In the second dialogue of this 3-part series, our two leaders, Richard Barrett and Marc Gafni, speak about how the teachings on soul and Unique Self can be applied to organizations and lead to more success of the organizations as well as the individuals.
Listen to this wonderful and insightful dialogue and read the summary of their discussion below.
To read more about the extensive work of Richard Barrett and listen to the first dialogue on “The Unique Self and Soul Activation: The Path of Personal Transformation” you can click here.
The third part of the series “Unique Self, Organizational Leadership, and the Destiny of Nations” on “The Unique Self and Societal Development: The Path of Societal Transformation” will be held on June 15th, and you can still register for it here.
In this dialogue Richard Barrett starts the conversation with his definition of soul referring to the energy of our being. To activate our soul and to live our Unique Self means to live a values-driven, a purpose-driven life. The soul of an organization is linked to the person starting the organization. Richard Barrett recalls that he has often seen that, when the founders of a company die or leave the company, the energetic connection to their soul dissolves through the influences from the new leaders, who of course also have a soul.
Marc Gafni then points to the idea of soul as referring to the interior depth of a person – her specific quality and perspective. Uniqueness, he says, exists even at the survival level. Awakening to our Unique Self means to become conscious of our Uniqueness. This also applies to groups. Individuals have sacred autobiographies, and so have organizations. The Unique Self of an organization means to fulfill its core values and unique purpose. This purpose cannot merely be to make money; profit is a natural by-product of fulfilling the purpose.
People, who are living their Unique Selves in the organization, Richard Barrett interjects, contribute their unique gifts, which in turn leads to an expansion of the organization’s purpose.
Dr. Marc affirms that the Unique Self of an organization, when it is articulate, ”calls us, when we identify with its purpose… it is almost as if it is psychoactive… our Unique Self is activated, we are opened, we are drawn by a strange attractor, …we bring our creativity to the table, and …there is this merging, this natural seamless meshwork… of the evolutionary creativity, which is inherent in the initial vision of the organization, which we then participate in and co-evolve. We co-create.”
A values-driven and purpose-driven organization, Richard Barrett reminds, is an opportunity for the soul-activation of its employees. It becomes sacred space.
Both of them dare to speak about divine guidance in the context of leadership, which Marc Gafni explains is not some kind of mystic appearance of a voice from a burning bush, but the palpable sense of being called by or being intimate with reality.
At this point the conversations switches to the stakeholder model of including all stakeholders and their needs into the business model, which is related to level 6 consciousness of Richard Barrett’s personal values assessment.
The shareholder values model equals, says Dr. Marc, an I-It-relationship, meaning that everybody is merely used as an object for the profit maximization of the shareholders – whereas the stakeholder model equals an I-Thou-relationship, in which everybody has an interior, an inherent dignity and value. They bring their Unique Self to the table. The Unique Self of the people, who are attracted to the organization, will then naturally start to evolve the Unique Self of the organization. So, the Unique organization is not static, but it is “actually a living organism that is evolving… within the integrity of the trajectory of Uniqueness that conceived it.”
Richard Barrett then reflects his own experience where his stepping back from his leadership position in his company created an opening for people to bring their unique gifts into the Unique Self of the organization, co-creating an expansion of it.
Marc Gafni points out that Egos are always in competition with each other, whereas Unique Self recognizes that it is a puzzle-piece and needs other puzzle-pieces to express itself. Therefore, Unique Selves come together to celebrate each other.
Richard Barrett then summarizes the 4 conditions for real change that he thinks are also the conditions for uniqueness of an organization, which might be a subject for another call in the future. These are: personal alignment (which means leaders becoming conscious of their Unique Selves), structural alignment, values alignment, and mission alignment.
And Dr. Marc concludes with the notion that individuals go through different stages of development, starting with the pre-personal, Ego, then a critique of the Ego (which in Buddhist terms would be called the No-Self), and finally Unique Self. In the evolution of corporations, these stages might be the corporation that is still merged with the government, then, beginning with Adam Smith, the development of the Ego of the corporation, the critique of the corporation through socialism, and finally – just emerging – the Unique Self of the corporation.
In the next part of the dialogue, the listeners become participants. They are asked to write down and discuss in breakout groups their answers to the following questions:
1. What is the unique talent or skill of your organization?
2. What are the unique values of your organization?
3. What is the unique need that your organization can address in the world?
4. What is the unique need of your organization?
5. How do your unique talent and your unique need align with your organization’s unique talent and unique need?
The dialogue finishes with a live Q&A session.
If you liked this, make sure to be on the live call next time!
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