21 Steps to Successwater thebamboo unleashingthe potentialof teams and individuals Greg Bell edited by sarah pagliasotti Foreword by mark few head basketball coach gonzaga university
contents Foreword xv Welcome to Water The Bamboo 1Plan Your Crop one Dig Deeper – Unearth Your Values 9 two Create a Vivid Vision 19 three No Goals, No Bamboo 27Don’t Farm Alone four Tend Your Relationships 35 five Create or Join a Bamboo Circle 45Use the Bamboo Farmer’s Tools six Belief 53 seven Self-Discipline 59 eight Language 67 nine Courage 73 ten Appreciation 77 eleven Lighten Up 81 twelve Optimism 87
Prepare the Soil thirteen Learn How to Learn 95 fourteen Practice Deliberately 101 fifteen It’s Messy in the Garden 107Plant the Seed sixteen Take Risks 113 seventeen Commit to Your Bamboo 117 eighteen Decisions, Decisions and More Decisions 123Survive the Storm nineteen Patience, Persistence and Perseverance 133 twenty Change Happens 139 twenty-one Busy But Balanced 143 now It’s Harvest Time 149 Index 157 About the Author 165 Recommended Reading 167 Don’t Farm Alone – Stay Connected 169
Welcome to Water The BambooWhat Is the Concept Behind this Book?W ater The Bamboo is a metaphor for success. It’s a concept based on a type of bamboo that grows like no other plant in the world. Giant timber bamboo can grow 90 feet in 60days — that’s a foot and a half a day! Some claim that you can hear itgrow. Wouldn’t you like to have that kind of growth in your personaland business life? However, what’s even more amazing about giant tim-ber bamboo is that once it’s planted, it takes at least three years to breakthrough the ground. Timber bamboo farmers water the seed and tend toit faithfully, even though there’s no visible evidence of growth for years. After more than a decade of working with and studying successfulpeople, teams and organizations, I realized that every person, every team,every family, every organization and every social cause could benefit fromunderstanding the principles giant timber bamboo teaches us aboutamazing growth and success. What are you working on — or dreamingabout — right now, that you won’t see results from for years? The other fascinating fact about this bamboo — which is useful forour analogy — is that you can plant other crops above the bamboo forthose three years that it’s working its way to the surface. So, you can beworking on your bamboo, but also planting corn, beans and any other 1
2 WATER THE BAMBOOcrop that will help sustain you in the meantime. When you’re wateringthose crops, you’re also watering your bamboo. Water The Bamboo will help you in a number of ways, whether youare a CEO, CFO, vice president, manager, supervisor, HR director, em-ployee, salesperson, educator or a person seeking personal growth. Thisbook will demystify the notion of “overnight success” and provide stepsand strategies to help you achieve real growth. I am confident that theideas and strategies presented in this book will work for you becausethey’ve worked and continue to work for thousands of my clients.Why is this Concept So Important?Water The Bamboo is the best way to deal with a society plagued with thedesire for instant gratification. Based on personal conviction, research,and business experience, Water The Bamboo will show you what it reallytakes to be successful. In this book, you’ll learn strategies and walkthrough the steps to accomplishing amazing growth. This book: presents a framework for success offers exercises that will tease out your challenges and opportunities introduces strategies and mindsets aimed at achievement suggests solutions for your own circumstances and personal fulfill- ment Full of how-to information and exercises, Water The Bamboo willguide you to create your own, personal plan for growth.Getting the Most Out of This BookThis book is not a cookie-cutter or “quick fix” solution to success; ratherit provides a foundation for accessing the answers already within you,your team or your organization. This book is meant to be a guide foryour success. Water The Bamboo will provide you with practical exercises
Welcome to Water the Bamboo 3designed to encourage thought and insight. Use a separate notebook orjournal as you read along to record your thoughts and responses to theexercises. Anytime the book says “list” or “write,” use your journal soyour thoughts and responses are all in one central place. This book isuser friendly and easy to read. I encourage you to read and re-read it. Ifyou’re part of a team, it is helpful for all team members to read it at thesame time (like a book club) so that you can discuss the concepts and gothrough the exercises together. Watering the bamboo in unison can createmomentum and focus to ensure new growth in any team or group. The success of many of my clients continues to validate my theorythat the solutions they discover themselves are the ones that work best.The analogies, illustrations and examples in this book are intended tobe used as ways to think about the concept. Think in terms of what’simportant to you and your team as you read, reflect on, and apply eachconcept. Each chapter is also sprinkled with Bamboo Rules to highlightkey points. Below is the first: Bamboo Rule: The strategies and exercises in this book don’t work unless you do. Let’s get real – just like anything in life, you will get out of this bookwhat you put into it. Your success will depend on how you apply yourself,period. You must be involved in the process to reach the growth potentialof giant timber bamboo. With this commitment, you will notice greaterbenefits from your personal development efforts and will discover in-creased focus, clarity and motivation and greater self-discipline. Read thisbook as if your future depended on it. It does! Dreams are great. Making them a reality is better. No matter whatyour bamboo is, or how seemingly impossible, this book has been de-signed with one purpose in mind – to guide you into turning your dreamsinto reality. Today is someday! Let’s start watering.
