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We’ve all heard about work/life balance, but has anybody really been able to demonstrate what this balance is like?

Work is supposed to be part of life, not the other way around. Although, for too many, it is.

Nevertheless, creating this false dichotomy, or the illusion of a possible balance, is simply a good money-making scheme.

Marcus Buckingham is right when he states that “work isn’t designed to help us present the best of ourselves” and that’s why most working people say “Thank God it’s Friday.”

Marcus is also right regarding the many lies about work, specifically when he states that “Your organization’s culture is the key to its success. Strategic planning is essential. People’s competencies should be measured and their weaknesses shored up. People crave feedback. These may sound like basic truths of our work lives today. But actually, they’re lies.

However, Marcus is only focusing on one part of the equation.

The reason that 9 out of 10 people are miserable at work is not because they are not “fit enough,” but because their organizational structure was not designed to make them happy, regardless of their fitness.

Yes, the pervasive bureaucratic structure (restrictive & tropophobic) was deliberately designed for “command and control,” i.e., people were paid to obey period! As a consequence, that made most people miserable, especially smart people. But, because it worked extremely well for about 200 years, nobody dared to complain, until the 1950s, when organizations like IBM began to realize that the bureaucratic structure was no longer capable of delivering within an increasingly turbulent and uncertain global environment.

In summary, it doesn’t matter how good or “fit” your employees may be at work, or how clearly you have identified and cultivated their strengths, or having good team leaders or bosses.

We all have been indoctrinated long enough with the infamous idea of the survival of the “fittest.” However, survival of the fittest is NOT about how fit an individual may be.

Survival of the fittest is a function of the fitness of the directive correlation between the individual and its environment.

In other words, there is no such thing as work/life balance. Work is part of life and most work organizational structures were not designed to make employees happy. So, if employees are miserable at work, their life will also be miserable.

Hence, the importance of having an enhancive, and tropophilic organizational structure at work, designed not only to make employees happy, but also to allow any organization to achieve the best possible correlation with its environment.

Therefore, the real question is: How can your organization become enhancive and tropophilic so it can develop the best possible correlation with its environment?

The answer is straight forward: By becoming Tropophilic.

To the health of your optimal directive correlation with your environment!

JC Wandemberg Ph.D.

President & Founder

Sustainable Systems International

About the author: Dr. Wandemberg is an international consultant, professor, and analyst of economic, environmental, social, managerial, marketing, and political issues. For the past 30 years Dr. Wandemberg has collaborated with corporations, communities, and organizations to integrate sustainability through self-transformation processes and Open Systems Design Principles, thus, catalyzing a Culture of Trust, Transparency, and Integrity.

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