I have spent a fair amount of time over the last few months “preaching” about the benefits of social media. Some people get it and some people don’t. It got me thinking about the remarkable similarities between a religious leader and a great business leader.
One of the dictionary.com definitions of religion is: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/religion
“body of persons adhering to a particular set of beliefs and practices”
If somebody described your business in this way would it be a bad thing? As a business leader you should be able to inspire your employees to want to be part of building something and to want to be a part of achieving the company’s main goals or objectives.
I will share an example I borrowed from Simon Sinek’s book. There are two stone masons working on a construction site for a new religious building.
The first guy says: I come to work to build a wall, I have been building this wall for the last few years, it will take me the rest of my life and I will probably will never see the end of this project.
The second guy says: I have been building this wall for as long as I can remember, I may never see the end of this project BUT I am building a cathedral.
The second guy understands that he plays a small part in the project but he knows that it is an important project and he loves the fact that he is part of something far greater than he could ever achieve on his own.
What the work the second guy does stands as proof of what he believes in. If he got offered more money to go and build a house then he probably wouldn’t take it. However the first guy would jump at the chance of earning more money. To him whether it is the wall of a cathedral or the wall of a house he doesn’t care.
A great CEO or business leader should be able to inspire the employees of the organisation to want to be part of something far greater than they could ever achieve alone. They should be able to share their beliefs and vision for the company’s future. The great employees around the business will share the same beliefs as the CEO and will want to be part of that mission. They will want to share the message with everyone they come across because what they do serves as a proof of who they are.
So what do you think? Do you feel the comparison of business and religion is a good comparison? Do you go to work with passion because you share the same beliefs as your leaders? Are you a leader who thinks these ideas could make a difference in your ability to inspire. Have you found a better way to inspire people into action?