changes are chances – get involved instead of just being there?
the naboblog: the People-first-approach - experience from practice
my name is oliver kirchhof. i manage the bayenthal coaching workshop in cologne, and support People and companies in change processes. as someone with degrees in business administration and engineering, i have worked as a consultant and manager in various companies for many years. but then a career crisis changed my life. it became clear to me that i had to take another path to experience true happiness in my private life as well as in my work.
today, my goal is to empower People. they should enjoy going to their workplace and contributing all their ability, talents and creativity there. the work should not be part of their lives, but a continuation of them, where they can be themselves – just as they are in their free time. it's about living at work and not just surviving.
numbers, facts and results
in today's world of work, profit-thinking dominates and determines business. People become the means of growth and profit maximization.
but there is also another way. organizations such as the dm retail stores or the holiday provider, upstalsboom (https://www.der-upstalsboom-weg.de/der-upstalsboom-weg/die-geschichte/) prove that you can also be economically successful with a ‘People-first approach’.
this is also necessary. social change processes such as digitization, a shortage of skilled labor, and demographic developments are forcing People to rethink their ideas.
technological development is progressing ever faster, fundamentally changing workspaces and replacing entire occupations with computer programs and machines.
the pace of change triggers fears in some People, overburdens others, and often does not take account of older People, in particular. we know this from our own experiences. we have just got used to our software’s user interface, when along comes the latest update and we have to start searching again for the required functions. this is just not positive.
agility stresses out
alarm bells sound when studies repeatedly show how stressed workers are in germany. most recently, the health insurance provider, ‘techniker’ (https://www.tk.de/presse/themen/praevention/gesunder-arbeitsplatz/anti-stress-gesetz-2042684) found that almost half of all employees in germany feel overwhelmed, and that prescriptions of antidepressants more than doubled from 2007 to 2017.
in addition, there are new forms of collaboration that make People feel insecure. agile working methods are being incorporated into companies instead of well-known hierarchies. complex projects are managed across departments, while teams lead themselves instead of waiting for instructions from supervisors.
every single employee increasingly becomes more of a decision maker, who has a decisive influence on the success of the company. this is not for everyone. managers quarrel over the loss of authority, while specialists are burdened with new responsibilities.
getting involved instead of just being there
my task is to actively shape the changes with the managers and employees in a company-specific way. nobody should feel that they have to put up with something that is unwanted. this comes down to four factors.
- change through knowledge
People must understand the meaning and reasons behind necessary changes. only those who are aware of the goal will be prepared to aim for it.
- change through ability
People must have the ability to do the things that are demanded of them. further education/training and exchange of experiences are of central importance here.
- change through permission
a culture of ‘good mistakes’ is elementary. when something new and innovative is tried, the error rate increases due to lack of experience. however, to prevent them from remaining a disadvantage for production, the mistakes must be accepted, openly exchanged and analyzed in order to avoid them in the future, and to make the organizational unit more effective in the medium term.
- change through wanting it
if the first three change criteria are sufficiently assured, a high level of motivation to make a Personal contribution toward success will automatically arise. those who are aware of the goal, who feel empowered to achieve it, and who are not afraid of failing, can devote themselves courageously and competently to their tasks. if there is a lack of motivation, the first three change criteria must be readjusted so that everyone in the team will want and be able to contribute successfully.
anyone who thinks that changes in a well-established change-management system can easily be implemented, is mistaken. rather, changes guarantee resistance. that too is known from our own life experiences. things that are not good are ignored or suppressed, rather than resolved. People are not masters of change. rather, they love consistency, and many attempts have to be made before new changes can really be implemented and succeed.
i therefore support People on their journey to courageously overcome their inner resistance, to step out from the shadows, and to get involved in something new.
a child will fall down a thousand times before it is finally able to run. however, it never gives up and does not get frustrated. it just keeps on going - as if falling down is the most natural thing in the world. it is precisely this view that we, as adults, need to discover again for ourselves.
falling down is normal. it is part of our further development and the overcoming of resistance. just like letting go of convictions, beliefs, and supposed knowledge. only those who openly accept and try out new things without prejudices and prejudgments, will be able to find out where their own niche and strengths lie within their new selves.
holistic and effective
that's why i think that a holistic approach is important in my work. those who want to enjoy their work should not have to pretend that they are. People have to experience and realize this for themselves. they can then successfully contribute their strengths and weaknesses to the process of change. i work with coaching, approaches toward awareness-based (self) leadership, bodywork, and listening/singing for this self-discovery process.
i became aware of naturheilzentrum bottrop (‘nabo’ for short) because the two managers of this institute for integrative medicine are on the same wavelength when it comes to dealing with their patients. farid zitoun and christian rüger also pursue a holistic approach that includes People, their living situation, and their environment in the development of therapy. you can look at the current youtube video/ fact check by the two naturopaths to see how this works exactly. here, they explain the background to their work, beliefs, and approaches.
only when the body and mind are in harmony with each other, will the Person be full of courage, enthusiasm, and creativity. and depart from old paths and pursue new ones. mindful medicine and mindful entrepreneurial innovation - these two worlds are not that far apart.
you can also find more about nabo in the news section. information, knowledge and ethics: the fact check - who we are and if so how many? (https://naturheilzentrum.com/en/news/vlog-nabo-latest-fact-check/).
what do you think of the People-first approach? i look forward to your comments and a lively exchange of experiences.
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