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Book synthesis

7 lessons from the natural world to help you create the company of tomorrow

Eco-anxiety versus eco-inspiration: Today we look on nature as an invaluable asset to be preserved at all costs if we want to avoid our own extinction. In short, the natural world has become a source of concern. But the issue wouldn’t even arise if nature were primarily a source of inspiration.

The earth is 4.5 billion years old, whereas the corporate world is barely more than 400 years old. So nature is 10 million times more experienced than our business organizations, and has the wisdom to pass on some best practices that have certainly stood the test of time.

Based on

“La stratégie du poulpe, 60 récits du vivant pour inspirer nos organisations :  collaboration, innovation, résilience”, by Emmanuelle Joseph-Dailly, (Eyrolles, 2021). 

#1 : Embrace your negative emotions like rats do 

Happiness, peace of mind, altruism… Companies love positivity and have a tendency to deny negative emotions. This attitude may become unbearable to some people, who may feel compelled to put on a brave face in all circumstances (even when two years of pandemic have dialed up anxiety levels).
The ability to conceal your feelings is characteristic of humans, probably even more so than laughter is. After all, you’ll never see a startled horse or monkey trying to put on a calm front; everything about them says fear. And that’s useful, because other animals systematically adapt their behavior in line with the messages they receive. When there is a conflict, for instance, the signs of fear quickly lead to a de-escalation.
What’s more, uncomfortable emotions such as fear, anger or regret are potentially constructive since they can help us become aware of our needs and mistakes. It has been observed in rats that the public expression of regret after making a poor choice means that other rats are less inclined to make a mistake and that the frustrated individual can move on more quickly to something else. So the benefits are two-fold.

How about you: What attitude do you take when you experience a negative emotion? And how do you treat the fears and regrets of the people around you? 

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Dominique Fidel
Published by Dominique Fidel
After completing her studies in civilizations and working 10 years in corporate communications, Dominique now divides her time between popularizing science, institutional communications, literary reviews, and Business Digest.