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How would you measure up against yourself 5 years ago?

Last week I did something I haven’t done in years. I created a mix CD of songs. This used to be a hobby of mine in the days of cassettes and early CDs. 

All good mixed tapes have a theme and this one was songs I had heard with our son Sam while driving to and from his job at McDonald’s. We listen to CFNY, an alternative rock station, and critique the songs based on melody, lyrics, etc. It’s fun and often we have the same views.

When I shared my project with Sam, I said it was an activity from a different era. He said, “Like the dinosaur era?” Ouch. Undaunted, I started collecting the songs we liked. I was searching for a song by Metric on Youtube and noticed there were multiple live clips of it that people had posted.  

Metric, Dead Disco (2008 Coachella Festival) – Click Title 

What caught my eye was that Dead Disco had been performed at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in 2008 and 2013. Watching the clips, the location, size of crowd and weather were the same, just five years apart. I wondered how the band’s performance had changed. 

Metric, Dead Disco (2013 Coachella Festival) – Click Title

Watching them back to back, the earlier performance is more raw and energetic. The later one is more stylized, better played with less but more focused energy. The later one is my favourite.

I wonder how our organizations, teams and ourselves would measure up with five year old versions. How have they changed? Would we be more stylized, better skilled and more focused?

My business notebook said that five years ago today,July 31st, I was in London leading Global Commercial Human Resources for Cadbury. I had five meetings and fifteen actions listed for the day. I had used a highlighter to mark the highest priorities and there are multiple “must,” “need to” and “urgent priority” references. It’s hard to say whether today I am more stylized, better skilled and more focused, but it feels that way and this version is definitely my favourite. How about you?


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