The role of the steward in sustainability
Stewards delight the stakeholders.
In a business the customer and the employee are stakeholders. These stakeholders derive a benefit from the business, participate in the business and have a say in the business. The stakeholder operates out of self interest and participates in a small way in the business.
Above the stakeholder is the steward. The steward is responsible for the whole business, they operate for the good of the business rather than out of self interest. The steward is like a loving parent in that they will protect, feed and guide the business so that all the stakeholders benefit from a healthy happy and abundant business.
In the relationship between bees and the beekeeper it may be considered that the bees are the stakeholders and the beekeeper is the steward. If a beehive has happy healthy bees the beehive will be abundant with honey. The beekeeper as steward is focussed upon the needs of the bees so they remain healthy, happy and abundant.
The beekeeper has three roles as steward: protection, guide and feeder. In protection the beekeeper protects the beehive from disease, weather, humans, vermin and poison. As a guide the beekeeper may intervene in the activities of the beehive to assist the bees, for instance if there is problems in the egg laying of the queen bee. As feeder the beekeeper provides access to resources of food and water for the bees.
The focus of the beekeeper as steward is on the well being of the bees in their care. The steward as beekeeper will know their bees, see from their point of view, act in ways to delight rather than harm their bees. The focus is bees first steward second. Bran the Blessed amongst the Celtic peoples said: “let them who be chief be a bridge to their people”. The steward is a bridge to their bees. The bees see the steward as friend rather than enemy, one of them.
One may say of a beehive that it is an energy system, for which the steward seeks to be healthy, happy and abundant; that the beehive has processes which the steward assists for the best possible benefit to the beehive; and the stakeholders the bees who participate in the processes which the steward seeks to delight.
Delight is a wonderful word. Delighted bees make lots of honey. Delighted readers follow blogs. Delighted customers pay lots of money. Gardens that delight birds, butterflies and bees become an animal paradise. Delight is part of a creative process, and the steward delights in all they do.