LifeWorks Today Podcast → 06 When Everything Falls To Pieces

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Episode Title:  When Everything Falls To Pieces

“In general, only a child who feels safe dares to grow forward healthily. His safety needs must be gratified. He can’t be pushed ahead, because the ungratified safety needs will remain forever underground, always calling for satisfaction.”

Abraham Maslow


In my recent podcast episodes, I shared the importance of certain conditions and conversations that keep people out of what Adler called the inferiority complex and the resulting uninterrupted struggles within and between people. I shared how we need to help one another build courage and motivation from the inside out. I shared why the fostering of personal responsibility, social interest and emotional intelligence on a regular basis and for everyone, without exception, is crucial. Consistency and breaking down outdated imbalances of power are key to creating further experiences that support healing and regeneration on every level, especially as we go through traumatic circumstances.

Questions to Ponder:

  1. What does trauma-informed mean and why is it important to consider especially in recent times and as we move into the future?
  2. What is the power distance index and how does this fit into our discussion on creating trauma-informed, supportive conditions?
  3. What exactly are technohuman ecosystems and why should we be excited to understand and embrace them?

Episode Guest: Jacob Perkins

Jacob Perkins is an empathizing and systemizing transdisciplinary practitioner with over a decade serving across human service systems. He has an eclectic background, including an MSW from Washington University in St. Louis and training and research in clinical practice, transdisciplinary science, and globalization. You can find him serving passionately in the Emergency Room, advising emerging practitioners, conducting health research, or pro bono project consulting.

Featured Story:

I had a email from one of my clients the other day that really illustrated this. It was from the COO of a large local healthcare company, who shared an email she sent to her entire team observing the many ways they are rocking the teamwork during Covid19. She shared with me this is happening so extraordinarily because for the past three years, together they have built a highly trauma-informed workplace culture and instituted a technohuman ecosystem, not only with each other but in their technology roles within this 1500 person fast-growing healthcare company.

Keywords: power distance index, trauma-informed, technohuman ecosystems, psychological safety, neuro-diversity

In this episode, we focused on:

  • Power distance index – PDI is a measurement of the acceptance of a hierarchy of power by individuals who make up the general population of a nation, culture, or business. What was discovered is that fear of questioning or being assertive and open with the captain and in some instances with those manning the control tower, was perceived to be insubordination and to be avoided.
  • Trauma-informed – Understanding and consideration of the pervasive nature of trauma and promotes environments of healing and recovery rather than practices and services that may inadvertently re-traumatize.
  • Psychological safety – is being able to show and behave as one’s self without fear of negative consequences of self-image, status or career.
  • Technohuman ecosystems – In this podcast, it’s the collaboration of human activities enhanced by some degree of technology.
  • Neuro-diversity – variation in the human brain regarding sociability, learning, attention, mood and other mental functions in a non-pathological sense. An example would be to learn of the specialized functioning of certain autistic workers in bringing strengths and unique ways of determining answers through non-conventional neurology.
  • Five requirements for a high-functioning trauma-informed culture, including:
    • Safety, creating spaces where people feel culturally, emotionally, and physically safe, including practicing openness, acknowledgement and support for people when they are in discomfort or unease,
    • Transparency and Trustworthiness,
    • Choice,
    • Collaboration and Mutuality, and
    • Empowerment.

If you’ve listened to my earlier podcast episodes, you recognize that the work of LifeWork Systems includes all of these. In fact, over a year ago, a colleague and friend of mine Jacob Perkins told me that I had created a trauma-informed system and that’s why I’m happy to introduce you to Jacob and invite him to have this conversation with me for the benefit of many!

Resources: There are some articles related to this topic, including:

