top of page
Search

WHY INVESTING IN VALUES SHOULD BE LEADERS’ TOP PRIORITY: A HISTORICAL LESSON FROM ISRAEL


"Don’t worship leaders; follow ideas based on values.”



DOING FOR OTHERS


The time of the IBMA conference is approaching fast, and the preparation work is in full swing.

Naturally, as the IBMA's chairman, I am involved in the preparations, and this requires my full attention and focus, not to mention the many hours.

However, following the October 7th genocide by Hamas in south Israel, I found myself drawn into wanting to do something for the sake of the victims and those who suffered from the terror attack and, in a moment, have lost everything they had: the loved ones, friends, house, livelihood, belongings, feeling of security, and the simple happiness of life.

I wanted to help the victims of the terror attack, even at the expense of my other activities. I delivered that message to the IBMA organizing team and let them know I would be less available for a while. They received it with empathy and understanding.

In the days past the genocide, I found myself sharing many posts where I bring my point of view to those outside Israel who have no clue about what is happening here and mainly the atrocities committed by Hamas terrorists.

Next, to assist entrepreneurs, I volunteered to connect entrepreneurs to potential investors and protest (calling “BRING THEM BACK”) with the families of those abducted to the Gaza Strip, etc.

I didn't do much, but what I did was mainly for the benefit of others, and it filled me with satisfaction and hope.

It lifted me by reminding and inspiring me of the feeling of brotherhood. Not many things feel as good as doing for others without expectations for return or compensation.

In the past, there were days when all my activities were for the public good, i.e., working in my Kibbutz, one year of volunteer service for a young Kibbutz, and, of course, the army service.

Volunteering activities always “recharge my batteries”. A few weeks later, I was ready to tell the IBMA team, "I am back to normal; there is a lot more work to do; let's make this conference as good as we dream." Note that the activity at IBMA is also voluntary.

You see, "normal" is the last thing you can say about life in Israel these days.

However, Israelis are famous for "delivering" under any circumstances, including during war, as if things were sort of “normal”.

I am determined that the IBMA conference and the other things I am involved in will not "suffer" due to the war; on the contrary, when facing pure evil, I am motivated to counter it with more “pure good”.




VOLUNTEERING


Following the October 7th genocide, I was not the only one who stopped his life and volunteered; hundreds of thousands of Israelis stopped whatever they were doing and volunteered.

Without being ordered or asked, they/we volunteered in one of the hundreds of organizations that were established overnight to help in every possible way the victims of the genocide.

Due to the internal political situation, the current Israeli government is as malfunctioning as it gets.

Therefore, the volunteering organizations are the ones practically running daily life in Israel at an unimaginable scale and efficiency (I am sure you were not aware of it!).

Their activities include most of those that the government should do, such as helping the refugees in all aspects of life, supporting factories and farmers with daily volunteer workers, education, healthcare, housing, etc.



Israelis volunteer to help farmers next to the Gaza Strip, donating food, equipment, and anything refugees and those suffering from genocide need.



I remember seeing the massive number of volunteers, and I was shocked (in a good sense) and encouraged.

I said to myself, "With so many good people, there could be only a better future once the war with Hamas ends and the current government resigns or ceases to exist."

Furthermore, I saw the exceptional cooperation between all volunteers and organizations, and it became clear that something unique was happening.

What I see these days in Israel, the genuine mutual care of people reminded me of the good old Israel of my childhood.

Yesterday I went into a store, took some things and paid, as I was about to leave the person behind the counter smiled and said "Goodbye friend".

I didn’t remember meeting, so I asked him, "Do we know each other?" “No”, he answered, “But we are all together and friends."

I left the shop smiling. "Together" and "Friends" are potent words; now I was sure Israel would emerge triumphant from this existential crisis.

P.S. The meaning of Kibbutz is Grouping or Together. In the Kibbutz, members call each other "Haver", translated into "Friend".


At this point, you must be saying to yourself now, "I don't get it; why would hundreds of thousands of Israelis stop their lives, leave their work, house, families, and sometimes even risk their lives (like when working in a war zone) to help people they don't know, have never met, are not visibly connected in other ways, and not for any financial compensation or benefit.




VALUES


Only one thing would make people want to volunteer and give everything they have without any visible material return: values.

Like the unseen forces that connect the elements of the atom, and then several atoms to form molecules, and then by connecting molecules create everything you see around you, so are values.

Though unseen, values are the most vital and fundamental social forces you will ever encounter.

Values keep individuals' psychological and mental health integrity, connect two people to form a family, several families to create communities, and then connect communities to form a nation.

Values are the unseen forces shaping our lives, even when we are unaware.

