Imagine David Letterman is on streets of New York City with a microphone in hand. He has one question to ask those who happen to pass by, "What is purpose of being in business?" "What do you think most common response will be? I would guess that almost everyone, if not everyone, will answer that purpose of being in business is to make money.
Iím going to suggest a different way of looking at this question. Imagine for a moment that purpose of being in business was to Grow People! What would be different? How about, everything would be different and you would make more money as well!
I rented a movie other day about industrial technology. I loved these lines from that movies main character;
"Lately Iíve been reading about some of our great entrepreneurs, Dupont, Rockefeller, Ford. Their ability to create great new wealth depended on fact that they worked out on edge, leading edge, frontier. It can be a scary place...but once youíve stepped out onto edge, itís impossible to come back.
I welcome challenges of frontier. Institutions never create anything, individuals do. We are thinkers, planners, visionaries, that will shape future. It is our destiny not only to change to make people community, but to change way people think."
It is my vision and quest to travel throughout United States and abroad and speak code. If individuals and groups would live their lives with integrity, world would be a safer, more vibrant, healthy, and fulfilling place.
I do understand that this is a new way of thinking. However, all of research that I have conducted points to similarities between those companies that are considered to be visionary versus those that are not. Companies such as Citicorp, Ford, Marriott, Nordstrom, Wal-Mart, and Walt Disney all share a common code of integrity. I will give you my interpretation of that shared code.
These visionary companies live a culture, a belief system, that is shared by every level of organization. One of these shared beliefs is that purpose of being in business is to grow people. How do you grow people? You do this through coaching and a principle based organization. The following are guiding principles that I believe are necessary for a company to be living in integrity.
Three Core Principles:
1) I do what I say I will do.
2). I canít do it by myself. I am far better off as a part of a team than I can ever be by myself.
3) Accountability-I am source of all that I experience.
Core principle #1: I do what I say I will do.
This is a fundamental principle. If an individual does not hold this as important, entire system of core values fall apart. I support this principle by blasting following myth:
I am better off by committing high and falling short, then committing lower and falling short.
Please understand that this is a myth, and is not true. One is not better off by unrealistically committing to big audacious and hairy goals. If an individual commits to an artificially high goal then moment they start to question their ability to reach that goal, their motivation begins to dramatically decrease. The "pull" of hope no longer is present.
Replace that myth with MLOís. Minimum level objectives. This concept embraces first principle of living with integrity, I do what I said I would do. What is minimum level you give your word you will do and falling short does not exist.
I have been in training and coaching business for over twenty years. I canít tell you how many times I have heard an individual say that they were committed to reach some goal and then not take intended actions. They all had viable reasons, stories, priorities, unscheduled interruptions, and excuses. They all also didnít do what they said they would do!
When you use MLOís, you call upon Newtonsí third principle of physics, "inertia". "Any body in motion will remain in motion unless acted on by an external force" With huge unrealistic goals, external force preventing continuation of momentum is fear. Once individuals see "evidence" that they canít do something they immediately buy into that evidence as being true and they live their lives in resignation. Iíve heard it said, "itsí starting that stops most people."