Organizations typically have a singular focus on doing, and operate by the Do model of Sacrifice & Compensation. The basic premise is that the individual will sacrifice their time and energy for the organization. In turn the organization will compensate the individual. Motivation is built on the concept that the more an individual sacrifices for the organization, the more they will be compensated. And from the other side, the more the organization compensates the individual, the more they will sacrifice. Trouble is,
Employees are people.
And so are organizations.
Isn’t there a better way, a way to have an effective organization without dehumanizing the individual? I believe there is.
Doing is important, but it needs to have a foundation of being. Everything really hinges on who we are. This is the starting point. Before you can effectively assess what you want to do, you need to have a clear understanding of who you are and who you want to be.
Doing then needs to spring from being. Our actions should build on our gifts and talents. Our decisions need to be in alignment with our beliefs and our values. What we do should also be an expression of who we are. What we do does not define us, but it should reveal us.
Connecting this all together in a powerful way, what we do should in turn enrich who we are. What we do should reinforce or refine our values, increase our knowledge, improve our abilities. The primary purpose of doing is that we become more from it. When all this is in place it creates a cycle of growth.
Unfortunately, this can also become a cycle of decline. When what we do is not true to our values, or when our doing only drains us and pulls us away from what is important to us, then it becomes a downward spiral. We become less from it, and in turn are able to do less. We don’t become all that we are meant to be.
When individuals living by who they are connect in relationship an effective organization is created.
It is the role of leaders, both inside and outside of management, to assure that the intrinsic worth of the individual is primary over their value to the organization. The leader has goals for what the team or organization can do, but those goals are always in the context of a vision for what the individuals can become.
I am not who I am because of what I do.
I do what I do because of who I am.
For more information on the Do model of Sacrifice & Compensation see the post “Do”:
For more details on the Be-Do model see the post “Dooby Dooby – Be Do Be Do”: