From the FLIGBY ‘play and learn’ diary of Erika (Business Student, Finnland):
Most of us expect that stars on the stage (let it be a concert hall or a theatre) are in Flow and most probably also the professors should be shining in a focused way once delivering the lecture. What about the students sitting in the lectures? During the team works – not a mission impossible at all! What about the rest of the time while learning? It is not easy to answer as we do not have any real Flow-meter around. Nevertheless, based on the following fragments from students reading diaries, reflecting their FLIGBY playing experiences, accompanied with personal insights, you can guess, what is going on in the heads and hearts of the students while studying and experiencing the universe of Flow…
- ERIKA describes in the following self-reflection about her sacrifices to the altar of FLIGBY and how she got introduced to the basics of Flow and FLIGBY through “Missing link…!
- JOHAN expresses his first aha-moments while reading the book.
- LUISE takes one step further by explaining in a very illustrative way and in a great detail her Flow (pre-)conditions and drivers in her job.
SUMMARY – Not just feeling, but also consciously experiencing Flow, are the first steps to get yourself ready for the experience! And as FLIGBY is teaching us not only to get into the zone ourselves, but create the ground for our team, we may make once again the very basic conclusion – planning and preparing is everything… Are you ready to plan your Flow experience and set the favorable conditions for your organization to sky-rocket?
It’s a Wednesday night, planning to hit the gym but then I realize I haven’t started the training home assignment yet. Damn it. Gotta skip the gym and start working with simulation.
I find it a bit difficult to get my mindset into studying after a long day at work and having a huge desire to take a nap. No, ‘I can do it!’. I click the ”Missing Link Discovered” by Marer, Buzady and Vecsey open and start my reading.
After a while, I notice that the article is actually pretty interesting and this is the kind of science and researches I am into reading, also without the ”have to”. As I keep reading it, I realize that I am in that special state of mind.
I’m in Flow. WOW!
The text is understandable but enough new concepts are present, so that to keep it challenging – not boring at all!
From the FLIGBY ‘play and learn’ diary of Johan ( Service team manager, The Netherlands):
To begin with, I have to be completely honest. Before FLIGBY, I had never even heard of “Flow”.
Yet, multiple times in my life I have been in a state of flow without knowing that it is a real thing.
I could even say that those moments give the most pleasure at work and when completing assignments. I’ve known that there are moments that one is fully immersed in the task at hand, but I never knew that there was a term for it, and it is based on a scientific study.
From the FLIGBY ‘play and learn’ diary of Luise (Expatriate manager & Night club DJ, Canada):
Reading Prof. Csikszentmihalyi talking about how Flow at work is a state of mind I can very easily reflect it to my job. I work as a DJ in different nightclubs of Finnland and occasionally elsewhere.
As I DJ it is my job to energize the crowd and create an atmosphere where people feel comfortable, relaxed. I move everybody into the “zone”. You can also call this feeling being in a Flow. To get the crowd into Flow, you need to be in Flow yourself so that you read the crowd, atmosphere and your energy and the Flow transmit to the audience. This is something of positive psychology.
As a DJ I don’t have any external motivation for my job (I do not even get a salary) or get a special reward for doing my job well. That’s why I can very strongly agree with Csikszentmihalyi’s words when he talks about what drives people’s motivation. In the job of being a DJ the real source of the motivation of being in a Flow.
There’s no better feeling than sensing your good vibes passing to the audience. His metaphor, Flow means ‘like being in a river’, describes precisely my feeling of being in Flow.
The “Flow Radar” with the relative Skill level on the X-axis and the subjective Challenge level on the Y-axis is very interesting to me. Let’s talk about three different kinds of DJ gigs and insider workflows. But let me first confirm, my skill level as a DJ level most definitely grew and still does when I am facing an increasing challenge level. So, they are someway correlative variables in my job. I don’t want to explain it more precisely because it would take too much attention from the main point.
First, let’s talk about wedding gigs. Groom, fiancé, or bridesmaids usually give me a list of songs that they want to hear and sometimes even in which sequencing order and at what time. This makes the Challenge level for me very low, but it doesn’t affect my skills on my job. Most probably I will be able to play the songs in the right order with a little DJ RT twist and my skill level comparing to the challenge level is rather much higher. This doesn’t mean that I won’t be in the Flow, even though the Flow radar claims that I should be in boredom state of mind. I probably distract myself by watching the guests and their interactions...
Second: Beautiful venue, with amazing light and sound systems but very few people around. Now my job is to create ‘the real party’ atmosphere. Of course, I and all the peers find it very difficult and depressing, if the dancefloor and great venue is empty and dull. In these cases, the challenge level is indeed high but my DJing skills are also high, yet I need to find a way to apply them appropriately. I take it that the current challenges of the yet empty dancefloor are slightly higher than my current application of skills. According to the ‘Flow Radar,’ my Flow should be ready. I am moving into Control state of mind, in hope that after a while the dancers will stimulate me to get into the Flow Zone. Yet if the challenge is too high, which is the case when there are only sober and bored people present, then it doesn’t help if you”d be the best DJ in the world to create amazing Flow on the dancefloor.
Thirdly: A crowded venue with lots of customers, very drunk or even high. Well, in these cases, it is rather easy to create an atmosphere in which people enjoy and get into the Flow. The Challenge level on these events is lower and than my great DJing skills. First I am in Arousal, and then it makes Click and I move into Flow. And it feeds the Flow also in the audience. We all end up being in an energized river of Flow states – Group Flow. I, You, everybody will feel the euphoria kicking in and it makes me constantly better in my job as I feel more and more energized by others with the good vibes.
Not just feeling, but also consciously experiencing Flow, are the first steps to get yourself ready for the experience!
And as FLIGBY is teaching us not only to get into the zone ourselves but create the ground for our team, we may make once again the very basic conclusion – planning and preparing is everything… Are you ready to plan your Flow experience and set the favorable conditions for your organization to sky-rocket?
This contribution was compiled and edited by Dr. Zoltan Buzady (Director, Leadership & Flow Global Research Network, Associate Professor at CORVINUS Business School) in cooperation with Ms. Marge Sassi (Researcher & Ph.D. candidate, Estonian Business School).
Please, share with us your most interesting or touching participants’ contributions too!