Edgar Rosas
Human Development Expert
Centro de Liderazgo Emergente
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Effective Value-Proposition Benefits Organizations

By Cinthya Alaniz Salazar | Wed, 04/06/2022 - 11:19

Q: How has the happiness or positive psychology work model been received by Mexico’s business community?

A: Centro de Liderazgo Emergente’s human flourishing model was derived from research in positive psychology, which examines what intrinsically motivates people and uses that information to help them meet their life objectives. Finding purpose or happiness at work may sound contradictory to some but it is important, considering people will spend an average of 40 years working. Happiness in the workplace has proven to be a fundamental component of the human psyche, without which individuals suffer serious psychological difficulties. This requires individuals to acknowledge and understand their capacities and limitations. Leaders are individuals who can recognize positive traits in others and nurture them.

Mexico and Latin America’s business communities had a hard time coming to terms with this work model because happiness for us is commonly perceived as an economic matter. Yet, despite having a significant income-inequality rate, Mexico has consistently ranked high in the global Happiness Index because the population’s happiness is eudaimonic; Mexicans live their best life even in the face of undesirable sociopolitical conditions. Even so, some business leaders continue to resist the proposition but the results speak for themselves.

 

Q: Why should companies consider management models aimed at generating happiness at work?

A: The best and most competitive companies always have excellent organizational leadership. This was actually discovered by the authors of “Great Place to Work,” Robert Levering and Milton Moskowitz. They accidentally discovered that all the Fortune 100 companies placed a salient importance on building high-quality relationships in the workplace characterized by trust, pride and camaraderie.

In other words, investing in the people who make up the company and keep it alive leads to greater innovation, creativity and sales. While this may be hard to envision in work environments, such as accounting and finance, which emphasize numbers, it can and should be done.

 

Q: How have the changes engendered by the COVID-19 pandemic fomented or hindered the adoption of this concept?

A: There is much work to be done. The COVID-19 pandemic, unfortunately, undermined many of the programs we were attempting to get off of the ground in some organizations. Many of them involved true integration, which required face-to-face interaction that was simply not possible to achieve under the Ministry of Health's recommended health guidelines. Despite making significant progress, in many cases, organizations decided to put the program on pause until they returned to normal. It has been a long two years but we are excited to resume our programs and continue nurturing the next generation of leaders.

 

Q: As baby-boomers exit the market, how can your vision of leadership help companies prepare millennials to lead in top positions?

A: Millennials have proven to be one of the hardest demographics to attract and retain, an especially frustrating challenge for organizations amid the Great Resignation. Yet, this was a predictable outcome for organizations that failed to adapt their work cultures to provide a clear mission and value proposition with which millennials can identify. This culture is important considering that millennials are inherently different from their predecessors who worked to live.

With projections anticipating that millennials will take over 70 percent of the labor market as soon as 2027, organizations are running out of time. Baby boomers and Generation X will play a critical role during this adjustment period, helping millennials fill in emotional intelligence gaps and understand workplace bureaucracy, among other things. Organizations with leadership models already in place have benefited greatly from generational integration, which has formed a retroactive relationship among different generations.

 

Q: With a post-pandemic era on the horizon, what are Centro de Liderazgo Emergente’s objectives in a changed labor market for 2022?

A: The center’s primary objective is to resume all of the programs that were previously underway before the COVID-19 pandemic and to continue to expand in Latin America. We have just kicked off various projects in Brazil, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia. Overall, there is much to do and we wish to continue helping business leaders through this process. 

Cinthya Alaniz Salazar Cinthya Alaniz Salazar Journalist & Industry Analyst