How attached are you to your ideas? To your business plan? Let's get more specific. Are you attached to results - whether that is growth or profit or are you attached to how you get there? Does it matter? Apparently, it does. As Glen Beaman said, "Stubbornness does have its helpful features. You always know what you are going to be thinking tomorrow. Viewed from the lens of a sustainability consultant, it seems if you are attached to the traditional means of which to grow your business, you might be getting the same results tomorrow that you are getting today.
The post, You Can't Solve the Problem with the Same Thinking that Created It, addresses this precisely. You've heard it before, "If you always do what you've always done, then you'll always get what you always got." In other words, you can't solve the problem with the same thinking that created it. Such is the case with climate change, carbon, water, and the evolving business landscape. So, if doing what you have always done isn't going to cut it, then what is?
The post, The Two Innovation Challenges, explores a recent IBM CEO study which states that when CEO's were "asked to prioritize the three most important leadership qualities in the new economic environment, creativity was the one they selected more than any other choice. Why is creativity important in leaders? The report argues that creativity is the basis for "disruptive innovation and continuous re-invention ... this requires bold, breakthrough thinking." Our sustainability consulting practice believes that creativity and business sustainability are intertwined. Sustainability can provide a powerful organizing principal for business as well as a catalyst for creativity, unlikely partnerships and collaboration all positively impacting the bottom line.
Better yet, in a study of 1,349 older male veterans, creativity--serving as an indication of openness, the willingness to try new things and accept new ideas--seems to have predicted a longer lifespan. The Journal of Aging and Health study, which followed the men over the course of 18 years (but did not include any women), found that creative thinking may have led to a 12% reduction in mortality risk. Activities in which we create something new and require problem-solving skills and imagination, like sustainability concepts and applications, could reduce stress levels, improve overall health, and increase longevity.
Thinking of sustainability as a boundless opportunity opens the door to actions beyond what have already been implemented enriching our lives and our businesses.