by Suzy Welch – wife of Jack (GE) fm Today on MSNBC.com 7/11
enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4biz
3. Why 10-10-10 ??? As I’ve said, a fully conceptualized version of 10-10-10, logistics and all, didn’t exactly strike me like a thunderbolt that Hawaiian morning. Rather, my thinking was more like, “I have to stop running around putting out fires and trying to make everyone happy. When the kids are in their twenties, they’re going to love me or hate me for decisions far bigger than whether or not I took them on a four-day business trip in February 1996. I’m just living too much in the moment, for God’s sake.”
And with that, I formed the Concept of “10-10-10”. I was going to start making my decisions based on a balance of short-term & long-term considerations. What nonsense it had been, I told myself, to have schlepped the kids 5000 miles for a few piddling swims on the beach together. If I had left them home, their pouting would have lasted a day at most, had there even been any. Almost instantly, however, I became aware of the incompleteness of my emergent idea. Over the next few months, I was actually going to be away from home twice more, for a wedding and then for another conference. Maybe my trip to Hawaii, taken cumulatively, had me absent from the children too much. Maybe, for true balance & perspective, my new decision-making process needed to consider a more middle-term horizon as well. Thus 10-10-10 was officially born.
4. Applying 10-10-10. With nothing to lose, I started applying the & to all sorts of dilemmas both at home and work as soon as we returned to Boston. Should I stay at the office for an emergency when I promised the kids I’d be home at six? Should I spend the holidays with my parents or my in-laws? Should I confront a difficult writer about a late manuscript? Should I focus my time on an article submitted by a promising newcomer or a steady old-timer? Much to my surprise, I found that the process invariably led me to faster, cleaner, & sounder decisions. And as an unexpected bonus, it also gave me a way to explain myself to all the relevant “constituents” — my kids or parents or boss — with clarity & confidence. “Let me tell you how I came to that decision,” I could finally say, and go from there.
5. Sharing 10-10-10 & the Success Stories. Within months, 10-10-10 had served me so well that I couldn’t resist sharing it with my sisters, as well as a cadre of close friends and colleagues. And so it was that the process first started to spread. One of my co-workers told his wife, who used it to untangle herself from a state of job-search paralysis. A friend “gave” 10-10-10 to her just-married daughter, who was struggling with whether to continue working or return to graduate school. Another acquaintance of mine described 10-10-10 to her husband, a doctor, and he brought it to work, where a group of nurses adopted it to confront — and resolve — a contentious dispute over patient visiting hours that had been simmering for months.
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