The Need for Living Organisations
Since the vast majority of us give the best years of our productivity and the most productive hours of the day to our organisations, it is vital, imperative even, that we create organisations that are a joy to work for. These organisations need to be vibrant, life-affirming, energising, exciting to work for – in other words, they need to be “Living Organisations”.
Our organisations are not separate from the world in which they conduct business. They are vitally connected in a web of life. In fact to see themselves as separate is to invite self-destruction. Instead, they have a part to play in the ecology of commerce and of Civilisation as a whole. It therefore makes sense to mimic the models that already work in Nature. The most fundamental of these models embraces the seven characteristics that define every organism that may be said to be alive: Movement, Nutrition, Reproduction, Excretion, Growth, Respiration, and Sensitivity.
I am beginning to seek interviews with people who are the “voice” of their particular Living Organisation. The interviews are straight-forward, and need to use the same questions in each interview. To help you gather your thoughts, here are the questions. If you are proud of the vitality of your organisation, and would be happy to be interviewed, I’d love to hear from you.
• What are you moving towards as an organisation?
• What, if anything, are you moving away from?
• How do you know when you are moving in the right direction?
• What energises you as an organisation?
• What does your organisation ‘feed’ on?
• What does your organisation value most highly?
• How are you seeking to spread your message? (or products or services)
• How do you replicate your best practices?
• How do you ensure the organisation’s talent is replicated and passed on?
• How do you deal with set-backs as an organisation?
• How to you learn from your mistakes as an organisation?
• How do you recycle?
• How do you reduce waste?
• In which ways are the organisation growing, expanding, or going deeper?
• How do you define ‘growth’ for your organisation?
• How do you enter into an exchange with your community – the environment in which you live and move and have your being?
• What do you give?
• What do you receive in return?
• How do you sense what is going on in the Market?
• How do you stay aware of what’s going on inside your organisation?
• How do you keep track of opportunities or even threats in your environment?
• How do you use information you gather?