Do companies have a soul?
I guess the next question would be, if your company does have a soul, is it a good one?
We’ve all heard someone criticize a company that has corrupt practices declaring, “That company doesn’t have a soul.” So, if it’s possible for a company to not have a soul, then it must be equally accurate that companies can have a soul. Once you know that your company has a soul then the accountability lands with you as a leader whether it will be a good one or not.
Everyday decisions not only redirect our business, they also have a profound impact on the health of our company’s soul. Leaders that ignore their company’s soul fail to fully realize the potential risk they are putting their culture and overall future in. I would suggest that a company’s culture (How most people believe and behave most of the time) is the tangible experience resulting from the manner of soul a company has.
I describe a company’s soul as the fullness of its essence…who the company is and why. As an individual’s soul is who they fully are, in the same way the fullness of a company is its soul. So how do we keep the soul of our company healthy?
Here’s a “Soul Check List” to ensure you keep your company’s soul healthy:
- Your company values should be more than a list on a poster board. How influential are your values in day to day operations?
- Your employees are given permission to care while at work. In what ways can employees connect what they do every day with a greater sense of why that gives them a sense of fulfillment?
- Your customers are more than a financial transaction. Do your customers know how they can involve themselves in your culture that makes the world a better place?
- Your leadership team is consistently upbeat when discussing the workforce. Are people looked at and talked about in a positive, enthusiastic light or not?
- Your mission includes using profits as a catalyst for good. Do you have a defined, purpose that is supported with monetary and personnel resources?
I’d love to hear other ideas of how a company can keep their soul healthy. Feel free to share in comments! Also, if you want to further engage in this type of work for your company reach out to me on cultureofgood.com. Talk to you soon!