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Business Hippie Club

time is now

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I’m used to start my blog articles describing the past, to demonstrate how it all started. Next to describe the actual situation, followed by a possible future scenario of what can happen next or at least a possible future scenario.

Many people are publishing articles about the rapid development of technology and how it effects our world. Our life’s are speeding up, time is money in our work, you only live once etc. But we know all this, so let’s look at it from a different perspective. Let’s start with my statement to see if you are critical and awake…

We should skip the time addiction, and eliminate it out of our lives. Time is a tool of our (past) production era, and not applicable (anymore) if we want to be happy in the present.

Hans van de Rakt

1.       Everything we do every day in our (modern) society is based on the clock, and the duration of our efforts. We set our alarm to wake up, and not by the rising sun, the annoying and loud rooster, or the biological rhythm of our body. We go to our work by train, which is departing at 7:30 precisely. If you’re 30 seconds late you might have a problem. When you finally arrive at work your boss is waiting for you and would spank you, because you took 5 minutes from his time of production, you get the picture right? So there is no natural behavior or flow anymore, we are driven by a mechanism which is invented for a rational reason in the past century, which has nothing to do with (y)our well-being, but with someone else’s needs and advantages.

2.       On a different and perhaps larger scale it is the pace of our societal systems. With societal systems I point to the political system, the economic system, the cultural system etc. Please take into consideration the high speed of technological developments which is taking place now. The effect of all technical developments into the different systems is with such great impact and intensity, we sometimes forget to realize the huge effects of it in our systems, in our society and in the end, in our own personal lives.

3.       Under influence of these technical developments, some systems are developing more rapidly than others. This means that some systems are old fashioned, and others have adapted to the new reality or now. For example most political systems are founded in the 19th century, while no real changes has been made since then, except the introduction of an electronic voting system perhaps. Another system example is the medical sector. Where DNA sequencing (analyzing and visualizing of DNA) is now so cheap it’s available to a large audience. This results in a shift towards preventive Medicare instead of curative treating afterwards. Do you see the different speeds of these systems during time?

4.       The world wide web, including all social media etc., is an eco-system at itself. The numbers of participants in this (unsocial?) system is so incredibly high, where all voices are heard and where is so much choice , it’s dazzling You could say it’s a new kind of “democracy” Do you realize that if Facebook were a country, it would be the biggest country in the world….

So where does this all lead us? If some systems don’t keep up with all technical developments their existence will be questioned. Timing is not that important, as the clock itself. The demand for more natural living and behavior will increase. We can decide how we live, based on all data and information made technically available, wherever you are. It will result in a power shift of systems. Where the (end?) control is done by artificial intelligence based on big data. We live in a parallel universe, soon. The Matrix. But I believe time is on our side…

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Business Hippie Club

Onboarding = expectation management

The hire of new personnel can be daunting. It’s a profession by itself. The HR Manager might fall into the trap that his job is done when the application process is finished. The file of the new employee will be forwarded to the assigned department-head, and case closed. Actually this is the moment where the process starts to a possible win-win situation for both parties; the employer and the employee.

24 % of new hires leave within the first 45 days

The new hire will have expectations about his/her job and tasks, about the typical company organization and culture, about the delivery of tools and support he/she will get. The communication between the two parties should be correct and transparent from the very beginning. So the job advertorial will match the actual (real life) job. The following three elements will give you the insights for good onboarding:

  1. Functional Transparency
  • Job goal: what is the main or big goal of the new job
  • The tasks: which duties and tasks to do
  • The tools/systems will be supplied or are necessary
  • When is the job successful: results, output, time, delivery, (quantitively/qualitive)

2. Organizational Insights

  • What are the rules/regulations in the organization
  • What is the company culture in the sense of values, mission, vision and social tribing
  • How does the organization look like and what is his/her place in this organization

3. Job Support

  • Make E-learning available and relevant to the job
  • Personal Coaching or a buddy system for direct assistance
  • On the job training
  • Who is your first and second line of contact for functional help

40 % of new hires make their decision to leave, during the first 6 months

Onboarding is relevant for employers
A good onboarding program is beneficial for employers as new hires will be more quickly up to speed, and thus productive. Also the involvement and motivation of the employee will be higher. If onboarding is done well, new hires are less likely to leave the company.  

Why employees benefit from good onboarding
Employees will get confirmation of the choice they made for this particular job or company. As they will learn about the company, they will be (more) proud at their new workplace, colleagues, products, etc.

