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It’s Called Human Resource Management for a Reason

I ran across an article the other day while I was searching for something that I can’t remember now. The title of the article grabbed me, “The Importance of Human Marketing in Business.” After poking around this topic for a few minutes and doing a bit more research, I saw that “Human to Human” marketing is a “trend” these days. Isn’t human to human marketing common sense?

Maybe human to human anything isn’t such common sense these days. It doesn’t feel like it much of the time. When did we all forget that we are sharing the world with other human beings? How have we come to see each other as something apart and different from ourselves? And why do we have to be reminded of our own humanity and each other’s over and over again?

Any business you are in, whether it’s B2B or B2C, whether you are serving senior citizens, students or John Q. Public, you are in the business of people, not products or services. But so many people seem to have forgotten this fact.The people that you work with have a whole life outside of that office. Work is just one part of their life. They have joy and pain and struggles like the rest of us, and they try to hide it and put on their bravest face when they step through those doors.

While I can appreciate the level of professionalism that needs to be maintained at work, there is still room for human to human connection. Real connection and real care for one another. I know a bit about needing human care in the workplace and not getting it. Years ago, I was forced to take a Family Medical Leave (FML) to be with my mother on what was supposed to be the last day of her life. My dear mother held on for three days, and so the FML was no longer valid.

On top of the immediate grief and sadness I was facing, I was forced to deal with a bunch of red tape and ask for assistance on getting a new FML because I was now the guardian of a sibling and I was also out of the country.

The receiver of my request for assistance met my wish with an “I don’t know what you expect me to do.” That is what this woman said to me. Not even, “I am really sorry for your loss and I wish there was more I could do but I just don’t have that authority.” Nope. Just a cold and uncaring response.

I could now add shock and disappoint to the other feelings I was feeling. I had never felt so raw and vulnerable and so completely uncared for. Needless to say, that experience stuck with me.

So, when people are going through personal stuff at work, I focus on that first because they deserve that. We can do better. We have to do better. If we can give all the care to our students, why can’t we do the same for the people who we work alongside day in and day out? I think it’s time we all try and be a bit more compassionate with each other.

I think technology really increased human ability. But technology cannot produce compassion.” Dalai Lama

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