Theory  E²: Working with Entrepreneurs in Closely-Held Enterprises–III.The Appreciation of Entrepreneurship and Enterprise

Theory E²: Working with Entrepreneurs in Closely-Held Enterprises–III.The Appreciation of Entrepreneurship and Enterprise

Part of the satisfaction in becoming an admirer of the competition is that it allows you to wonder how someone else did something well, so that you might imitate it—steal it, to be blunt. But the best part is that it shows you that there are things you will never learn to do, skills and tricks that are out of your range, an entire imagination that is out of your range. The news may be disappointing on a personal level, but in terms of the cosmos, it is strangely gratifying. One sits among the works of one’s contemporaries as in a planetarium, head all the way back, eyes gazing up at heavenly matter that is all the more beautiful for being unreachable. Am I growing up?

Paradoxically, at the point that people are fully appreciated and reaffirmed they tend to live up to their newly acclaimed talents and drive, just as they live down to their depreciated sense of self if constantly criticized or undervalued. Carl Rogers suggested many years ago that people are least likely to change if they are being asked to change. People are more likely to change when they have received positive regard. Appreciation and positive regard certainly seem to be closely related concepts.

Recognizing the Value of Cooperation

A final mode of appreciation is evident in the attitude of cooperation in a closely-held enterprise. An organization is appreciative when efforts are made to form cooperative relationships and recognize the mutual benefits that can be derived from this cooperation. A culture of appreciation provides organizational integration. It is the glue that holds a closely-held enterprise together while the enterprise is growing and differentiating into distinctive units of responsibility. The appreciative perspective is particularly important when there are significant differences in vision, values or other cultural elements among members of an organization or among independent organizations that seek to work together. If genuine and productive cooperation is to take place, then appreciation must embrace both judgments about reality and judgments about value.

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About the Author

William BergquistWilliam Bergquist, Ph.D. An international coach and consultant in the fields of psychology, management and public administration, author of more than 50 books, and president of a psychology institute. Dr. Bergquist consults on and writes about personal, group, organizational and societal transitions and transformations. His published work ranges from the personal transitions of men and women in their 50s and the struggles of men and women in recovering from strokes to the experiences of freedom among the men and women of Eastern Europe following the collapse of the Soviet Union. In recent years, Bergquist has focused on the processes of organizational coaching. He is coauthor with Agnes Mura of coachbook, co-founder of the International Journal of Coaching in Organizations and co-founder of the International Consortium for Coaching in Organizations.

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