Sunday, 20 August 2017

Collaboration and boundaries

Collaboration and boundaries of surface dwelling

These are two elements that I need to improve in my life, and since this journey of sustainability keeps moving forward, they must be considered.

So the centre of my little ojo journey has been my awesome 1966 Avion Mobile kitchen.  I really have a tremendous amount of affection for my trailer.  She started as a camping trailer, and was renovated with the help of friends and local contractors mostly in my driveway.  In my driveway ojo has sat since our last service of 2016.  She received a little make over, a high shine polish, but mostly she has been waiting for her next adventure.

So collaboration, while I am channelling my inner tank girl as I tow and haul, as much as I might hate to admit it, Tank Girl needs a Mad Max.  Two hands are always better than one.  No one can be successful all on their own, it takes team work and trust and respect.

So in my real world career I have been 20 years with an International Engineering company.  I get to work with 99% super smart extremely professional top of the line dudes.  I have been lucky to be part of some big negotiations, and travelled all over the world with men, I have generally been the only girl.  I really miss these guys, 20 years with a company things change, people retire.  We all have some of our best stories from these trips and times, and I feel really honoured looking back at the respect and camaraderie that I was treated with.  I miss knowing that I am part of team and that I know the team has my back, deep trust and loyalty we had that. 

Becoming an Entrepreneur has been a rather eye opening and somewhat humbling back to basics experience.  Instincts become key as you can no longer rely on the pre-approved evaluation of person as defined by their location on an organization chart.  There is no workplace policy for sexual harassment or verbal abuse.   I quickly realized how much I took for granted the structure of what I called the “Borg” element of our workplace, and what an awesome boss that I had for 17 years of it.  

So call me uptight what ever, but I just don’t take kindly to being yelled at in the workplace. Small business is like the Wild West of the Workplace.  Kitchens especially, and I am equally as guilty here as I had a boyfriend on the truck cooking, it completely changed the dynamic due to the level of familiarity, and as a result yelling and swearing at me the owner, which would never of happened if a true employer/employee relationship.  

So new challenge is how to move forward as a small business and surround myself with people who I can respect and trust, and who can trust and respect me.   Trust is truly a challenge for me, pretty sure I have got some well earned  trust issues so a huge amount of consideration went into moving ojo.

Boundaries, you don’t have to say yes to everything and everyone, since there are no org charts to review each individual must be considered on their own demonstrated merits, it’s like re-discovering critical thinking.   It’s scary sometimes being in charge or your own life, when there is one else to blame for your good or bad decisions.  Perhaps I ruminate too much, and my inner me & I have it out on future decisions.

Social media can be a pretty cool thing for exchanging ideas and connecting old friends from high school, among them that stood out online was Harry White with his concept for Surface – I was an immediate fan of his concept and volunteered to make his first brochure 5 years ago.  

Surface has been developing as a small urban farm, and I have been hanging out, helping out and otherwise pondering life and options.  One thing I have learnt on this journey is beware the boastful person.  If the only time you hear how great a person is – is by their own words, that should be a trigger for the truth finder button.   On the other hand, when kind words, compliments and trust are placed in people, that is the strongest indicator that the person is existing in a place of goodness, so hanging out at Surface with Harry and his Surface dwellers has been a refreshing reassurance that genuine cooperation and collaboration and trust are alive and well.  

So Ojo has a new home, a little tweaking and polishing to come along with some planting and harvesting at Surface Farm.

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