Suffering in the Workplaceby Tami Anderson on 09/19/12
Suffering is in the workplace. It is everywhere. And the effects are damaging. What kind of pain is causing suffering? Although there are physical challenges in many jobs, it is the emotional pain causing suffering. People's feelings are hurt on a regular basis. One hurt does not heal before the next one attaches itself. We are whole beings so cannot separate our hearts between professional and personal existances. What hurts in one place continues and exemplifies itself everywhere. To explain a very complex condition in simple terms here is an example. When a little boy is told he is not good enough, that belief carries over to his work life as an adult. When a peer or supervisor correct a mistake, he reacts internally. The outward appearance may look like mad, sad, dispondent or defensive. In reality, he is hurt and feels like he is not good enough. He is suffering with an unhealed emotion.
All of us have unhealed emotions affecting our Life at work. It is easy to recognize the people who do not like their job. Gossip in the workplace has a strong, negative effect on everyone. The most common complaints are: "I am not appreciated." "The lady training me only tells me what I am doing wrong." "My boss never even says Thank you." Ouch! What effect does this have? It creates suffering in employees who feel unhappy, stressed, despondent, lonely, fearful, disassociated, depressed, anxious, worthless. The incidents of heart, stroke, cancer and addiction dis-eases increase annually. This affects every employee - including managers, business owners and supervisors - working in the organization.
If I cannot convince you change is crucial because people are suffering, let's look at the affect this suffering has in economic terms. All organizations exist based on two primary factors: a) financial stability and b) to provide a product and/or service.
Here is what is happening: high staff turnover, short term and long term disability claims rising, staff regularly calling in sick or not showing up, poor efficiency and effectiveness in performance, service and product output (both productivity and integrity). To replace an employee it costs $15,000 - $100,000 per person, depending on the length of service and level of position. The costs for insurance increase exponentially. Then, to realize the incalculable loss in productivity, service, sales and so on from unhappy staff, the accumulated cost is staggering.
It is time for the next r-Evolution in HR. Businesses are not expected to heal individual brokenness but until now there has been a duality of values. This causes more damage to the souls of their employees, negatively affecting the organization's own bottom line.
It is time to have a holistic approach to corporate thinking . It is not just business any more! It's personal with your personnel - the individual to the collective. The people are at the very core, making the organization run. Companies have their own identity. If the structure, policies and procedures are only geared toward efficient productivity, then it could be creating suffering. If an organization or the people experience any of the suffering symptoms, then it is time to change! It is time to relook at the culture, attitude, behaviours, feelings and thoughts working behind the scene of the organization. The time is now to create work spaces that naturally transform into productive, happy, energetic and positive environments.