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Interview Transcript


Welcome To Life Works today this podcast is provided so that together we can create a world in which all people love their lives our current human systems aren’t working the way of superior versus inferior or management versus employee or adult versus child we need a powerful positive and sustainable transformation this podcast is for you who seek to be happy fulfilled and peaceful so that your Abundant Life Works today welcome everybody to this episode of Life Works today our episode is called when everything falls to Pieces how uncertainty and change can foster growth rather than chaos and failure and oh my gosh it sure feels like everything’s falling to pieces there will be more change in the next 10 years than we’ve had in the last 100 years uncertainty and changes aren’t new they’ve been increasing exponentially and now our human window of Tolerance has been stretched to the Limit more than ever as a global civilization we’ve been catapulted into the awareness that we need new technum ecosystems wow that’s a mouthful I’m GNA have a guess that’s going to really help you understand what all that means but these systems help people to increase emotional stability and resiliency because how we react adapt and evolve will become the measure of our success individually as communities and as Nations together with my guest today we’ll be sharing our vision of just some of the game-changing systems that are needed to fortify resilience and help us all to reach the other side of Crisis intact and thriving in my recent episodes I’ve shared the importance of certain conditions and conversations that keep people out of what Adler called the inferiority complex and the resulting uninterrupted struggles that happen inside of us and between us I shared how we need to help each other to build courage and motivation from the inside out I shared why the fostering of personal responsibility social interests where we care about what we’re causing each other and emotional intelligence is happening on a regular basis in for everyone consistency and breaking down outdated imbalances of Power are really key to creating f experiences that support our healing and our regeneration on every level especially as we go through traumatic circumstances so in today’s episode the compelling questions that I want to address are what is trauma informed what does that mean and why is it important to understand especially in recent times and as we move into the future what is this thing called Power distance index that’s something that I recently learned about and I want to share with you and how it fits into the discussions on creating supportive conditions responsibility based trauma-informed conditions and what exactly are technum ecosystems and why should we be excited to understand and to even Embrace those so there are least five requirements for a high functioning trauma informed culture and I’m going to be speaking about these in in Greater depth with my guest today but I want you to keep in mind that when people go through hard times when they’re on under stress they need to feel a sense of safety they need to know that there are spaces where they can go and feel emotionally and physically safe and where they can practice openness and get support even when they’re in discomfort or unease they need to know they can be open Unapologetic transparent and trustworthy and have trustworthiness with other people they need to feel like there are choices that there’s real healthy collaboration in mutuality of respect of equality of care and they need to feel empowered so if you’ve listened to those earlier episodes you might recognize that the work of Life work systems includes all of these characteristics in fact over a year ago a colleague and friend of mine Jacob Perkins told me that I had created a trauma-informed system I didn’t even know what that meant and that’s why I’m happy to introduce you to Jacob and invite him to have this conversation with me today for the benefit of many people before I go into the uh full introduction on Jacob I want to share with you a quote that I brought to this podcast and it’s really apt that it’s by Abraham maslo and basically he’s saying in general only a child who feels safe dares to grow forward healthily his safety needs must be gratified he can’t be pushed ahead because the ungratified safety needs will remain forever Underground always calling for satisfaction and I think a lot of us are really in that place where we’re trying to find our safety needs so who better than Jacob Perkins to tell you a little bit more about what it is to be trauma informed so I want to just tell you I met Jacob a couple years ago and he is a person who has I always tell him he’s got a big brain and a big heart because he’s very empathetic and he also values systems and studies a lot of different disciplines called he was even called a train trans disciplinary practitioner and he has over a decade serving across many Human Service systems so he’s really smart I always learn new things from him he has an Eclectic background including his masters in social work from Washington University in St Louis and his training and research in clinical practice transdisciplinary science and globalization you will find him nowadays serving passionately in the emergency room advising emerging practitioners conducting health research or giving pro bono project Consulting welcome to the show Jacob Perkins hi thanks Judy I appreciate all those kind words I appreciate everything you’re doing and The Bravery that you have every single day as you go into those emergency rooms you know that we all have a real appreciation of that for you yeah I mean I’m a servant but there’s so many big servants right now I have friends who are nurses friends who are Ed Physicians and many of them are out there right now not just picking up shifts but dealing with some of the other issues that kind of are pervasive across these Health Care Systems so I would say that they’re all in it together right now and so that that’s it is stressful but it’s also very inspiring to see um the supportive stance that those um Frontline healthc care providers are giving each other right now yes yes and so how does that fit into what we’re going to be talking about today because really I tried to sort of give a few characteristics of trauma and form but why don’t you go ahead and tell the audience what