On Prof. Buzady’s “New trends in Leadership” course we always had the body-mind-success theme trilogy to highlight and to exercise the connection between wellness and leadership.
This theme is now also the focus of a HBR article:
We have forgotten that organizations are first and foremost places of human interaction, not justtransaction. Research shows that our greatest need after food and shelter is social connection — positive social relationships with others. If we create work environments characterized by these kinds of positive and supportive interactions, we create organizations that thrive. Organizations with very low turnover. Organizations that inspire. And organizations that enjoy superior results for employees and employers alike.
This is not to say that leaders and managers should be too “soft,” nor does this mean that an organization becomes a place that is too “nice.” You can still lead powerfully, you can still exert authority, you can still influence, and you can still communicate frankly while remaining courteous, empathic, and understanding. Rather than adding more and more wellness initiatives and material perks, employers can actually do something much simpler — not to mention cost-effective — that will have much greater results. By creating a values-based culture characterized by humanity, they can create an organization with true workplace well-being.
Well, I guess that for the ordinary manager-leader in many of us, the concept of “value-based organization” sounds a bit too much of a challenge and maybe even ‘risky’ – why should I follow values at all, they are obstacles – I hear often my students proclaim triumphantly.
BUT, many of us, at CEU Business School, the producers of FLIGBY (the official Flow-Leadership simulation game) and now again at HBR, think that there is no other way for you, as leader, then to follow some sustainable values.
We recommend the Flow-Leadership Values: Csikszentmihalyi’s three recommendations – do no harm for selfish reasons, help others experience Flow, and contribute to something beyond yourself – are permanently relevant to us – as individuals as well as managers/leaders.