I’ve been backed up on lots of work, really busy with building MyPlanMap. I’ve had so many inspirations from the articles I’ve read and I haven’t gotten a chance to sit down and really write an article that really puts down my thoughts on the vision of what I see MyPlanMap to be. I touched upon it briefly in my previous post on gamification. This post, I want to provide another layer on that topic and from a slight different perspective than from a Financial Planner perspective.
The Best Laid Plans…
I read a post this past week by Jane Perdue over at Todd Nielsen’s organization that helps builds leaders and effective execution. In it Jane expertly talks about how “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry”. She talks about having 3 attributes for ensuring that plans don’t stifle creative thought and becoming to inflexible they break or lose sight of the ‘spirit’ of the plan if you will.
Planning for Resilience and Serendipity
The three ideas for making sure a plan has resilience and ensures some degree of serendipity are:
- Knowing the destination and have a plan of getting there. Timelines should be defined, roles and responsibility given out. But there should be a willingness to revamp it at any time to meet the needs of the goals.
- Sticking to a plan provides a “false” sense of security”. The parties are flexible in the ‘how’ and the ‘what’ is being implemented and are open to revisit and/or challenge the objective. This is where Jane calls “purposeful discomfort”.
- ‘Leave room for serendipity’. Meaning to make room to facilitate an interaction that was originally unintended, but nonetheless was that moment of truth. The key here is to create the interaction, but leave the outcome of these exchanges to the ‘moment’.
The Creative Dance
As Jane summarizes this concept, I cannot help but think that the creative “dance” that she implores is necessary for successful execution of leadership is in fact also true of the leadership you bring to your clients in helping them out with Financial Plans. As Financial Planners, and in the process of implementation in particular, building in the flexibility, building resilience and building those moments of serendipity is really another way of saying gamification (as Michael Kitces talks about how on his blog Nerd’s Eye View). True gamification allows for this “dance” between what is possible in the moment.
We also see this in other areas of high creative endeavors such as dance, art, film, software product management. All these areas have great creativity in come and takes a true artist to that all great “pieces” is both an art AND a science.
Building Financial Plans…
You can only create a Financial Plan with clear end goal in mind and the roles clearly defined. It’s the journey however, that should remain flexible and not hold people so rigid that it fails adapt. A Financial Plan is after all a plan, to be used as a document of agreement on a path forward. It’s really a recognition that it’s okay to not do what you planned to do, but it’s far more important to ‘play’ and execute at a level which is best for you (your clients). That’s how you build resilience, instill confidence.
Interested in gamifying your Clients’ Financial Plan that is resilience and flexible, schedule a demo to see MyPlanMap in action.