What’s all the passion about? Part 2
Hopefully you read Part 1 of the Passion blog so that this makes sense.
Answer 2: 2 years ago my last agency was at a critical growth point of surpassing 15 employees at a sustainable speed. Mike handed me an audio book called Good to Great by Jim Collins and using my hour plus commute each way to work, I eagerly listened to Jim’s ideas of how to turn a good company into a great company. When I say “great”, I’m referring to a company who has experienced 15 consecutive years or more of profitability by more than 30% of the industry average. Think Coke, Walt Disney, Kimberly-Clark, GE etc. (I highly recommend this book to any business striving for greatness). Back then we were focused on Concept 1 – getting the right people on the bus and off the bus.
This week, I finished the final CD (they were misplaced a while). Without ruining the entire book (in fact this should help you), Jim talked about a “hedgehog concept” which was one of the keys to all the great companies he researched for the book. The hedgehog concept comprised of 3 components that had to be explored and form the basis of the company:
1. What can we be best in the world at? And equally, what can’t we best in the world at? (Not a goal, plan or strategy. It’s a deep understanding of what you can be best in the world at.)
2. What drives your economic engine?
3. What are you passionate about?
There’s that word again. Passionate. So I thought about that some more in relation to my work – what type of agency did I want to be? What was I passionate about?
Helping people is all about results. From finding a lost little boy on Parramatta Road and reuniting him with his dad to volunteering at the local nursing home, as long as there is a good result, then I’ve filled the passion. If there isn’t a positive outcome then it’s a failure. Or is it? Perhaps we should see failures as learnings instead. So a campaign wouldn’t exactly fail if we actually learned on the journey. As Steven Covey said in 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: to learn and not to do, is not to learn. (I think Steven Covey will be explored in Part 3, the word passion has already raised it’s head). So ultimately if we don’t implement learnings then that’s when we fail.
It means my agency will be based on results. Having the ability to collaborate with both Mike and Sarah on projects provides a best of breed approach because they too have the passion to deliver great results. It’s very comforting to know I have access to these imaginative minds and sharing our work environment makes it a productive engine room – when we all start our day you can feel the buzz in the air.
If I can make it a pleasant journey in the meantime, then surely that’s a nice day at work both for me and my clients.
Good work, happy team, happy clients.