4 WATER THE BAMBOOWater The Bamboo AssessmentThis tool is designed to give you a quick look at your current situationand rate your areas of strength and weakness – which will give you anidea of the areas you need to focus on. Answering honestly and accuratelywill help you achieve new levels of growth and set you on the fast track toyour dreams. Remember, this information is just for you! (Replace “I” with“we” if completing this as a team.) SOME- SKILL YES NO TIMES 1. I know what my values are and I follow them. 2. I can picture my vision in my mind. 3. I have a written action plan on how I am going to achieve my goals. 4. I have a strategy for building and maintaining my relationships. 5. I have a strong support network to assist me with my vision. 6. I believe that I can accomplish my vision. 7. I focus on my goals and avoid distractions. 8. My self-talk is positive and helpful. 9. I have the courage to do what is necessary to achieve my vision. 10. I regularly show appreciation for myself and others. 11. I am light-hearted and able to laugh frequently. 12. I have an optimistic approach. 13. I have a process for learning new things. 14. I practice my most critical skills. 15. I create an environment that is conducive to creativity.
Welcome to Water the Bamboo 5 16. I am comfortable taking the necessary risks to achieve my vision. 17. I stay committed to my vision despite set- backs. 18. I have a strategy for effective decision making. 19. I have the patience to allow something to develop or grow without looking for results too soon. 20. I deal effectively with change. 21. I have a balanced life that reflects my values. TOTALSScoring:Give yourself one point for every time you answered “yes,” a half pointfor every time you answered “sometimes” and zero for every time youanswered “no.”17 – 21 points. Excellent! You have a good grasp of the principlescontained in Water The Bamboo. Use this book to help take you to thenext level.12 – 16 points. The Water The Bamboo concepts aren’t totally new toyou, but there are some areas that could use some attention.Under 12 points. You probably understand some of the Water The Bambooconcepts, but will benefit greatly by following the process herein.If you scored well on the assessment, way to go. But don’t relax yet.Individuals and organizations who have had success in the past will stillfind great value from following the strategies in Water The Bamboo. Andif you didn’t score well, you’re taking an important step by reading thisbook.
LEADERSHIP“In his new book Water The Bamboo, Greg Bell takes a unique and joyful approach to time-tested management concepts. Greg’s distinctive outlook on maximizing your potential will propel you toward significant growth in both life and work. A truly enjoyable book.” – Ken Blanchard, coauthor of The One Minute Manager® and Leading at a Higher LevelWhen giant timber bamboo grows, it will rocket up an astonishing 90 feet in only 60days. (Now that’s growth!) Typically, bamboo farmers will tend the plant for at leastthree years before they see any signs of growth. Do you have that kind of vision, faith,patience, persistence and focus to achieve what you want? Those who catch the spiritand understand the principles of the bamboo farmer will see their visions suddenlyexplode into reality – seemingly out of nowhere. Water The Bamboo is for those whotruly want to achieve extraordinary results in life and work. Through simple exercises and practical examples, Water The Bamboo will help you: § Make your values come alive § Set a compelling vision § Generate the results you want § Build a network of supporters § Create unshakeable motivation § Apply the secrets of high achievers to create breakthrough results § Develop persistence and laser-like focus to avoid flirts and distractionsGreg Bell, JD is a recognized thought leaderand founder of the Water The Bamboo CenterFor Leadership. Through his entertaining andcontent-driven keynotes and seminars he hasencouraged and inspired thousands of peopleand teams to identify and water their bambooto remarkable results. $14.95