Friday, April 10, 2015
F: 4:40 a.m. All right, Rita, more on [TMI Board member] Al [Dahlberg]’s questions?
[“What role does Rita think TMI should play in bringing alternative therapies into our consciousness (through programs etc.) or should we remain focused on Hemi-Sync and SAM for now?”]
R: There isn’t any need to make such a decision in a vacuum, as I see it. Opportunities will arise and should be evaluated one by one as they do so. I don’t see any advantage in either extreme – trying anything new as soon as it comes to mind, or refusing to try anything new. What makes sense to me is to integrate into your decision-making, ever more firmly, the fact that your own non-3D guidance is there and will sound an alert sometimes, saying, “try this,” or “stay away from that,” and in the absence of an alert will remain available for a consultation, let’s say.
F: Which fact relieves any anxiety about perhaps missing the path.
R: Trust your life. One aspect of life is career, both in the sense of one’s personal achievement and in the sense of one’s service to a goal.
F: So, for now Hemi-Sync and SAM.
R: For now, for always, remain oriented on the eventual desired goal, and procedures will suggest themselves as you go.
F: All right,
[“Does Rita have any suggestions for how TMI should / can `get it out there,’ as Bob Monroe always said about Hemi-Sync (and now SAM).”]
R: Yes I do. Hire expertise.
F: That one kind of surprised me.
R: That’s because that isn’t the way Hampton Roads went. But you might have.
F: Well, spell it out for us, then.
R: “Hire expertise” doesn’t mean, add employees and ever-more-qualified ones, though in some instances that could be the preferred solution, and in some specifics it could be the only feasible interim procedure. But what I have in mind is this. There are people and companies that specialize in providing services. They will nearly always be better at doing so than any amateur competition, despite the amateurs’ advantages of greater familiarity with their own subject matter. So, combine your own familiarity with the processionals’ superior technique.
Advertising and marketing, for instance. Professionals have been studying how to communicate for a long, long time. They know the principles and are accustomed to applying them to new specifics. Find the right set of professionals and marry them to the cause.
F: Hire pitch men to plug TMI? That’s pretty distasteful.
R: In the first place, you don’t hire anyone as an employee, you hire a firm’s services (even if it is a one-man firm) as an independent consultant lending you the best professional advice and execution. Doing for you what you can’t do for yourself. And then you guide that expertise by keeping a firm handle on the limits of what you allow them to do, for no matter what any professional will try to tell you, there is always great latitude in how to accomplish any goal, even if there is little or no choice of goals.
Now, to be able to afford such professional services, you have to be able to pay for them, and this in itself is an area to explore. Are there no professional firms that advise non-profits on fund-raising? You see?
F: I do, although the whole subject makes me nervous. The things we did at Hampton Roads that made us who we are were sometimes very different from what professionals would have advised. Even how we stayed afloat financially, we had to make up as we went along. I’d hate to see TMI become just another do-gooding non-profit indistinguishable from a thousand others, no longer unique as it is.
R: And that is the mindset that has kept it alive, and unique, and yet limping. You might call that preserving your virginity by avoiding the big city. In the first place, it doesn’t necessarily work; in the second place, it assures that you will remain small-time.
F: What is so wrong with remaining – well, not necessarily small-time, but human-scale?
R: Those are false dichotomies, and if you consider things in that way, it will assure that you miss opportunities.
F: All right, proceed in your own way, then.
R: The question was, how should TMI get it out there. My answer is that it must, or should, or may, or could – choose your own level of urgency – move to a more professional level of presentation. This does not say anything about losing its identity or its integrity by making compromises in its mission or its methods. I would oppose any such compromises. But it is the mind-set – the unconscious mind-set – that says “we can remain ourselves only by remaining small and only semi-professional” that causes problems.
Nor, in saying this, am I telling anything the TMI board and administration isn’t aware of. But I’ve been asked, as I see it, if I have any insight into how to get from here to there.
You know very well that they have already taken little steps in that direction – and, indeed, not so little, in that [any] new awareness, seated into the vision, leads to sustainable change. So I am merely giving my view as to how to implement that vision.
Hire professionals to do what they can do better than amateurs can do. I used advertising and marketing as an example, but there are many more, centering on the logistics of creating and managing events at far distances, rather than TMI having to do so themselves, at great strain and in an unavoidably ad hoc manner. Similarly, other aspects of business – packaging and making available new kinds of products, as one example — could be done more effectively that way.
F: Something else ran through my mind, but escaped.
R: It doesn’t matter, the point is made. Professionalism routinizes, it hones, and thereby it frees up resources for other things.
F: Research, was what I briefly thought of.
R: Of course. Different levels of research could be done – vastly multiplying TMI’s effective resources – if it could be paid for in the form of research grants, joint investigations, et cetera.
Now, what all this depends upon is money. Access to money or access to services in kind is the way to more professionalism which is the way to greater effectiveness in getting it out there.
F: And how do you obtain access to money without selling your soul?
R: You begin by losing that attitude toward it! It is not money, but love of money, that was said to be the root of all evil. Money in itself is neutral energy; any form of corruption that manifests among sums of money stems not from the money or the opportunities that [such] money seems to provide, but from the individual (even if the individual in question is a corporate culture manifesting as one).
F: All right, consider me corrected. Where are the sources of money?
R: Grants, not savings. Individual and institutional bequests, not past profits (nor, still less, present borrowings) as a source of growth.
Now we need to look at something here, and your own semi-sweet experience at Hampton Roads should illumine it for you.
F: I know where you’re going with this.
R: You do to an extent. Here are the desiderata.
Maintain firm control of the vision and the objectives and the means of delivering or facilitating them.
Rely upon your own resources for day-by-day overhead. In other words, do not become dependent upon extraordinary bequests to finance operations, something easier said than done, this requiring continual vigilance. Hold on-going overhead to a reasonable minimum, both to maintain your own steering and way of operating, and to prevent financial necessities from arising that will end to distort the larger picture.
Build up an endowment in the form of gifts from those emotionally and intellectually invested in the welfare of the institution, and manage that endowment for growth so that it may be a financial flywheel. Do not let it become an intrinsic part of an operation budget.
Find the professionals who can write grant applications; find the professionals who can solicit donations from private individuals. This is not the same thing as responding to offers. It is an on-going professional effort to multiply resources so as to multiply its impact.
And then, finally, you will come to the need to create a structure that will combine local initiative and customization overseas with maintenance of the mission and method from home. This is less difficult than you might think. One model might be franchises; another, the way some churches are organized; another, universities with numerous semi-independent colleges attached to it yet functioning on their own. Each model has its point of application, without you turning TMI into a franchise, a church, or a university. The goal is to become an umbrella but not an empire.
And that’s enough of sticking my nose into TMI’s “business” business. I will return next time to advising on its “consciousness” business.
F: Well, it was highly interesting and occasionally surprising. I don’t know what Al and TMI will make of it.
R: That’s for them to decide. You and I have a different role to play, and we are playing it.
F: What you say (mostly by implication) about Hampton Roads rings true. Bob and I created something unique, but when we tried to expand it we did it by hiring people and never thought of hiring expertise, instead. Well, enough for the morning. Thanks as always, and next time I hope we get to the longer question Al sent me yesterday in response to your communication.
R: That will be fine.
F: I look forward to it. See you whenever.