We live in a post-truth world apparently.
I can’t help wondering if, based on the news that appears in my Twitter timeline at least, we are entering a post-human world of work.
I’m not talking about all the automation, robots, AI stuff. This isn’t about suggesting work doesn’t need people. But instead that many of our organisations have become places in which we have lost sight of the human element of work.
Amazon are the latest in a long line of companies being heavily criticised about working conditions in their distribution centres. Not for the first time either. Sports Direct had all of the headlines previously. The accusations are familiar. Poor treatment of agency workers. Harsh sanctions. Lack of job security. Fear. Oppressive management.
Scientific management, just with added tech for the digital age, rules still.
Despite everything we know about what motivates and engages people and what does not.
Despite the impact that we must know these working conditions have on the people that operate within them.
This isn’t about criticising one particular company. I don’t have any information beyond the headlines.
But this is about suggesting, again, that we can do better.
As I have quoted in a previous blog post, in the machine age, only the human organisation will survive.
We can merge technology, targets and good people stuff. We can create human centred workplaces, that ask, not only how will this improve the bottom line but also how will this make people feel?
It is possible.
Or maybe we’d just prefer to have a new sandwich toaster delivered within an hour.