Filed under: Business, Change, Goals, Innovation, Leadership, Personal Discovery, Society, Sustainability, Travel, Uncategorized | Tags: AIESEC, alumni, exchange, internship
It’s been a long time since it was called a time to move on for me. Since then, I have grown up a lot and I must accept that it was hard to learn to get by without you but I have done so while keeping you in my heart. I didn’t want to be like those creepy ex-boyfriends that show up uninvited.
Every time someone talks to me about becoming an alumnus, a dinosaur, head for the future, going into the life long connection or however you want to call it nowadays I tell them exactly the same thing, and AIESEC, the problem is that you get so deep into our hearts and go so much into the core of who we become, that letting go is initially a pretty hard thing to do; Accepting that it is someone else’s turn to learn and experience the amazing lessons and friends you gave me was a hard task initially and it required me to make a clean cut, a hard cut. So I wasn’t in touch for a while. I needed to catch up with myself without you.
And as your acronyms changed; Careers progress, people move countries, continents and new lessons are learnt; Life continues and one moves on, unavoidably. It seems that all that time I spent with you passed in a heartbeat and it seems that life is going by even faster than that, if my head could comprehend.
It is only after a couple of glasses of wine and in the company of those who shared you with me that I dare to say things like “Years later and I haven’t found anyone that understands me as well as my AIESEC friends”, because it is once or twice a year that every alumnus, dinosaur, headed for the future or life long connected accepts they are nostalgic. It doesn’t matter really how many years we spent with you we all get it here and there. If there is no wine confession, there will be a cryptic Facebook post.
And you were so good to us AIESEC… Many of us are getting ahead in many ways. The business skills that completed my academic education… You made it happen. May we be successful artists, technologists, scientists or business people, entrepreneurs, activists or politicians, we are conscious citizens in this world thankful to that, which made us who we are today: YOU.
There are few magical moments like having a conversation with a truly inspiring person, a real change agent in the middle of a conference on any imaginable topic only to discover they are too an AIESECer.
And then, the question that I really want to ask you pops in our heads… What is the job of an alumnus? Here is the advice I gave to some soon to be alumni:
- Join an alumni association.
- Give advice when you are asked for it.
- Act as a mentor of current members that want to learn something from you
- Chair a conference, a workshop or a local planning weekend when you are asked to.
- Get a trainee.
- Pass on your piece of history to those that can use it.
- Let AIESEC know you are there when it needs you.
- Remember ONE roll call and keep an AIESEC T-shirt; you will need it once.
- If honoured with the invitation, become a member of a BoA or an auditor.
- Show in small and meaningful ways that you will always be an AIESECer.
AIESEC, you have changed so much too. It is hard to keep up with what happens with you in only a few years time but any alumnus can feel nothing but pride when as I went back to you this weekend I discovered
- You do twice as many exchanges in my country as you did (2000!).
- You are present in twice as many universities as when I left you (1700!).
- You change the lives of three times as many students (86000!).
- You expanded to 30 new countries, making a total of 110
Who wouldn’t be proud to be part of a legacy like that?
We had an identity and now a way; We have done projects, leadership, issue based learning, programs and many more; There was 1996, 2005, 2010 and now 2015; there were green forms, pink forms, Match, Insight, Insight 2, myaiesec.net, the orange one and the blue one and many more will come, but there is one thing we all believed for the last 65 years and we will believe in forever: Exchange.
AIESEC, don’t let this letter be only the nostalgia of one that remembers the incredible rush of selling, matching and realising a management internship or the feeling of that full bucket of cold water spilling over my head…
For you are not only an organization for us, you are our life long cause. We are out here, millions of us. Find us.
I am back from an AIESEC National Conference in Germany. Truly inspired by AIESEC’s evolution and success, believing in the impact that AIESEC and its alumni can have together. In this post I think of every AIESEC member in the world, and the two alumni that with their role during my active time in AIESEC , starting in Mexico and until the culmination of my AIESEC International term, changed my life. I am forever thankful to Juan Manuel Ferron and Victor Loewenstein.
Filed under: Business, Human Resources, Recruitment, Society, Sustainability, Technology
What’s stopping equitable recruiting? If recruitment isn’t a level playing field, then the recruitment industry is at least partly to blame.
Across Europe and the rest of the world, institutional process has a definite and damaging impact on increasing executive diversity in the workforce. While a few voices work to erode that impact, we’ll still be facing discrimination — both conscious and unconscious — far into the foreseeable future.
