There are numerous reasons what I wrote this book and established this consultancy. Primarily I wanted to:
Provide a tool kit to help people find their true vocation and ‘mojo’ at work
I had fallen into the legal profession and thankfully loved where I ended up; in commercial finance. But as with many careers there were highs as well as lows. When I found myself in the wrong role at Linklaters, I began to question everything. What did I really want? Who was I in the world? What was my gift?
In response to those questions, I moved from practising law to becoming an organizational psychologist and began to work with global leaders from all sectors, experiencing many different influences along the way, including Buddhism and more philosophical approaches. I discovered that my vocation was to enable people and their organizations to realise their potential. My job was to help business leaders see themselves more clearly; their purpose, their strengths, their limitations, their potential areas for development, and importantly the blockages and anxieties that stopped them from being great.
Help those leading organizations to see their own systemic blindness
The seeds for the book really took root when I realised (as a Visiting Fellow at Cranfield School of Management) that no amount of individual development can really help if an organization encourages and rewards the opposite type of behaviour. Inclusiveness, for example, cannot thrive where those in senior positions are unconsciously biased or prejudiced and blind to their inappropriate reactions and behaviours. Well-being workshops won’t land if the unwritten ask is to work 24/7
Working with many people in the financial sector prior to the crash I witnessed extraordinary levels of ‘wilful blindness’ at senior levels, including and, perhaps most importantly, on boards. I wanted to do more to help those in governance positions to become aware, strategic and skillful with the systemic practices that they fostered within their organizations.
Make a difference to leaders and boards by sharing my learnings
Then I got breast cancer which paradoxically threw me into life and focussed my attention on what I really wanted to do with my time. So, combining my legal background, my organizational psychology and my twenty five years working with global leaders from all sectors, I decided to write a book. The aim was twofold. To
· Share with the widest audience possible the psychological tools and models that I have found most helpful when working with clients, as well as on my own personal and professional journey, and
· Show, with practical examples and case studies, the path to good governance for those leading organizations and sitting on boards.
Do the work that I was supposed to be doing in the world
The book seemed to just write itself which led to my then establishing our consultancy Enlightened Organizations. We are now a team of highly experienced business psychologists, facilitators and coaches that focus entirely on:
· organizations that want to become inclusive and purposeful, and
· leaders and boards that want to be able to see more clearly the impact of their actions and reactions; understand how they can be more effective within their organizational system and broader operating context and know how to accountable to their diverse stakeholders