The difference between what we ‘think’ we want and what we ‘believe’ we deserve can often be the stumbling block in achieving our limitless potential. Says Tammy Hamawi.
Change now happens at such speed that we are urged to consider new ways; new ways of thinking, new priorities and better ways to accessing an abundance of opportunities we never had before. History (told or untold) is filled with stories of winners. Through their darkest moments and most difficult situations they forged a life so wealthy, that Bill Gates himself would be proud to endorse.
These courageous ones know only one way; and that is to believe in ones own inner perfection/potential. The opportunities are then limitless.
Consider the options you would take if you were a young boy, back in 1930’s and living in the deep South of USA. Being regularly shooed away from white stores, white restaurants, white bathrooms, even white water fountains. On a long return bus trip from a debating contest, he and his teacher were told to stand so that white passengers could sit. In a downtown department store, an elderly woman once slapped him saying, “The little nigger stepped on my foot!”. That boy became a man and chose to ‘believe’ in equality, peace and his own potential. Armed with the teachings of his 3 main mentors: Gandhi, Henry Thoreau and the gospel, he chose to fight for what he believes through peaceful yet powerful actions. On April 4th 1968, He was shot dead, ending a life and beginning a powerful legacy. He is Martin Luther King, Jr.
Have you heard of Ricardo Semler. President of Semco SA, and author of two books: Maverick and The Seven-Day Weekend? For nearly 25 years, Ricardo has let his employees set their own hours, wages, even choose their own IT. The result: increased productivity, long-term loyalty and phenomenal growth. Born 1959 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, at age 21 and after threatening to leave his father’s business due to clashes over management styles, he was given the reins and on his first day fired 60% of all his top managers. In 1990, through Brazil’s hyperinflation period, the Brazilian economy went into severe downturn and many companies declared bankruptcy. Semler and his loyal workers at Semco negotiated and agreed to wage cuts, management salaries were also cut by 40% and employees were given the right to approve all expenses. His firm’s revenues grew from US$35 million to US$160 million in just six years. Semco is now a US$400 million business with additional minority interests in companies that add up to $9 billion in market value. He is a man after my own heart as my leadership style has always been about believing and investing most in the partnerships and relationships with the people around me. That is why my experience in the shipping industry is more than my job descriptions, my income-ability my gender or the titles.
What are you prepared to do now in order to have history tell its story about you in the way you believe you deserve? Be honest and take ownership.
Start this year with a wealth plan that you believe in. That you believe you deserve and you qualify clearly to yourself why you deserve this to happen. In all four corners of your life (Financially, mentally, spiritually and physically) lies an opportunity for you to develop. List what you deserve financially and physically. Add into that what you intend to learn more about and don’t forget to also plan for adventures and experiences that will nourish your spirit. Plan how you will make this all happen and then as Nike says “Just do it”.
“Investment success in the 21st Century will require a pioneering mindset” says TAMMY HAMAWI.
Our modern age of constant and massive change brings a real smell of this NEW world emerging. It excites me to be absorbing, learning and developing throughout this time. It calls on all senses and all intelligences; be it “Intellectual” or the mother of all intelligences, “Emotional”.
This is why I felt compelled to write about the pioneering mindset of an investor today. We are the new breed of investor- a more curious, more accountable, and more willing to diversify into a sea of options. Regardless of age, wealth or education, anyone seriously investing today is pioneering for the future generations. This has become more so today as our governments have delegated the responsibility for many of their social responsibilities back to us. With taxes higher than ever before, we are now expected to cover our own health, education and retirement costs.
So how do we handle the huge opportunities, risks and responsibilities that come with that? Here are some great tips I would like to share with you:
Know who you are and where your values lie. My personality grew through a tough and global upbringing. I gained experience in business through a cut-throat and competitive industry of International Shipping & Logistics. That shaped me. I also became more intuitive and flexible about many things including investing. Who are you? What are your core values about money and life that anchor you? Knowing who you are allows you to set up a plan that works best for you. For example, as investors, we are divided. Some of us like to manage our investments while others want to delegate that responsibility to others. Knowing what’s comfortable for you allows you to choose the best, and therefore, reduce stress and anxiety over money.
Ask the right questions from yourself and others. Whether managing people, selling to customers, or raising kids, I have learned a very valuable lesson in asking the right questions. This is essential in avoiding frustrating dead ends or wasting time by taking wrong turns. In other words.. Are you asking the right questions about investing? Where do the opportunities lie right now? Are you considering the future when you look at where you should invest your money? Rather than asking “Are pharmaceutical companies bad?” vis-à-vis ASK “Who is currently developing innovative medicine that combines conventional with holistic science?”. Consumers want both today. Which companies are known to be working on innovative products that meet current demands and future needs? If it is stocks you’re considering then let’s not forget that making real money comes from investing early in the cycle of that stock, before it becomes a trend. JFK’s father, Joseph P. Kennedy, claimed that he knew the rampant stock speculation of the late 1920s would lead to a crash . It is said that he knew it was time to get out of the market when he received stock tips from a shoe-shine boy!
