Simon Mainwaring On The Business Revolution That Will Save Our Future
Simon Mainwaring is the bestselling author of We First and Lead With We: The Business Revolution That Will Save Our Future, which comes out in November. He is the founder & CEO of We First, Inc. and he was a finalist for Global Australian of the Year in 2015.
Simon’s first book came about after the global economic meltdown when he heard a speech from Bill Gates from the World Economic Forum. Bill Gates talked about how the private sector needed to play a bigger role in social change and that really hit home with Simon. He wrote his first book, We First: How Brands and Consumers Use Social Media to Build a Better World, to help companies rethink their strategies and practice capitalism in a way that produces profit but also benefits the planet and communities around the world.
What is the future of work
As Simon shares, prior to covid we had defined separation between work and life, but since the pandemic that line has dissolved. Work has infused our life and life has infused our work. We are now seeing people bring more of their whole selves to work. We have Zoom calls and we see people’s children, pets, and house decor.
Simon believes that as we go forward we will see even more blending between work and personal life so they are more seamless. Even though work-life balance has been a phrase used in the past, Simon believes there is no work-life balance, the balance has to be within yourself. You have to know what works for you and what gives you balance. Do you work better at night or in the morning? Do you work better in a coffee shop or in an office setting?
“I think, you know, that balance is something that we all need to strive for in a sort of the inner state level. And once you do that, I think, you can show up meaningfully, when you're just hanging out and being social, and also you can really contribute on the work front. So I think the focus of the balance has to be within you, rather than sort of this false separation between work and life.”
Simon has also learned from working in countries around the world. He says he has learned to work more lightly and not suspend his happiness until he reaches a certain level.
“I used to be so anxious, and you're striving to get ahead and you think you can't be happy or successful until you've done X, Y, and Z. And I think it's a much smarter strategy just to realize that you're gonna put that effort in, but not suspend your happiness until you get there to just travel more lightly, take things a little less seriously. And, you know, have a little bit more fun on the way because I can't even remember things that I was worried about three or four years ago.”
Trends Simon is paying attention to
The world of work is changing a lot and there are a few trends that Simon is watching and paying attention to. The first one is the heightened and growing awareness of all of the challenges we are facing these days. You can’t look at your phone, or your social media, or a newspaper without seeing what’s happening around the world--floods, fires, species lost, political unrest, etc....
“I think we're all going through really tough times-- anxiety, stress, pressure, family, professional, whatever. And I think one of the challenges of COVID is I don't think any of us had carved out the time or the pressure hasn't stopped for us to actually process what's happening. And so we're carrying it forward into our work lives.”
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