While deliberate discrimination still happens far more than anyone admits, the battle against this barefaced prejudice is well advanced, although it may never be conclusively won. Unconscious bias, on the other hand, is far more subversive and wide reaching.
Even the most enlightened, diversity- and equality-conscious individuals and organisations are prey to it, and we all need a better understanding of it if we are to diminish its impact.
I have seen it where I least expected, a woman discriminating another woman based on gender. A mature manager discriminating another one based on age.
Unconscious bias often starts with the first thing a recruiter experience of a candidate — their CV. Recruiters, helplessly are conditioned through long practice to review CVs in a certain way and to look for certain characteristics and features in them. Every recruiter gets reprogrammed when starting in another firm and we are effectively given a blueprint for assessing a CV against a job specification.
When I review a CV, I run through a checklist of what I expect to see and deviations from that ‘normal’ are exclusions or extraordinary happy surprises. With most recruiters, non-standard CVs are quickly discarded in the first or second cut and rarely see the light of day.
Unfortunately, a large proportion of diverse candidates have an ‘irregular’ career progression and ‘irregular’ educational backgrounds and I was right there at that pile. This barrier, at the very first link in the chain, is arguably the most pernicious form of unconscious bias — and almost certainly the most widespread.
Even for recruiters who do understand the value of increasing capability in such non-standard career paths, a common challenge is coping with generalist vs specialist experience. Candidates with broad generalist experience across 20 roles, for example, are difficult for a ‘straight-line thinking’ recruiter to cope with. Assessing overall competency across those 20 roles is far harder than assessing someone with a narrow field of focus, with the result that we tend to favour the specialist, at the expense of people who might bring far wider experience and diversity of thought.
Again, a large proportion of diverse candidates bring that generalist background to the table, and again, they stand to lose out.
Those two elements of unconscious bias are compounded in recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) situations, where the large organisations delivering the recruitment (and the third parties they employ) tend to rely on rigid processes because of their economic models and service-level agreements that inadvertently promote the kinds of unconscious bias described above. I have seen poor RPOs in action and they tend to draw talent from a very narrow band, risking the organisation’s employee value proposition with unsophisticated social media campaigns.
The same can be said about some preferred supplier frameworks that appoint ‘the usual suspects’. When the usual suspects recruit on your behalf, you’ll tend to see the usual suspects in terms of candidates as well. It’s potentially a negative cycle in terms of diversity, since those kinds of recruiters and recruitment firms typically lack the desire, client relationships or leverage to promote diverse candidates.
The simple elements of unconscious bias barely scratch the surface of the issue. Add them to the current market pressures, and the result is a narrowing talent funnel, drawing candidates from a narrow, homogenous group of people. Understanding and overcoming unconscious bias is the next big barrier for diversity champions to break down for sustainable progress.
Filed under: Business, Change, Goals, Leadership, Personal Discovery, Society, Sustainability
Filed under: Business, Change, Human Resources, Innovation, Society, Sustainability
An organization that is truly diverse understands both the differences and similarities in people. Inside the organization you’ll see people from all different backgrounds working together and how a blend of employees adds intrinsic value to the business.
An increasingly global network, due largely to the expansion of technology, people from all different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives are all coming together to work in various capacities. Virtual connections have significantly increased the capabilities of doing business.
A more diverse business environment is rapidly developing through e-commerce, customer service practices, supplier relationships, outsourcing, partnerships and merges to name a few. As a result people are exposed to differences.
Businesses who embrace diversity go above meeting the confines defined by the law because they recognize the advantages from a both a business perspective and from a social one. They understand diversity shouldn’t divide employees, but instead unite.
There is a strong business case for diversity because companies who are genuinely diverse and invest resourcesin diversity initiatives have found lower turnover rates, and less discrimination lawsuits brought against them for sexual, race and age discrimination.
Additionally, what we all have heard before is: People who are diverse in culture, background, social class, gender, age or religion all bring something different of value to a company because of different life experiences and perspectives. Each employee helps shape a unique perception on work projects, processes and issues because of the differing backgrounds. These distinct viewpoints help businesses grow because of the innovative ideas inspired by diverse viewpoints.
From the social perspective, investing in diversity initiatives means equal practices for all people within their organization without exercising positive discrimination either is the right thing to do. Organizations that have become intensely aware of the value of diversity and from a humanistic point treat everyone equally and with the same respect.
