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"Leadership. Highly Skillful Leadership." by Brian Sharp

Today, I'm very pleased to bring to you Brian Sharp. A veteran, high level, and extraordinarily competent project manager in the video game industry, most recently with Bungie before becoming self-employed on his own projects. He was in the top 1% of well-paid project managers, but more importantly -- he was effective and empathetic, getting the best out of his people, helping them develop, and marching towards achievement after achievement while keeping his team healthy, happy, and engaged.

The following interview is in line with the launch of his GiveGetWin deal, Elite Management & Leadership Coaching for People In Creative Industries.

"Leadership. Highly Skillful Leadership." by Brian Sharp, as told to Sebastian Marshall

Buddhist philosophy has a lot in common with how I tend to think. I find professional work within organizations is one of the best forms of ethical practice.

It's one of the few environments where you're constantly juggling diametrically opposed goals (or at least, goals that can seem to be diametrically opposed).

Preference

On Tynan

There are different ways to solve problems. I've noticed that there's a continuum that these solutions rest on. On the left side are solutions that attack the symptoms of the problem. They're the easiest to implement quickly. On the other side are the solutions that attack the root of the problem, but are the hardest to implement.

Take weight loss. Going from left to right along the continuum, you'll find liposuction, lap band, eating disorders, following fad diets, eating packaged "health" foods and shakes, eating somewhat healthy food, and eating really healthy food. Most people would be able to think of all of those solutions to their weight problems, and might pick one along the continuum somewhere.

But there's actually one more solution, so far to the right on the continuum that most people wouldn't even think of it. For weight loss, that solution is to PREFER healthy food. A change in preference. Think about it-- if you LIKE healthy food more than you like unhealthy food, you will never gain weight again. Impossible, even if you don't exercise. More importantly, if you prefer healthy food, there's no stress associated with weight loss. You're just eating foods that you like. What's easier than that?

Changing your preference for food isn't easy, though. It's not like getting a lap band. To change your preference for food you have to learn a lot. What makes food healthy? What are the exceptions? You have to understand the biological impact that bad food has on the various systems of your body. That's the leverage that holds the preference in place. When you learn about how sugar abuses your pancreas, it's a little less appealing in your mind. You learn about how factory farms raise their animals, and that sort of meat is less appealing. Changing preferences is hard work, and it takes time and effort and energy, but it produces lasting change.

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