If you build it, they will come ~ Field of Dreams

An interesting and true statement but not always easy for people to do. The actions that support this statement take time, patience and confidence. Not everyone can sustain the fortitude or vision it takes to build from scratch an idea, product or mission. It is even harder to “build” a movement.

PHO 09Jul31 172162 If you build it...I thought of this quote when watching an address by Geoffrey Canada. I am moved by him and others like him. If you have never heard of Geoffrey Canada, then you have never heard of the Harlem Children’s Zone.  You may not have been witness the dramatic changes that have happened within a 100 block area of Central Harlem, NY.  The Harlem Children’s Zone Project is a unique, holistic approach to rebuilding a community so that its children can stay on track through college and beyond. It is about equalizing the playing field of education, health and life. Their goal is to create a “tipping point” in the neighborhood so that children are surrounded by an enriching environment of college-oriented peers and supportive adults, a counterweight to “the street” and a toxic popular culture that glorifies misogyny and anti-social behavior.

It is easy to build something in the mind but difficult to create and follow through with it in actions. This is especially true when the organization you are a part of looks at activities in the realm of the short term result versus the long term benefit. But it is true that if you build something extraordinary and have passion around it, ‘they’ will come. “They” being anyone that has a mutual belief in your cause, product, field or role.  “They” will come to support you. “They” will arrive to ask “what can I do to help.”

It is the passionate few that help drive the willingness of many.

For us in the field, it is often difficult to create new approaches, destroy obsolete and unneeded policies that cater to the 1% of your company. It is not easy to do the ”needed” things in the face of what the bosses “want.”

But the fact remains, if you have patience, passion and a strong belief in whatever you are “building” then many people within your organization will tag a long to help.

So let me ask with regard to your role, organization and life, what are you building?

Are you a builder or are you the one that shows up after the movement has begun? 

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