We know we are in trouble as individuals and people when we are reduced to resources. When our value is measured purely on our ability to provide some predetermined function with all other domains of value being rejected or ignored.
Or when we become consumers? We are now measured by how much, or how little we consume. (I have visions of hungry beasts eating up all the food until nothing is left. Which sadly isn’t that far from reality.)
Indeed, any form of mass identification diminishes all of us. By naming people in categories we create a convenient distance between them as flesh and blood unique and valued individuals, which then makes it easier for us to treat people as objects. This allows a whole manner of atrocities and ill considered actions. From having it be acceptable that children go hungry, sick, unable to access basic human needs….to over hiring and then later firing…with as little care or consideration to either.
And by the way, you are being treated as an object in countless ways…as am I, right now.
The very label ‘human resources ‘ is a dumbing down of potential. (And the label consumer is so seriously a sign of a very sick society…but that is for another blog.)
As a human resource I am open to exploitation, to prostituting my skills and values on the altar of someone (or something) who has the appearance of dominion over me. This of course is an illusion, as no one really has dominion over anyone.
An organisation that honours every single person with whom they interact as unique and valued individuals, that enables people to bring all of themselves to work…while maintaining clear and uncomplicated boundaries, co-ordinating around a central and compelling purpose, is an organisation that attracts people…and when these people show up they bring their best selves.
Is this possible if you have 40,000 employee’s? Yes…of course. But not by doing business as usual.
Am I being trite? By just removing the term Human Resources…will this create change? No…not unless your organisation is committed to honouring every single person. No exceptions.