The new hires will get a clear idea on what their role will be. A picture how things run around here, so they are able to navigate in the organization and find their way much easier and with comfort.

Losing an employee in the first year costs about 2,5 times their salary

PRACTICAL TIPS FOR GOOD ONBOARDING

  • Take care of all practical matters as early in the process as possible
  • Put all administration things in the background, as this is only a disturbance during the learning process
  • It should be all about work, and not about all kind of practical details
  • Online learning should be made available as soon as possible and be relevant to their job
  • Present new hires 3 real live cases, so they have a clear picture of what to expect in their job from the beginning
  • Describe the end-goal of the onboarding program
  • Track progress during the onboarding program
  • Know what employees motivates
  • Make all tools, applications, computers etc. direct available and make sure it really works
  • Show them their new workplace so they can visualize themselves being at work

A GOOD ONBOARDING PROCESS WILL BRING QUALITY

PRE-boarding
Before the boarding starts, sent the new hires an overview of the onboarding program. So they know what to expect and get them involved. It will lessen their insecurity and sorrows. This is also a way the employer will show interest in their employees, and that they take their careers serious.

ON-boarding
Appoint an onboarding buddy to accompany them during the process. It’s not only about taking care in a functional way, but especially about their personal development and human wellbeing.

AFTER-boarding
Ask and check about the progress when the boarding program is active and when the program is finished, when they start working in their actual new job. This gives valuable feedback for adjustments.

ONBOARDING IS NOT GIVING THEM A MANUAL OR A COMPUTER. NEITHER A FUNCTIONAL TO DO LIST THEY HAVE TO FOLLOW. IT’S ABOUT A REAL HUMAN EXPERIENCE!

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Business Hippie Club

peace, love and happiness in business

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Trade Necessity

A long time ago when new transportation techniques emerged, it created new jobs like the traveling merchant and local trader. Where you could buy new and different products from other places then your own. There was a natural balance between the buyer and seller because goods or services were exchanged based on necessity.

Business is the new standard

Trade or starting a business has evolved during the last centuries into a “serious” profession. Where all kinds of new business developments were invented like new production techniques, price calculations, ratio’s, KPI’s, and something called “efficiency” Here scarcity was the basis of this trade game.

A Fair Trade

Slowly our view of doing business changed from efficiency towards impact. Where transparency opened our eyes and changed public opinion. This in a sense that trade was not always equal for all parties. Where business ethics became an important factor; doing good for society, giving back to the producers, a sustainable business for a clean environment etc. Where the rational efficiency on short term is not leading anymore, but the soft factors and the impact in a longer period of time, are the new metrics.

the impact in a longer period of time, is the new metric

Business as the new religion

The new entrepreneurs are getting younger and business is initiated by all kinds of people on all levels. New enterprises arise in so many different countries and even in remote locations. Where money is not an issue anymore thanks to Crowdfunding and Microcredit. Entrepreneurship is a commodity. Or is there more to it?

Entrepreneurship seems to be the new religion. The save harbor for a meaningful live and freedom of choice. Where business models are filled with the mantra of Peace, Love & Happiness. Where business people live accordingly to it:
– PEACE: have peace with yourself and with all others
– LOVE: love what you do, and how you do it
– HAPPINESS: experience happiness about the positive impact you bring to others

If you use these three spiritual factors, in your business-life you will make a change to your inner being as to the other humans beings around you.

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Business Hippie Club

WHAT IF… employers apply to candidates

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Since years candidates apply for jobs with employers. Where hundreds of applicants for one position, seems to be the new norm. These large numbers make that most applicants don’t receive an answer at all, or just a standard mail confirmation. And when you are not chosen, a message to all: “we found a candidate who is a better fit”

Besides the impersonal communications, it takes really time and effort for the candidate to do this the right way. The applicant is required to fill in the job portal system with a lot of details of which you might think, why are they asking all these questions, especially in this first contact phase? Anyhow, your personal data is now somewhere in the holy grail of an online job portal. Hoping you will be one of the lucky bastards to be chosen in this job tombola.

WHAT IF… employers apply to candidates

What if…. Employers apply to candidates. In other words candidates have supplied a good CV, made all the personality tests, etc. All made available and where the employer takes the first step. So the first check would be already done at the door.

