A values-based way of doing business

That’s the tagline for the newly created Holistic Chamber of Commerce in Oakland County, Michigan. I attended the kickoff last night, in a packed hotel ballroom with familiar faces and an energy so pure and honest, I was heartened by the notion that we can indeed do business with heart.

To be fair, I attended the launch to see what this holistic chamber was all about. I’m fairly skeptical about joining things for many reasons – for one, I’m not much of a joiner. I am an observer, and always have been, who lingers on the outskirts of so many great groups and communities. It’s the life and journey of a writer.

I also don’t like saying I’m in one club when there are so many I could frequent! So many worthy associations and organizations. How can we choose where to spend our time and money? And for a business, what is the real purpose of attending events when time is at a premium?

But the term holistic got me. That’s how I look at life – from a holistic perspective. It’s not work-life balance – it’s all the same. My life is my life, not separated into categories and hour-long blocks. I am me all the way through, so shouldn’t everything fit into that purview?

I’ve joined a lot of associations in my career. Some I renew and continue with. Some I let lapse if I haven’t been drawn to get involved. It has to be worth my time.

So when I picked up the marketing card that proclaimed this values-based way of doing things, I knew I was in a room of people with character, and businesses with purpose. That’s a huge defining difference, in my humble opinion.

What does it mean to take a holistic approach in anything? It’s the wisdom of seeing the whole picture, not just treating one facet of a person or a problem. In my mind, it’s the only way to do anything – for we don’t function in a vacuum in any capacity.

The holistic medical guru Christiane Northrup said the following: “If you have a headache every Monday morning when it is time for you to go to work, perhaps you’re driving the wrong car, perhaps you’re taking the wrong route, or you may be in the wrong line of work. Obviously, only you can figure out the message.”

Because if you’re doing work that is not compatible with your soul, it’ll make you sick.

Of course, you have to know who you are if you are to align your work with your person. So what’s stopping us?

The fear of finding out that our story is different than we thought? The fear of not figuring it out? The illusion of grandeur in acquiring, accumulating, dolling up so the exterior is so protected we don’t have to penetrate the surface?

The other day a woman told me she works in an office where the boss doesn’t allow music to play or conversation to happen during work hours. When the boss leaves, the staff connect, talk, laugh, sing.

Which is a healthier environment, control or trust?

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