This year marks some significant birthdays in my family.
My dad turned 90 this year, my youngest of four sisters turned 60, my youngest brother turned 50, and early this fall my son will turn 30.
It was also 10 years ago today that we started a small organization development practice with the simple thought that we wanted to help small to midsized organizations benefit from the learning we had gained from years of working in fortune 500 companies.
2009 was deep in the heart of the recession and kicking off a new business sounded like a risky venture, but the thought was simple – organizations were going to be forced to change, to do things different, different than what was done before to be successful, and we wanted to help them in that process.
Interestingly, some of our initial work was helping with Sales and Business Development, helping folks connect at an interpersonal level, and build deeper levels of trust in their relationships, something that would come up later with our research efforts.
A large part of our initial support was helping organizations (and individuals) redefine who they were, so in a lot of cases that meant helping them define their current situation.
Helping them get clear about their purpose, who they are and where they wanted to go. Then aligning their culture to that purpose, and in a way that helped build trust with those that they served.
Leaders within all levels of these organizations discovered their unique leadership style, through the Discover the Leader Within program, and developed skills around appreciative inquiry to better understand those around them, to value the diversity of thought and styles others brought to the organization.
Teams, through a culture of trust, started to become more effective, silos that had been built over decades, started to come down, and cross functional teams began to have breakthroughs in customer service and delivery that had not been experienced before.
Something we are probably most proud of is how a balanced approach to employee engagement emerged, how an employee led process for continuous engagement became the foundation for organizational success, the leading indicator to how work processes would be delivered to their clients, which translated into customer delight, and ultimately the results and impact that would allow them to sustain the vision and mission they had created.
It has been an amazing ten years, years that included:
A personality and trust research project that started in Singapore and ended in the Europe a year later. It involved over 20 organizations and 1,300 participants across the US, and it helped individuals understand how they could build trust into their relationship by simply understanding their own and others personality styles.
The development of a Purposeful Culture of Trust model that helps organizations align their culture to strategy in a way that builds trust with their employees and those that they serve and does so in a way that will sustain long into the future.
The creation of the Leading from the Helm model, a balanced approach to organizational effectiveness, ensuring that organizations maximize human potential and can experience the highest levels of organizational performance.
And again, the creation of the 8 Factors of Engagement, scientifically the most balanced and actionable approach to employee engagement.
We have been able to work with hundreds of organizations, thousands of employees, many different strategic partners, and some amazing individuals that we affectionately refer to as Crew members.
Looking ahead, we are planning on doing more of the same by helping organizations grow in the healthiest way possible.
We are looking to expand our partnership relationships and scale our efforts in a way that as many as possible can become part of our community of practice.
Thank you for an amazing decade, looking forward to more to come!