Thursday, January 12, 2017

CORPORATE SUFI : What Corporate Sufi is all about

Azim Jamal

Azim Jamal 

By Azim Jamal

        With increasing performance pressures and competition, the modern workplace has been transformed into a virtual battleground. As you climb up the organizational ladder, the stakes keep getting higher.

Soon a variety of issues like politics, favoritism, unfairness, and nepotism begin rearing their ugly heads and deflecting you from your path. The pure and simple joy of getting a job well done is soon lost in a race to rise up higher and faster.

Sufis believe that our life is a precious gift. And considering we spend half of our lives at work, it is important to make this significant portion of our lifetime, noble and meaningful.

When I use the term ‘Corporate Sufi’ I look at a person who marries his work with his life mission and balances his work, family, social, and spiritual lives. He is a person who is ambitious and wants to do well in the worldly sense of climbing the corporate ladder, raising a family, being materially successful, and helping good causes without compromising spiritual principles.

Why would one want to be a Corporate Sufi?

Ultimately, we all seek fulfillment and lasting happiness. And we believe that corporate success will give us inner happiness, contentment, and satisfaction.

We are all born to fulfill a particular purpose in our lives. But gradually as we progress through life, we become more attached to our trappings of comfort and security and lose touch with our purpose. This gradually shrivels up our spirit, leaving us vulnerable to fear.

We realize our potential only when we work on our purpose.

One way to identify this purpose is to find an area of work that totally absorbs our attention when we are engaged in it. This is the area in which we can make a significant contribution.

Our corporate purpose should be an extension of our personal purpose. My colleague and mentor, the late Dr. Stephen Covey uses the term “co-missioning,” meaning the aligning of personal and company missions. It means integrating our work life with our soul to create a unified picture that brings together our inner and outer worlds.

If our life’s purpose is not aligned with our corporate purpose, we experience tension and unhappiness. When the two are aligned, we find that we are performing optimally in our work life and are using our innate gifts.

So make it a practice to regularly reflect on the big questions of life:

• Do I know my purpose in life? Do I know the purpose of my corporation? Am I finding meaning and fulfillment in my corporate work?

• If I were dying today, what would be the one regret I would have?

• Is my life purpose married to my corporate purpose?

• Do I have a simply written, energizing corporate vision and mission statement that I clearly and consistently articulate to my team at work?

• Have I involved my team in preparing the company vision and mission statement?

• Similarly, do I have a clear family vision and mission statement that I have involved my family members in constructing?

These questions will prompt you to look deep within yourself to find the purpose for which you were born. Purpose brings clarity and focus and answers the question why.

Purpose is an anchor, helps with alignment, and is an energy driver.