Before you dismiss ‘living consciously’ as the motto for a vegan hippie retreat, consider that building consciousness within your business can have a significant impact on your bottom line.
Does that sentiment make you do a double take? Perhaps you’re wondering how on earth an exhortation to be more mindful can translate into greater productivity and better profits?
It’s simple: consciousness speaks to our spiritual quotient (SQ). This may be a new concept for you, even though you are, of course, familiar with IQ and may even have started leveraging EQ. In fact, it completes the triumvirate: while your intellect helps you address certain aspects of the world and emotional intelligence enables you to get to grips with others, your spiritual quotient speaks to our inherent need to feel, and understand, that we have a purpose on this earth.
Organisations are no different to individuals in this respect. Henry Ford himself once said that “a business that makes nothing but money is a poor business”.
It seems that little has changed in the century since Ford made his observation; to the contrary, it’s more important than ever for organisations to understand that they have a purpose beyond functional operations.
Think about it: some of the most successful companies are clear not only on who they are and what they do – their core DNA – but also on how they enhance the world around them. Consider organisations like The Body Shop; a global empire which has built its brand around protecting community trade, human rights and animal rights, or Ben & Jerry’s, which donates 7.5% of pre-tax profits to worthy causes. We have stellar examples in South Africa, too: Bean There Coffee, one of the country’s most popular coffee brands, is rooted firmly in Fair Trade principles, for example.
What about you? Have you thought about the true purpose and the role that your organisation plays in society? Or how you can make sure that you use your corporate power for good? Or even how you and your employees can jointly explore your SQ, so that you can all reap rewards on an individual as well as organisational level?