Are you interested in this position Mr. van de Rakt? Yes, lets’ talk! As the best fit is not only about the past career, but moreover about your personality and if you fit in the organization culture. Combine the human factors (first?) with the rational facts for a bright future together.

Surely there will be disadvantages about this concept, but think about it for a while and discuss it with you colleagues. Let’s come with a disruptive idea to get, in the end, a better solution for the perfect fit between employers and employees. I say” Power to the candidates!

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Business Hippie Club

COMPANY CULTURE IS UNDERRATED

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When we talk about cultural differences we tend to think about differences in national cultures. But being involved in several international projects with people from different backgrounds and sectors, I noticed that even within one country, there are some cultural hurdles to overcome. Within a country differences might occur based on regional heritage, religion, history, local dialects and more.

But there is also something as the Company Culture. If we want know why some businesses are more successful than others, you might think about pragmatic or functional reasons, like a lower price or better technical specifications. But more important, a deal might be rewarded because both parties have a click. Like having the feeling this person, representing this company, will do as they promise. It’s about trust and leveling, based on the same believes.

The Company Culture is about how your organization handles things based on the norms and values in your enterprise. In more detail, it’s about the shared etiquettes, values, visions, rules, customs, beliefs and habits. It’s how your organization works, It’s how you and your colleagues, and in the end the external stakeholders, collaborate. You represent your company culture.

There are a few main drivers and focus points to be recognized in your organization. Is you company internal focused or external oriented? Is your organization open to flexibility and discretion vs. stability and control? What is the culture in your company, can you describe this?

This Company Culture is formed during the history of your company by all people present and by the new people joining your organization. Mostly it follows the changes during time, and is formed unintentionally on a subconscious level. But please know you can influence this culture. By steering your company culture the outcome in business results might be higher as expected. According some studies it can improve results by 200% or more. So why not give your company culture more attention and focus?

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Business Hippie Club

A TRUTHFUL BUSINESS

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A truthful business is when you have a healthy balance between who you really are and who you want to be. In other words it’s closing the gap between your authenticity and your ambition.

WHO YOU ARE (authenticity)

Your company is existing now for some years. Once started with a dream to sell and get rich. This according the founder(s) believes how this goal should be achieved and what the company should be. Telling what the audience would like to hear, in order to sell stuff.
During this endeavor you were so focused on selling that you forgot who you truly are and why you started this adventure in the first place. You only listened to the voice of your market audience and responded to it accordingly.

What if you would listen to your own inner voice…. about what you really care about. In your life as director or owner of your business. What are your personal values and your company core values? Can you take one step back and think it over to find what is really important and to take action on it?

WHO YOU WANT TO BE (ambition)

Perhaps you are unsatisfied with the present situation within your company. Simply because the results are declining, or your company cannot comply to the latest trends and developments. On a more subtle level, you feel uncomfortable by only making profit and know there is more to it.

As a conscious business leader you realize it has to change. A new and alternative approach has to be chosen, one way or another. Set your (company) ambitions to a higher level. By involving all people around you, make impact in your community, add extra value to your offering that your clients will talk about. You are doing this, just because.

A TRUTHFUL BUSINESS

A truthful business is acting by the heart, which takes no effort at all. Not shouting out how good you are and spending large marketing budgets. This is old fashioned window dressing for short term wins. If you want set long term sustainable goals, communicate and act in a transparent way to your clients, employees, partners and others. Trust me, they will see and feel the difference, because it is the natural way to go. (and it feels good…)

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Business Hippie Club

WRITING YOUR VALUES

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Culture eats strategy for breakfast. A nice saying, but what does this mean and firstly, what is culture? Culture contains a mix of elements such as norms, values, behaviors and ethics. The most basic element of culture is values. About being aware of what we really find important in our daily life’s.

As a start you can discover your own values as an individual, what you as a individual find important in your daily life. Another area where you can define values, is discovering the common values with your co-workers: a company value manifest. To know what you as a team or organization find important in your daily work.

a value manifest gives direction so everyone works on the same goal, knows how to communicate with each other and being aware of what -not- to do

There is also a more functional reason to write a value manifest: for example when you want to hire new people; this will attract the right candidates that match your value criteria. Also it will level out the business partners that are (not) on the same page of what your organization stands for.

You can start writing about what you as a conscious business leader find important. Next step can be to discuss this with your team and find the internal common grounds. The motivation to do so can be various: for a clear goal setting, increased motivation, more focus, finding the main strengths, a possible culture change and more.

