Organizational development and food. Weird?
What's happened in most of our lives is the silo effect - you pay close attention to your sphere, and do that job as well as you can. Unfortunately, there lies the problem. If we never stop to look at the whole organization - the health of the whole organization, we will fail. It's inherent. Think about the organizations you are in - the times you have witnessed the writing on the wall regarding something that goes unnoticed until it is too late. It's what has spawned an entire idea of "farm to table".
I was absolutely inspired by watching the Netflix original Chef's Table recently - Dan Barber's episode in particular. His care of all things food - the farm, the restaurant, and the lives of all those involved - easily blends into the corporate setting. It's the kind of mentality that I've always leaned toward - that actually giving a damn about the source of your food was equally important to the preparation, the experience, and eventually your health and well being. For example, why can't we eat sausage or steak, so long as we know that it's not full of junk; that it wasn't farmed or made without care or concern for the animal's life? Barber's care for the farm, end-to-end, taking it even to the level of caring about veal in such a way that makes veal not gross or inhumane, is enlightening. I watched a Ted Talk where he spoke of a farmer whose foie gras was made in an entirely old way, one that doesn't follow the horrific practices that we've all associated with the delicacy. Anecdotal notation here: my friends who are vegans or vegetarians can at least agree that if farming livestock was again as it was originally intended, with care and without industry, that they would at least be understanding, if not supportive, of it.
But what does this actually mean for an organization? Well, for one, caring about the final product without caring about the inputs will leave you with soil that is completely worthless in the near future. What we put into our organization's "soil" is so important - culture, professional development, practices, concern. These are the nutrients that replenish who we really are.
Yes, it's completely time consuming - exhausting, really. Yes, it's so much easier to download a template off the internet, rather than putting thought or energy into what your organization needs right now, and what it could need in the future. That former mentality creates an organization that might last a few years, but doesn't change the world for the better, doesn't change the way individuals think, doesn't make any of your team's lives better as cause and effect should.
Chef's Table, Dan Barber. Watch it, and think how it can apply to your world now.