Why be a victim of superficiality? Super is better & success follows shared significance we all earn.
Monday December 7, 2020
By Bill Van Eron
Stakeholder & Brand Relevance Coach
Headwaters Marketing & Innovation
I wish I could give a global electronic hug to all affected by decades of superficiality across its many forms -- bottom-line limited actions, control, greed, time-pressured repetitive work, technology security, inequality & bias in life, business, organizations, especially government.
Why? Because a major shift is happening that most have yet to hear about, nor do some holding the reigns want you to. It’s not like I just waited around, but when any of us is fortunate to synthesize what really matters sooner, understand challenges from several perspectives and across the stakeholder ecosystems impacted – superficiality - whether as a closed culture, long unchallenged status quo, or risk aversion – all limit, versus enable us.
The good news is while forward thinking, inclusive, appreciative management can be a great stimulus, this changed path to success has little patience for those that stay risk averse, or indifferent to shared values-based business approaches. Success will blow right past them, rarely looking back. Those taking responsibility to align these overdue needs to people with deeper insight to the values within each, benefit as leaders much more now.
Words alone – a scary management trend – will fail as actions are what matters.
Collectively, stakeholders have 100% transparency, as a trusted path to who is worthy or not. If anything, I see how a system of trust, credibility & relevance will redefine who matters or not.
‘All that now relate to and apply the values-based business principles will rise above superficiality to define the high bar all organizations will be measured against to achieve success we share in creating’.
More upbeat - as a solution professional- I cover the advantages many can act on now as a value-added contribution that directly affects greater success. I always respected managers and doers while sometimes puzzled as to why managers who say yes, and little more, often fail to share the credit where teams who contributed to greater success, got minimal raises while managers and higher level leaders took huge bonuses & promotions. It did not stop me from contributing, as enabling values to define us is my passion, yet it needs attention as this has become a 1600-pound gorilla. I love gorillas, but greed is unacceptable.
The good news:
- See through superficiality in most of its forms while in fact, success follows true relevance. Just saying the right words without committing to the actions, is a path to failure. Quoting policy when ethics should define actions is another unacceptable gap we see of late.
- Employees have long wanted to work in more entrepreneurial cultures that also inspire and empower us to champion the insights and actions where we each have deep connections to them. Kind of a spin on the “theory of relativity” as one invested in aspects of significance – whether earned trust, credibility, diversity, inclusion, design & systems thinking - has a better chance of success more can emulate than someone new to it all as yet another superficial risk.
- Likewise; employees limited by job descriptions, yet who have attributes, such as asking great questions, empathizing with all sides of a challenge & need and creative thinking to list a few, can also expand that value across more functions, as I did as a creative thinker.
- Diversity is a serious benefit in all its forms. Having grown up in the high diversity of Brooklyn, NY, it clearly inspired open dialog, trust, a healthy mix of varied perceptions that increased the value of ideas, core assessments and all topics. That’s inclusion.
- Systems thinking; a major overlooked skillset- reveals change indicators beyond what most see and connect. Most of us have witnessed exponential attention to technology, yet at what expense and benefit to humanity. Some have seen how socially responsible stocks have exceeded most other categories, something I relate to brand, purpose and attitude relevance. While many sense AI replacing jobs, it is time to act on evidence showing higher gaps in soft skills, reasoning, creativity, I see a duality in integrating transitions so all benefit from change.
- We relate to the value of creativity as an aesthetic key to engagement. My own design, marketing & PR career greatly expanded the value to synthesize change beyond the norms, see actionable values, share insights with all leadership forms, across all stakeholders. So as design leaves its own comfort zone, we become high impact catalysts internally and externally, in Boards, C-Suite, as a Stakeholder Relevance Officer that can revitalize leadership, sales, marketing & HR, as a functional revitalization resource all benefit by. Especially now.
- Even though we hear leaders earn a few hundred to a few thousand times more than the average employee, earned relevance is a sign of value at every touchpoint. So, while ethically, this should change, the net sum of earned trust and relevance will also earn far greater revenues, while modelling a people-powered organization, values, purpose & success more can share in. This is a major shift from decades of bottom line thinking & while we do not blame leaders, the challenges they face will be common knowledge unless they step up now.
- While many in management see the last two decades as more chaotic, disruptive & unpredictable, a greater truth prevails. When change is negatively disruptive, your internal and external stakeholders, your purpose and brand when all earn higher relevance, is the best support any organization can have to weather change and rise even higher.