Business is too often about fear: fear of the bottom-line, fear of competition, fear of being enough. But, as Maya Angelou said: “Have enough courage to love.” As we see it, love trumps fear. It’s time for us to bring love out of the corporate closet.
Love is no longer an idealistic, soft, useless concept in the business world. Science and experience tells us that love is, by nature, among our strongest capabilities as human beings. It therefore belongs among our most powerful leadership tools. As leaders, every moment presents us with a choice: to lead from fear or to lead from love. The betterment of our world and our welfare hinges on how we lead from love.
Love is what unites people. According to Barbara Fredrickson, love grows in micro-moments of connection in which two people’s minds and emotions become momentarily attuned. We are hard-wired with this capacity to connect—with strangers, with our spouses, with our children, with our employees—though we often choose to shut it down. When we don’t shut it down, love is the connection that builds families, communities and organizations. When love is present, we lead confidently and courageously because we are fueled by a purpose bigger than our ego. It’s the force that drives ideas forward into action, creating new possibilities and innovation.