Updated: Jan 16
By Kevin Buck, Emergent Success Founder and Psychology Advisor for ipvive:
In the not so distant past, when the mechanistic model was dominant, human employees were asked to show up to work as machine like. They were asked to check their feelings at the door to efficiently become the interchangeable cog in the manufacturing wheel. They had a job – nothing more and nothing less. It was a transactional relationship between the employer and employee. You do the job and we pay you – simple transaction.
Then it all changed. Humans began to want more. They wanted to evolve, become more conscious and get more in touch with their feelings. This was a natural evolutionary development that was good for humans and challenging for business. The job/transaction model was no longer good enough. Since the majority of adult humans spent most of their waking hours working, they wanted more than money.
The resulting dissatisfaction created turnover. The life-long employee was becoming an anomaly. Then someone calculated that the replacement cost of an executive could be 1-2x their annual salary. Once the shift was monetized, there was a market for employee retention. Gallup came along and surveyed millions of employees and discovered that humans were no longer plug and play components. They had feelings and those feeling ranged from Actively engaged to Actively disengaged.
If you want Actively engaged employees who are passionate about the work they do and the company they work for, then you need to engage their feelings. There is no passion without feelings. So, not only did we ask folks to stop checking their feelings at the door, we started to assess how well engaged they were. It has now evolved to Emotional Intelligence being a foundational competence for good leadership and part of our corporate lexicon. And this was not the only change.
The mechanistic model of the past imagined that humans were interchangeable like pieces of a machine. Then in the late 1950’s systems theory began to change all of that. No matter the size of the system, instead of a machine, scientists recognized everything is connected. Whether we are talking about subatomic particles or ecosystems, it is all about the relationships. If we want integration and efficiency, then we need to pay attention to how well humans are relating to one another. On a small scale, relationships define whether you have a good team and on a larger scale, whether you have a thriving culture.
So, in our lifetime (or at least in mine!), we have gone from treating humans as machine-like robots to understanding that full engagement of a human workforce requires us to better understand the emotions and relationships of employees. Ipvive is a technology that augments the understanding of the emotional DNA of each employee, and all the others they need to integrate within their ecosystem, to be the most efficient and engaged culture and workforce. It is a game changer.