If you work somewhere that this is an issue, it might not be you. It could very well be the workplace. A workplace that can’t keep right on rolling when one of the team is on PTO is a workplace that hasn’t planned staffed or done talent development well. A workplace that is truly looking out for the well-being of its employees would not leave anyone in a situation where taking a break is more stressful than not taking one.
But in other areas of life, that’s not at all how the game works. War, business, education, etc. are not finite games. It’s not clear who all of the competitors are, the rules change and there’s no one “score” that everyone has agreed upon. Maybe most importantly, it doesn’t end at the allocated time, it goes on and on with some of the competitors giving up over time and dropping out of the game.
The problem Simon identifies is that when the game is infinite, but you play it as if it were finite, you end up in a quagmire.
So, while I wouldn’t place the blame for all of our anxiety coming from a pandemic, climate, racism, sexism, and violence, I do believe the workplace has a role to play when it comes to supporting the human beings who work for you in dealing with all of that, and a responsibility to not add to it. Unfortunately, I see a lot of leaders who don’t seem to care about either of those things. IMHO, they don’t deserve to have employees.
How does anyone work like this? Is it possible that 95% of those working for your organization don’t even get the company strategy? Probably because 93% of them feel like they aren’t being communicated with clearly.
As I read over the list of six conditions that Drucker believed enabled productivity, I came to the conclusion that I have never worked in a place that provided all six. Usually that last one, being seen as an asset as opposed to a cost, is the easy one to see. Management loves to remind you that you are a cost, especially if you work in a tech or training position. Heck, anything other than a sales position in some organizations is a “cost”, and we all know anyone who isn’t directly billing more hours to a client than they get paid in legal is a cost. As we have seen over the last year, you can do great work, but when shareholders and Boards decide it’s time to cut costs, that great work won’t grant you immunity from mass layoffs.