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Jan's Corner: know thyself — as relevant in business as it is in life

A sign at the Temple of Apollo at Delphi in Greece reads Nosce te ipsum or Know yourself. More than 2000 years ago, philosophers like Socrates knew that a meaningful life and a successful, prosperous society was based on deep self-knowledge.

What has knowing yourself to do with business in the 21st Century? Everything. Businesses exist for people and with people. More then ever before, people seek to discover and express their passions, talents, values and aspirations — to live a meaningful and fulfilling life — as customers, business owners and employees.

Those businesses that allow self-knowledge be an integral part of their philosophy and practice witness real magic.

How does that work? Knowing yourself and others knowing themselves allows for an unusual alchemy to happen, not just in business. Everyone sees their unique value and is appreciated for what they bring to the table. Differences are celebrated and effectively used. New opportunities and synergy is created when unique perspectives, natural strengths and passions are melded with those of others in total self-awareness of what the process is. Excitement is pervasive and no vision is out of reach.

Invest your time in knowing yourself, and understanding others below the surface, and you’ll be surprised at what happens.

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