All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.Arthur Shopenhauer – German philosopher
Hewlett Packard had one of the great corporate cultures of the 70s and 80s. When people talk about Silicon Valley at it’s best, they are talking about Hewlett Packard. A culture of respect and treating workers fairly. And mostly of “showing your work”. They had a principle that every night you should leave your work open on your desk for others to see. That keeping your work a secret is not the sign of confidence, of someone who is in a hurry, it is the sign of having something to hide.
The culture at Hewlett Packard made it possible to keep up with the changes in the business environment and make a successful change from creating instruments to computers, a much more competitive environment. The computer business gave a rise to a new subculture that emphasised strategic planning rather than entrepreneurism.
What they learned at HP is that when you walk around at the end of the day and you are able to see what the engineers are putting on their desks, you can make it better. And the idea that we can make it better because we can see what you did, that is critical to forward motion.
Today when we talk about the opportunities the Digital Modern Workplace can bring companies, three things appear prominently at the top of the discussion list: working where you want, when you want and with the device of your choice. This is logical as these characteristics are real changes and fairly easy to visualize and discuss.
However, the Modern Workplace is much more than just this. Due to the evolution of technology the Modern Workplace has become an opportunity to create openness, a place where people can find each other and connect, ask questions, share their ideas, create understanding, give feedback and build and improve solutions with a strong customer focus. The Modern Workplace has become a platform which contributes to the creation of value structures in organizations which are critical in staying relevant on the long-term. It brings together creative like-minded people who are being trusted, heard and challenged. These people won’t just do their work, they will give their best.
The foundation of the Modern Workplace consists of three key elements: giving dignity to people, recognizing their potential and creating forward motion. Not treating people as if they are production factors, but as equals who all have a field of pure potential that needs to be activated to flourish and live a full and rich life, which in it’s turn will lead to the forward motion of employees, organizations and humanity.
Making this the starting point of the conversation will absolutely contribute to unlocking people’s and organization’s hidden potential to create new truth – which in the end will be accepted as self-evident.