Values caused hundreds of thousands of Israelis to want to volunteer, to put the good of others before their own, without asking "Why" or doubting the reasons for others asking for help and support.

For those volunteering, it is enough that you say you need help to reach out and do their utmost to help without expecting anything in return (when possible, a smile or a hug would do).

Now you must wonder, "What values made hundreds of thousands of Israelis take action simultaneously and put the good of others before their own? And, above all, How, Why, and Where did those values originate?".




INTERIOR ADVERSITIES


The current Israeli political situation is such that the government, according to reports in Israel's official media (TV, News Papers, and Radio), is corrupted, selfish, useless, disconnected from the people, ineffective, hated, dysfunctional, and unprofessional. Israelis fade up of their government (and the PM) and wish to see them vanish.

The public sentiment toward its PM strongly indicates that the people didn't volunteer because of a leader.

Then why did they?




VALUES FIRST = SUCCESS


While the current Israeli government is unpopular, Israelis had a good fortune many years ago, starting when the nation was formed.

In those critical years, about 140 to 70 years ago, the Israeli leaders grew from, were, and remained part of the "simple farmers", the proletariat.

I do not refer to or point to one or few leader/s in particular, for in those days, each community had its leaders (in plural) - people didn't worship leaders; they followed ideas based on shared values. Such a leader still exists in each Kibbutz/Moshav and is called a Secretary.

Following values leads to better long-term results than following people. Always follow values.

This is not to say that all people are not good; quite the contrary, even when most people and leaders are excellent, it is enough to have a handful of inadequate leaders to bring a nation down on its knees.

Hence, the good fortune of Israel that the "Fathers and Mothers of the Nation" were not one but many – they were pioneers, which in Israel we call Halutzim. They laid the foundation of values for the country in the making.

At the end of the 19th century and early 20th century, some young Jewish people, mainly from Eastern Europe, returned to the Promised Land after 2000 years of exile.

Most of them wanted to practice farming, even if they had no prior experience.

In a previous column, I told the story of the rural communities of Israel, so here is a summary –

The “new age” rural communities began as Villages, where every farmer was the master of their own faith. That was a colossal disaster; all villages economically failed, and their farmers went bankrupt (sounds familiar?). Then, in the early 20th century, the Kibbutz, followed by the Moshav lifestyle, appeared and instantly became a hit, a huge success.

From 1900 to 1990, hundreds of Kibbutzs and Moshavs appeared, reshaping and crystallizing the Israeli agro sector, its food security, exports in its early years, agrotech, and, most important for our discussion, the young nation's social and human values.

How meaningful the rural communities in shaping Israel's values can be learned from the long list of national leaders who were farmers or Kibbutz members, including David Ben Gurion, Israel's first Prime Minister (after quitting political life, Ben Gurion returned to what he valued the most - Kibbutz values and lifestyle).

The value of Equality, mutual support, and cooperation, which is central to the Kibbutz and Moshav, found their way into Israel's Declaration of Independence and is strongly reflected in Israel’s science research, IDF (army), and tech industries (including agrotech).




David Ben Gurion - Israel's first PM. In the picture, after retiring, he meets the Kibbutz children next to his humble house in Kibbutz Sde-Bokker.




DRAWING VALUES


If the Americans have the Statue of Liberty representing their values, then Israel has the Srolik figure that encapsulates them.



Srolik, a legendary self-portrait drawing presentation, reflects how Israelis view themselves. Note the picture of Ben-Gurion with the children of the Kibbutz and the way they are dressed.



"Srolik is usually depicted as a young boy with a top hat and simple sandals, wearing khaki shorts. Srolik is a pioneering and energetic Zionist who loves the land and Israel's soil. A brave farmer who, when necessary, "puts on a uniform" and goes out to defend the State of Israel." Wikipedia

Although rural communities were never the majority in Israel (the maximum was about 5%), when Israelis looked for their foundations, roots, and values, they always found them in the portrait of the farmer, Srolik.

Thanks to Srolik, we can trace the roots of the Israeli high-tech success and Israelis' habit of working hard.

In Israel, farming and agriculture are automatically associated with the Kibbutz and its values. So, when Israelis see a drawing of Srolik, they associate it with the Kibbutz values - simplicity, cooperation, brotherhood, integration, equality, community, and values first, etc.

To this day, Srolik remains the symbol of the Israeli archetype, and when there was a need to sign Israeli production, the sign kept the top hat and the face of Srolik.


The Made In Israel symbols.




THE KIBBUTZ ROOTS


Following the October 7th attack, a study about Israeli entrepreneurs in time of crisis was published.