A great case for this is made for example in the commented book, Womenomics while being careful once again of maintaining objectivity; As I mentioned before, exacerbating differences in a superficial way is too one sided. Only genuine appreciation for the unique value different people bring to business will drive growth and could in some cases become a key driver for organizations to operate in a true synergic and organic way, and this kind of adaptability is of utmost importance for those that want to be successful in the future.
What has been observed though is that companies which invest resources in diversity measures experience strong levels of growth. It has been proven customers like to see themselves represented within the companies they do business with, so in addition to the other business and social reasons for diversity, the market base is a high consideration and strong argument for diversity as well.
Also traditionally known… Diversity naturally drives innovation because the differences in ideas, incentives, knowledge base and experiences all promote new inspirations and initiatives. When people who work together think alike, this good to an extent, but it is the challenges which make a company grow.
Businesses which hold strong conviction and dedication to diversity illustrate they recognize the value and advantages that naturally follow diversity. The committed company celebrates the differences which exist amongst different backgrounds and realizes the worthy contributes people all bring to their organization beyond the obvious differences.
Filed under: Business, Human Resources, Society | Tags: economic recovery, employment, employment agencies, hiring, labor, Temp work
The recession supposedly ended two years ago. Corporate investments and proﬁ ts are up. But unemployment remains, and many companies that do have job openings are taking forever to ﬁll them.
So what gives? If companies are making and spending money, why aren’t they hiring?
Countless experts and major news outlets have weighed in on the issue, and no one can offer a simple answer. Rather, there appears to be a number of factors that have come together to create the perfect storm—a jobless recovery. There is no easy ﬁx, and the result of these combined factors could be a permanent shift in the US and western Europe hiring . . . and the way you recruit.
But we’re getting a little ahead of ourselves. First, let’s analyze why a jobless recovery is happening. While we can’t possibly explore every reason that may be holding employers back, there do appear to be a few root causes perpetuating this jobless recovery that are worth discussing.
Reason #1: Uncertainty in the economy
The ofﬁcial end of the recession was in the summer of 2009. But the so-called recovery has been so slow, it’s hard for many people, especially those still on the unemployment lines, to decipher the difference between now and the thick of the recession. Every time there seems to be a little spark in the economy, something (natural disasters, high gas prices, the debt ceiling debate, etc.) quickly snuffs it out.
Meanwhile, several governments are anything but employer-friendly. New laws and “crackdowns” on existing regulations are making hiring increasingly more expensive and complicated. And then there are the unknowns. For example, how will budget cuts in the wake of the debt ceiling deal affect businesses? What will happen to Greece? When will it be enough for Germany? What will the still-to-be-enacted provisions of the healthcare and social reforms do to insurance premiums?
All these factors have some economists talking about a “double-dip” recession. With that fear lurking, you can’t really blame employers for being cautious. After the devastating layoffs of the Great Recession, the last thing anyone wants to do is hire employees they will eventually have to lay off.
Reason #2: Companies learned to run lean
Another thing the recession taught employers is that they can do more with less. In previous recessions, employers were reluctant to make deep cuts to their workforces, so they kept more workers than they needed and productivity fell. Not so in this recession. Companies cut to the bone, and workers were just expected to work harder.
Now that companies know they can run lean, they are reluctant to add to their overhead, even as their business picks back up. Every candidate that is hired direct (perm) adds a huge payroll expense, plus they have to ﬁgure at least another 40 percent or more for employer taxes, workers’ compensation, unemployment, medical, dental, and vision insurance, etc. So a $100,000 direct-hire now costs an employer at least $140,000.
As an interesting fact I know that the return on investment (in payroll) of top employers worldwide is something around 1:12. Yes, for every Euro or Dollar they spend in a person they make sure to get 12 back… if that is not lean management I don’t know what it is.
And as technology advances by leaps and bounds, it’s getting even easier to get more done with fewer people. When companies ﬁnally reach the breaking point where they have no choice but to hire, they are only hiring as much as they absolutely have to, which brings us to the next issue.
Reason #3: The candidate dilemmas
Even when companies say they are hiring, it’s taking them forever to do so. Recruiters already know this and won’t be surprised to learn that it is taking hiring managers up to four times longer to fill open positions, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Why? Well, with all of the people looking for jobs, some hiring managers ﬁgure it’s a buyer’s market and are not willing to settle for anything less than the “perfect candidate.” Even when a recruiter brings a hiring manager a great prospect, it’s not uncommon for the hiring manager to ask for more candidates.