that’s all about and why that matters yeah for me as a provider in healthc care I mean trauma informed care is something that we’ve been talking about for a while now you know a lot of the large scale health care agencies and nonprofits they’ve pursued trauma informed care over the last three to five years here in St Louis in particular we have some learning collaborative initiatives that seek to link all the different service providers across different Human Service systems and kind of make them strive for trauma informed care and when I say trauma firm care what I’m really talking about is a set of policies and practices which focus on acknowledging the kind of common experiences we all can have that are either a severely traumatic that’s what we call Big T trauma so that’s things like assault abuse a severe accident something that we can all kind of recognize that would disrupt lives but also the littl te traumas we have so the level of stress let’s say that whole communities are experiencing right now with both the level of infection and fatalities so we kind of see how those little te’s are are pervasive and common to everyone but overall there’s still big tea traumas a lot of the times that we don’t even talk about but they do impact a large segment of our society and of course can last over the lifespan and interrupt our life at various points depending on where we’re at and what’s going on whether it be work or home life you know I think it’s interesting how you talked about it as big tea and little tea because actually I think most of us are pretty forgiving and supportive for big tea experiences that people go through but a lot of times we don’t even want to admit our own little te experiences is are you find that true I do find that true you know certainly I know survivors of child abuse and neglect and sexual trauma who have not confronted or addressed kind of some of the experiences they’ve had but then certainly in the larger Workforce and even in the larger society you know we go through stress stressor stressor stressor and we might even acknowledge it as a stressor but it can have a definitive impact on our coping skills on our window of Tolerance and on our ability to perform across both a workplace and in our home with our families and so I think it’s important to have larger conversations about those little tees and what that means uh for people embedded in spaces and in groups yeah I know for myself I I on the last couple of years was really able to call something a trauma that really had been a trauma and I was afraid to even use that word or even use the word that I had been victimized in something because most of us don’t want to be a victim we don’t want to feel like one we don’t want to claim to be one we don’t want to even have that hanging over us but the reality is for many people once they’ve had a traumatic experience even if it seems small if they can’t call it what it is and move past it I don’t think the healing can really occur and so I’m glad we’re even just using the word trauma because it sounds like it’s real dramatic but it can be as simple as you know somebody doing something to you in a way that just makes you feel completely shooked to the core of who you are yeah then we bottle up that experience and we stuff it as I would say individually with a patient in session it may or may not manifest itself immediately in certain coping patterns or behaviors but when you do that enough you know it can overflow and it can manifest itself in other ways and that could be the workplace that could be the home life but as we know the home life and your work functioning your performance are related so you know it’s important to have this kind of trauma informed lens we’re trying to focus on human systems well and you know I want to just bring something into the conversation that kind of will tie together for those of the listeners that have heard the former episodes especially the first one which was called spitting in the soup Jacob I don’t know if you’ve heard it or not but it was really about the problems that come with using control over people and I just happen to be rereading a Malcolm Gladwell book this weekend and it really tied in with what we were going to be talking about even in terms of trauma and it was about what’s called the power distancing index I don’t know if you’ve even heard of that yes but okay good I knew you would I hadn’t heard of it but for those of you in the audience what was so interesting is Malcolm Gladwell was talking in this book about these really high levels of Korean airplane crashes and what they came to discover is that because of the way the culture of of the Korean people was you know managed people had an inordinate amount of distance from power so they felt as if they had to be very subjugated to the power structure so what would happen is sometimes these co-pilots would be in an airplane and there would be mistakes being made fuel being lost crisis occurring and they didn’t know how to overcome their fear of you know approaching the authority figure and so what happened is they had this inordinate amount of plane crashes until they could help the co-pilots learn how to shorten the distance between the authority figure and the people that are reporting to the authority figure and I just thought that was so fitting with trauma because sometimes our biggest traumas are managing relationships with authority figures yeah I mean the nature of you know I talked about big tree and little little te traumas earlier the nature of Big T is Unfortunately they tend to occur in the context of a power Dynamic so an example would be intimate partner violence and we can think of like a historical example of a male who might have more physical financial and try to perpetuate emotional power unfortunately through toxic Dynamics or force and that worker let’s say that Frontline staff might be a female and carry that over from either a prior relationship or maybe her current relationship into the workplace and you might have a high power industry that that person’s working in and you know the manager ERS don’t necessarily see it as a problem but they’re not seeing the Big T trauma that that that Frontline worker that they’re engaging might carry with them in there and so there are implications for how people are responding to high power index groups or Industries right now I would say as an aggregate the United States is about middle of the road at least