Gepubliceerd opPosted on 1 January 2018
Fer de Jong Jongert

Individualism amongst people

Individualism is on it’s return in the world. Big ego’s, “Look at me” and “Do as I say!” are getting less and less the interest of people. Even while we still see (and will see) big ego’s at world stages, the longing and need for building great things together, attract people more.

People see that we simply need each other’s potential. You can not create great things alone anymore. The world has become our playground and is complex. It is not just about your street, village, city or country anymore. We need others to be able to understand markets and needs, to connect best to target audiences and new locations. From “Ego” to “We Go” is not a wish, collaboration is crucial for success these days. And without self-awareness and personal ownership, collaboration does not work.

Status devaluates every day more. New stars are hardly arising. And when they do, they are vloging, bloging, sharing, connecting, inspiring and telling stories to others. Not Ego-driven but We Go-driven. That is what people want!

Individualism in organisations

In organisations individualism has a basic in Command and Control. An exercise of authority with an origin in military forces. Command and Control works only, when you operate in silos. Command and Control splits groups of people in those with authority and those without. We and them, leaders and followers, you and me. Individually.

A top-down directing system that has been introduced in the last century, to re-build our cities, houses, organisations and infrastructure after the destructive world wars. To create a better living and economy on a short notice. This has been successful, but is it these days?

Various researches show, that these days we want meaning, purpose and a better well-being at work. We want to be heard, seen and listened to. A recent research showed that 80% of people prefer to be personaly recognized above receiving a personal present. Read: “Do not give me a bonus, but please give me space, time and personal recognition for what I do, say and bring at work!”. Another research points out: When people do not bring at work their heart, they do not work hard. Purpose, meaning, the need to do good is everywhere.

What people want?

From my students at the university I learn; they want to work in a supporting environment. Where they can learn, bring creativity, helping hands and brain power. Students know a lot. Bring great new visions and have ideas.

All your co-workers are well educated these days, compared to the years after the wars. They have great ideas, know best how to improve their daily ways of working. They know what they are good at and what not. Instructing workforces is not a big need.

Our daily setting

We are working in an over-structured environment full of set boxes. Every box, whether it is a position, discipline, programme or new ways-of-working (Agile, LEAN etc.), it is all over-thought, pre-described and strictly monitored. Even with all good intentions, to create a better space to work, it all is a Command and Control implementation in disguise. Top-Down. With no real space for input from or discussion with the ones that need to use/work/do it. The space lies only in the, well-described, rules of the game. Another box.

Strategies are spread Top-Down. How many organisations ask all co-workers individually to make a personal strategy plan to improve the results of the organisation at any level without setting strict boundaries? Another box.

Whether an organisation is or is not driven by Command and Control, is best seen when items as leaders, managers and employees are often mentioned. A simple way to split groups of people in various silos (creating Ego). Either way, you are not a collective (We) but a group of individuals (Me).

My key questions over the last years?

Do we make use of the full personal potential of people in an organisation?
What is needed in this organised setting to be able to unleash this enormous potential that currently is not being used in organisations?
What will be the effect of unleashing this potential, when people have space to bring their true potential, are able to work with purpose, meaning and have fun whilst delivering best results?
With all the available brain and skill power of people, how can we stop that people work hard fighting the existing structured systems, silos and boxes and are rewarded by developing talents that they simply do not (want to!) have?
Not using 100% of your personal skills and best strenghts, to create the best for yourselves and the organisation creates frustration, depressions and a bad attitude. And in the end you deliver no extra business results when you constantly have to fight the system most of your time. Losing precious quality time and not bringing in any scores that matter. Your people feel and are dis-engaged. Neither a supporting attitude for nor a perfect image to your clients, new hirers and other external partners.

The dilemma: How can we really make a difference that resonates?

How can we work together, bring the best of ourselves in this existing structured environment? With each other, with a new mindset, we collaborate, we take responsibility, we are aware of ourselves and the others! We work as a collective!

How can we create a mindset from Ego to We Go?

Better Together

Better Together is creating trust and safety to openly talk about and actively bringing in your personal strengths in your team. Not only your own strenghts but also your teammates’. A free trade of personal strengths (not necessarily position related), to deliver best personal and organisational results.

You are supposed to make maximal use of your strenghts and of other’s. While they make use of yours. People are not seen as a position anymore but as co-workers all equal with potentials, talents and gifts. They can work in various positions in the organisation. This mindset creates a flexible workforce by itself.

Better Together delivers another mindset, that expects you to bring in your best and your teammates’. The organisation creates space to bring out your best! delivering better results, guaranteed.

Better Together, from hard to heart. Another mindset in a structured organisation.


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