When diving for abalone on the North Coast of California, it occurred to me the immersive nature of the sport, and how much my senses are absolutely focused on the activity. Swimming in the ocean with the fish and the kelp, I truly felt one with nature, a powerful feeling of being fully engaged, being Part Of something bigger than myself.
How can we, as leaders in the Engineering industry, create a culture for our people and our company, where our people are immersed, fully engaged, and truly feel Part Of something bigger than themselves?
It’s illegal to use a breathing apparatus (SCUBA) to dive for abalone, you have to free dive, in other words, hold your breath. Unless you have peace of mind, you can’t hold your breath. This draws a parallel with how Robert Pursig, in his masterpiece Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, describes the craftsman, the practitioner can only become the craftsman by first having peace of mind.
The key then, would be to create a fully engaging culture where our team members feel safe and secure. A foundational culture grounded in the values of collaboration, participation, impunity, and clear expectations, one that lays the groundwork for our team members to have peace of mind, a culture that creates the possibility for craftsmanship to emerge. Indeed, an immersive culture where our team members feel one with their practice, Part Of something bigger than themselves.