Awakening the Spirit of Enterprise

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JAN POLAK‘s PRESENTATION AT LEADERSHIP SUMMIT>>> IN MARCH 2014:

Our businesses operate in times of unprecedented opportunities and technological advancements and at the same time countless internal and external pressures to perform. Many of the people employed in or managing business are not satisfied with a life where they have to mechanically work from nine to five, six, seven or even longer, five days a week just to survive, make more money to buy more stuff or gain power and prestige to look good.

Times and society are changing. And so are expectations and standards at work and in business. As employees, managers and directors alike, we are searching for something deeper, something more meaningful, something that would allow us to be ourselves, to develop our potential, to enjoy that what we are doing, to spend productive time with people who inspire us, to achieve results that we care about and to prosper without being rushed or living at the expense of our human nature and future generations.

Jan Polak on Awakening the Spirit of EnterpriseAnd we look to experience it everywhere, particularly at work, where it is the most challenging; where we spend most of our time and energy (often waste a significant portion of both); and where the stakes and pressures are significantly high.

I devoted the last twenty years of my life searching alternatives and opportunities to make business meaningful and humane. My journey was neither smooth nor straightforward. At a relatively young age I have experienced fabulous success, but also mistakes and painful disappointments. I traveled halfway around the world, stayed in the best hotels, ate at the finest restaurants, studied at prestigious universities, met with fascinating and influential people, and had the opportunity to put my mind and hands on projects that had wide-reaching impact, altered directions of large companies, shaped whole industries, and significantly affected the lives of many people I did not even know.

Despite all the external hallmarks of success, I noticed that after a while the fleeting feeling of satisfaction and pride was replaced by a feeling of exhaustion, emptiness or fear of not being able to repeat what I accomplished it in the future or even to lose what we have worked so hard to achieve. Many colleagues and clients around me were involved in a cake eating contest where the prize was more cake – not true joy, fulfillment, and exhilaration about accomplishing something meaningful.

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I began to wonder about how we can resolve the contradictions of everyday business and integrate success and fulfillment, joy and productivity, business and humanity. How we can be a part of something bigger, but not lose ourselves and our uniqueness in the process.

Albert Einstein said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” So the exploration began with…

  • Asking new questions. (For instance, what is the primary purpose of business, any business?)
  • Challenging established answers.(For instance, businesses are here primarily to make money, everything else is secondary or a means to that end.)
  • Looking behind the obvious.(For instance, wondering how can organizations be operated like machines when they are full of living beings and human relationships. Is that the optimal set up for our individual and collective performance and sustainable well-being, inspiration and growth?)

 

In my work with entrepreneurs, managers, teams and organizations across five continents I discovered three counterintuitive ways to not just enhance performance but start awakening the spirit of your team and enterprise where trust flourishes and miracles happen.

JAN POLAK

This articles was prepared by Jan Polak and addressed at the Global Leadership Summit>>> in March 2014.

 

Jan Polak on Awakening the spirit of enterprise

Jan Polak is a longtime advisor, facilitator, trainer, and coach of managers and entrepreneurs with international experience from Great Britain, USA , Australia, South Africa, India and Hong Kong as well as Central Europe.

He is a strong advocate for purposeful enterprises and organic approach to business, and is focused on supporting development and use of natural talents and human potential of individuals and teams in both small and large companies. Specifically, Jan empowers entrepreneurs and enterprises to propel humanity forward.

Jan is one of the few world’s Master Practitioners and Trainers in Wealth Dynamics, a unique approach for entrepreneurs to find their natural flow, build synergistic collaboration and stay on purpose in business, and the Global Head Master Trainer in Talent Dynamics, number one pathway for accelerating trust and flow in large organisations.

Despite the fact that he dedicated his past twenty years discovering, practicing and integrating many aspects of personal, professional, team and organisational development and transformation, he still considers himself an enthusiastic and curious student in this field.

In the past Jan worked as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company and as a partner in the London-based Strategy Dynamics Solutions Ltd, pioneering a holistic approach to business strategy. He studied internationally and obtained his MBA from the prestigious London Business School and a Professional Masters degree at Cornell University in the USA majoring in organisational behaviour. More than his positions and degrees, however, Jan values the experience of being able to grow, explore new perspectives of the world, collaboration and business, discover new possibilities as well as seize the opportunities to cooperate with visionaries, leaders, experts and like-minded and like-hearted people from around the world.

Jan’s work is both his hobby and calling, and he sees business and entrepreneurship as a potent way of human contribution and effective form of collectively doing good.

If you are an entrepreneur and Jan’s approach resonates with you, feel free to approach Jan via his website to explore collaboration opportunities.

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