Is "Passion" Optional?

Can we afford to leave the (expensive & resource consuming) "passion" out of Tom's
"systems + passion = excellence"
? It has logical appeal and God knows enough people make a living out of it ... but time and again, as we strive to transform our businesses, managers seem to get cold feet about spending money on the "soft stuff."

Is it a conditioned management "reflex" born out of a bygone age, or machismo, or ignorance or ...? OR is there really no truth in the assertion that in order to achieve excellence, you must get people to want to strive for a common aspiration?

What is the evidence? Which organisations can we point to and say they achieved excellence because they created a cause ... not a business?

Please help me out here! Can we get this beyond a faith thing?