I have been interested in the concept of work since my childhood.
My interest first appeared as fear, then as sadness.
I learned from the sadness and it became a source of growth.
Now, my relationship to work is curiosity - or rather "wonder".
I wonder: How can we be happy at work together?
The wonder developed through my experience as a coach.
What I discovered as a Career Coach
After working for more than 12 years in corporate organizations, I chose coaching as my new career path and decided "career coaching" as my niche to be the support I needed back then when I felt lost.
As I coached people, I observed 3 main stages:
- 1The individual develops awareness of their needs and desires
- 2The individual defines the work which will be the framework to fulfil these needs and desires
- 3The individual moves towards this work, takes action and stays in the course until they make the change
The individual experiences big a-ha moments in the first stage. They develop love and compassion towards themselves. They start believing in themselves and in the possibilities.
In the second stage, they start struggling. They don't believe that a work or an organization exist where they can fulfil their needs and realize their desires.
The ones, who persevere and make career changes start their work with acceptance that the work will never be fully how they would like it to be.
The ones, who do not believe these organizations and work exist, look for entrepreneurial ideas to start their own business.
If the individual desires to start their own business, that is wonderful. But if they choose this only because they don't believe in the existence of these organizations, the journey might be troublesome as this was not what they really wanted.
We need to challenge this belief.
We are Unfulfilled Together
Only 14 % of employees are happy at work. (Source: Gallup)
73% think actively quitting their jobs. (Source: JobList)
40% say they'd likely leave their jobs in the next 3-6 months. (Source: McKinsey)
If so many people are unhappy in their corporate jobs, why don't we talk about how an organization would look like where we are happy at work together and how to co-create it?
It might be difficult to believe in the possibility of happiness at work together in an organization but we can start with choosing not to believe otherwise. We can get curious. We can think together.
Only 14% is engaged at work.
How can we be happy at work together?
When an individual leaves the company because of unfulfillment, the company loses.
It loses the impact that this individual made alone.
It loses an important part of the work systems and relationships to which the individual belonged to which was an effective gestalt with the individual.
It loses the betterment possibility that the unfulfilment of this individual would reveal. With this person absent, the conditions that influenced the unfulfillment of the individual stay unchanged and possibly give birth to more unfulfillment.
The individual who leaves has displayed a self-protective behavior but loses the relationships, friendships, the feeling of confidence doing work she is good at and she knows well and maybe the opportunity to transcend conditions and grow beyond limitations, and lift others and the conditions with her growth.
There is great loss for the individual and for the organization.
Instead of losses, we can win through the unfulfilment.
Steps to turn Unfulfilment into Win
First step in turning unfulfilment into a win is changing the perception about unfulfilment.
It is not something we avoid experiencing but an opportunity to see what we have missed seeing.
And every stakeholder of the corporate workspace can make a change so that unfulfiillment can turn into a win..
The organization can include emotions as part of their culture, underlying that every emotion is valuable, every emotion belongs to work environment and is part of the conversation. The organization needs to openly communicate this aspect of the culture and live this culture.
Emotions need to become part of meetings. "How are you?" shall not any more be a question for small talk but a curious inquiry, whose answered will be deeply listened.
Every individual can empathetically receive the communication of another, regardless of it being in words or in energy. Every individual listens the other as they are the most important people in that moment and gifts their full attention.
In addition to the behaviours they display as people of the organization, they remember that they are the most important support to their team members and they are present for them with this consciousness.
The leaders are there to coach the team members. They inquire what the team member wants and needs and how they want to be supported to fulfiil these wants and needs.
The Unfulfilled Individual
The unfulfilled individual shall communicate his emotions and thoughts without blame and judgment and make clear requests. He knows that his expression underlines the existing emotional safety and encourages others to express themselves too.
Why does happiness at work together in organizations matter?
Work is not only an activity we engage in to earn money, but also bringing our unique creativity to the service of the world.
Organizations are not only companies who sell products and services to earn money but living organisms that serve the world and humanity. The direct way they serve is through their products. Indirectly, they s bringing people together around common values and creating a container through systems so that the individuals and collective consciousness can develop. This development benefits the families and acquaintances of the individuals and the future generations. Therefore, organizations are much more than a producer and happiness at work together in a corporate environment is for the benefit of all.