There is a different candidate dilemma in sectors like healthcare and technology, where there appears to be a true skills shortage. The Wall Street Journal stated that, although there are 4.68 unemployed workers for every job opening, companies say they can’t find the people with the right skills they need at wages they can afford in those areas.
The result: A ‘fundamental change’
The fact of the matter is that every company that stays in business will at some point have to hire again. But that doesn’t mean they have to commit to direct hires. Many instead are utilizing contractors to get the additional help they need while maintaining flexibility. As a result, contract stafﬁng has been one of the few bright spots in the recovery. In August, temporary/contract stafﬁ ng revenue rose 16 percent over last August, and temp-to-hire revenue rose 19 percent, according to Stafﬁng Industry Analysts.
That’s nothing new. If you’ve lived through previous recessions, you’ve probably seen for yourself how temporary/contract stafﬁng typically increases following a recession as companies test the hiring waters. But as Adecco CEO Tig Gilliam stated in a recent CNN interview, this time it’s different.
This recession was so tough, companies are very much more focused on ﬂ exibility going forward, and I think they are going to be looking for increasingly ﬂexible work environments in the economy as we get this recovery going.
Yes, I wish everyone good luck in planning their lives with more than a one year view of the future. Even more to my fellow staffers who suffer even more because of this than anyone else in the business.
This is no short-term ﬁx. Results of a recent study published in The Wall Street Journal show that 58% of employers expect to hire more part-time, temporary, or contract workers, not just over the next several months or year, but over the next five years.
A new workforce model
So what we are seeing is more of a permanent shift where companies are maintaining a core of direct employees and supporting that core with a larger outer ring of contractors. This new workforce model can help them navigate around the issues we’ve discussed by:
1. Allowing companies to remain lean because they can quickly bring in just the amount of help they need and just as quickly reduce their workforce when business slows.
2. Eliminating the fear of devastating layoffs because contractors know from the get-go that their assignments are for a speciﬁc period of time.
3. Limiting companies’ overheads because there are no employer payroll taxes, beneﬁ ts premiums, or administrative costs with contractors.
4. Allowing companies to “try-before-they-buy” because if they are not sure they have the “perfect candidate” or question a candidate’s skill set, they can engage them in a contract-to-direct arrangement.
The harsh reality
Business has always been challenging, but for many companies, it’s getting harder to make money than ever before. There are more government regulations, taxes, and more types of insurance. There are more attorneys waiting to pounce when a business makes a mistake. Technology has increased the pace of everything. Competition has increased. Margins have decreased, etc., etc.
Many of these challenges are not going away even when the economy improves. The harsh reality is that, even if the economy bounces back better than ever, direct job orders may never come back to the level you once enjoyed. Contracting used to be just a nice extra source of income, but it quickly could become THE source of income for many recruiters and other project managers or sales reps.
Companies are changing the way they’re doing business to survive in this new economy.
But I am left to wonder… is this really the best solution?
Reason #1 Against contract hiring: Agency fees are ridiculous
Any given company will pay a fee to a temp agency of 70% – 90% of the salary the temp will receive every month.
Meaning, if a temp gets $1 per hour, the company they are working in will have to pay between $1.70 and $1.90 for the temp to get that $1. and temps are no longer only juniors… there are senior temps, temps with leadership responsibility. Now calculate… For the $50,000 net salary a temp recruiter earns per year in Germany, or the $45,000 she/he gets in France, their asignee will have to pay:
In Germany $85,000 (+70%) and in France $85,500 in France (+90%!!!!).
If the country’s legal framework allows fixed term contracts E.g. Employing someone directly for a period of 1-2 years this move will save the company a lot of money, fixed term hiring keeps its flexibility AND you get rid of the other monsters that these companies bring to us.
And another important thing… in many countries a 12 months contract in this framework will allow your employee to get unemployment insurance from the government (Germany, Ireland, etc.) which in the normal temp basis (only 11 months hire) they don’t get. If you are going to get the best out of this person, promising them nothing in exchange… is it not only humane and fair to offer a little comfort in case of the worst as you are hiring them to be thrown to full life uncertainty? Think about it, with this employment situation, your temp cannot get a credit to buy a car, a house or pay their wedding… look a little behind the curtains.
