GALLUP Business Journal recently published an article entitled Making Hope a Business Strategy.  I have to confess that I was a little disappointed, though, because the bottom line seemed mostly, “if you support your people, they’ll have hope in a better future and they’ll be 14% more productive.”

Sure, but that’s only scratching the surface.

Someone with a more spiritual grounding will realize that hope is a basic human need, something that should be supported and encouraged for a more fundamental reason.  Without hope, there’s no point to dream of and work toward a better future.

And I’m not talking just about hope in the afterlife and going to heaven.  That’s great, but can be disconnected from many day-to-day decisions.

  • I should hope that I’m doing the right thing in raising my children, so I can aspire to do a better job of it and love who they’re becoming as mature adults.
  • I should have hope that my work has value, so I can be inspired and fulfilled by that work.
  • I should have hope that our society will be able to work through some incredibly tough issues, so that I can not become disheartened and cynical.

Yes, in the work context, this eventually shows up as improved productivity.  But would you ONLY support and encourage your people because you can turn it into a dollar on the bottom line?

I hope that we’ll all work toward a more generous, more human understanding of what we’re achieving with these businesses.