When it comes to the moment of truth, both the organization and the individual are equally afraid of the creativity, the passion, and the courage that accompany those powers hidden within them and that are central to their vitality. This meeting place of creative anticipation and fearful arrival is the elemental core of a new conversation in the workplace. –David Whyte in Crossing the Unknown Sea
Is our world of work falling-in around us, or is it simply changing? If it is changing – and it most definitely is – is it evolving in spite of us? Or is it evolving because we have made a collective choice for it to evolve?
In the trust project where I am partnering with my long-time client, the leader has made a statement – a commitment – indicative of her understanding of this new world of work in the 21st Century: “I cannot guarantee you employment, but I can guarantee you employability … if you’re willing to participate in a new conversation.”
This leader’s commitment represents the coming together of 21st Century reality with timeless wisdom. This statement is founded in the truth of personal accountability; an ancient truth that reminds us of the reality of where change begins. Richard Barrett describes evolution as doing different things versus doing things differently. Doing different things requires each of us to reach deep within for the power necessary for this innovative evolution.
If we collectively choose conscious evolution, then we must also choose behavior that substantiates our individual recognition of business realities and our common story that has brought us to this moment. We cannot fail to acknowledge the importance of the past or the reality of the present. They are not separate from the desired, different, or new story. There is no new, different, or desired story without intentional acknowledgement and realism.
To join in the unfolding story is to participate in a new conversation with personal integrity intact and active.