At EMPAUA, our overall goal is to tackle the single biggest problem of the global economy: Disengagement at work.
According to a recent Gallup – Poll, 7 out of 10 people in the U.S alone are disengaged in their working life. Within the millennial generation, the numbers are even higher: 9 out of 10 people dislike their job, while some individuals also actively work against the purpose of the organisation they call their employer.
What is causing this trend? Is it the change propelled by digitisation, impacting the content of the job description? Is it, because you receive emails outside of working hours? Is it travelling from country to country in a globalised world?
We believe it all begins with the perspective of how employees are looked upon. Luckily, a few organisations are tackling this issue by rethinking the way employees are perceived.
Risk vs Asset
The Industrial Revolution is responsible for the most significant paradigm shift within the global economy of 1900. Production, manufacturing and export of goods were at its peak. Company owners were partaking in the steep increase of value generation while “low-wage”-workers were not able to provide for their families. The gap between boss and employee was widening to an extent unknown to the world now.
As a consequence of this unjust value distribution, (understandably) workers were not inclined to primarily think about the prosperity of their employer or the organisation they worked for, but how to make ends meet and pay rent. Within this fight for survival, actions were taken to pursue their interests by illegally abstracting value from the organisation (e.g. stealing goods and eventually trading them on the black market). Employers were driven by protectionism of property and mistrust towards their workers, leading to a substantial tension field between the two parties.
Unfortunately, we have still not been able to transcend this unbalanced distribution of collectively generated wealth. Too many organisations all over the world summon immense profits on the backs of “low-wage”-workers, enticing employees to find alternative ways of making “their cut”. They are circling back to the comparison Risk vs Asset, a big part of disengagement at work roots in being looked upon and treated as imposing a threat to the wealth of the wealthy.
Luckily, there are companies out there that are rethinking the way employees are perceived. At EMPAUA, we look upon every member of the company as an irreplaceable asset that should be promoted the best way possible by the organisation. Everything we do is designed to stimulate personal and professional growth of each member, financed by the value we generate as a collective.
A great example to illustrate the mindset behind this is the frequently cited (at least on LinkedIn) conversation between a CEO and CFO about investing into their employees:
CEO: “We need to invest in our people!”
CFO: “What if we invest in them, and they leave?”
CEO: “What if we don’t, and they stay?”
The CFO, in this example, clearly sees employees as selfish individuals, that are looking to profit from the organisation to a maximum extent.
The CEO, on the contrary, understands that investing into these individuals promotes their value for the organisation and increases the level of engagement by manifesting that not all value generated by the collective ends up in the pockets of the few shareholders. The risk of employees leaving an organisation that lets them partake in the generated value is being decreased drastically.
Within EMPAUA, we strive to establish a framework for every member of our organisation to make crucial decisions daily while firmly trusting that the intentions behind the individual decisions are fully aligned with the purpose of our company. As a natural compensation for this trust, the organisation gains the full engagement of its employees.
The secret is building a close relationship between the individual and the collective: “True love exists in business. It’s when employee and employer are amazingly grateful to have each other. We should all have true love at work.” – Simon Sinek.
As in any love story, trust is the key to a healthy relationship, so let’s make more love stories in business happen!