Over the next few blog posts, I’m going to highlight some lessons, milestones, and progress this year from our business, so you can celebrate and learn with us.

Today’s post pulls in a few lessons from books we launched this year, with gratitude to the authors and the wisdom their books bring.

If it’s business, it’s personal. This lesson is pulled from Susan Fowler and her book Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work and What Does. The work we do is inherently personal. We work with and for people. It’s never “just business.” Even though our team works virtually, we spend much of our time collaborating and interacting, and we are each affected by our work and our work is affected by what happens outside of work. Every day, we deal with aging/ill family members, juggle our family commitments, enjoy hobbies, or find space for rest — and we seek to bring our best to our work. The more personal we are, the more effective our work is.

Opportunity begets opportunity. Bill Treasurer’s book, Leaders Open Doors, contains the helpful lesson that focus on opportunity is powerful! One of the greatest joys for me in this business is in creating opportunities for others to use their gifts and abilities while enjoying flexible work. When I find opportunities for our company, I create opportunities for others.

Values matter! This year, we’ve spent a lot of time focusing on our core values and how we express them through our work and culture. Chris Edmonds’ book, The Culture Engine provided helpful reinforcement and clarification about the importance of formalizing our purpose and values as we intentionally create an inspiring workplace. Read more about our journey in this post by Chris or in this series of posts by our team.

Great leaders serveMark Miller and Ken Blanchard’s book, The Secret, reminded our team of the importance of serving others. “A key question you must continually ask yourself is `Am I a self-serving leader or a serving leader?'” The powerful words of Miller and Blanchard’s classic book have fueled us to focus on how we can serve others.

Every day, we can choose. We’ve talked a lot about choice this year. Each day, we can choose: our perspective, attitude, and actions are something we each control. Frank Sonnenberg’s book, Follow Your Conscience, provided great thought-provoking inspiration that reminded us that we each choose and “each decision helps to define who we are.”

Check out more of the wonderful books we promoted this year and buy a few as holiday gifts. The leaders in your life will thank you!