Par Bruno Vidal

Qui n’est pas déjà allé en réunion sans avoir la moindre idée pour résoudre le problème posé ?

Qui ne s’est pas demandé, pendant la réunion, à quoi servent les discussions autour du problème sans apporter de solution ?

Qui ne s’est pas demandé l’utilité d’une réunion qui n’a rien résolu ?

Personne ? C’est bien normal.

 

J’entends souvent dire qu’être capable de résoudre un problème nécessite d’être créatif, de “think out the box”, et que c’est un don…

Hors il existe bien des façons d’être créatif. Et même des processus qui permettent d’être créatif et de savoir si on l’a bien été.

Pour entamer un processus créatif, il faut donc faire fi des pensées limitantes et pour cela à un moment donné il faut lâcher prise et laisser venir les idées qui peuvent paraître incongrues.

Prenons notre exemple de la mayonnaise : quels sont les ingrédients nécessaires ? De toute évidence il faut un jaune d’oeuf, du sel, du poivre de la moutarde (pour ceux qui aiment) et de l’huile…

Maintenant si l’on prend du recul il faut également un bol, une fourchette et pas mal d’huile de coude ou alors un mixer…

 

Mais si l’on change notre angle de vision il faut également du temps et pourquoi pas également de l’amour, des copains, des fruits de mer ou du thon et peut-être bien d’autres choses encore.

Maintenant, une bonne mayonnaise en réunion ou d’autres exercices de lâcher prise ne sont pas suffisants pour trouver des idées créatives.

Quatre critères permettent d’identifier une idée créative:

Similitude : une idée créative est une idée simple qui ne nécessite pas d’altérer fortement la situation problématique

Unicité : une idée créative est une solution spécifique à un problème spécifique, l’idée créative tire parti des caractéristiques du problème. Plutôt que de regarder les similitudes du problème avec d’autre, il s’agit de regarder en quoi il est différent

Idéalité : une idée créative est une solution qui apparaît lorsqu’elle est nécessaire et peut disparaître lorsqu’elle ne l’est plus

Le problème est la solution : une idée créative permet d’utiliser ce qui pose problème comme solution

 

Essayez lors de vos prochaines réunions et ainsi équipé de ces quelques outils vous les aborderez différemment et vous parviendrez à résoudre ce satané problème.

Oui, on m’a dit un jour, “tu ne seras jamais un chef d’entreprise…” sous-entendu “tu n’as pas la mentalité ni les capacités business.”

Et pourtant, dans moins de 2 semaines, je vais réaliser un projet dont je rêvais depuis 1 an…cette conférence qui existe bel et bien. Link Humans commence à se faire un nom en France après un long travail, l’entreprise avance bien.

Et je suis fier ce qui a été réalisé. Fier aussi de ce que j’ai fait. Si j’avais dû prendre ce feedback/commentaire au 1er degré de quelqu’un que j’aimais beaucoup, je me serais arrêté.

C’est facile avec le recul, mais au moment ou on me l’a dit, ca m’a touché. Je l’ai pris justement au 1er degré…puis je me suis dit que non ce n’était pas vrai puis je me suis lancé dans le “faire” pour oublier et montrer que je pouvais le faire.

Maintenant ces phrases n’ont plus beaucoup d’importance car je me suis approprié mon projet d’entreprise, je l’ai accepté comme un rêve de faire un “job I love”. J’ai lutté pour montrer que j’étais capable de le faire, puis aujourd’hui je ne lutte plus mais je me bats pour moi et le projet.

La nuance est de taille…je ne lutte pas “contre” mais je lutte “pour”.

Oui, Je suis un chef d’entreprise avec mes défauts et surtout en complément avec les compétences d’autres personnes qui m’entourent et me soutiennent.

C’est à celles-là que je dédie ce billet. Ces personnes (amis, famille et associés…) qui sont à mes côtés et qui me soutiennent.

PS: et ne me demandez qui a dit ça…je ne le dirais pas :)

Et vous, vous avez des contrats, des phrases comme celle-là qui vous ont été dites?

