A soaring organization is any workplace where employees are energized to contribute their very best (people soar) and in turn the organization is rewarded with financial growth and stability (profits soar). Research by Edward Deci and written about by Daniel Pink in Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us,demonstrates how autonomy, mastery, and purpose underpins soaring organizations.
Inner Bliss was selected for the first spotlight soaring organization because this yoga studio always delivers on their promise. The Promise: Inner Bliss Yoga Studio is more of a space than a place where warmth envelops you, laughter is contagious and ease prevails.
Inner Bliss consistently presents a graceful offering and honors those who accept the offering. This exchange is about community more than commerce. This yoga studio’s impact can be felt within and well beyond its studio walls. From within, bliss is found in breath fueled movement and stillness. Students experience life on the mat and carry their experiences into life off the mat. Beyond the studio the teachers and staff of Inner Bliss share their gifts in schools, at parks, at wellness centers, in bike shops, around local landmarks, and in arenas.
Inner Bliss is where I go to stay physically, spiritually, and mentally fit. I have been a grateful student and part of the of Inner Bliss community for more than a decade.
In addition to my personal experience I use Inner Bliss to bring yoga experiences to others. I recently developed a girls’ leadership program that is designed on a play-learn-play model. In this model, the girls gain experiences that help them learn how to be leaders. One way we do this is with yoga. When yoga became part of the program I knew instantly where to go to get the girls the best experience--Tammy Lyons owner of Inner Bliss Yoga Studio. When I reached out to Tammy she asked a few thoughtful questions and then shared that Sally Brooks would be perfect for this program. She was right, Sally is a perfect fit. When she arrives, the girls visibly transition into the ease that yoga brings them. She expertly guides the girls in yoga as she helps them find their voice and gain confidence.
The Inner Bliss team impresses with their excellence and engagement. Because of this I took a look at how Inner Bliss meets the elements of a soaring organization.
Inner Bliss Basics
Purpose: Create space and experiences for people to heal and grow with breath and movement
Products/Services: Yoga classes, workshop, apparel, and lifestyle items
Years in Business: 13.5
# of Employees 28
Locations: Rocky River & Westlake, Ohio
In April of 2015 I talked with Tammy Lyons, owner of Inner Bliss Yoga Studio about what makes Inner Bliss soar.The Leader Interview
Q: What motivates you to make Inner Bliss soar?
A: After studying yoga and seeing the dramatic impact it had on my life I made the decision to leave my corporate job and start Inner Bliss to help others experience the benefits of yoga. At that time yoga was very new to Northeast Ohio. I was driven to offer others the opportunity to heal and grow through breath and movement.
Q: Why do you think your organization soars, what is the secret to your success?
A: There is no secret. We live out our passion for yoga and put in lots of hard work.
Q: How does Inner Bliss overcome challenges?
A: Today yoga is a rapidly growing industry. This brings the challenge of competition but our focus is on the growing pains related to managing logistics that impact the student experience. For example space: from the parking lot, to class check-in, to a space to lay your yoga mat we were running out rapidly, this led to opening our second location in Westlake.
Q: How do you attract and retain employees?
A: It is important to me that employees’ earnings reflect their value so compensation is above average and allows for a good quality of life. But it is the work environment that our employees appreciate most. Our employees get to work with happy people. Our students invest time and money and come to Inner Bliss joyfully. Plus the perk of free unlimited yoga classes is attractive to our employees.
Q: How do you approach leadership?
A: From the heart. I make leadership decisions based on respect--treating others as I want to be treated.
Q: What about Inner Bliss makes you most proud?
A: We feel blessed that people reach out and share with us the positive life changes they experience due to yoga at Inner Bliss. People share that they are learning and growing; that yoga is improving their lives, their health, and their relationships.
People Soar at Inner Bliss
People who soar are motivated to contribute to their employer’s success. Every day they do their best work and seek out ways to add value. This level of motivation results when employees have autonomy, mastery and purpose.
In the spring of 2015 to explore if Inner Bliss employees do indeed have the autonomy, mastery, and purpose that allow people to soar at work they took the Echo System Partners soaring employees survey. The survey asks participants to anonymously rate their agreement with 22 statements such as:
- I feel comfortable trying out new ideas at work.
- If I make a mistake at work I am not afraid to own it.
- I know what needs to happen for my organization to be successful.
The survey results illustrated in the chart below emphasize that Inner Bliss employees do soar in ways that positively contribute to the success of their organization.