Can you build an organization on love?

Photo credit:  Creative Commons license  

Photo credit: Creative Commons license

“In every situation, you must lead with your real self, because if you’re going to be on the leading edge of management, you sometimes must be on the emotional edge as well.”
James Autry (author of Servant Leadership)

Words like “emotion” and “love” are not part of our mainstream leadership vocabulary. So I want to ask you, can you build an organization on love?

Where does that question hit you? Do you feel a little stirring of longing in your heart? When a client asked me that question a few months ago, I felt that stirring and said YES without hesitation.

Love is the most powerful force there is. When we are compassionate with each other, grateful for our partnership, and honest in our communications, we are practicing love at work.

“Love is not a word you often hear uttered in office hallways or conference rooms.  And yet, it has a strong influence on workplace outcomes.  It may not be surprising that those who perceive greater love and caring from their colleagues perform better, but few managers focus on building an emotional culture.  That’s a mistake.”
-Harvard Business Review