To give you some updates…

I have been writing in English since june 2009 on this blog and I really enjoyed it so far…but since I set up Link Humans, a lot of things happened!

And now I am focusing more and more on the French market where Social Recruiting is at its early stage…so I decided to found Link Humans in France with a business partner, Jean-Christophe Anna.

And among other things we launched the 1st Social Recruting conference in France, RMS conference and launching new initiatives and new ideas on the French market…a lot needs to be done but these are exciting times.

Since I have arrived in the UK, back in October 2007, I knew I would not stay in the UK for ever but now for me, I will be back to France probably around june 2012…don’t know yet exactly.

But this quick note to say sorry as I have not had enough time to write and sorry for my English followers as from now on I will be writing in French.

Farewell to a language I love, a language so easy to use so straightforward…

All the best to you :)

I started reading the new book of Guy Kawazaki “Enchantment” and I found a couple of things good but overall it all seems that he copied and pasted all his blog articles.

Guy tried to tie all the topics around a single word “enchantment”. I admire this guy for what he has done as an entrepreneur, but the writing bit is really disappointing.

It seems like a long serie of pieces of advice one after the other and no really common thread. He uses also stories within the book like snippets but it does not give coherency to the overall work.

I really had this strange impression of reading a list of posts of a blog but with a twist…making them work together by “enchantment” !

But for me it did not work! I really loved some stories and good tips but overall, it is general sometimes a bit simplistic and not really useful to me.

And after a chat with a good friend of mine (thanks Catherine), I realized that a lot of bloggers can’t write books…just because the format and the way of writing a book is completely different.

A book is not an addition of posts or articles, a book is a whole concept where everything comes in life together.

The book of Guy was full of life and tips and it was lacking in meaning…and global coherence.

When you write a blog, you adapat your way of doing things in a very short way…you explain and synthetise your ideas with 300 to 600 words max…and you try to create a feeling of a whole book in a short way.

But actually writing a book is a very different matter….it is about the meaning, the intention and the whole picture. You start with your goal, meaning, intention and then add examples, stories, tips…at least that is how I would try even though I am not sure I can do it myself.It would need a lot of work and self-discipline to get there.

Start with the goal, the concept…big programme.

And you what are your thoughts?

I discovered that teaching is really good for everything.

I teach at different business schools and universities and I love it.

The money is not good at all though…so lately I have been trying not to teach at too many business schools.

But the benefits for doing it are numerous….

- students will always challenge you if don’t manage to communicate clearly and in a simple way, whether asking questions, not listening or bad evaluation

- you will have to write and read more to be able to teach…as what you say has to be more simple and made in way you can transfer your knowledge

- your communication skills will improve especially when you have 30/40 people waiting for you in a room…the more you speak, the better you get…for public speaking, no other options or training…so to prepare a conference, teach at universities

- you will expand your  network through contacts with universities and business schools…with other teachers, other students, and any events that they organise

- it is good for your reputation and your CV…I always maximise the schools and universities I speak at and put it on my CV/resume or online profiles…companies see that as a strength

- you can use what you teach for your conferences, articles…in my case, I use the case studies I present to write articles and present them at conferences

So first step?

Just call universities or business school, leverage your network….Universities are really hungry for good professionals and people able to communicate their knowledge.

it is really more simple than you think…

One simple rule with students…You give a lot, but you will receive much more.

 

 

 

What is the worst thing when you run a company?

Having many invoices out and no money coming into your account…it is crap!

So here am I…with almost no money on my account as we need to pay first our employee and all the costs…

What to do?

Now I have to borrow some money from one of my friend just to cover my costs for 2 weeks…the delay to get this 6.000 £ in our account.

I am learning the harsh reality of business…Our prospects are amazing, I just signed a new deal with a huge corporation and they want to roll out our services across different countries…we have been getting more and more big clients in our portfolio. But the time to deliver and to be paid…it takes time.

What now?

Getting clients does not mean immediate money.

And I will get on the back of our clients. Cash is the key to any business…you never realise till it happens to you.

