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Focus by Daniel Goleman

71nvYbMAE6L._SL1500_This book is composed of some of the concepts already presented in the bestseller Emotional Intelligence by the same author. The suggestive subtitle (the hidden driver of excellence) gives a relatively clear idea of the starting point: distraction and its importance in the quality of our performance, whether in the professional environment, sports, family … And this is not a minor issue in our society, where distractions and interferences (whatever they are) are numerous.
Accordingly, the first part of the book deals with the attention from the scientific view and from the behavior of the brain. And from that point, concepts like open awareness are introduced, which allows us to enjoy the moment in front of the emotional reactivity that makes us get stuck in irritating details. How often do we lose the track of what we are doing because we cannot get out of our head that discussion, or that comment, or that angry face…!
The book is based on the concept of self-awareness (knowledge of oneself), a kind of internal compass that allows us to be aligned with our values and to focus (hence the title) on achieving goals. Only from this knowledge can we, according to the author, practice self-control which, among other things, is to delay gratification, manage the impulses, regulate ourselves emotionally or plan. With the domain of self-awareness and its control we can manage our will which, ultimately, is what allows us to keep our attention and focus, above impulses, habits or desires.
What is the proposal to achieve excellence? Of course, for a high level of performance it is required lots of practice (it is mentioned the rule of 10,000 hours), but accompanied by the concentration and the support of a teacher or coach. No matter how much time we spend, for example, to improve our record in swimming, if we do not focus on our style and do not receive any feedback on our performance.
To improve and work the attention the author proposes the practice of meditation, specifically, something that is now a quite fashionable topic, mindfulness as an “organic tool to teach skills on concentration”. Broadly speaking, this is a mental training that allows us to develop the ability to focus and break the chain of thoughts and internal dialogues that can irritate us and deviate.
Other issues are discussed in the book, such as the characteristics of focused leader (especially in the field of organizations) who should enjoy a wide or systemic vision to guide the team and the required empathy to manage it. Ecology is also addressed, but from my point of view it is a bit out of place in the book.
In the end, this is a work of scientific type (the aforementioned studies, references and bibliography are numerous) introducing the matter of attention nowadays in an entertaining way. This is not a self-help book or a practical guide to meditation. It can be considered as a strong tool into the topic.

Why a blog?

Someone may say that a blog that needs to be explained by his owner doesn’t worth reading. And that is true. However the aim of this post is not to defend or to explain the site’s existence, but to give some clues on the reasons why I decided to write it, and which are my targets.

Firstly, I would like to comment that this place is the answer to my passion for Business and everything related to them. And I am not just talking about those subjects studied in Business Schools such as Marketing, Finance, Economy… Of course, those are important but I think that there are many others like People, on which we should focus more than Companies do nowadays. In fact, what companies are is made by their employees and their performance: shouldn’t we invest time and efforts in understanding and improving the Human Resources? My definite answer is yes.

I am also interested in the innovations which come up everyday and that can be applied in business management. Trying to be informed of those novelties forces me to study and learn. One never stops studying, but when it is done with emotion the result can be satisfying.

As I have said, being informed is extremely important today. Therefore, this place intends to be a way for releasing news and analyses. It will represent an incentive for searching and putting forward attracting subjects to comment and discuss.

In the end, this is not going to be a specialized blog (a mistake, maybe :)), but a place open to a large variety of topics related to Companies. On the other hand and thinking globally, it will be bilingual with posts in English and Spanish. This last one is my mother tongue, so it will represent a challenge to write in English. My apologies in advance for the mistakes.

One last thing: I would be more than grateful with other’s participation. Proposals, constructive criticisms, collaborations, comments… from anyone who has something interesting to say are welcome. And I expect them!

Welcome on board!

Presento mi blog

Con esta entrada no pretendo hacer un ejercicio de hedonismo, ni justificar la existencia de este blog . Entiendo que él mismo con su contenido se debe defender y será el tiempo y los usuarios los que determinen si tiene interés y merece la pena. Sin embargo, sí creo que tengo que dar algunas claves sobre su origen y finalidad.

En primer lugar,  este espacio responde a mi inquietud por la empresa y todo lo que está  relacionado con ella. Y lo expreso en un sentido amplio. Algunos pueden creer que hablar de empresa es hablar de  finanzas, marketing y economía. Pero yo opino que es eso, y mucho más. Empezando por las personas, que somos las que en realidad constituimos las organizaciones y que hacemos que sean lo que son, para bien o para mal. Sé que esto de las personas puede resultar un poco manido, pero a lo largo de mi carrera profesional he sido testigo o protagonista de la gestión e interacción del capital humano, y estoy convencido de que, por un lado, la mayoría somos unos ineptos sociales, y por otro lado, de que en las organizaciones hay mucho potencial desaprovechado.

También me interesan las propuestas innovadoras en distintos campos (ligadas a la tecnología o no) que día a día surgen y tienen aplicación en la empresa. Querer conocer esas novedades y mi deseo de transmitirlas a través de este soporte, ayudan a uno de mis objetivos vitales como es el aprendizaje.   Creo uno no deja de formarse en la vida, pero si además se hace con emoción resulta gratificante.

Si algo exigen los tiempos que vivimos tan cambiantes es estar bien informado. Esta plataforma es una vía para la transmisión de información y su análisis, y a su vez es un acicate que me exige estar al día.

Se trata, en definitiva, de un blog generalista (quizás uno de los pecados capitales de una bitácora :)) que me permitirá abordar distintos temas ligados a la empresa. Por otro lado, tengo la intención de que sea bilingüe, con entradas en castellano y en inglés, lo que creo que enriquecerá las fuentes, los comentarios y la participación.

Finalmente, me gustaría concluir con una llamada a la participación. Agradeceré las propuestas, críticas constructivas y la contribución (comentarios, colaboraciones…) de todo aquel que tenga algo interesante que decir. ¡Y así deseo que sea!.

¡Bienvenidos a bordo!.

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