Amazingly but not surprisingly, it states the community, togetherness, and brotherhood as the primary and critical game-changer success factors.

Here is a citation from that study -

"There is some element of communalism that, for the Israelis, it turns out, is the 'game changer'. Those who feel they are part of a community – whether it is a WhatsApp community, a professional community, or any other community - have a very high crisis management ability. They say that whatever happens, there are people around me. It's even in the terminology - my “brothers” are with me, so I won't crash.

They are highly stressed. They experience a drop in income, and many of the investors have withdrawn their offers, so there are problematic economic effects, but the sentiment is positive - they will improve. Belonging to the community is very strong and influential in many other aspects.

The Israeli entrepreneurs have two strengths: the community, the "togetherness" that does not exist in most countries of the world, and secondly, the hope in terms of 'it will be fine' even when, at the moment, nothing is fine. And the entrepreneurs believe in it, and it is their success stimulator". Source.




EMPOWERING ROOTS


I began this column discussing the positive huge wave of volunteering acts following the October 7th genocide attack by Hamas on south Israel communities, mainly peaceful Kibbutzs rural communities.

As illustrated, the volunteering of hundreds of thousands, on a gigantic scale in Israeli terms (Israel's population is 10M), is traced back to the nation's "starting point", its foundations, its rural communities' roots, and their values of brotherhood, cooperation, trust, mutual help, equality, agriculture, land, the love of life, volunteering, togetherness, etc.


"Don't Worship Leaders; Follow Ideas Based On Values."


When the Israeli leadership failed its people, the citizens of Israel reached down to their roots, pulled out the values on which the nation was founded, acted upon them, and created a change.


My friend, if you live in a developing country or care about those who live there, take care of the nation's foundations and roots. Those are found in the unseen values.

The Kibbutz built its entire (successful) structure around Values; commercial companies, e.g., Apple, understand that sustainable success requires nurturing Values, but unfortunately, national leaders seem to neglect and forget this.

When you nurture values, you will harvest the fruits for many generations, even after you are long gone, and even if corrupted leadership takes the seats of the Parliament, the people will not forget their roots, as a tree can't forget where it is growing.

If Steve Jobs saved Apple from bankruptcy by nurturing its Core Values (video), why won’t you do the same?

Establish now the Core Values of your business, organization, sector, or country, and get it on the path to sustainable success.

Establish your organization's Core Values now. In times of crisis and uncertainty years from today, even when you're not present, people will turn to these values as a stable anchor in rough seas, guiding them to do the right thing and ensuring their well-being.

The Israelis volunteered in unprecedented numbers because they reached their Core Values, and those pointed them to being together, cooperating, helping, integrating, and being empathetic without asking for anything in return.

Be like the Israeli pioneers like David Ben Gurion, and by instilling the correct Values, you can be the one to save your organization today and even years from now after you are long gone.


“Make Values Your Legacy.”



Learn more at the IBMA 2024 conference; its theme is Reorganizing The Agro Sector: Building Organized Prosperous Communities.

You will regrate if you miss it. Register now before it's too late.

Create your legacy, contact to impact the agro sector - nisraely@biofeed.co.il WhatsApp +972-542523425

TAKEAWAY MESSAGE


Ø YOU PREDETERMINE peoples’ future by building organizations based on values.

Ø NOT ALL VALUES are the same.

Ø VALUES DRIVE ACTION.

Ø VALUES PROMOTING COOPERATION, integration, empathy, and caring for others will ensure the organization reaches prosperity sooner, faces challenges better, and has high resilience.

****************************

More on the October 7th genocide in South Israel:

****************************

If you enjoyed the article, please share it with friends and colleagues.

SUBSCRIBE TO THE WEEKEND COLUMN.


*** Mental and Economic Freedom Are Interconnected. ***


See you soon,

Nimrod









Dr. Nimrod Israely is the CEO and Founder of Dream Valley and Biofeed companies and the Chairman and Co-founder of the IBMA conference. +972-54-2523425 (WhatsApp), or email nisraely@biofeed.co.il



P.S.

If you missed it, here is a link to last week's blog, “Can Rural Communities Be More Successful Than Urbans? Yes, Here Is How It's Done.”


P.P.S.

Dream Valley is a field-proven disruptive business model based on the successful Israeli model.

To learn more and become a Dream Valley partner, contact me at nisraely@biofeed.co.il, +972-542523425 (WhatsApp/Text)


If you like it, please share it with those who need to see it and Subscribe.


Change Begins With A Decision

That The Existing Reality Is A Choice

and Not A Decree of Fate

2 views0 comments

Commentaires


Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page