Getting to Yes, And

Steve Farber: Love is Just Damn Good Business


Steve Farber

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Listed as one of Inc. Magazine's Top 50 Leadership and Management Experts, Steve Farber is a leadership pioneer, strategist, and best-selling author whose new book argues that loving your employees and loving your companies is the key to business success. 

One of the questions that constantly comes up on this podcast is why do we check our humanity at the door when we go to work?

“I'm so glad that you're asking that question over and over again. Yeah. Why do we do that? Why do we check ourselves at the door? And I did learn it the hard way and I'm happy to share that with you, but just to be really clear about this, the reason that we do this is delusional. It's like we have some kind of expectation that we arrive at work, we rip our heart out of our chest, we leave it throbbing on the curb, go to work, come home at the end of the day, push it back into our chest, and then we use it again. It's insane. We're the same people at home and at work. I mean, that's literally true. We play different roles certainly, but we're the same people, the same DNA, the same experience, the same relationships. And somewhere along the line we said, ‘Nah, you know, work is got nothing to do with any of that stuff.’"

So you talk about specifically bringing the word love into the workplace. And this isn’t a soft kind of love, this is love that allows you to face all the fear.

“If we take a look at the alternative, which is to act from a place of love, which is the whole theme of the book. And, frankly, the foundation of all of my work in this field for the last 30 years. If we come from that place, fear takes a back seat and we experience it in a different light. It's not the fear of being judged. Fear of failure might still be there, but that's natural. And we just have to understand that if we're coming from a place of love: love of the business, love with the values that we stand for, love of the people that we work with, love of the customers that we're serving, the fear becomes worthwhile because we're taking on that risk for a profound reason.”

And the core idea is that love is actually good business.

“Any business person of worth understands that our competitive advantage comes from when our customers love what we do for them. Anything short of that, there's no loyalty. So if they aren’t satisfied,  they'll go somewhere else. But if they love our product or service or  the combination of the two; if they love the way we respond to their need and they love the way we can help them solve their problems, that's where the payoff comes from. Right? So let's start with that. There's nothing soft and squishy about that. We can measure it in all kinds of ways, but what I'm suggesting is that the way to create that experience for customers in a meaningful and sustainable way over time is to create a culture and environment, a team, whatever the context is, that people love working in.”

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