Mining People Matters

Steve Heather

Steve Heather, Managing Director and Co-founder of Mining People International (MPi).

How to live before you die!

How to live before you die!

To kick off this new year, two separate hot topics on mining motivation. But what’s there to be motivated about? Well, firstly the Australian Gold space, however beyond that there are abundant opportunities starting to present, if, and I say loudly if, we can emotionally position ourselves. At various times during the past year, I often wrote words to the effect of... 'I see so much stress, exhaustion and in some cases fear, on the faces of many mining company executives; exhaustion born out of an extended period time playing a defensive game'.   At MPi, we were falling into the same trap ourselves but eventually formed a view that it was our attitude that had to change. So in our Christmas message we declared that: 'We’re over talking about the bad stuff; Now is the norm, the market is the ‘market’ and we’re focussing forward and looking out for the next great opportunity. Now is the norm, the ‘BOOM’ was not the norm. In a search for perspective, perhaps it was that after 20 years in business, getting beaten around, flown to the moon and back a few times inevitably to crash back to earth, then to be beaten up again, we decided there IS a bigger picture. How many business start-ups make it to two years? How many to 10? How many make it to 20 and how many make a profit almost every year, and can honestly say they continue to have fun (most of the time) and continue to make a difference?' We’re in mining, but we’re not a mining company of course and so felt I needed some direct industry parallel to make my case when I saw this fantastic article written by Allan Trench in his 'Strictly Boardroom' column in miningnews.net last week. I thought he nailed the sense of forward thinking and optimism we need a little more of right now. Thanks Allan.    Thinking beyond cost-cutting And something on motivation. Is it just me or does it seem like we’re all now new age motivational gurus and life coaches with pearls of re-tweeted/liked/fav’d, wisdom gushing forth from our social media accounts, or I am just being cynical? I probably am, but we are all being encouraged to become ‘content rich publishers’. The truth though, is that there are very few new ideas and most of us aint that good at making new stuff up. So on the subject of motivation, when a pretty normal person says something out of the ordinary, you tend to listen. It happened a couple of weeks back and while I won’t quote them they gave me permission to use this. It put a lot of the motivational 'noise' into perspective. Steve 'Life is pretty simple. You need to Get Motivated Now because this is how it will play out: If you’re lucky, at some future point you will find out you are ill and are scheduled to die at some point in the future. I say lucky, because most people do get this advance notification. A small number though, die suddenly and get no such advance notification. So that’s why I say lucky, because for the bulk of us we will have time to reflect and what we will reflect on is the memories we have. We will also reflect on what we will leave behind and the differences we made to other people – and first and foremost we will think about the difference we made to those closest to us. So today you are simply making the memories and the differences that you will spend time reflecting on during your notice period. Make them good, or at least make some.'  That should be motivating! As always, I don’t need to be agreed with but I do truly look forward to all (polite) feedback and observations. I wish you, your families, friends and colleagues a successful 20016.

Steve Heather
Managing Director & Principal Executive Search
Mining People International
 
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