Since I began working as a mentor professionally 30 years ago I've worked with over 1000 leaders, women and men in all kinds of roles and situations, in a myriad of industries, and in over 40 countries.
What all these highly motivated people have in common is a deep desire to keep on getting better, wiser and more valuable.
Three BIG pathways have emerged that each of these successful people are travelling in their own best way. The three are people, processes, and how progress is measured.
The most successful leaders put their people first and ensure that they are working in the right roles for them.
In the workplaces of these leaders every person is working on a personal and professional development plan to see and bring out their best.
These plans focus daily communication, conversation and presentation.
The most successful leaders are ensuring that strong processes are in place that mean it's simple for people to bring their best to their work.
Processes include policies, procedures, practices, philosophies, principles, structures and systems.
In the very best workplaces all of these are under constant review and are being improved and updated regularly by the people doing the work.
This is the area that I've witnessed the biggest shifts by the most successful leaders.
Profit is just one way to measure progress. Increasingly the very best leaders are seeing profit rightly in my view i.e. it's a result of being good at business never a reason for being in business.
Increasingly the best are embracing a five-fold bottom line. I couldn't say this when I first introduced the concept almost 20 years ago.
In addition The Progress Principle is being widely embraced. This is all about "making progress in meaningful work visible.”
How are you tracking in these three BIG pathways of people, processes and progress?
Who will you become?
What will you do next?
The Five-Fold Bottom Line as I first articulated it in the year 2000
"Economic Prosperity: Making monetary profit is essential for personal and business sustainability and growth; and for our being able to choose our lifestyle now and in the future.
Social Responsibility: All organisations are made up of individual people. The cost, and not just economically, of unhealthy and unhappy workers is probably immeasurable. Therefore every organisation has a role to play in helping to prevent social ills. Businesses must be responsible members of the communities in which we operate. Corporate citizenship is now much more than a sneaky way to promote our brands.
Environmental Sustainability: Once, most of us turned a blind eye to waste disposal and a myriad of other environmental disasters. Thankfully most of us no longer do. As the simple weekly collection of recyclable items in many Australian neighbourhoods demonstrates we can save our planet if we work together. All businesses have a clear obligation to obtain and dispose of resources in ways that protect and sustain our environment.
Universal Harmony: We are living in a global village. The Internet in particular makes it possible to do business with almost anyone, almost anywhere, almost any time. We are also at war in many places despite the obvious fact that war never leads to peace. As businesses we must ensure that what we make, sell and deliver does not, in any way, contribute to local or global disharmony. Organisations increasingly have a role to help bring about and sustain universal harmony.
Spiritual Validity: In survey after survey what we repeatedly find is that people want, above all else, to be genuinely valued. For a business this takes much more than being socially responsible. At no previous time in history has there been such a search for meaning. Many people are searching outside of the church for spiritual answers. The workplace can no longer be a place where people are treated as mere commodities, or God forbid, resources.
We must build workplaces that are uplifting for the human spirit. A bottom line that honours and values the spirit of all people leads to greater performance in all other areas. Organisations who ignore this do so at their peril.
These five bottom lines must be our targets."