This is a follow up to last week's post when I asked several leadership influencers, authors and organizational leaders one question and shared their responses. The question was,
what is the responsibility of any organization in growing its people professionally and as human beings?
Patrick Lencioni said it best when he said that
every organization should exist to make the world a better place and if it doesn't then it should cease to exist.
The reason we form into organizations is to help our society thrive in some specific way. So doesn't it stand to reason that an organization should be measured in contribution to the members of that organization just as much as its service to its customers which then ultimately translates to both happy customers and happy employees plus more resources to do more good with?
Meaningful Work as a Basic Human Right?
Simon Sinek believes that being fulfilled and valued at work should be a basic human right. Wow, that's a pretty different way of thinking isn't it? Could you imagine being able to formally hold your employer accountable for not valuing you and your contribution or not helping you to find meaning in your work?
That's obviously an extreme example. But there are rare organizations out there right now that see it as a duty to help people grow personally and professionally because its the right thing to do and its helps them to perform well in every part of their life and ultimately helps organizational performance.
Harvard professors Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey call these organizations Deliberately Development Organizations or DDOs in their book An Everyone Culture.
What makes these organizations unique is that the way they function and how the members interact with one another and how and what the leaders focus on all incorporates a level, either large or small, of personal development and growth. Basically there is an underpinning of direct and supportive challenging of people's flaws, skill gaps and personal shortcomings all in an effort to help them overcome them and perform better so they and the team can succeed. In short, the culture of these DDOs are people growth machines. They are Peter Drucker's famous quote brought to life.
Culture eats strategy for breakfast.
Altough these DDOs put it another way.
Culture IS the strategy!
DDOs see their cultures and bent on pushing people to grow holistically as one and not as separate things that might be potentially be at odds with each other. And the interesting thing is these DDOs are not in the same lines of business and stylistically they look and feel different too. But their core belief in helping people grow and develop as a business necessity and responsibility to their people is what unites them.
Oh and by the way, these organizations are some of the most successful in their respective industries by any measure. So to you leaders of organizations out there. The choice is yours.
Kegan and Laheys An Everyone Culture
Patrick Lencioni's Organizational Health