The Dimension of Being
In a study of leadership mental models related to sustainability, author and Organizational Systems professor John Adams describes the "life orientation" on a continuum that stretches between the two poles of "Doing + Having" and "Being." The pole of "Doing and Having" is a good descriptor of an identity linked to what we do in life – to materialism, consumption, ambition, cost-effectiveness, quantitative growth, and financial performance. The pole of "Being" refers to life oriented toward introspective practices, self-realization, valuing intangibles, the greater good, seeking qualitative growth and personal development, spirituality, detachment, and having enough. The focus on Being starts with introspection and questions about who am I, what is my purpose. Work is being discovered as a source of spiritual growth and connection to others. While many employees do struggle to find meaning in their work, there is a growing number of members of senior management for whom spirituality at corporate level refers to the higher purpose of business.