A Novice’s Journey: Seek to Seek or Seek to Find.

My friend Isabel reminds me frequently that Greenleaf is not a cheap date. She was proven right today!Sitting down to pick up my theme focusing on the tools needed to Start by Seeking. Searching through Mr. Greenleaf’s writings for his thoughts on Courage, the following gives me

Sitting down to pick up my theme focusing on the tools needed to Start by Seeking. Searching through Mr. Greenleaf’s writings for his thoughts on Courage, the following gives me reason to pause: “Can the seeker accept there is no well-marked path? If there were such a way, there would be a destination. There would be something to be wanted, something which when found would end the search. Life at that point would be empty.” (Greenleaf, 1996)

Last week’s reflection that a more caring society will take decades to achieve was humbling enough. Now, I am being challenged to commit to the search. For a “Type A” recovering corporate exec, that was a bit much. Haven’t we been taught to see the problem, understand the problem and fix the problem.

Greenleaf isn’t saying that we shouldn’t get things done. Quite the opposite, he may be suggesting that we must constantly innovate. We see that thinking applied in industry every day, especially in the technology sector. When I was a teenager, my mother always made sure I had change to use the payphone if needed. Our teenager is in constant contact wherever she is and if we wanted to we could track her every move. (perhaps an innovation teenagers could live without) It didn’t all happen at once. From Alexander Graham Bell to Tim Cook, the great innovators look at their creations as a work in progress. The next iteration will bring new features that create additional value.

Perhaps that’s what we should take from this idea about seeking to seek. A more caring society will come about through an iterative, interactive, respectful, kind and accountable process. While we seek, we must remember:

  1. The issues facing our society are complex.
  2. We don’t possess all the answers to the questions the universe is asking.
  3. Progress emerges from setbacks. Facing adversity builds character and we shouldn’t shy away from it.
  4. Wandering around a bit and sensing where our specific experience and talents can be of service is a good thing.
  5. Beginning the dialog and listening to understand is a great way to start

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by Pat Falotico

Chief Executive Officer

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