Work Isn't Working

It’s All About Letting Go of Control

The wave of recorded outbursts from CEOs is often “about control,” says Jacob. “That’s definitely how it felt in my instance. It felt like she just wanted to be able to watch over everyone and just be in control of us. It feels like something about the freedom and flexibility that remote work gives employees somehow makes the people in charge feel threatened.”

CEOs are throwing tantrums about productivity and return-to-office plans, Fast Company

This is a phenomenal quote that communicates so much about the changes occurring in our world today.

Why its poignant is because within the context of vertical (psychological) development, there is a midpoint shift from conventional thinking to postconventional thinking that focuses on control. In effect, the peak of conventional thinking focuses on trying to control everything (including people) as much as possible, so as to create a sense of order in your world. With the shift to postconventional thinking though, there is realization that you can’t control people, so there is a letting go of control which empowers people by giving them the space to be who they are, thus releasing their potential in the process.

For this to work in an organization setting though, it requires that the individuals who are freed from control need to take responsibility and control of themselves and their work. Right now there seems to be a noticeable desire for this by workers but a hesitancy by employers to allow it. In other words, employers still don’t trust their employees to be responsible.

Yet if we want to evolve and be prepared for The Future of Work, everyone needs to let go, mature, and evolve, taking responsibility for just themselves, rather than trying to control others. Until this occurs, work will continue to not work for people as a whole.

Some CEOs are thinking, “‘But they used to do this,’” says Lewi. “‘They used to come in five days a week. Why are they complaining about three?’ I try to help them see that the world has changed.

“COVID changed everything,” he says. “We all looked in the mirror and rethought what our purpose and priorities are and, Why are we doing this? That’s reset on the workforce.”

By Nollind Whachell

Questing to translate Joseph Campbell's Hero’s Journey into The Player’s Handbook for the roleplaying game called Life, thus making vertical (leadership) development an accessible, epic framework for everyone.

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