From Leonardo da Vinci to Bill Gates, there is no shortage of pop cultural archetypes of the kind of person we commonly call "a genius." Most of us can rattle off the names, and most of us don't include our own or those of our associates in that list. But we've all had moments of extraordinary performance. What if you, and everyone you work with, could reliably replicate that level of performance? What if we could be at our best all the time, not just at peak moments?
"Genius is the ability to always show up at our best, and we're saying there is genius in everyone," Pontish Yeramyan, Gap International's CEO, told the opening session of the conference.
Getting to that state of Genius is the subject of Gap International's annual Leveraging Genius Conference this week at The Phoenician Resort in Scottsdale, Ariz. Around 150 clients from six of the seven continents and Gap International leaders are working together to train ourselves in breaking through to extraordinary performance. To do that, we're using an intensive process developed over more than 30 years of global consulting with leaders of Fortune 500 companies and federal government agencies, along with family-run enterprises and local businesses.
"As business leaders, our ability to succeed will be a function of how fast each of us grows and changes. This calls on all of us to be at our best, not just some of the time, but all the time," Pontish told the conference.
Attendees, representing sectors from energy and healthcare to finance and consumer brands, spent time envisioning the impact and results they could achieve if everyone in their organizations performed at their best all the time. Some said the change would result in "much more causing than doing." Others said it would speed up their organizations and shift the focus from achieving targets to achieving dreams. Sharing Genius could also reduce time wasted on dead-end pursuits and have the bonus effect of causing "an infectious spread of people loving" their work.
"Imagine what it would we mean for the world if everybody experienced Genius thinking?" Pontish asked. "That's exciting. Let's start with ourselves, here today, and go from there."