Creating Work Environments that Work
© 2000, Robert Knowlton
We're now in the 21st century. Look around you. Has your work place changed much in the last two months? How about in the last two years?
There are many books today being written about the mechanization and computerization of the new work environment, but what about the people? What do we need to do to assure that individual human beings get what they need aside from their paycheck alone?
Today, if the technology we use becomes obsolete, we spend big bucks and upgrade. Add memory, lay new cable, network the systems, or get a new program or machine.
What is often overlooked are the individual men and women who make the systems work. What do you need to do your jobs to the best of your ability? It seems there is strong drive to create work environments where respect for the spirit is acknowledged and supported.
In 1994 I went to hear Matthew Fox, former Dominican priest, defrocked by the Pope for his outspoken positions, discuss his book, "The Reinvention of Work: A New Livelihood for our Times."
Fox, in his radical way, asked us why we were working the way we were and "how could we bring more spirit into our work?"
In some arenas changes are being made. Poet David Whyte conducts workshops and uses story, metaphor and poetry to preserve the soul in corporate America, as explored in his best seller "The Heart Aroused."
Some still argue there is no room for "spirituality" in the workplace, perhaps confusing it with religion. But what happens when you lose spirit in your work, in your life? I see the loss of spirit revealed in a fractured society where workers gun down their colleagues and associates seem much more stressed and frazzled. To succeed, we need work environments that nurture all aspects of our being. It's no good to leave your spirit at the door. You are your spirit.
We have come to a new age, where work must offer more than just a paycheck. If the leadership of the company does not offer it, those who make up the company must. People caring for each other, respecting each other and working together to inspire each other to excellence.
As businesses realize inspired workers are more productive, have fewer sick days and will stay late because of their commitment, then serious thought will be directed to caring for the spirit of employees. Creating environments that inspire as opposed to oppress will have direct implications on a more productive, profitable bottom line. The commitment of employees to the overall success of a business is priceless.
The prophets of Inspirational Leadership are dedicated to business success. Inspirational Leaders know the need for an organization to be financially viable (able to sustain itself and grow). They also know true success comes out of a vision that includes its people's spirits and has a purpose or cause that its members support.
Inspirational Leadership is not something others do to you. It is the responsibility of everyone in an organization. Leaders inspire and need to be inspired. Do you inspire your leader, supervisor or manager to be great at their job?
You can create environments at work that inspire you and those with whom you work. Be a cause of inspiration. A heavenly lightening bolt will not strike and change your workplace. You must commit to making your workplace one that serves the individual spirit as together we create a new way to work in the 21st century. You'll probably spend the majority of your life working, why not be inspired everyday.
© 2000, Robert Knowlton, Options Success Coaching and Training
Robert Knowlton is an Executive Success Coach. Coaching in leadership development, communication strategies, and realizing your purpose and personal vision. Contact me now if you are ready to move to the next level of success and fulfillment in your business and life.
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Five tips for creating an inspiring work place:
1) Find out what your boss or your colleagues need for them to be great at their job. Help them get it.
2) Decide what you need to be great at your job. Ask for it!
3) Find ways to bring out the best in others every day.
4) Leverage your talents by understanding what you are really good at and love doing...then do more of it.
5) Change happens when you change. Be a leader.