What I love about this word is that it’s always indicated as misspelled on Microsoft Word and the blog posts I write everywhere. This means it’s not a mainstream word and thus isn’t trendy…so let’s create a new trend in the way of thinking, OK?
Let’s be strategic about your business, and let’s have a discussion about what being heartful is all about.
We’ve been running a series on the workplace on The Heart of Marketing podcast. I’m providing the links to our very popular three so far right here. When you click, you’ll get to our website, GetHeartMarketing.com, and you can listen from there. These discussions between John and I are very popular, and I like talking about workplace culture, too.
What is a Heartful Business
When I think of a marketing department within a company, I think of the leadership in that department. What kind of leader are you? I don’t mean which type (A for aggressive) or which psychoanalyst letter (S, P, J), either.
What I mean is whether you live with a loving heart. This is not woo woo, folks. This is the real deal. My teenager, even before she was a teenager, has been told daily to live with a loving heart. Focus outward, help the poor and weak, be helpful, have compassion, and empathy; be sincere and be genuinely sincere.
Does any of this resonate with you?
When you’re running a marketing department how genuinely sincere are you to your reports, peers, clients, prospects, folks on Twitter, pro bono clients, and other stakeholders? Or, are you merely making the bottom line sing on steroids without concern for emotions anywhere?
I suggest that being heartful may be a sign of maturity. When you’re starting out on a career path, there’s not much helpfulness happening. I recall distinctly how competitive the Chicago agencies were in which I worked. Each of us was out for numero uno to get the boss’s nod. I also remember how ugly that was; a complete power trip.
As I moved up the ranks, it became apparent I liked to teach, and the firm I owned, Soulati Media Relations, hired kids out of college. It was grueling, but I knew, even at my own young age of 30-years-old, that I wanted to pay it forward.
Now, much later in life and still on a professional trajectory, I see things differently in business. Helpfulness and educating others are part of my client service; some call this servant leadership that comes from a world of faith, as I’m told.
And so, in a heartful business, others come first before the dollar. Yes, yes, profit is critical as it pays the salaries of all who contribute; however, the emotional foundation and health of humanity in the workplace begets the strength of the dollar for your bottom line. I know this because there are studies galore about happy wife, happy life…heh. I mean, happy employee, lots of productivity.
In fact, today’s Wall Street Journal kindly shared a story with data I can use to prove my point:
In the April 20, 2016 edition of the Wall Street Journal, “Job satisfaction hit its highest level – 88% — in a decade, says a report.”
The Society for Human Resources Management survey of 600 full-time and part-time workers “found that the biggest contributor to job satisfaction was ‘respectful treatment of all employees at all levels,’ which 67% of respondents cited as critical to their happiness on the job.”
What great fodder in support of my heartfulness theory!
Heartfulness begins with the CEO, entrepreneur, founder, president, business owner; you know that gal in the corner office or only office! Even if you are a solo, you can exhibit heartfulness to your peers, vendors and clients. It’s highly discernible; trust me, as I try to live that culture every day as a solopreneur.
If you have a small team of say, five folks, for sure there’s someone at the helm, and the culture you create for your team is embodied throughout your team and the network you create to conduct business. Respect has a lot to do with it. Employees know when and if an employer respects them, and they govern themselves accordingly!
We spoke on The Heart of Marketing about Zenefits, a startup in the HR sector that allowed alcohol at work every day and fun was the tone. What happened was sex in the stairwell and an out-of-control workplace all because the leadership permitted that party atmosphere in the first place. Check out one of the above links to learn more about that!
Charitable giving and rewards for performance are helpful ways to be heartful in business; yet, there’s a fine line. No leadership team wants to be taken advantage of by employees or for employees to have an expectation that financial gifts are commonplace and not earned.
At the end of the day, every single person on this planet must develop heartfulness on his or her journey, and it comes with intent. You don’t awake one morning to say, “I want to be more heartful today.”
You awake over the course of 10 years of mornings, after a particularly challenging stretch of your journey, and you say, “It’s time to make an attitude adjustment. I am ready to be more loving, caring, helpful, emotionally connected with my fellow man, in tune and perceptive of those in need, aware so I can lend a hand on occasion, sensitive to those less able, and cognizant of my own productivity and contribution to our green Earth.”