By Stacey Hentschel, Founder - Quantum Integrations
The competitive demands of today's global and turbulent marketplace suggest that a business that will continue to thrive in the 21st century must provide both a powerful outward contribution and intrinsic satisfaction and fulfillment to its creators and employees. The following practices will support us in creating and running a sourceful, impactful and fulfilling business.
CONNECT WITH OUR INNER PASSION
By taking time to connect with what we love to do, what we care about, what has us be joyful, inspired, moved, energized and alive, and by considering what difference we are committed to making in the world, we open ourselves to see opportunities we may otherwise have missed. We begin to observe what is wanted and needed around us in a particular way that resonates with our inner passion. Similarly, we discover valuable connections with people whose passion and interests fit uniquely with ours. As we discover the desires and commitments that make up our unique design, life takes on a quality of flow and outward expansion. Joseph Jaworski puts it this way in his book Synchronicity: "Deep down we know that to cooperate with fate brings great personal power and responsibility. If we engage our destiny, we are yielding to the design of the universe, which is speaking through the design of our own person . . . The fundamental choice that enables true leadership in all situations . . . is the choice to serve life. My capacity as a leader comes from my choice to allow life to unfold through me."
DESIGNING A STRONG FOUNDATION
The business that makes a lasting difference in the world and fulfills its creators must be built upon a foundation of clear vision and values. Begin by writing out your vision: How do you see your business making a lasting difference? What is it that you wish to contribute? Next, identify a smaller number of values or guiding principles by which you will operate your business. What values are most important to you? Integrity? Or empowering communication, service, excellence, and cooperation? Describe your values in your own words. With these statements you begin to define the direction and style of your business based upon what you believe your truth, your essence, that which brings you joy and energy.
CREATE COMPELLING PLANS & GOALS
It is important to formulate a plan with goals that call us into action in each of the following areas: promotion, sales, product development, finance, operations, human relations, customer service, administration, and information systems. Once again, it is essential that these goals and action plans be consistent with our truth‹our inner passion, our vision and guiding principles. It is necessary to create a structure to regularly review our goals and plans to evaluate our progress and to bring clarity, intentionally and integrity. In your review, be sure to ask yourself, 'Is this fulfilling and is it fun?'
DEVELOP A POWERFUL TEAM
Much of our energy must be focused on creating clarity, alignment and direction among all the people associated with our business. In developing a powerful team, we seek to encourage co-creativity, cooperation and partnership with our employees, customers and suppliers. By involving people in our vision of making a difference, and by creating space for people to bring forth ideas that will contribute to the growth and expansion of the business, we foster creativity and innovation. When one's heart expands, one's energy expands. Expanded energy attracts abundance and creates fulfillment and joy. Peter Senge from MIT said, "An organization can have profound effects on people, particularly by nurturing an understanding of and a responsibility for the larger social systems within which the individual and the organization operate. In such an organization, individuals aligned around an appropriate vision can have extraordinary influence in the world." Beneath everything, all people really want is to make a difference.
GROW WITH THE FLOW
Your business is an ecosystem with many different living parts interdependent upon each other. It is continually changing and moving. It has patters of rhythm and energy. Remembering it organic nature helps us to nurture the natural flow and movement of our business. A business takes on certain characteristics, and when one part of the business changes, it can impact all parts of the business. When employees come and go, markets change, technology advances, and the political, social and economic arenas shift, the ecosystem adapts. By not resisting this, but embracing it and dancing with it, we let it teach us. It will empower us to see this as the natural unfolding of our destiny and to find joy and fulfillment in the flow. As Kierkegaard wrote, "To venture causes anxiety, but not to venture is to lose one's self . . . And to venture in the highest is precisely to be conscious of one's self." In giving ourselves with reserve to a compelling vision of service and contribution, what's inevitable is a sourceful, impactful and fulfilling business.
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