The Dinosaur Follies
So yesterday, with all seriousness, someone asked me: “You’re in HR. Tell me why I have to change how I do stuff at work? Everything has to be so PC now. Why can’t it be like it used to be?’”
I admit I was rather flippant in my reply: it was 95 degrees and I wanted to get back into the AC, plus I really couldn’t believe someone was still using the phrase PC.
So my answer was “because if you don’t evolve, you’re a dinosaur. And you know what happened to the dinosaurs.”
Now, obviously, this was not a particularly original thought; we’ve talked for quite some time about the evolution of the workplace and the evolution of HR. I pondered it quite a bit after HRevolution myself.
So why do individuals resist the inevitable?
- A routine can be comforting – if someone has talked, acted, interacted with others and done things in a certain way for XX years, there’s a sense of comfort and stability in that
- There’s an inability to see the bigger impact – without a context or explanation to define the reason for evolution (or often a personal experience to support that personal definition), people tend to live in their own sphere and not envision the larger cultural shift that may be taking place around them
- Fear fear fear – what appears as stubbornness or resistance may have an underlying reason – fear of failure, fear of having to learn something new, fear of new expectations and on and on
The future could be a scary place, we won’t know until we get there. While some people are rushing headlong into new possibilities, others are much more tentative. And I don’t care if it’s at work or with my neighborhood association, I want to make sure that I help people see the context, need and reasoning behind the necessity to evolve.