I have alluded to this issue previously and will continue to do so because if I don’t, I might just explode with pent-up passion. People matter. Every one of them – even those you wish would rather matter on a bug-infested island all by themselves…
One of the reasons this stirs me is because I see the opposite modeled with alarming regularity. We not only have to raise the standards of doing business and of equipping those in business with relevant skills, but we also have to raise the standards of how we relate to and value fellow evolved bipeds.
I love these words from a song*:
“Did you hear of the city on a hill? Said one old man to the other
It once shined bright and it would be shining still
But they all started turning on each other
“… the poets thought the dancers were shallow
And the soldiers thought the poets were weak
And the elders saw the young ones as foolish
And the rich man never heard the poor man speak
“…Instead of standing strong together
They let their differences divide”
And then my favourite part:
“But it was the rhythm of the dancers that gave the poets life
It was the spirit of the poets that gave the soldiers strength to fight
It was the fire of the young ones, it was the wisdom of the old
It was the story of the poor man that needed be told.”
We easily reduce those we work with to the job they’re doing. This is not limited to peers or those in positions lower in the organisational hierarchy than ours – seeing the CEO as just the CEO is reducing his or her breadth of contributions. We are not our jobs. It is only a position for which we use a small – relevant to the potential buried in the whole person – selection of skills.
If we were to mine the potential of the whole person and see how best to slot it into our money-making machines instead of (in sophisticated fashion) punishing people for their weaknesses and differences, what power houses could we not develop and what additional opportunities could we not create!
It is with a keen sense of the importance for an upward trajectory in all facets of leadership, service delivery and being human that Raising the Standards celebrates its first birthday this month.
The journey has been one of continual learning, facing challenges, embracing the productive pain of growth, celebrating successes and the value of each person who crossed our path. Poets, dancers, soldiers, young, old, rich, poor – every single one has a contribution bigger than a title.
(* Casting Crowns – City on a Hill)