Reason #2 Against contract hiring: Give a punch to employee engagement
Contractors these days are no longer blue collar workers. Today contractors have university degrees and work hand in hand with permanent employees in the same level of complexity, with the same level of confidentiality and I dare say the same level of results. A top performer leaving for no good reason is a low blow to any team’s morale.
Plus… how could anyone give their best performance until the end knowing they are out anyway? If they know they will leave and they were told once the contract was a part of the process to get hired?
You tell me how productive you can be if you have no idea if you are worthy or not, or for the simple matter… if you have no idea what will happen to you.
And then contractors only get reference letters from their employers, aka. the temp agencies… really this has no value.
Reason #3 Against contract hiring: Service? What is that?
An employee will go to the Human Resources department with different issues. Contractors get sent to their agency contacts which in my experience provide little or no guidance to the contractors around issues like immigration, insurance, taxes, sick leave, etc.
Most contractors get payslips that are hard to decipher as Egyptian hieroglyphics. From the moment they sign a contract, the documents are so unclear that there is rarely clarity on what the person will earn… an index per hour plus minus something… surprise every month… oh… and holidays are not paid fully, not even if they are only those stipulated by law. And in case their is a salary problem, no one to back them up.
Yes, many contractors finish their contracts feeling betrayed, maybe you get even in legal trouble… who knows…
With close to a decade in Staffing, I just don’t think this is the solution.
Filed under: Business, Change, Innovation, Leadership, Society, Technology | Tags: Censorship, Freedom, Internet, Legislation, Technology
I wished I was talking about soup or pipes, but not, this is not the case…
Once a week in the mobile market that gets set up close to my parents home in Mexico City (one of hundreds in the city every weekend) and in there, a DVD, CD, and pirate software booth — the proprietor sets up early in the morning and leaves when the market closes in the afternoon. Instead of just offering up ripped DVDs with handwritten titles in paper sleeves, he sells meticulous copies of the entire package from sleeve to disc label, and there are a few legitimate used DVDs thrown in for flavor. If not for the suspiciously low prices and the occasional printing error, you might not ever know the entire operation was operating in brazen defiance of the law.
Stands like these are an important touchpoint when you read or hear about the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, and its sister bill in the U.S. Senate, the Protect IP Act, or PIPA. Both bills attempt to deal with online sites that traffic in illegally copied content, but at extreme cost of remaking the architecture of the internet itself. That’s a high price to pay, especially since neither bill will actually curb real piracy: SOPA and PIPA are the effective equivalent of blowing up every road, bridge, and tunnel in New York to keep people from getting to one bootleg stand in Union Square — but leaving the stand itself alone.
What SOPA and PIPA do
- Order internet service providers to alter their DNS servers from resolving the domain names of websites in foreign countries that host illegal copies of videos, songs, and photos.
- Order search engines like Google to modify search results to exclude foreign websites that host illegally copied material.
- Order payment providers like PayPal to shut down the payment accounts of foreign websites that host illegally copied material.
- Order ad services like Google’s AdSense to refuse any ads or payment from foreign sites that host illegally copied content.
That’s just the first part. SOPA section 103 and PIPA section 4 require payment processors and ad networks to shut down accounts if they receive the right kind of letter from a copyright owner — a system modeled on the heavily criticized notice-and-takedown provisions of the current Digital Millenium Copyright Act that requires a service like YouTube to pull down infringing content after the copyright owner complains. That system has been abused on occasion, but it ultimately works because it allows YouTube to avoid direct responsibility for the actions of its users — it would have been otherwise sued out of existence.
There’s no such balance of interests for the payment processors or ad networks under SOPA or PIPA: they simply have to block their accounts within five days of getting a letter, unless their accused customer writes back with a letter promising to visit a U.S. court. A site like YouTube would remain protected under copyright law, but become extremely vulnerable to having its finances choked off by overzealous copyright owners under SOPA — imposing a huge additional cost on new startups that host user content and effectively undoing the flawed but effective protections for those services currently in copyright law. Remember the death of Napster or Kazaa? Well, that sort of thing would happen easily, fast and with little research.
Oh, but it gets worse. Much worse. SOPA section 104 offers legal immunity to ISPs that independently block websites that host illegally copied material without any prompting from the government. That’s a major conflict of interest for a huge ISP like Comcast, which also owns NBC — there would be nothing stopping Comcast from blocking a foreign video service that competes with NBC if it could claim it had a “reasonable belief” it was “dedicated to the theft of US property.” And indeed, Comcast is among the companies that support SOPA.