Understand what core beliefs drive you now and manage them. For me it was not enough to be in my own business, I wanted to influence my environment and my industry. This is a core belief for me and by catering to it, I was able to take risk and gain confidence, which in turn gave me the depth of my experience. “My world was bigger than just me”. By knowing your core beliefs you can choose investments that resonate with you, excite you, and even compel you to take risk and learn more.
Take responsibility about your financial education. We don’t stop learning when we leave school or university. Education has to be something you hunger for. And you must be discerning in whom you gain that knowledge from. We can learn a lot from historical and modern wealth creators. Joseph Kennedy survived the 1920’s crash “because he possessed a passion for facts, a complete lack of sentiment and a marvelous sense of timing”. During the Great Depression Kennedy increased his fortune from $4 million (equivalent to $54.1 million today) In 1929, to $180 million (equivalent to $3.05 billion today) in 1935. Today, we have a teacher in Warren Buffett. What is Buffett’s secret? According to his business partner, the plainspoken Charlie Munger, Buffett spends at least half his waking hours “just sitting on his ass and reading.!”
I am writing at the end of another economically turbulent week where we have seen the US Government drop It’s investigation into Goldman Sachs for basically betting (by taking opposite positions) against their own clients and the positions they have placed on their behalf. It truly justifies the sentiment we have towards financial institutions, banks and Governments.
Coincidentally I have thoroughly enjoyed revisiting John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath. The famous novel was set and written in the Great Depression. Steinbeck’s little book caused quite a stir when it was released because he was very critical of the greed and apathy that characterised and dominated modern life. In contrast to the colourful characters of his other works, where even the villains have an innocent lovability about them, he is scathing in his criticism of banks, industry and most of all the apathy of the human beings that make-up these institutions.
Although we might be more circumspect today, complaining about industrialisation and the loss of the farming lifestyle – one issue he raises is a problem that still resonates loudly today: apathy. I would like to share with you some parts of Chapter 5 that really moved me. The following passages concern a conversation between a tenant being evicted from his farm with a bank representative, and later with the tractor driver who is now ploughing the bank-owned fields.
Dealing with difficult decisions
“Some of the owner men were kind because they hated what they had to do, and some of them were angry because they hated to be cruel, and some of them were cold because they had long ago found that one could not be an owner unless one were cold. And all of them were caught in something larger than themselves. Some of them hated the mathematics that drove them, and some were afraid, and some worshipped the mathematics because it provided a refuge from thought and from feeling. If a bank or a finance company owned the land, the owner man said, The Bank—or the Company— needs—wants—insists—must have—(as though the Bank or the Company were a monster, with thought and feeling, which had ensnared them). These last would take no responsibility for the banks or the companies because they were men and slaves, while the banks were machines and masters all at the same time.”
We all feel like these owners sometimes. Inevitably in professional life we have to make tough decisions that affect others. In tough financial times there is more of this than ever with evictions, redundancies and liquidations. Sometimes we have very little choice in how we treat people – these are often the easiest decisions because we can hide behind necessity or the authority of others: ‘just following orders’.
Other times we have flexibility in how we address a situation. We can make the world a brighter place and come up with more creative and fruitful solutions by being mindful of the humanity of others regardless of which side of the fence we sit on – whether we are ‘farmers’ or ‘owners’. By treating others with respect and remembering that they are a person not a problem, you are able to better resolve these difficult situations.
Hiding Behind Bureaucracy
“It’s not us, it’s the bank. A bank isn’t like a man. Or an owner with fifty thousand acres, he isn’t like a man either. That’s the monster.
“Sure,” cried the tenant men, “but it’s our land. We measured it and broke it up. We were born on it, and we got killed on it, died on it. Even if it’s no good, it’s still ours. That’s what makes it ours—being born on it, working it, dying on it. That makes ownership, not a paper with numbers on it.”
“We’re sorry. It’s not us. It’s the monster. The bank isn’t like a man.”
“Yes, but the bank is only made of men.”
