Name a business that has soul. Got one? Got a few? You’ll be lucky. You know instantly when an organisation has soul. It connects with you on a deep and personal level. It makes an impact.
Now imagine this was your business. Where every engagement with your employees connected at this deep level. Where your leaders led with soul. Where every team member spoke with soul. Where your customers had an experience that was full of soul.
When we talk about soul in organisational life, we are certainly pointing to something that feels intangible and is often invisible. Pragmatic and pressured business leaders can easily look beyond these apparently non-core areas (dare I say ‘fluffy’), yet engaging employees and customers to secure their loyalty requires uncovering and working with the right levers internally and externally.
Today’s world needs people to adapt faster and to handle more uncertainty than ever before. The pressure on leaders is immense. We need to energise and lift peoples’ spirits so they will want to do their best and to focus their efforts on the important priorities, even when the chips are down, which may be the case for some time with the current crises we are facing.
Research by Posner and Schmidt shows that it is clarity of our own personal values that drives us to commit more of ourselves, not what the organisation tells us are its values and purpose. When we do get such a personal connection, we see an extra 18 percent of commitment. What is that worth in each customer touchpoint, each project team, each challenging situation that needs to be overcome?
To get this extra commitment, people need to feel personally accountable and empowered, coupled with a sense of moral elevation – so much more than informed or engaged. Purpose and values often exist, but they often don’t reach people and inspire them at the level of heart and soul. So, when it comes to values, for us the key is what people carry around in their heads, hearts and their deeper I. This is a deeper sense of self (the I-space) and each other (the We-space). These are the spaces where we actually experience powerful emotions and team spirit. Our scientific approach to the modern world can easily create distance between the variables senior managers grapple with and the real lived experience of their people.
A recent McKinsey study shows us the power of getting both – an organisational alignment to purpose, and a full first-person connection at the personal level. The research involved almost 1000 people working for organisations that had an expressed purpose and showed that 44 percent felt that both the organisation and they personally were fully aligned and engaged with the purpose. In the disconnected group 41 percent of employees were willing to stay in their role, 20 percent felt engaged and 45 percent were willing to advocate on behalf of their employer. Compared to the fully connected group where 87 percent were willing to stay, 77 percent of employees felt engaged and 93 percent were happy to advocate.
If we want people to survive and thrive the hybrid workplace, they need real leadership and the right culture – one that has real soul. We need to invest the time and effort to develop and maintain such a climate. Do you have these qualities in your leaders, teams, and organisation to lead in way that creates a powerful connection at a deeper level? Do you have a plan to develop them?
Soul Corporations® is a global movement that connects the soul of people and businesses. Through our unique approaches, people connect at a deep level to their own soul, the soul of their team and their organisation. This connection delivers profound transformation that is instantaneous and sustainable and leads to a quantum leap in performance. We’ve won four major national awards for our work in the past 10 years.
At Soul Corporations® we believe in a hybrid world, people will need more experiential and immersive experiences to breathe life into the soul of their teams and organisation:
• High impact keynotes with world-class speakers and facilitation
• Online and face-to-face experiences packed with action planning guides and tangible takeaways
• Retreat experiences for teams and leadership teams
Please contact me, Nicholas Brice at email@example.com to discuss how we can help to drive your organisation forward with soul.