When channelled correctly, passion is a powerful asset. At Potential Squared, we believe that the secret to success lies in being able to ignite and maintain this fire that lives within an organisation’s people.

Fanning the flames of a workforce’s fire is important when it comes to fuelling the passion in a business. The more fuel that you can feed to the fire, the more energy you will get out in return. And the more energy you can generate in your teams that are responsible for sales and business development the more business opportunities your organisation will create in order to produce growth and success. But the question is, how do you instigate this passionate behavioural cycle – how do you keep the fires burning?

But the question is, how do you instigate this passionate behavioural cycle – how do you keep the fires burning?

The source of the fuel

The skill of stoking the passion in people is more nuanced than simply following a formula. A manager is someone who goes around lighting fires under backsides, whereas a leader takes on the responsibility of lighting fires inside their people all of the time. Not that the manager’s role isn’t essential during a project: effective leadership just demands that we understand what challenges necessitate which approach, and when. To keep the fire consistently hot, leaders need to learn to master one of Potential Squared’s three leadership pillars, including change and innovation.

Creating the right conditions

Random sparking of fires is a complete waste of time. When organisations initiate exercises to increase their internal energy levels, they often overlook their team and brand - the two elements that should be at the heart of the process. Leaders need to ensure their team understands why they exist, where they are heading, what their role is and the value of the position they fill. By paying attention to the ground work you will keep the fires burning for longer, and allow fresh sparks to cultivate new fires throughout the organisation.

 Instilling trust in the process

To maintain the enthusiasm and passion of your people, your method of leadership needs to be able to inspire their trust. Your position as a role model should create as much energy and determination in them as your technique of management. You only have to look at the recent turbulent example of FIFA to see how much trouble can be caused by the air of self-interest in an organisation’s leadership. A useful equation to keep in mind, created by David Maister, is: Trust = Reliability + Credibility + Intimacy / Self orientation.

To generate and maintain passion and fire throughout an organisation demands a rounded focus on creating the ideal conditions and consistently supplying adequate amounts of fuel. To produce trust you need to provide the complete package of being an inspirational role model and effective manager. To keep the fires burning and organisational energy high, leaders have to learn to balance exhibiting a broad range of behaviours that both inspire and drive passion.