What’s Love Got to Do With It?
How Loving What You Do Can Make Your Company Soar
Love–it’s the one word we know well. And contrary to what Tina Turner says, it’s more than a second hand emotion. Chances are, we ALL love at least one person (unless you’re the Grinch, of course). It’s safe to say that love is a universal feeling. But what about loving your job?
That’s a feeling not everybody shares. But when you do love what you do, and your job is not just a job–but your calling–you can do anything imaginable. At the core, love is what drives us all: a feeling of connection to a mission or idea that is so strong that it inspires us to take risks and put ourselves on the line, and gives us the courage to create something from the ground up.
To succeed as an entrepreneur, though, love needs to course through all the veins of your company—not just its leaders. The same passion that drove you to start must manifest itself first and foremost in your philosophy, your company culture, and importantly, in your product.
What’s Your Philosophy?
“The origin of the word philosophy means a love of wisdom” says Wendy Lea, CEO of Get Satisfaction. “Applied to business, philosophy is the theory or attitude that guides behavior for an entire organization. More commonly, it’s your mission statement.”
How many companies do you know of that don’t live by their mission statement? When there is a disconnect in a company’s mission statement, there is a disconnect throughout all subsequent channels. If you truly love what you do, living by your mission statement isn’t a difficult task. When you strongly believe in your mission, it becomes the guiding philosophy that keeps your employees coming to work every day.
Think about your business. How is your company philosophy expressed? How does it influence your company culture and your product? And how will it stand the test of time?
Culture is the collection of customs, art, practices, and other manifestations of a group or company. At HUMAN Healthy Vending, our culture is built around openness and transparency with our customers—and with each other. This culture is a direct extension of our philosophy.
For a textbook example of the ways in which culture can drive business success, look no further than Zappos. Zappos knew from the start that relationships are strongest when employees talk to you in a natural and human tone, like you’d have with a neighbor in a coffee shop. The company’s culture of “Delivering Happiness” bonds a unique customer experience with a loyal employee experience. As a result, their culture of happiness has been driving phenomenal business growth.
How does your company culture mirror or differ from your personal philosophy? What about your company’s mission? Is it a deliberate extension of your broader mission, or simply an afterthought? What impact is your culture having on the growth of your business?
Walk the Product Talk
The capability of any business is a mash-up of the people, tools, and processes that deliver value to the customer.
Look no further than brands like Whole Foods, Peet’s Coffee, and Nordstrom’s. These companies create and deliver products and services that are tightly aligned with their philosophy as a business—and supported by their employee culture. Each brand has a loyal, passionate customer base that feels connected to the business.
How do your products or services align with your philosophy? How are they supported by your culture? And, more importantly, how does that impact your bottom line?
When you plan your new business venture, don’t sell your company short. Take the time to define a philosophy that you and your employees can believe in. A well-defined philosophy helps create a culture, energize your employees and create better products with ease. This culture will help foster the connections you need to grow a valuable business; an intense feeling of connection, Love has everything to do with it!
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How to Live Before You Die
Steve Jobs Says, “You’ve Got to Find What You Love”
In his 2005 Commencement Address to the graduates of Stanford University, Steve Jobs delivered an important message: Finding what you love, and not stopping until you find it.
Check out the video:
“You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”
These words couldn’t ring more true. Love is a pretty powerful thing. Embrace it. Like any lasting relationship, love is what keeps it together.
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