Now, you may have noticed that while all these rules are totally insane, they’re all at least theoretically restricted to foreign sites — defined by SOPA as sites with servers located outside the US. That’s important to know: at its simplest level, SOPA is a kneejerk reaction to the fundamental nature of the internet, which was explicitly designed to ignore outmoded and inconvenient concepts like the continuing existence of the United States. Because US copyright holders generally can’t drag a foreign web site into US courts to get them to stop stealing and distributing their work, SOPA allows them to go after the ISPs, ad networks, and payment processors that are in the United States. It is a law borne of the blind logic of revenge: the movie studios can’t punish the real pirates, so they are attacking the network instead.
So… What now?
Everyone that knows me can tell you I am not a fan of protests. why? Protests in my life have not made any change, if they have produced a lot of traffic and pollution, still they are a key element for the survival of democracy… limiting the content of the internet in the way these bills purpose to do so is equivalent give a selected group the right to prohibit citizens their right to protest or gather, or telling a newspaper back in the day what they could or could not write.
Remember those moving videos that triggered movement and change during the Egyptian spring last year? Well… someone could say you are not allowed to see them because of the song they play on the background. Maybe you couldn’t even have the kicks watching the laughing baby on Youtube…
A free internet is a key element to ensure the survival of democracy worldwide and to warranty the collective evolution of humankind.
So even if you will not catch me inside any protest, this site was on strike on January 18th 2012, together with thousands of websites that united to protest against the Protect IP Pact making the largest online protest world wide.
And what is there to do? What can you do?
If you are a U.S. Resident… Write Congress! Call Senate!!!
If you are not in the U.S…. Write the State Department.
You can sign the petition of an NGO such as Fight for the Future. It will only take you a few seconds to put your voice behind a critical issue.
Yes my friends, for the love you have to your iPads, iPhones, Androids… for every single person that records themselves playing music of their favourite artists etc etc…. you should do this.
Filed under: Change, Innovation, Personal Discovery, Society | Tags: Acceptance, Authenticity, Connetion, Courage, Fear, Gratitude, Joy, Shame, Vulnerability
Dream for a minute of a world without masks, without mind and power games…
Filed under: Business, Change, Innovation, Leadership, Personal Discovery, Society, Sustainability, Technology | Tags: Evolution, History, Leadership, Motivation, Psychology, Society, Spiral Dynamics, Technology, Theory U, Values
In the last half a year, I started working with Spiral Dynamics. A concept/model I knew but never applied has become an key part of my current professional development as of my personal life, and so I thought of sharing a little about it, for those who are thirsty for something estimulating that I could recomend to get your hands on and munch a good bite of.
I personally think this theory can be powerful if mixed with other tools such as MeshWORKS and Theory U.
So here a glympse.
Conception of a Model describing the Evolution of Individual, Organizational and Societal Conscience
When you look back on your actions, decisions, and ways of coping with problems, were your responses consistent? Or have your reactions changed over the years? (Most people’s do.) This is because our values and motivations change over time.
Psychologists have long been interested in these changing reactions. In fact, some of the best-known psychological theories on motivation have been derived from looking at this very phenomenon. Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and McGregor’s Theory X versus Theory Y are just two of the theories that have emerged to explain what motivates people and why. Although each theory is different, the question of what people value is central to the theories of motivation and human development.
Spiral Dynamics, a fascinating but less known theory of motivation, looks at the value systems that drive individuals’ beliefs and actions. The concept originated in the 1930s with the work of Dr Clare Graves, but he died before publishing his theory. With the popularity of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, Graves’ theory slipped into obscurity until one of his students, Dr Don Beck, wrote “Spiral Dynamics Integral”.
Essentially Spiral Dynamics was developed in order to help us understand:
- How people think about things (as opposed to “what” they think).
- Why people make decisions in different ways.
- Why people respond to different motivators.
- Why and how values arise and spread.
- The nature of change.
And interestingly enough, it applies not only to individuals, but also to organizations and societies. Taking a little time, you can apply it for the personal development of any individual from childhood on, analyze the structures and business models present in organizations through time and place where they are or to see patterns in the historical development of human kind.
I don’t think I need to tell you it is enough material to go on for years.
Misconceptions of Spiral Dynamics: You are less evolved than me, so bugger off!