some of the surveys that I’ve looked for power distance index you know it’s a pretty solid construct across comparative management studies well Jacob do you know where the narrowest distance are what what cultures have the Nordic by far the Nordic countries do the US is at the lower end but it’s not the lowest the lowest are the Nordic countries right now those tend to be culturally more communal and so that tends to be low power distance because they’re more relational so I hope that you that are listening understand what we’re talking about here we’re really saying that the use of power in itself is a source of pretty significant variations of trauma on people and it can be male female but it can also just be boss employee a parent child I mean any place that anybody feels that they have this hold over somebody else and the other person believes it I talked about this in in a former episode how the most important relationship to manage is the one you have with authority figures people that you believe have power over you and that’s a tough one no matter if you’re male female or whatever age you are so I don’t want to get too far a field Jacob is there more that you wanted to say about trauma informed in general because when you said to me you know you’ve created a trauma-informed culture will you tell me what you see in a trauma informed culture so that other people can recognize that being a trauma informed workplace would require me to acknowledge one the prevalence of big tea but more importantly little tea traumas and because I’m acknowledging that what I’m really acknowledging is the kind of universality of human beings and how they respond to stress traumas just another word for stress what we’re really talking about is stress responses in human beings and what that means so you know we’re talking about Big T and having a possibly having a workplace subordinate that is has a history of big tea trauma we have a workplace subordinate that has history of little tea trauma we need to be aware of that that person under periods of extreme stress might have a lot of I’m GNA use the technical term central nervous system upregulation which basically means they’re going to be kind of hypervigilant and wrestless that’s going on right now there’s a lot of that I’m right now everyone has central nervous system of Regulation right now everyone’s hypervigilant they’re Restless they’re having some anxiety those are stress responses and it might be short term it might be that people people were going to get back to business as usual in the next two months and people are going to kind of calm down but we’re not able to say well 90% of my Workforce this is the first time they’ve ever had something like this and so they’ll just get back to business as usual and be fine then relations will go back to the way they are three months from now what we don’t see is that chances are probably there’s a lot more Big T’s and a lot more little T’s in in My overall Workforce life this could be that one critical event which activated someone’s central nervous system and it’s being activated too long and there’s going to be all these other kind of secondary mechanisms that are activated it’s going to lead to for lack of a better word stress depressive and anxious responses and that might be enduring so in other words could have some elevated mental health in your Workforce and that’s going to disrupt performance that’s going to disrupt selfcare that’s going to disrupt workplace interactions maybe you’re going to have a subset of your Workforce that are going to have some pretty negative behaviors by your standards that you might need to address so I wouldn’t under what could happen here in the long term so if we’re really trauma informed then we’re going to take a stance that we’re going to come in during those management employee interactions we’re going to kind of acknowledge and validate what’s going on but also be assertive enough to relay what our expectations are for performance but we’re always moving forward with the lens that everyone we’re working with is a human being that can be empowered that deserves to feel safe that could be having elevated stress responses right now we’re going to be transparent enough to tell them what our expectations are but also help them and that’s to help them yeah that’s going to give them the choice that’s going to Foster trustworthiness that’s going to certainly be a collaboration for having that conversation and it’s going to empower them and when we take that stance that’s pretty low power distance that that’s pretty relational that creates the closeness even even if we’re physically distancing we’re more emotionally close closer through that you know I want to just pull the lens back a little bit because the pandemic is a really great example of people being under stress higher stress than normal having all these stress reactions but I also know that you and I have talked for a long time about the stress of just the speed of change how much complexity the world has been entering and how that’s going to continue to grow and also just the importance of paying attention to what we’re called to be like just even being called to be able to Pivot quickly to meet the needs of the marketplace or pivot quickly to be in some of the more evolved states of culture and I I want to bring that up because the pandemic will come and go and it will have its long-term and short-term effects but the fact of it is we’ve always had a lot of our work in the area of mergers and acquis that’s been a big part of our business has been mergers and Acquisitions because a person’s ability to manage trauma and stress just comes out more when they’re everything’s shook up for them so we’ve seen organizations like right now one of our clients who’s been in the culture model that they’ve been using which is our culture model for the last three years they’re just blown away by how they’re rocking it and they’re in health care you know they’re just rocking what they’re doing their teamwork what they’re accomplishing and part of that is all of the hard work they put into to create a trauma-informed I never called it that but it really is a trauma-informed environment so even though they had been doing this before anything big came along it’s really shown itself can you speak a little bit to that Jacob yeah I mean the business context we’re working in right now is the 2 Century globalized World by definition globalization did