Our Wildest Dreams Summary
by Joline Godfrey

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Our Wildest Dreams

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

Joline Godfrey discusses the special qualities that women bring to the business world—such as a “head, heart, and hands policy” and a feeling for connectedness. She gives voice to many successful women entrepreneurs and shows how their vision provides an exciting new approach which could change the way of doing business in America.

She begins by presenting the “new Right Stuff.” The entrepreneurial spirit has been too long suffused with the macho notion of the Right Stuff: the man who survived, made it to the top by being the best, and who looked down on those left behind.

But successful women entrepreneurs envision a different sort of success, one based on a different type of Right Stuff. They want companies that combine good work with good lives. And they evince qualities such as 1)Ease in relationships and a drive for connection 2)A head, heart, and hands policy 3)Appreciation of complexity and process 4)Desire for balance and self-awareness 5)A sense of artistry, imagination, and playfulness 6)An integrated vision of business and ethics 7)Courage.

Godfrey describes new rules that underlie a business that is “essentially human” and that meets the needs of customers, employees, investors, community, family, and self. She insists that these new rules are not female rules in contrast to male rules, but are simply human rules. For example, an old rule was work, work, work. The new rule is work, live, love, learn. In the past a primary rule was to seek money alone, but the new rule combines seeking money AND seeking meaning. Another old rule is to grow fast, which contrasts to the new rule of growing naturally. And finally, the old rules often present a difficult choice: work OR family, whereas in Godfrey’s new rules the guideline is: work AND family.

In addition, Godfrey’s new approach to business redefines success. Success is not simply being on the FORTUNE 500 list or being cited in the FORBES list of wealthiest people in the United States. It is not based solely on keeping score and making measurements. Its measurement includes questions such as, Did I work from truth? Did I do as well as I could? Was I fair? and Did we help one another to grow?

At a time when books based on the Japanese art of war or the notions of Attila the Hun are winning attention in the business world, Joline Godfrey’s book offers a refreshing balance and a new, more female perspective on how business could be done.