Earth Day… May 22, 2019.
On this Earth Day, I reflect on the parallels between leadership and nature. We can find innumerable lessons from the natural world that translate into deeper understanding of leadership.
Throughout the history of humans, the natural world has driven the need for people to display leadership in order to survive and to thrive. Also throughout history, humans have looked to nature for clues on how to best work together to achieve this.
Bees have a complex organizational structure to share the workload. Prairie Dogs have an intricate language system to communicate throughout the colony. Geese create team formations for maximum efficiency and share the lead role to allow others a time of easier flight.
Yes, we can learn a lot from nature about how we can create better organizations that foster leadership growth.
An ideal example of growth is grass… sprouting from a seed to create a single leaf that grows strong, and then shares of itself by spreading its seeds for more to grow.
I took this picture on the family farm in Oklahoma on a beautiful summer morning as the sun began to rise behind the hill in the pasture. The prairie grass swaying in the light breeze created an ideal foreground to the glowing clouds beyond.
Grass will only grow where the conditions are right. It requires soil with the right nutrients, enough water to saturate the roots, and sunlight to create photosynthesis for growth (and giving we humans some valuable oxygen to breath… Thanks, Grass). Each blade of grass is important to the patch, adding to the lushness.
People will only grow where the conditions are right. It requires an environment that nourishes the body, motivates the mind and strengthens the physical and mental capabilities. Each person is important to the whole, adding to the lushness of life within an organization. Great leaders create this environment, where... growth is life.
Logic dictates that we must do all that we can to protect and preserve our natural environment so that we can continue to survive and thrive as a species.
Logic also dictates that we must do all that we can to create the best work environment so that we have the best opportunity to survive and thrive in our organizations.