two things It sped up so we can think that speeds increased and with this increase in speed is a secondary increase in time and place the epidemic is the perfect example right now one overall having an increase in epidemics or risk of epidemics it’s part of globalization so I’m not surprised that we’re all kind of talking about these topics right now you mentioned speed right now Acquisitions merger shift change declines in supply chain new customer bases Emerging Markets the pace of the business professional is is ever increasing so much so that we can’t necessarily predict and we can’t necessarily get our mindset where it should be necessarily so I talked earlier about central nervous system up regulation if you’re a business professional right now for a large multinational corporation and you’re at a certain level you’re going to be moving at a pretty intense pace and that pace is pretty much going to mean that your body doesn’t really have a circadian rhythm is always under a high level of stress it’s almost comparable to having a prolonged littl te yes so when we have these systems in place that kind of guide us and Foster empowerment and Foster selfcare and Foster healthy relationships and mov us away from engaging in toxic workplace patterns we’re more likely to be resilient towards dealing with that prolonged state of stress that we’re under but that’s the nature of the business world that we’re kind of keeping up in nothing is nothing is really logistic it’s not linear growth is exponential and it’s in many different ways yeah yeah you know I I think in that respect I think the speed of change the comp lexity the stressors all of it whether it’s the pandemic or outside of the pandemic all of it is an opportunity to shore up the conditions and conversations that we engage in on a regular basis that either strengthen us or you know really take us down and so I love it that you are always watching for what are all the disciplines that bring about a stronger more resilient human being and what are the systems that we want to dismantle so we’re going to go into that whole thing about what is a technum ecosystem because that sounds like something from outer space and it is very very real and I want people to understand what it is and how to be excited about it because it’s important that systems thinking becomes something that you can latch on to for a sense of safety and a sense of security and a sense of assessment but before we do that I just want to take a minute to remind our listeners a little bit about life work systems my company life work systems was was formed in 2002 and we specialize in Performance Management through healthy culture transformation so we’re actually using that transformation to improve the way people manage their stress the way that they manage their jobs the way that they manage their relationships so I just ask that you consider going to our website to learn more about life work systems and how to get involved with us including access to information related to both today’s episode but also all the former episodes and the ones to come you can find us at life you can subscribe to our podcast you can find the main points on each podcast and a list of all of them and we also invite you to join our mailing list so that you receive information on free videos webinars articles free surveys my book is on there free there’s all kinds of things and we’d really like you to know how to contact us by phone and by email so all of that’s there for you we hope that you’ll take some action into that so Jacob now let’s get back to that little bit of a cliffhanger there what the heck is technum ecosystems help people understand what that is so before we get there we have to understand what resiliency is so resiliency is a capacity of a system to deal with change and to continuously develop you know we’ve had resiliency discussions in terms of systems and systems Dynamics for the better part of 40 50 years now it’s been a pretty prominent discussion across modern disciplines resiliency of course says it’s overall the capacity of a system a few instances disruption like right now in our globalized world and what’s going on to kind of SP renew in in Innovative thinking the issue is that technology is becoming such a more dominant force that we really need to include it with our view of human systems so that we’re really talking about one system and how they’re connected so the technum ecosystem refers to a fusion of our meta Consciousness which is kind of like our Max awareness of everything we are as a group of people or as a single person so my metac conscious Consciousness right now would include my awareness of my body my limits my pain my joy anything that’s like an inner phenomenon that we can talk about from a psycho emotional standpoint if I want to talk about a Workforce I could talk about the cumulative awareness and kind of the collective Consciousness that my groups might have we might put in some terms like Synergy there how they might maximize each other’s overall benefits to get to a goal or an outcome but what we need to throw in there a technum ecosystem is the integration of Technology into this awareness so now everyone’s on remote work this is a perfect example for now how does my daily routine and how I connect to remote work impact my emotions my awareness my connection to my community my Workforce and this larger world and how does that relate to my performance and my self-care when I’m not on the job or I’m not doing that business whatever at some moment in time whatever that task is well you know what Jacob even when you say the word technology to many people that’s a small T right there maybe even for some people a big T there like I don’t even know how to use my smartphone people will say you know that’s the question we have to have and I’ll talk about that in a second so going back to resiliency at the at the macro level are going to include questions of what’s the pace of technological growth and what’s that disjunction between the Techno and the social so now I have my entire Workforce remotely let’s say before maybe 15% of my Workforce was remot well now I got 75 because of what just happened in our world how is that impacting them as human beings it’s what does that mean for the service or the product I’m trying to produce so that that’s the resiliency questions we have to ask am I resilient right now given my new platform for my employees to work oh my gosh and