So now I rely on my lucky penny ::)) (you can see it on the picture)

My Plan

1) borrow £500 to one of my friend

2) get on the back of my clients to speed up the payment process

3) eat potatoes

4) play poker with my friends and hope to win

5) find a wealthy girlfriend

More seriously…

Cash is a big issue for any business that is the reason why we always tried to keep our costs as low as possible. We have been very clever, negotiating everything we could…and keeping a low profile.

A conference? We always try to get invited.

We use google calendar, google whatever…as long we don’t burn cash.

We hire (unpaid) interns to run Social Media London…it is a win-win situation as it gives exposure to the intern.

And by the way, I am playing poker tonight, wish me good luck!

 

You see this picture?

It is Jorgen my business partner working in our new offices…

It looks good….professional and well located. We are in the heart of London, between Covent Garden and Holborn…for those who love shopping, perfect place. It is full of tourists though :) .

We have access to our small office, the kitchen, a meeting room…it is not big but full of light though.

And now?

I wonder sometimes if it is a good move. Are we taking an office for the fact of being seen with an office? Or are we taking an office to enhance colloboration between Jorgen, Cristina and me?

Probably the latter.

But at the same time, it puts pressure on us…we need to deliver…we can’t afford to let the costs of this new office put pressure on us.

When you grow, it is obvious to take an office…but is it that obvious?

The good thing for us is that we negotiated a deal with the consultancy renting the place…we deliver workshops and consultancies in exchange of this…so hopefully it should not cost us anything!!

AT the end of the day, I am quite excited with this new office…I shot this video…I speak in French so don’t worry…when I am excited, my mother tongue comes back.

 

I think having an office with everyone in it, is good for collaboration, exchanging ideas, getting ideas together…I will probably alternate between home work and office work…I love home working.

And moreover, we can run all our workshops from the meeting room (see there).

I was a bit worried about the real motivation…is this a vanity thing? To me a start-up should live with nothing, a computer and an internet connection should be enough.

You need to have the fighting spirit…and too much luxury can spoil it…hopefully it won’t be the case.

 

10 years ago, I was living in Brazil…ah what a life! I worked for a big (French) company in Brazil, Orange and then moved to north of Brazil.

And there I bought a car washing station….it was my first business.

But it was like throwing money away…I did not know what I was doing neither why I was doing it.

It was just something to do, something to build….but there was no meaning in it. I was 25 at the time.

I was throwing myself at things without thinking. And yes I did. I bought a car washing station with 8 employees from someone without checking anything.

The guy running it was honest but the business was built randomly…the business was not profitable and I was not interested in it.

After 1 year, I just left…and I lost all the money I had invested, not a big amount but something significant for me at the time.

10 years later, here am I, back to the entrepreneurship! The difference?

I know what I am doing but especially why I am doing it…I feel more mature and the experience I have learnt helped me in the process.

I think a great business does not come from a great idea but from a person who puts meaning in it…if it is a bad idea, this person will adapt its business model and will end up finding a good idea…it is all about the person!!

My piece of advice to succeed as an entrepreneur: start a therapy :)

When writing this post, I was thinking to myself that the word “values” is really old fashioned…”value” seems very serious or boring but in fact it is not!
When we founded Link Humans with Jorgen, we wrote down some key values for us, simple, authentic, credible…
Values that reflect who we are deeply, what we care for….

Values for us
And everytime we deal with something I try to think about these values. When we did the website, is this website aligned with our values (simple, authentic, credible…) ?
When I am with clients and I work on projects, I always have these values in mind.
It may sound ridiculous but it is very important to me.
Link Humans has an anchor: its values!
And it is also an anchor for me….I can put in front of these values everything.
I already said No to some clients because it did not fit into our values.

Years ago…
Values are my anchor, my reference, the point where everything starts.
A couple of years back, I used to think that values were pointless…it was made for a bunch of philosophers or charity people just to show off…and by growing and getting more mature, I realized that in fact values count.
Values are not a set of things written in the stone but something deep you relate to, and it is more the way you are going to interpret them.

But it helps you to remain true to yourself, and so to attract the people/clients aligned with that!

Link Humans is growing (up) now…we hired an employee and the question is how not to forget about our values while growing?!
And you, what are your values, what is important to you?