frees up mental energy for more productive ends.
2. Think Phenomenal. Is your business truly inspirational? Is it actively contributing towards making the world a better place? Are you happy to show your work and working practices to other people? If you can answer in the affirmative to these questions and other like them, it is highly likely that you will find it that much easier to get up in the morning. Conversely, if you are in the position where you are flogging dog food to subsidise a bank – in other words, engaging in routine commercial transactions with no greater end than paying one’s way in life, e.g. via paying rent or chipping away at a mortgage – then dejection, lethargy and frustration are virtually guaranteed. CSR and amazingness must be at the very core of the enterprise.
3. Think Alignment. On a related point, many entrepreneurs are caught in a peculiar bind: they are spending vast amount of time and energy working at something that is not really their passion or vocation. This is natural – particularly in one’s first few years in the world of business, rare is the entrepreneur who is totally in their element – but if after a while your daily existence is a bizarre parody of what you set out to do, then don’t be afraid to do a 180-degree turn: a volte-face now can save a breakdown later.
4. Think Structure. Businesses which structure their interactions with the outside world well are far more likely to house happy and contented individuals. Frankly insane numbers of companies are failing to ask the most basic questions: is that junction near the dual carriageway really the best location for a ladies’ fashion boutique? How hard are you going go have to work to convince the world that they really need yet another fitness app with no obvious USP and no major corporate backing? Do you actually want to run a café – which in many cases involves a lot of physical labour – or own one and have someone else take care of the gritty-gritty? Being up against the wall from the start of proceedings is a recipe for pathology; even a modicum of solid preparation and research can remove most heartache before it has to the chance to develop.