to pull this into the context of letting go of control systems imagine those leaders who are used to controlling through policing and oversight and helicoptering and whether you’re a parent or a business leader now having to take a network model which doesn’t fit well if you have high power distance index a network model for your business will not work well with power distance because by definition people are working remotely and supposed to be working independently so then ideas of self motivation your ability to process your ability to stay connected even though you might not be through technology let’s throw in some other questions here maybe there’s a generation effect you have a younger Workforce so there isn’t a generational effect you have an older Workforce because you’re an older industry or an industry which might rely on people [Music] who yeah might be because age might be correlated with uh educational attainment depending on your Workforce in your industry so yeah we could say there could be a generational difference younger Generations might be more comfortable with this so there’s all these other questions that come into play at the macro level if you’re related to the total resiliency that you have right now and then at the micro level in there and you kind of brought this up a second ago questions for the techn human ecosystem might be discussions of well what’s the role of emotional and cultural intelligence if I’m trying to get all these teams to work since everything is so fastpaced and intense do I train a bunch of generalists do I don’t have any Specialists is everyone cross trained is everyone cross trained remotely so there’s a whole bunch of other questions to come not just on the how do I manage people aspect but what type of people should I have and all that end goal should be to be agile enough to be able to tilt and keep up with your service lineing your product when you need to because as we know right now globalization and the fourth Industrial Revolution go hand inand and so changes pretty fast changes very fast and I think even words like agile people don’t even know know what the heck does that mean you know and so one of the things that I would just want to reassure the audience is if we all start to have the kinds of conditions and conversation ations where we know who we are and we know what we’re functioning from for example one of the hardest things that we do as a company is help people to identify what they want to cause in this life what they’ve always caused when they’re at their best they just freak out they they’re afraid that they’re going to fail at it or that it’s too lofty or something but once you know that you can go through anything and know what you stand for so it’s even real basic things like living from purpose and values which a lot of people haven’t been taught how to do I think some of you may remember one of my former podcast the woman on there said look I’m over 50 and I I’m just now learning how to say what am I feeling and what do I want so there are a lot of things that go along with the speed of change that kind of force us into am I going to crack up or am I going to recreate myself and am I going to be strong enough to recreate myself and not be threatened by that I can actually either look at that with excitement like oh my gosh I get to become a different better version of myself or am I going to be afraid that now I’m outdated and I’m Obsolete and nobody’s going to want me anymore because I think a lot of people are going through that as they’re almost forced into this forced change process whether they they wanted it or not yeah I mean the remote work is a perfect example so now you’re working remotely and you’re trying to cope with that but then six months to nine months to 12 months from now the speed of technological change is exponential that’s what mtex law says and there’s already a disjunction between my human systems and my organization and now the technology platform’s growing I have very little control of the technology because that’s really being driven by the fourth Industrial Revolution and larger outside forces related to exponential technological growth but what I can control and invest in right now is the human systems so it’s important to really have that stable because that’s easier to invest in and the reason why that’s important right now is that every organization has a Knowledge Management System it is the speed at which knowledge Insight wisdom training practice kind of flows to other technology augments that well again there’s very little I can do to stop the speed of exponential technological growth that’s beyond this new markets are emerging we have drones delivering now that’s being piloted we have all these things happening on the tech side I can at least invest in the human side and in the human system and in doing so I stabilize that Knowledge Management System because that knowledge manag system is going to be disrupt if you have toxic workplace culture it’s going to be disrupted you have stressed out employees who aren’t able to focus on their jobs and learn new skills there’s I mean there’s still strategically some implementation protocol you can put in place things like more productive and diverse onboarding different learning adaptations you can kind of Ensure your knowledge management system is intact but technology augments that so in the technum ecosystem I need you to be mindful of MX law and how it’s influencing your product and service line and your training platform but also invest heavily in the human system resiliency as a whole and we view both from an integrated standpoint then we’re going to build resiliency for both it is both it absolutely is both you can’t have the techn human without the human part and I think up until now even still now I would say there’s a lot of people that look at the human system as kind of a nice to have not an absolute need to have and they underestimate the amount of complexity that it really takes to have a healthy human system more so every day so it’s not to scare anybody off by saying that it’s just that we underplay just like our technology is more complex so is our human systems needs and requirements and understandings and so what I see happening are that people are still kind of railing against why do we have to learn all this human stuff you know because we really hadn’t been taught it in the first place we really haven’t been taught to be resilient