As an example, please have a look at our own Business Hippie Club – Value Manifest. This Manifest contains the most important elements how we see the social economy and how to do business, by intertwining it with human values. This is our holistic approach to accomplish our mission.

If you need assistance with writing your value manifest, please contact us. We organize workshops for teams and organizations to discover your common values for a more coherent workforce.

a better (business) world starts with you!

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Business Hippie Club

WELL-BEING INEQUALITY

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What matters more: the greatest overall happiness, or the happiness of the greatest number? This question has concerned philosophers for centuries.

It is easier to talk about income differences (inequality) then about more subjective items as feelings about happiness.

Most conversations about development these days focus on income inequality and people’s wellbeing. But analysis suggests these conversations might be better focused on the inequality in people’s wellbeing. There are three reasons for that:

  1. Polarization

Data show that worldwide, with every passing year since the Great Recession, life has gotten better for people with wellbeing scores in the top 20% and worse for people with wellbeing scores in the bottom 20%.

2. Holistic metrics

Measuring inequality through a subjective wellbeing metric such as life evaluation allows each respondent to consider all the issues of their life that are important to them and to factor them into their rating accordingly. Income inequality, on the other hand, looks at only one component of what is important to people.

3. Psychological

Importantly, this inequality is associated with lower levels of happiness for citizens, while there is evidence regarding the psychological nature of this relationship. Central mechanisms that explain the link between income inequality and subjective well-being, including anxiety from status competition, mistrust, and hopes and fears about the future.

wellbeing inequality may tell us more about life itself, than income

There are at least two ways in which to examine inequalities in wellbeing: inequalities between groups of people (e.g. according to gender or income groups), and inequality in overall wellbeing of the population.

The growing inequality in how people rate their lives shows millions of people are clearly being left behind. But more than that, the widening gap in how people rate their lives may be able to provide a better, more complete picture of inequality in a country than income inequality alone.

While studying national averages illustrates important differences between countries, to gain a greater understanding of wellbeing inequality it is important to analyze differences within countries. This is why more and more political leaders are taking Wellbeing Inequality into account.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced plans to include the wellbeing of New Zealanders as a measure of her country’s economic success.

a better (business) world starts with you!

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Business Hippie Club

ECONOMIC PHILOSOPHY

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An increasing number of people is not happy with the present situation in our society and how the economic system works. Tweaking the existing system is not bringing the drastic change we need right now. There is simply no time to waste. So we need a different approach to have a balanced social economy.

The philosophy of our society should be about studying the human behavioral patterns and market constructs. To analyze the correlations and motivations to build an economic system which is adapted to our goal of well-being.

Now we use an economic system which was initiated after a war which was based on scarcity, to rebuild our society and economy with jobs, income and housing. This construct is no longer applicable as we, generally speaking, live in a time of abundance. This consumerism is no longer valid.

This quantitative approach should be replaced by the goal of improving the quality of life

By working on an economy of connection instead of competition. Where we all have access to goods and services instead of owning these. We need to define what well-being means, in order to design how our society should look like.

Let’s also be critical about the role of the larger companies as they have a great power and influence on how our society functions. Can we make them accountable for their impact on our society?

The (present) old school economic system is prevailing and leading our society. What if we choose for people first, and happiness as leading criteria? Let businesses innovate in non-commercial activities, and see what happens….

a better (business) world starts with you!

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Business Hippie Club

WE ARE ONLY HUMAN

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We are living in a society which is rooted on an economic system with production and efficiency goals. Where making profit was the target, whatever it takes.

Now we come to the point where we realize this was perhaps a good idea back then, but we didn’t think it through, or could foresee the consequences of this production system on us, as human beings. It is/was a system where human interests were secondary. Simple as that.

In this era we are aware that the quality of life is more important than making money. Where human emotions are part of our existence and we cannot skip these in favor of chasing profit.  

As humans we are capable enough and worthy enough

So this is my pledge:

  • Please treat me as a human and not as a rational homo economicus or production tool
  • I’m aware of the tension between unlimited wants and limited means. I’m wise enough to realize this, and don’t need a production leader to tell me otherwise
  • I’m an authentic person and others are too, so please respect our uniqueness
  • As a real living person in this world, I realize when I have enough and I’m able to share

a better (business) world starts with you!