Saturday, November 17, 2007

If Money Doesn't Buy Happiness But Happiness Gets Money What Do You Use The Money For?

Mind Hacks looks at the relationship between money and happiness "The relationship between money and happiness:Newsweek has a brief article on what research has told us about the link between money and happiness. Essentially, more money makes you happier until you're comfortable, and then, it really doesn't do much good. "

Another blog post from Fast Company puts the optimal point of money with happiness at, $1.5 million. Googling "'money and happiness' on the FC website. According to this 2003 article, $1.5 million net worth is the magic figure where people's feelings of happiness go from nowhere to nirvana in nanoseconds."

Even more helpful, since getting $1.5 million any time soon is unlikely, is some good advice as to what to avoid being:

Uncomfortably challenged = stress and an untimely death.
Comfortably unchallenged = numb and stagnant; has a strange habit of morphing into uncomfortably unchallenged over time.

The post goes on to discuss finding happiness by following the different drummer in your career. This according to another Fast Company article means happiness comes from figuring out "How to Get the Job of Your Dreams"

"There's heaps of research out there that shows that the quality of your work affects your well-being and mental health. This has spillover effects for your life outside of work," says Professor Sharon Parker, Director of the Institute of Work Psychology at the University of Sheffield. She emphasizes that money is not usually the sole motivating factor behind why people choose to stay in a particular job; more important is whether it's challenging, exciting and stimulating."

Dan Gilbert provides insights into why we are happy and why we are not happy.

It is however Matthieu Ricard: Monk, author, photographer who provides us the habits of happiness.

You Can't Talk Your Way Through A Paradigm Shift

Businesspundit: YUM Brands and The World's Largest CSR Project
This caught my eye because it is in direct opposition to another article that I decided to bypass because it wasn't clear to me what was the intention of the article and my general sense was negative. Watch Out for Anti-Social Responsibility Campaigns

Rob, the author of the first blog admits to being, "skeptical of these types of corporate projects, but Yum employees have really supported this effort, donating money and time to help make a difference. Regardless of your philosophical views on CSR, this project is interesting because Yum seems to be walking the walk, not just talking the talk."

The title of the second blog post is confusing. "Social responsibility is being embraced by businesses. But as more companies participate in causes, watch out for “anti-social responsibility” activists. If your business has any vulnerabilities to a negative public relations campaign by a passionate activist, participating in a highly-publicized cause may be just the thing that puts your vulnerabilities under a spotlight." So are we being warned about spoilsports who ruin the party or are we being warned that if we we need to walk the walk and not just talk the talk. This weblog has raised concerns before with superficial efforts to address problems that focus more on style than substance and not just with businesses.

Is What You Do Who You Are?

Seth's Blog: End your tasks, end your job?

"It's no wonder, then, that groupthink and politics and natural defenses kick in every time strategy is discussed."

One means of defining ourselves is by our job and the means of defining our job is what we do, what are our tasks? Sometimes that is hard to define. Certain tasks can be essential when working in a multi-discipline organization, however explaining how they relate to the overall enterprise can be a challenge. Especially, if they focus on organizational cohesion to move projects forward rather than direct application of a certain discipline.

As Seth asks, if your tasks, that which you do day in and out, ends does that end your job. If that job and those tasks have defined you, how do you then define yourself? As Seth points out, organizations often do a bad job at responding to this, depending on all too often on worn out paradigms. I am less optimistic about his ideas about creating change within the organization. Most upper management would not go for it and neither would most of the line staff. I believe it is something one will have to do for oneself.

Character and Personal Force

"Character and personal force are the only investments that are worth anything."

--Walt Whitman, poet

Making Personal Paradigm Changes to Make Social Paradigm Shifts

According to Entrepreneurial Mind Baby Boomers and Millennials are two generations that are over-represented in the ranks of entrepreneurs. As part of my own personal paradigm shift as a baby boomer I am moving away from government bureaucracy to some form of entrepreneurship, most likely social. Not sure what form just that I would not want to do absolutely nothing and will at sometime look for something different. The Millennials are the ones light years ahead of me in Web 2.0 and are far likelier to be working in areas in which I have interest. So would I be managing or working for them. A previous post took a look at the Yer's.

Social Entrepreneurship has been an ongoing topic of contemplation for the weblog. The ideas reflected in this site are also being considered by universities across the country. Part of the mission of this weblog is trying to determine how to best fit into such an environment. Previous to the above post Entrepreneurial Mind raised the question, Is Social Entrepreneurship, Just Entrepreneurship? Quoting the visiting Dr. Morris and Dr. Brooks of Syracuse University

"Mike Morris stressed that it is important to keep in mind that entrepreneurship is entrepreneurship no matter what the organizational context. I could not agree more. Our program will have students taking a wide array of our standard entrepreneurship classes. We will be using the social entrepreneurship classes as a vehicle to interject experiential and service learning."

Arthur Brooks went on to give a working definition of social entrepreneurship:

"Process of creating value by bringing together a unique package of resources to exploit an opportunity, in pursuit of high social returns."

All of which I can and have agreed with in the past and continue to do so.

Boomers Ruling the Old World or Helping to Raise Up a New One

Being a Baby boomer looking for a new paradigm shift means trying to understand where the changes in the world are arising. It is young who create the new paradigms. The old more often than not just recycle the old ones. There does though often seem to be a connection possible between old and young, more often than we acknowledge. More importantly, there are questions being asked and challenges to boomer paradigms that need to be pondered. The personnel paradigm change is accepting that one's old paradigms don't necessarily fit in the world anymore while at the same time not surrendering those that define one's ethics and spiritual foundation. Whether we are old or young the question below applies to many of us today.

The Gig Money v. meaningful work, the battle continues «
Many asked, though, how they could keep their Yers engaged — and frankly, coming to work — in the face of huge salaries from big corporations trying to poach them. The plans they work on have a huge impact on people’s lives, another attendee said, but is that enough for Yers? I’m inclined to say that, yes, along with lots of exposure to higher-ups’ passion, Yers will choose high-impact jobs like these over high-paying, but perhaps less rewarding, ones. (Leaving aside, of course, debt. The average college grad with loans has more than $19,000 to pay back, so s/he may have to choose salary in the short term.)

But I think the key is seeing the dedication of senior staffers. As psyched as these Boomers were about their work, I couldn’t imagine any Yer I know not finding it a little infectious. This seems to be borne out in the research, which Tamara Erickson — one of our recurring Gig experts and president of the Concours Institute — says shows that Yers value expertise above all else, including authority. Meaning that, a lot of the time, we’ll take the old guy with great stories and good advice over the younger one with a big title. So for those senior folks in the public sector or nonprofit world, retaining their Yers may just be a matter of sharing a few tales about the lives they’ve changed.

Getting Back Into The Groove

There has not been a post to this weblog for about two weeks. A real world/day job change enveloped me in a number of whirlwind issues at work, sometimes you change the paradigms and sometimes the paradigms change you. It was an interesting course of karma to be put in a position of power over some who would have craved it far more.

Did try to keep up with the influx of new information and organize it all in some form so that it can be studied more closely in the future. This is of course a self-afflicted difficulty. One can simply say no but articles look interesting then connections are made and one feels a need to tie things together and more often than not creating a narrative for one's self is the best way of accomplishing that.

Finished transferring anything deemed worthwhile from the second incarnation to this, the third incarnation of this weblog. A few current and old posts are still in draft form waiting for a final decision to post or not. It goes back to the often raised question as to why I am doing this. Maybe I will figure that out if I do it a bit more.