A yearning for purpose paused;
HR is about connecting people, like dots on a train, boxcar hopping aimlessly until the train connects them
to some meaningful destination. Enter the modern workforce.
Amid our turbulent workforce landscape, I hear employees at all levels expressing burn out, dreaming of a
work-life balance that gives them a sense of higher purpose. Likewise, I listen to business leaders lament that
employees are disengaged, behaving disingenuously, and paired with the perception that there is a universal
talent pool in decline as their excuse for failing to achieve recruitment goals, which led to their own poor
hiring decisions. To wit, both sides believe that positive change just over their bleakly described horizons, is
out of reach and unattainable.
It is true that beyond the singular purpose of today’s business, be it a solopreneur or corporate conglomerate,
they both are experiencing a shift in culture and attitude from the experienced and inexperienced segments
of the modern workforce. Why wouldn’t they? I mean, we have five, soon to be six, generational relationships
crammed into our 21 st century work environment that business leaders were woefully unprepared to support
emotionally let alone embrace the opportunity to learn from one another.
Generationally speaking, I’m a Boomer, and over the recent years, I’ve interviewed hundreds of employees
from entry level skill sets to C-Suite executives within a variety of industries from all five generational gaps
and the top three things they all have in common are, 1) a demand for their work environments to equally
place value and focus on people, 2) a focus on the planet and green initiatives, and 3) to work for leaders of
organizations who understand that everything is connected irrespective of profits. Has the work world really
gone to Hell in a train’s boxcar handbasket? How do we begin transformational change that supports both
sides of the workforce isle fostering and promoting growth paving the way to focus on people, performance,
and the planet?
In my earlier years as a fledgling HR Practitioner, I was once referred to as HR’s own Pollyanna, and wasn’t’
that cute, and we all had a great laugh. However, even in today’s crazy, kooky work world, I say, who’s
laughing now? It is not so Pollyannic to believe that transformation can be achieved through the integration
and deployment of soft skills like encouraging managers of all ages to be more genuine and authentic in
their communication activities, and by helping employees of all ages (union and nonunion) to connect with
their own emotional intelligence as well as encouraging businesses to provide real-world skill-building
events that are realistic and meaningful in order to achieve performance improvement and desired career
advancement throughout an employee’s life cycle.
How do I know it’s not Pollyannic? Because I’ve affected this kind of change in hundreds of businesses
within a variety of industries, it’s a thing of beauty and delicious to witness. As humans, we give meaning to the things we care about. Essentially, values are what truly motivate us. Understanding the motivational values that drive your workforce and aligning them with corporate culture and purpose, in an authentic and genuine manner, will make a dramatically meaningful difference the results of which will yield higher employee performance/engagement, and who knows, maybe less carbon footprints upon the planet, too? That would be awesome.
HR dots connected. Boom. Drop Mic…and scene.
Get in touch with ion8 today to get started on crafting the HR and strategy your business needs to propel your business forward.