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Passion Fruit

Optimize Blog - October 26, 2012 - 0 comments

Brazilians are known to take their soap operas or novelas seriously, but one in particular has even surpassed another national passion by exceeding the audience for a recent soccer final.
Avenida Brasil is a compelling watch that reflects the reality of life to the north of Rio, and is notable for putting Brazil’s growing middle class centre stage where in the past it was the lives of the super wealthy which dominated.
The show has become such an unprecedented phenomenon that even President Dilma Rousseff felt obliged to rearrange her plans recently when confronted with the soap opera providing a conflict with one of her events. Subsequently she cancelled plans to attend an important local election rally in Sao Paulo, fearing the turn-out would be less than satisfactory as people were more likely to stay in glued to their TV’s.
It is perhaps no surprise that such a passionate country should fall for the show in such a big way with more than 50% of the viewing public tuning in to watch the latest twists and turns in the various plots involving a girl who comes back as an adult to avenge the death of her father.
Passion is a necessary ingredient in building a great organization and team. As leaders, we should be hiring for passion and commitment first, experience second and qualifications third.
Creating a culture of passion around the goals, behaviours and brand of the organization will ensure that mediocrity does not thwart your plans for success. Having ‘passion’ as a team or organizational value is a good place to start.
True passion requires genuine commitment to something about which you feel deeply. Passionate leaders genuinely believe in what they stand for. They convey the power of their belief without shooting down or undermining someone else’s point of view.
Great leaders encourage and invite real dialogue about their passion and they want to hear and consider others people’s perspectives. Regular readers of Zeitgeist will know that we are passionate about trusting action and not words and the truly passionate leader ensures that their day-to-day behaviors support and reinforce their beliefs.
The true test of passion is the ability to stay the course; to remain committed despite adversity and setbacks – leaders with passion hold true to their principles and find a way to move forward.
However, creating a culture of passion can be compromised by the wrong people. One of the most destructive behaviours is that of the complainer. These people aren’t necessarily overt with their complaints but instead choose to move through the organization, speaking privately, sowing doubt, strangling passion. Sometimes this is simply their nature – they complained at their last job and will complain at the next.
Oftentimes these people are just not a good fit. Your passion isn’t theirs. The organization’s passion is not theirs. Relentless complaining is toxic and so as leaders we must identify these people and replace them.
Alongside passion comes the requirement to have the right work ethic. It’s easy to do what you love and therefore people passionate about the direction and goals of the organization create a strong and productive work ethic. The opposite is true. If you are not passionate about what you are trying to achieve, it is unlikely that the work ethic will be strong.
When a leader is passionate, people feel a deep sense of being led by someone who is committed to something more important than his or her own individual glory.
Real passion in a leader provides inspiration that’s much deeper than being gung-ho or creating temporary enthusiasm for a task. When leaders are truly passionate, people feel part of the leader’s commitment, part of making meaningful things happen.
Leadership passion and commitment satisfies on a very deep level, and it lasts…….

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