In 2000, a friend in my daily yoga class handed me a book called The Diamond Cutter, The Buddha on Managing Your Business and Your Life.
This person knew I had just started my first agency and thought I would
really appreciate the perspective. My first thought was, “Huh? I
understand the life part but the Buddha and my business? I don’t get
it.” I practiced yoga to get away from thinking about work. But then I
read it and my outlook and approach to business has never been the
same. The book expertly blended ancient and modern wisdom and laid out
an easy roadmap for applying Buddhist principles such as mindfulness to
building a successful business.
Back then this book was a real outlier and few business leaders I encountered had ever heard of it. Today, The Diamond Cutter has been translated into 20 languages, sold millions of copies and fortune 500 companies like Google,
Target and Starbucks have adopted many of the core principals. Today,
incorporating mindfulness into workplace training for employees and
company leadership is commonplace.
practicing mindfulness can provide significant benefit to individual
workers by reducing things like stress and increasing overall job
satisfaction, companies that harness the benefits of a more focused
workforce into their business model can, like The Diamond Cutter demonstrated, truly change the trajectory of their enterprise.
Mycoskie, founder of Tom’s Shoes, created his multi-million dollar
business on an ethos of giving back. The “One for One” mission of Tom’s
means that “Every Purchase Has a Purpose.” Most notably, it was not a
purpose for purpose’s sake but rather, a business mission directly
connected to their core business that serves the greater community.
company really succeeding at this sort of corporate mindfulness is the
global company SalesForce. When asked, CEO Mark Benikoff explains his
point of view this way. “The business of business is to improve the
world. Purpose is not just supporting a cause, it is a way of operating
your business.” For SalesForce that means installed "mindfulness zones"
on every floor of their San Francisco HQ and focusing on sustainability
by providing their customers a carbon neutral cloud thus reducing energy
consumption for the very flagship product they sell.
Rebel Gail, this purpose-built approach has been baked into our
business model from day one. For each one of our healthcare clients we
earmark a percentage of our fees and, bundled with a matching grant from
clients, those funds are given directly to a person suffering with a
specific health issue related to our client’s product or service.
always believed and now have the proof that if a company or
organization weaves a strong purpose into its mission and objectives for
success and this mission demonstrably improves the community at large
than ultimately, a company will not only attract the best and the
brightest but employees themselves can and will show a sincere sense of
focus in their work.