The pressures of modern work life can sometimes cause you to reduce people to numbers. To reduce your customers, colleagues and stakeholders to faceless entities. You may forget that actually everyone is a person.
The pressure to get financial results can sometimes lead to everything and everyone being anonymised — reduced to their impact on the bottom line. This is undeniably a feature of our current socioeconomic construct. And, no one is immune from being drawn in.
We are all part of a complex economic system of exchange with millions of participants, where the risk of anonymity is high. With so many participants, we can forget that our interactions are happening with real people. It is then all the more important that we pay attention to what gets lost along the way.
- Are you forgetting that those who report to you have feelings and their own personal difficulties?
- Are you forgetting that the customers you serve are real human beings?
- What is the ‘higher’ purpose of what you do beyond its impact on the bottom line?
Indeed the pressures are systemic and it is easy to blame our environment for making us behave in a certain way. Yet we have to each one of us take personal responsibility for our actions. If we keep passing the buck around, nothing changes. Even if you relate to just one person in your high pressure work environment in a more human way, you would have already done something profound.
The starting point is becoming aware of how you relate to and treat those involved in your work environment — colleagues and competitors, customers and suppliers. The more you recognise that you are dealing with real people with real feelings, the more humanity you can naturally bring to your work. And, what’s more, perhaps this will lead to stronger human relationships, better ideas and more collaboration. Things that not only improve everyones emotional wellbeing, but perhaps even the bottom line. It all begins with remembering that everyone is a person.
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