So often we come across the bureaucrats (real ones at the council, or our friends in call-centres) who won’t budge an inch to help you out. People in ‘customer service’ who have become so fixated on the rules that they have lost the ability to serve customers effectively. Treating customers as people and not numbers is one of the few things that large companies do poorly and that small companies can excel at. The thing that strikes me about this passage is that the evicting bank representative does not take responsibility for the actions he is taking. He might be right, but like then tenant says – the bank is made of people like him. How is it that we end up doing bad things together that we wouldn’t do alone? If we took responsibility for, and made more effort to be aware of the wider implications of our actions perhaps we could avoid the harm that this kind of detachment can cause.
Apathy and the Big Picture
“No, you’re wrong there—quite wrong there. The bank is something else than men. It happens that every man in a bank hates what the bank does, and yet the bank does it. The bank is something more than men, I tell you. It’s the monster. Men made it, but they can’t control it.”
“It’s not me. There’s nothing I can do. I’II lose my job if I don’t do it. And look—suppose you kill me? They’ll just hang you, but long before you’re hung there’ll be another guy on the tractor, and he’ll bump the house down. You’re not killing the right guy.
“That’s so,” the tenant said. “Who gave you orders? I’ll go after him. He’s the one to kill.”
“You’re wrong. He got his orders from the bank. The bank told him, ‘Clear those people out or it’s your job.’ “
“Well, there’s a president of the bank. There’s a board of directors. I’ll fill up the magazine of the rifle and go into the bank.”
The driver said, “Fellow was telling me the bank gets orders from the East. The orders were, ‘Make the land show profit or we’ll close you up.’ “
“But where does it stop? Who can we shoot? I don’t aim to starve to death before I kill the man that’s starving me.
“I got to figure,” the tenant said. “We all got to figure. There’s some way to stop this. It’s not like lightning or earthquakes. We’ve got a bad thing made by men, and by God that’s something we can change.”
This is the point I most wanted to make. So many of the world’s problems today: economic, environmental and social could be solved if people weren’t so apathetic and detached from one another. We know that we each bear a small part of a group responsibility.
So let’s decide! At least on an individual level, to check our actions and make sure that we replace APATHY with EMPATHY. That we also celebrate when someone does the same for us. Maybe with our own small ripple that we created, we will have the power to make that ripple grow until it encompasses the universe and we can REACH our final destination of true NIRVANA.
With all my love to you,
When I was contemplating this blog, I was riding my bike with the sun and wind in my hair. I felt light, happy and young. How could such a simple activity generate inside me such a deep sense of self? Grounding me around my thoughts and plans. Knowing this about myself allows me to add activities within my business day that encourage my positive mindset when tackling the days’ challenges and opportunities.
Taking your business day too seriously may not be doing your career any good! Leadership is demonstrated by the decisions we make within our own lives. How can we demonstarte what great leaders we are, if we fail at leading our own ~ self, thoughts, emotions, health, finances etc…
So if today, your work or life feels overwhelming, one easy way to lighten your thoughts is to, “stand up, go out, look up to the sky and notice the colours & shapes & feel great that your eyes can see with so much details”. ” Take a deep breath & feel that thick oxygenated breath fill your lungs with life forming force”. “Jump up or twirl around & get that boost of energy vibrating through your whole body”. “Feel the wind (or lack of it) touching the exposed areas of your skin”. “Acknowledge the beauty that is, within your self”. By adding this ever so short “play time break“, it may save you & help you make that amazing decision you’ll feel happy you have made.
Dare to be Happy today!
I am on this journey with you too.
Tribunity’s tag line say’s it all, “Human Empowerment”. We mentor, coach and lead businesses, individuals and teams because we have successfully walked in their shoes. We bring a wealth of knowledge and diverse experience in business ownership, growth and management. We mainly service the corporate and business sector and enjoy working with highly motivated individuals. Success breeds success and that is a very true statement. Our objectives are to empower, teach and mentor people to discover learn and evolve. We walk our talk and everything we mentor on, we have the experience to back it up.
Q: What is the most important lesson you have learned as a businesswoman?
A: I love this question but find it very hard to succinctly answer as there are too many pearlers to share. I would say being myself, believing in myself, investing in myself and respecting myself. Authenticity and integrity go a long way in business and anyone taking shortcuts in these areas crash eventually.
Q: In your role, what do you consider are some of the barriers facing directors/ businesses today?
A: I don’t notice barriers, which is reflective in the career I forged for the past 26 years. Being the first female in Australasia to be director, shareholder and GM of an International shipping company and create joint ventures that many would consider too hard or impossible comes from an attitude that only understands Potential.
Q: How important is it to have a strong voice from a governance and board perspective?
A: I am a strong believer in doing things well. Having a strong and clear voice brings clarity and direction. These are important factors that contribute to a successful board with clear goals and objectives.
