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At Happy Work Environment, my team and I created a mission of Bringing humanity back into business.
When we created this slogan, as Chief Executive I began to think about the deeper meaning of humanity and what it has to do with the business or workplace.
The dictionary defines humanity as: Human beings collectively; and the quality of being humane; benevolence. (Oxford Languages)
I have also linked this definition to what Albert Einstein once expressed.
"A human being is a part of the whole called by us; Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our desires and affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."
Now I understand what humanity means to me. It also brought these questions of bringing humanity back into business.
Is humanity lacking in the workplace? Was it there before industrialism?
And if it needs to come back, then why?
I wasn’t aware of the meaning of humanity when I was employed in a large corporation, but in retrospect, I felt that work provided a living, but not necessarily fulfillment. I don’t entirely blame the organization, but I feel that mental and physical wellbeing could have been addressed holistically rather than quick fixes or ticking quota boxes.
Before I set myself on a challenging tour of bringing humanity back into business – I started by looking much closer to home, i.e., myself as a CEO, Are there any traits of humanity within me?
Am I kind to another human being with whom I interact?
Am I kind to myself so I can be kind to others?
Am I creating a safe space for colleagues to have a dialogue without fear of feeling judged, misunderstood or repercussions?
Am I actively listening and putting effort to understand?
Do I treat them with the same respect as I prefer to be treated?
These are questions that I often remind myself to keep my humanity in balance and not to lose connection with myself and others.
To answer these questions, I believe that it takes one to dive deeper into some soul searching. From experience when I started my transformation journey a while back, it felt challenging to face my truth. The process of peeling off the masks and false pretensions was personally painful. Now I see clearly after the dust has settled.
Through the process, the underlying work that happened created a firm foundation by knowing my values and guiding principles. Now I operate from a place of certainty and empowerment instead of uncertainty and fear. For which I feel much better as a human - Happier and at peace. The result of connecting to my humanity helped me see the humanity in my colleagues.
I invite you to imagine how a workplace would look like when every single person is connected to their humanity.