cape-buffalo-615Lions don’t attack the whole herd of African buffalo, they wait for weak ones in the community to fall behind and break off from the pack, then they attack. Unless the community comes back to intervene, the weaker will be killed and devoured. Just because you are not a buffalo doesn’t mean there are not proverbial lions all around your life looking to attack in a moment of weakness. What would that look like in the business world and how could the community intervene?

Community can be defined as a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. The common goal for the buffalo community is to eat and stay alive. They achieve this by constantly roaming for food and staying very close together in tight packs for safety.  A common goal for the community you live in might be to maintain a safe environment for families to live in. Some communities achieve this with a security gate, some do it by having the houses close together. What is the common goal for your community of workers at your place of work? In the hospital that I work in our common goal, or mission, is to provide the best patient care with the best staff. As an organization, the best way that we can keep our eyes focussed on that mission is by setting smaller picture goals. Those smaller goals when all put together lead us to the bigger common goal. We measure and review our behavior and see how we can improve.

In our department,

This is a key thought process that keeps us, and me, going strong. When we do miss a smaller goal, it doesn’t mean that you fail, it means that we missed the goal as a team. That individual mindset that I am a failure can be a huge detriment to the team. The community can come around that individual and remind them that we are all in this together. We should review the behavior together to try to keep individuals from falling away from the pack and becoming week. Like the buffalo, the weak can be devoured by the burden of personal failure.

As humans, it is in our nature to want to be a part of community, we are social beings. This doesn’t turn off when we go to work. As leaders, it is part of our responsibility to understand this about our teams and work to create a culture that that allows individuals to feel like they are part of a community. Why do most people leave their job? Look it up, it all boils down to relationships, or if you will community. What are you doing to strengthen your community at work? You don’t need to be the CEO to positively impact your community.


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