Top five leadership/business coaching tips:
1. Always have the right attitude.
2. Remain Passionate to what you’re committed to.
3. Surround Yourself with the best skilled team for the business you have.
4. Invest in growth and innovation that suits your style and business model.
5. Improve communication flows within your organisation and team.
JKF quoting (Luke 12:48) once said “Those who much is given, much is expected”.
Spending yesterday visiting 4 amazing wineries in The Barossa, one of Australia’s most influential and internationally recognised wine regions; it reminded me that Resilience, Vision and Courage are the true currencies that shaped this region to what it is today.
It is easy to see magnificent estates on breathtaking land; filled with immaculate vines with inspiring stories behind every drop and assume “How Lucky are they to have this?”. Then you learn about the history that was built on the backs of true pioneering WOMEN and MEN who worked together seamlessly and beat the odds to give us all a place we can visit, lose our worries, fall in-love again and as we say in French enjoy “ le Joie de vivre”.
Resilience taught through Sofie Schroeder, wife of Oscar (Benno) Pedro Seppelt from SEPPELTSFIELD winery (EST 1851). She had 21 pregnancies, 16 children with 13 who survived to adulthood. Sofie & Benno’s desire to build a community beyond their business meant that their responsibilities to their workers went beyond the normal call of duty. Sofie herself would cook breakfast, lunch and dinner for 150 people everyday while still in charge of maintaining the business accounts. A full time job on it’s own. Can you just imagine the dedication and commitment to doing our very best no matter what.
Vision taught through Oscare (Benno) Seppelt, who at 21 took over after the death of his father. Benno went on to expand SEPPELTSFIELD until by the turn of the 20th Century it was Australia’s largest winery producing 2 million litres annually. Visionary thinking Benno, back in 1878, selected a 500 litre barrel of his finest port wine, which would lay in one spot for 100 years to be released as Seppeltsfield 100 year old Para Tawny Port. He would go on to instruct his people to do this every year laying another 500 little barrel ready to be bottled and sold 100 years on. How could we ever underestimate the power of vision in brining to us something so perfect a century later.
Courage taught through Peter Lehmann from PETER LEHMANN OF THE BAROSSA winery, who’s personal bravery in 1979 saw him leave the security of paid work as a grape buyer and to protect the livelihood of his mates; the independent Barossa grape growers and their treasured vineyards. Back then a slump in the wine industry saw our government offer growers money to rip out their vines. The fruit buyers (of which Peter work for) said they would no longer be buying any grapes due to the glut of existing stock. Peter felt responsible and took action by borrowing money to purchase the run down winery, which today bear his name. Peter offered the growers to buy their grapes and would pay them when he sold the wine. Today around 150 growers continue to sell their grapes to Peter Lehmann. Imagine you risking for something greater than just you. What would you feel 30 years on! “Priceless Payoff”.
I started this blog today with an important biblical quote. One that reflects the weaknesses in our society and what brings news to our attention. It is a time when we have so much yet we see so little. Never in history have we had so much. I hope we can reflect on this today and make decisions for tomorrow to build on something bigger than ourselves.
With Love, Tammy.
I was flying back from Venice a couple of years back and had just left my sweetheart behind. It was a long flight home via Dubai then Australia. Being that I was a passionate DJ in Sydney from my late teens to early twenties, I just love music and the power it has over my emotions. To lift my spirits I’d play the song time and time again until I reached home. I don’t have to be in a somber or sad place to appreciate the tunes this beautiful song brings. The images lifting our hearts and reminding us of the gratitude that is ours for the taking. Forget the pills, the booze, the power play and the food gluteny as medicine, find your joy through music that lifts your heart. Here is one I just love and so who else I should share it with is you. My Tribunity family.
Love to you all and hope you’re having a lovely week.
Everyday going into my office, the first thing everyone heard before they could even see my face was a happy and loud “GOOD MORNING SUNSHINE!!!”. I just loved the responses & smiles from even the die hard cynics. I knew I connected with each one of these wonderful and talented souls in the best way I could to start our working day together. Our world of international shipping was a daily diet of problem solving, disaster control and putting out fires. It’s a tough industry with high costs and so many out of control challenges. For most of the time, we worked happy and felt fulfilled. We had great culture.
We underestimate how much this simple human acknowledgment is needed to remind everyone that they are appreciated. Vibrant Happy companies build vibrant happy teams and the results are vibrant happy clients who bring their business back.
How do you greet your team, your co-workers or anyone for that matter? How do you greet yourself when you first wakeup? It’s all in the mindset that sets the tone.
If you want to feel as warm as sunshine, you need to be as bright as the sun.
Helen Keller said, “Keep your face to the sunshine and you will never see the shadow”.
That is what I hope for you today and everyday of your life.