Imagine what we could learn from nature.....
As we move into the 21st Century our world is faced with enormous challenges and opportunities. Never before have we experienced such growth in financial, intellectual, and human capital. The number of billionaires and millionaires is growing on a daily basis. The growth and innovation in the technology sector has been a catalyst for the unprecedented growth potential and caused this burgeoning prosperity to take on global proportions. As the saying goes, knowledge is power, and advancements in technology are enabling organizations and individuals across the globe to share that knowledge with the world in a matter of minutes. In his insightful work, The World is Flat, Thomas Friedman states; Individuals from every corner of the flat world are being empowered. Globalization makes it possible for so many people to plug and play, and you are going to see every color of the human rainbow take part. Let there be no doubt, many organizations and individuals appear to have made it to an economic "promised land."
But such is not the case for the vast majority of organizations and individuals. Despite this enormous prosperity and growth, there are companies, schools, churches, non-profits, governments, and other institutions that are just barely making it. Hurricane Katrina exposed many of these individuals to the world. The focus of these individuals and organizations is not on thriving in the 21st Century but surviving in a change-oriented, fast-paced world of outsourcing, internets, emails and short attention spans. It's not hard to detect these organizations. You can see it in the incoherent focus of their leaders. You can hear it and see it in the words and work of their employees; and you can detect it in the response of their customers, clients, parishioners, and constituents. The saddest thing about these dismal phenomena is that it is all too prominent in the human service industry. Too often we find this negative culture in our neediest schools, churches, hospitals, non-profits, and governmental agencies. In other words, we tend to find this benign existence in the places where society can least afford to have it, organizations where the "bottom-line" is not financial profits but lives saved and lost. In Listening to Nature, Irvin Scott introduces the world to two natural frameworks (DNA Systems Theory and The Physician Model of Leadership) which can help organizations and individuals foster calm, controlled growth and sustainability. According to Scott, the answers rest all around us. They lie dormant waiting for us to acknowledge their existence and become aware of their power to shed new light on some of our most difficult challenges.
So, find a space in the forests or on the beach.
A space a top your apartment, where the sky is fresh and sweet A space on snow capped mountains or under a palm tree beneath the rays of the sun A space in your city's park, where children and birds frolic as one A space on the ranch amongst the grazing heard A space where heavy rain drops can be heard Pause, sit, relax and learn. Listen to Nature speak; you've had your turn.