What is a community?
A community is a purposeful group of people who are united in serving a higher purpose together. It is an environment that is characterised by cooperation, trust, support and a culture of learning. A community does not know any silos, corruption, internal politics or competition. It is driven by a desire for excellence and continuous improvement.
Within a community individuals find meaning, develop their capacities to their highest potential and take purposeful action. A community works for 100% of the people in the organisation – free from the destructive habits of sexism, racism, paternalism, and cynicism. At the heart of these companies lies learning, cooperation and continuous improvement.
Why should my organisation become a community?
The more cooperation exists within a company, the greater the success will be in all its aspects: finances, innovation, efficiency, employee engagement, and customer satisfaction. We are convinced that the most successful companies of the future will be those that have mastered the capacity of community building.
How do I create a process of community building in my company?
Our experience has shown that building a community can start in a variety of ways. But instead of elaborate kick-offs or gatherings, it may be more effective to start in a rather inconspicuous manner.
The soul.com approach is to identify a few individuals within the company who are eager to learn and who desire positive change. These selected individuals can learn about the nature and dynamics of a community and receive some initial training to carry out simple yet profound activities. One or more spaces can be created within the company for these individuals to start putting into practice what they have learnt.
For example, fundamental to community building is the capacity for an individual to operate in a learning mode. We accompany a small group of people in mastering this capacity by trying to resolve some of the most immediate issues that the company is facing together. Once sufficient capacity is built, we assist these same people in building capacity in some of their colleagues, thus creating an educational system within the company for the development of human resources for community building.
What does it mean to build capacity?
To build capacity means to develop the ability to perform a well-defined task or activity. This involves the acquisition of knowledge and insights in relation to a particular subject as well as the development of certain qualities and attitudes that are essential to carry out the activity and to learn new skills. For example, in order to cooperate effectively with others, one needs to appreciate the power of oneness and understand the traps of competing with others. Furthermore, one needs to develop a humble posture of learning and acquire a service orientated approach. Lastly, one needs to learn how to listen to others, to understand what is needed, and to communicate in an effective and clear manner.