Here’s what things have come to in American business: We send texts from the bathroom.
That sums up the state of the business world as seen by Twin Cities leadership consultant Gina Soleil. American workers are overstressed and underinspired, their energy drained by a 24/7 corporate world that’s become a soul-sucking round of meetings, spreadsheets and never-ending demands for instant action.
But if that sounds like a commonplace observation, Soleil’s prescription is anything but. Drawing on Eastern spiritual traditions, Soleil advises businesses to boost their bottom lines by clearing out their chakras. Yes, their chakras.
Her new book, “Fuel Your Business: How to Energize People, Ignite Action, and Drive Profits” (Career Press, $16.99), contends that businesses won’t prosper unless they learn to positively channel the human energy that flows through all of us.
It may sound New-Agey and touchy-feely, but Soleil says her solutions are grounded in science and logic.
“What’s fascinating to me is the kind of businesses that are gravitating to my work,” Soleil said. “IT firms, engineers, accountants, lawyers. These very smart, logical-minded organizations are saying, ‘What we’re doing isn’t working.’
“People perceive this as very right-brain, but the entire book is a logical plan for executing these principles.”
In other words, a left-brain approach to right-brain thinking.
Soleil was rising in the corporate world but realized that her most important values weren’t being fulfilled in that setting. Her journey out of that world took about eight years to complete and was painful at times. But it’s a journey she’s eager to help others take.
“The whole book is a road map for any common Joe to take their power back,” she said. “This isn’t rocket science. It comes down to three things: vision, values and clarity.”
She offers a number of exercises to help assess the state of a business — for example, how to recognize toxic leaders and “energy vampires.” The process she lays out may sound foreign to a typical worker or manager. But the principles on which it’s based — trust, freedom, collective responsibility — are undeniably those that any healthy business would aspire to live by.