[Opinion] On Emotional Labor

Just the other day at a workshop, after filling out a communication assessment, we heard this:

Emotional Labor

“I’m an engineer. This is all great stuff, but really hard to quantify.”

And later in the workshop, after we made another point, we responded by saying:

“You can quantify the effects of emotional mismanagement on the bottom line, in terms of lost productivity, health issues, declining quality of production and overall employee disengagement.”

The engineer nodded his head.

Emotional labor is the final frontier. It’s a space that care workers, mothers, therapists and social workers have inhabited for years. And, in an economy where manually (or technically) laboring was once seen as scarce, emotional labor didn’t matter much.

And yet…

  • 40 hours a week, the average person goes to another location, away from their home, and interacts with people that they did not choose
  • 26% of people report that they are disengaged at work and with work, and 13% of those people are actively disengaged at work
  • 44% of companies are outsourcing jobs to other countries, across all sectors, with the vast majority of employers reporting that they are doing so “to control costs.”

What kind of labor matters?

Well, the kind that can’t be outsourced:

  • The kind that addresses people’s emotional inner lives, where we spend 99% of our time.
  • The kind that addresses issues of self-awareness, leadership, emotional intelligence, focus, discipline and many other emotional tasks.
  • The kind that builds resiliency encourages accountability and that develops people to be more than just cogs in the machine.
  • The kind that develops and encourages interpersonal communication, conflict engagement, and responsibility.

The challenge in this paradigm shift (for every organization), comes when 20% of the people in an organization are doing 80% of the emotional labor.

But, emotional labor, moving forward in a world where more and more will be accomplished by fewer and fewer people , is the only kind of labor that matters.

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: jsorrells@hsconsultingandtraining.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/

3 Organizations Operating on Scarcity

Some companies don’t believe that they will be impacted by the sharing economy.Hey Im at a Call Center

Some organizations and associations believe that they will continually be allowed to “skate by” operating with a scarcity based model.

Some of these organizations exist in the area of public utilities (i.e. gas, electric, water, etc.), public governance (i.e. state and local governments) and big brands (i.e. hotels, car dealers, certain media companies).

They believe that their large size will insulate them from the disruptions that the Internet and that social media have already created in other areas of the economy.

  • Public utilities believe that they will be saved by government regulation from having to collaborate and connect with customers on prices, processes, accessibility, affordability, etc.
  • Public governance believes that since they have everyone’s tax dollars, they will be insulated as they have been under the old rules of an industrial economy, from competitive market forces.
  • Big brands believe that their lobbying, cash and influence will allow them to buy, bribe or force out the smaller, swifter competitors and keep the market positions that they have had for the last century.

They are all wrong.

We are in the midst of a cultural, social, political and economic evolution.

We are reverting back to the time of tribal connections, based on Twitter and Instagram and collaborative problem solving through openness, transparency and authenticity.

This is a golden opportunity to explore the conflicts between the old and the new and to help resolve them in favor of everybody.

So…who’s going to step up? I’m already doing my part…

-Peace Be With You All-

Jesan Sorrells, MA
Principal Conflict Engagement Consultant
Human Services Consulting and Training (HSCT)
Email HSCT: hsconsultingandtraining@gmail.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HSConsultingandTraining
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Sorrells79
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jesansorrells/
HSCT’s website: http://www.hsconsultingandtraining.com