GIVING THANKS

Photo Credit: @PerfectCelebration

Photo Credit: @PerfectCelebration

I try to be thankful every day like we all do. Yet, like most entrepreneurs, I can get caught up in the business of running a business and gratitude can easily take a back seat to the problem de jour. 

Thankfully, our Nation makes it a habit to pause from daily life each Thanksgiving to be thankful, grateful and appreciative. Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday of year and there are many reasons why this holiday is so meaningful to my family as we can trace back our lineage to John Hancock as one of the signatories of our Constitution. 

Thanksgiving dates back to 1621 when the Pilgrims and natives come together for a three-day celebration of harvest and blessings.

Life for the Pilgrims was far from easy— half of the settlers from the Mayflower died from starvation and disease —but they still focused on the blessings and abundance. President George Washington proclaimed on Oct 3, 1789, that this celebration (Thurs. Nov. 26th)  was to be a time of public thanksgiving and prayer to the Almighty with grateful hearts for our civic liberties, freedom and the blessings of life … asking people to live in harmony. 

Even during the Civil War Americans could find reasons to give thanks. In October of 1863, with the country gripped in war, President Abraham Lincoln asked all Americans “to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise...” 

On Thanksgiving, let us pause to reflect on all that we are grateful for, and think about where all our amazing advancements come from. Inventions, new businesses, and prosperity do not just appear spontaneously; it takes someone with a vision and the courage to act on that vision to make it happen. This intelligence and activity, this key to prosperity, societal and environmental advancements and healing, comes from the entrepreneur, the heroic spirit of the American dream embodied.

Entrepreneurs often have a culture of appreciation (and opportunity) as their lives are built on ideas and innovation, they work to convince people what could be, not what is. Let us live in the future they say.   

This holiday, pause to remember the entrepreneurs behind the amazing products you have, all those gadgets used to catch the latest info, all the technology that lets you communicate with family and friends across the globe, all that medicine that keeps grandma going, or the natural pest control that keeps pest out of your home. Everywhere you look the entrepreneurs made your life easier and better.  But we need to remember that no one achieves success alone, so we are appreciative of all the people who help us in our journey: family, friends, employees, customers, investors, vendors, suppliers and many more. Thus we stand on the shoulders of others who came before us, and who are with us, as we depend on many helping hands.  

We need Thanksgiving to remind us of the bounty we’ve been blessed to receive. Many thanks, and much appreciation, to everyone actively involved in our robust entrepreneur ecosystem.

Have a blessed Thanksgiving with family and loved ones, and please take time to remember our entrepreneurs, our values, freedoms, and the many reasons we can all find to give thanks.  

Thank you!!

Kari W Block

Founder & CEO

 

 

SCIENCE AND NATURE

I have all these random thoughts constantly revolving around in my head and it’s often a challenge to collect them and present cohesive ideas. So when I started to think about science and nature and what they mean to me, this quote summed it up perfectly:

The goal of science and engineering is to build better mousetraps. The goal of nature is to build better mice.

As a CEO who thinks like a farmer, and is 'building a business from nature,’ I observe what nature does so well and I use science to validate my inventions. Everything I do comes from the earth, including my company name EarthKind®. Before I started EarthKind® I was a farmers wife and a master gardener, working with the soil, and getting my hands dirty. Healthy organic soil is what grows things, keeps plants healthy and it naturally repels pests—pretty ironic seeing as I’m in the pest control business!

The earth (soil) needs love and respect. I work with her, I listen to her, I honor her and I put my feet on her each day. It’s that connection to the earth that keeps me grounded and true to my mission. I think of my products as a 'plant force'; my people as a 'human force' and our mission as our 'life force.' That's how our tag line of “Preserve the good. Prevent the rest” came about. It’s important to me as I build a business with purpose that all these forces are combined to use business as a force for good.

As a result, I challenge the status quo of everything that’s not in harmony with what I see is possible. I see everything through the eyes of biology, ecology, psychology, and all the natural laws. I refer to myself as a “scientific-creative” as I combine creative with logic when I’m inventing products or launching business initiatives.

Now, I know many of you may think this sounds a little out there, especially if your background is pure business. Just think about the most successful entrepreneurs—they are people with big and bold ideas, innovators that push the limits.

Inventing products is just the beginning. To disrupt an industry requires much more. I create and lead change by reinventing policy, industry, business, and anything that stands in the way of a kinder earth for all families. The pest control industry is based on fear and as such causes disharmony. I’m working to restore harmony and bring things back in balance.

One of my favorite quotes reminds me that working with Nature is the right way, because:

Nature is relentless and unchangeable, and it is indifferent as to whether its hidden reasons and actions are understandable to man or not.

 Galileo Galilei  

LIVING AND WORKING IN HARMONY

Living in harmony means different things to different people, to me—an entrepreneur with a vision to create health and harmony in homes everywhere through business—it’s very much like being a choir conductor. 

If you know the song “All God’s critters got a place in the choir,” you’ll understand what I mean! As a company grows, so does the need to keep everyone aligned. With more people, it’s harder to stay in tune and maintain the tempo.

Here are some things I’ve learned along the way that have helped me create and maintain a more harmonious environment in my business and my relationships with everyone from employees, to national retail buyers, to government policy workers. 

 

1. Recognize what everyone has in common:

We all strive to belong to something, and stand for something. If we seek to honor this common thread, we can begin every relationship with an open mind that facilitates collective and inventive ways to reach mutual goals without a loss of individual control or mutual acceptance.

2. Work towards the greatest good for the greatest number of people:

Think about what goal you want to achieve, what dream you want to realize, what destiny you want to pursue, and know that there is enough abundance to go around, despite what others might believe. You can never be contemplative enough if you have big goals.? Every decision is a chance to make a positive impact somewhere: Thinking on purpose, ask yourself, what's the greatest possible good that can come from this decision?

3. Recognize the potential in everyone:

See each person as a gift/asset to humanity. Everyone has the capacity to add something of value to the world. When you begin to focus on finding potential in others, it will become easier to cultivate leadership within the company culture. The trick is selectively honing this skill as your level of experience and influence grows. A business can create powerful positive change when its leaders replicate this skill in everyone. No one achieves anything great alone. 

4. Recognize the unique contribution that each person can make:

This is so close to my heart. From day one I’ve tried to honor and appreciate everyone for what they can bring and achieve as part of our team, even if I don't tell them enough. We consistently maintain a handicapped workforce (I call them handicapable) and we've built our factory around their contributions. They never cease to amaze me, and are a joy to work with because they say what they think, no filter. They exemplify authenticity and do not judge each other’s capabilities. 

5. Remember that we are all on this planet together:

We stand to gain more by realizing that we are all connected to one another through the earth we share and the air we breathe. Imagine if we'd each do our part to leave the world a little better than we found it? It has been said by Native Americans, “no tree has branches so foolish as to fight amongst themselves.” Working together is not always easy, and if we each contribute before being asked, a natural groundswell will occur with others following that lead. 

 

Our company mission to preserve health and harmony in the home is at the core of everything we do and in every aspect of our business. By seeking harmony in my life, I’ve found that the impossible becomes possible. 

A word of caution though! This level of empowerment isn't for everyone. It takes courage and perseverance as people come and go in your life to support you. 

 

What do you do to seek harmony in your life? I'd love to hear!