Appreciation is also to be found in the recognition of one’s own strengths and enduring values. Integrity and authenticity come with this recognition and the capacity to act consistently from them. We appreciate ourselves while appreciating other people. This seems to be critical in engaging all forms of generativity.
We conclude this return to alternative definitions of generativity by offering a particularly astute set of observations made by one of our Sage leaders about the power of appreciation as a leverage point for the generation of energy and strategies for collaboration. Generativity seems to reside, finally, in a commitment to vision and the movement beyond one’s personal interests (setting aside ego):
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I have seen leaders make several serious mistakes. One is confusing the organization with its mission. It’s very easy for the organization to take on a “will to survive,” similar to “the guardian” within us as individuals. This can blind those in the organization from exploring collaborations or even mergers that could better achieve the mission. It can also cause organizations to develop competitive rather than resource-sharing strategies. It can get all mixed-up with protecting one’s job and personal survival needs. And it takes courage to keep focused on the mission, especially in times of shifting paradigms and challenging economic issues.