“ Good humour is a tonic for mind and body. It is the best antidote for anxiety and depression. It is a business asset. It attracts and keep friends. It lightens human burdens. It is the direct route to serenity and contentment. ”

- Greenville Kleisser

Our ANGRY Workforce

Written by  , Published in Blogs & Articles

It does not seem to be business as usual in many South African companies. As more corporates strike to shed jobs, we have hit a 10 year high with retrenchments.

While Economists and Organisational Design Experts make up good business cases for accelerated workforce transition, people centric citizens are witnessing our country’s workforce, well… suffer. In some cases, amidst soaring profits, healthy balance sheets, large incentive pay-outs and even sponsorship's.

The question is what follows Workforce Transition?

Workforce transition is mostly experienced as nasty and agonizing by those affected. I bump into worried, stressed and guilty Managers in every workplace in transition. Company corridors are filled with bewilderment and a search for clarity. Great people are acting angry, lazy, crazy or hazy when faced with the reality of becoming disposers or disposables.

And then, off course, there are the tales about “rising from the ashes” and “good endings” that nobody actually believes.

Facts are a great part of our country’s workforce is in crisis mode. Both thoseejected and the survivors.
The disposables are soon out of sight, facing the hat-in-hand existential challenge to find new meaning. The survivors - those who get to stay and play harder with less for longer - have serious looming challenges like feeling and dealing with hectic emotions in the workplace: insecurity, pressure, survivors guilt, betrayal, distrust, hostility and finally…………acceptance.

Interestingly, the Survivor Syndrome "vibes" out in direct correlation to workplace productivity:
Imagine a workplace where people are obsessed with self-preservation, their backs against the wall and their backsides to their clients.

Imagine fixations around job security replacing visions of sustainability...risk aversion replacing innovation. Imagine not saying what you mean, and not meaning what you say. The gaping abyss between those who make the decisions and those who receive them…

Fact is the culture of an unsafe workforce is filled with agenda’s, power plays, bickering, manipulation and demotivation. Doing more with less is hardly really on the agenda.

Transition is a cold fact of life and there will be pain. The challenge for Leadership is to help people deal with pain in a way that prevents them from going into suffering.

Workforce Transition at its best is lead by Transformational Leadership. If this was an unfortunate oversight, it can be managed more humanely, if supported by true Transformational Leaders.

Transformational Leaders are different and they do things differently – they are distinguished by the ability to be honest, direct, inspirational, empowering and innovative, regardless of life’s adversities.

We all know such people….they have mastered their authenticity, they are trustworthy, they act with integrity, they communicate constructively, they are not fearful, not even of their own feelings, they accept the realities of life, they are always hungry to learn, they have clear purpose and they are more concerned with giving than having.

Here’s to the rise of such leadership for and in South Africa!

Last modified onWednesday, 06 May 2015 13:49