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The Green Sheet Online Edition

April 11, 2016 • Issue 16:04:01

Breaking free of autopilot mode

It is human nature to fall into familiar patterns. After all, routine brings order and purpose to our lives. But operating on autopilot at work has its shortcomings and may be detrimental in the pursuit of goals.

The problem is that acting on autopilot at work doesn't allow innovative, out-of-box thinking to rise to the surface, producing ideas that, if acted upon, could open new revenue channels and increase merchant retention. For many payment professionals, innovation has been the bread and butter by which progress is marked.

The next time routine habit creeps in and halts progress toward your goals, take time to reflect. And to help jumpstart your thinking, follow these short, simple tips from author Mona Patel's new book, Reframe: Shift the Way You Work, Innovate and Think:

  • Step 1: If you happen to be stuck or unsure about why a work goal is not being met, ask What if? Thinking about your goal from a different angle opens the door to other possibilities.
  • Step 2: Translate the possibilities outlined in the first step into written form. Schedule a meeting with work peers to share your new ideas, give each person three minutes to write down suggestions and ideas, share these ideas with the team and repeat as needed.
  • Step 3: To keep the dialog open with work peers, be tactful when responding to creative suggestions. Some ideas may be new and others not, but treat each individual respectfully. They may have brilliant, new ideas worth exploring.
  • Step 4: Filter each idea based on how well it solves the need identified, whether it's feasible, how easy or difficult it might be to execute, and whether it will generate the desired revenue or save money.

According to Patel, the four steps detailed above have helped many Fortune 500 companies get out of financial ruts, so why not apply them the next time you find yourself stuck in autopilot without any resolution in sight? The Green Sheet, Inc.

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