Strategy

9th June 2016

The Power of Passion

So I have been thinking a lot about passion and its place in our lives and our businesses and that got me to think about the cost that lack of passion has associated with it.

I wonder how many opportunities, to serve, to play at our best, to contribute, to be great are passed by all for want of passion.

What is the opposite of passion? Indifference, apathy, couldn’t care less? I am not sure, but as I start to list the possibilities they don’t sound very appealing to me. Do they to you? And yet I wonder how many of us are aware of the presence, or absence, of passion in our lives and in our businesses. I also wonder what the effect would be if we could ignite more passion in ourselves, our customers and our team. Would that be a game changer or what?

I have collected a whole bunch of quotes over the years and when I am trying to understand something at a deeper level I will often trawl my quotes to help me understand other people’s perspective. There are some interesting quotations when I search on passion.

Nelson Mandela said “There is no passion to be found playing small settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” Passion, being the best we can be, living the life we were supposed to live seem inextricably connected.

Sir Richard Branson said “There is no greater thing you can do with your life and your work than follow your passions – in a way that serves the world and you.”. my own simple mantra is that if you find a job you love you will never have to work another day in your life.

Passion creates meaning and purpose and meaning and purpose drives passion. These three are the antithesis of a wasted life and a miserable existence.

The greatest leaders help their people release their passion, find meaning in whast they do, who they are and find their purpose.

In a group coaching session a few years ago one of my coaches asked a delegate to give six oranges to another delegate. She replied that she wasn’t able to because she had no oranges to give. An obvious and simple story but very relevant when we think about the leader’s role. How can a leader help her people find their passion if she can’t access her own passion? Indifferent leaders engender indifferent people. Apathetic leaders engender apathetic followers.

One of the biggest responsibilities a leader has is to help their people to find their passion, therefore it follows that one of the biggest requirements for a leader is to be able to find their own passion.