In my path to discover this interesting theory, I came across consultants and practicioners that dislike it. Going a little deeper into what they dislike, I came to the following point of misunderstanding:
Spiral Dynamics talk about more and less evolved people, this creates a hierarchy and a feeling of superiority from some towards the others aka. I am yellow and you are only orange so bugger off unconcious being.
This is a misconception that easily happens when you go through the theory quickly without suspending and taking the time and space for it to really sink in.
Spiral Dynamics differs from other theories of human development and motivation in one key way: It doesn’t argue that we travel towards an ultimate destination and stay there, it says that we continue to spiral through a helix of developmental stages depending on the biological, social, environmental, and psychological forces at work. As such, Spiral Dynamics attempts to explain “everything” that influences human experience.
Spiral Dynamics argues that with enough personal mastery, we can live in one meme and communicate to others, collaborate with others and foster their development from the place they are at enhancing then common understanding and the efficiency to achieve a goal.
The theory also suggest that an individual does not “belong” in a color clasification, but they can have different colors in theferent spheres of their being. Eg. I can be orange in my external individual sphere, while being yellow in my inner individual etc etc.
At this point, a picture says more than a thousand words, enjoy.
Full size picture here.
Filed under: Business, Change, Innovation, Leadership, Society, Sustainability | Tags: Action, Collective Intell, Ethic, Moral
Now, that should be an interesting combination. Knowing what is the right ghing to do, how and when to bend the rules… truly innovate and do it in service of the whole. It adds up. It’s time for internal collective change… Systemic change. We all know it in a way or another.
Filed under: Change, Goals, Innovation, Leadership, Society, Sustainability, Technology | Tags: Civil Society, Collective Intelligence, Conciousness, Mexico, Transformation
Mexico has it all, but we are drawning in the sea of poverty, of inequality, impunity, corruption anddeath. The emptiness created by the social fractures has been filled with hate, resentment and fear. The lack of hope and chances have been taken over by mistrust and violence. Problems are explained structurally, but they are also go across a social and cultural dimensions and that makes us question ourselves as a society.
We need answers and actions that will transform the current conditions and with which we will reach the ideal of a democratic, participating and equal society. Now, more than ever, it is time for the revolution of conciousness, culture, education, institutions and finally the evolution of citizens.
It is key to create a community, networks, built by people with feelings, ideals and common purpose, with a sense of identity and belonging. In the information society, what will guide us to a superior level of human nourishment is the architecture of the human link. The construction of decentralized human networks with multiple nods, can be triggered by technology and the collaborative nature of the internet.
The net gives place to the emergence of collective intelligence: People can easier, quickly build networks to generate and communicate knowledge that can be later translated to action and common wellbeing. Creativity and imagination convert into empowerment: Intelligent masses with the capacity to impact their surroundings. The basic principle of collective intelligence: Everyone as a whole knows everything; with the practical application: We can do anything.
The Digital Era creates networks and communities, it articulates its sense of identity and belonging, it promotes its capacity of organization and action. Internet opens a small window of opportunity for citizens. Citizens can for the first time make choices directly and in real-time between opinions, information or actions coming from the governing agents of content. Civil groups organized in networks with common interests and worries have accomplished public visibility. New leaders have come from contexts that previously had no presence in public debate. These new networks organize themselves many times along the order of party organizations, use technological tools and social network platforms for communication, organization and action; the create a space for public debate on social topics and create and distribute alternative content to that of the traditional media, they develop consciousness about the social surroundings, provide critical but constructive views about reality; they get media visibility, enable the emergence of civil leaders, drive political and civil agendas, propose innovative initiatives, integrate differentcommunities and and themselves to different social causes; they have a social impact.
If it is truth that in Mexico the access to the internet is limited to one third of the population, it is also truth that this small group of users the valuable initiatives that have achieved social impact put in new light the old judgement and myths of social and youth apathy. Even if many young people have felt captive to organized crime there are many that despite their poverty, the uncertain future and the social rejection have demonstrated they are capable of positively influence their surroundings. They are only a few, but they are there.
The transition from representative to participating democracy should come from the incorporation of all voices conforming society. The technological tools are only one option to achieve this. In this sad historical moment for Mexico is when more voices are needed to make proposals, and more hands are needed to take action. We have to bet on the imagination, the creativity, human dignity, sensibility, civil networks, youth…
Juan Villoro says: “Mexico is not going to be saved by bullets, it will be saved by its people”. We need to understand we are a community, a collective intelligence and that together we could do anything.