agile strong and now it’s a make or breaker the other thing I want to mention about systems themselves so systems are simply the kind of organizing structures that save us time energy and money most people don’t realize that only about 8% of the population even thinks in terms of creating systems and how to make them in in such a way that they create competencies and so when you couple that with the fact that very few people know how to build systems and very few people know how to build human systems it’s no wonder that more of us are really lacking in that area and we don’t even know how to admit it because we think everybody else around us knows what they’re doing and they don’t so that’s a big huge I think a te for people is this illusion that everybody knows what they’re doing and we none of us do that’s been the case for what I discover when I go in and work with companies most people are like I didn’t know how to do that I didn’t know know how to have that conversation I didn’t even know what I was feeling or thinking there’s so much there yeah the power distance index is a good example here because you know you might have a high power distance index industry or organization and you’re so distant from your Frontline staff well who’s going to see who’s how things are changing faster than Frontline staff and so what I always recommend is taking a systems lens if you’re trying to test a product or revision or tweak something to enhance your Roi using a mixed methods design where you incorporate a lot of that live data feedback from your Frontline staff that can really be the make or break in terms of insights but you know we can’t even get there if I can’t even have a conversation with you exactly that’s why in our last episode I had a business owner that had been using mentoring for like three or four years with our process but they weren’t yet using reverse mentoring where the manager mentors the staff and the staff turns around and mentors the manager and they’re now going to begin to incorporate that and I I really encourage that and in our system everybody is participating nobody’s The Keeper of the knowledge everybody is sharing equally in being empowered and being participants in the process which is something that breaks down those artificial separations that’s what was so mindblowing that planes could literally crash because people were afraid to speak up to their authority figures we got to break that whole set of artificial separation that happens within just about every structure that we are part of right now yes participatory based projects is what I’ll call them in systems Dynamics science we have participatory based research basically we’re coming in and we’re trying to take a social problem we bring in Frontline staff we ask in all state holders for that problem and we tell them to give us what’s the ca what’s the cost this right so for instance I might have gun violence and I bring in youth who’ve been who’ve had experience on the streets with gun violence I bring in teachers I bring law enforcement and I bring in researchers and we all kind of create a map of what that social Pro why that social problem is occurring when we do that I just don’t have the criminal justice researcher saying oh well this is going on because I’ve looked at all the quantitative data over time and and for the United States and I just don’t have the teacher saying well it’s this we kind of come together and we bring all of our Collective lenses to Define what that problem is and so you know when you apply participatory methods in a business context what you really do is take your Frontline staff who again see change faster than anyone else and you take their insights and experiences and you use that to inform your decision making and when you naturally build healthy workplace cultures and healthy relationships that process kind of already happens you don’t have to operationalize it with a participatory design yes they become the creators of the whole process and they become the people that say hey let’s make this part of the way we operate you know a couple of really cool ways we’ve done this as life work systems is we worked an entire education system where we work with parents teachers administrators and students all at the same time they all had a Common Language they all had common tools the kids would go to school and have classroom meetings they’d go home and have family meetings the parents knew how to speak to the teachers about you know how are we going to redirect negative behavior if we’re not going to be using punishment and bribery and all the control models when you say participative I always want to say fully distributive that means your Frontline staff matter but so do your middle people and so do your high performers and your low performers and in fact what what I see happen in the traditional system is that the higher the performer the more that’s invested in them and it’s really the underdevelopment of so much potentiality because we don’t always include the the whole and make it so deliberately participative on the part of everyone now most people would think well we can’t afford to do that we don’t have time and money to do that but if you think about it we all have time and money to have a cell phone now right there was a time where we we would have thought that was insane to think that we could all have a cell phone well the the beauty in the Techno part of techno human is the Techno gives us the advancements that allow us to have these human systems available to us easily we have phone apps that we use so that when people people learn how to communicate a certain way oh I forgot how to do Health Eventing instead of gossiping but I have it right here on my phone so there’s no more excuses or oh I really want to redirect this person’s negative behavior and it’s it’s this one but I don’t remember how to do it oh I can pull it up on my phone and that’s what the beauty is of having techno the Techno part of the of the equation it’s just that we’re still thinking in a non- techno way about human systems and it’s really possible for all of us to have things at our fingertips yeah we could certainly augment our human systems from technology the learning component is is massive right now especially the e-learning you know at least right now since remote work took live and higher education will forever be disrupted and reformed from this recent epidemic we’re going to see those e-learning and those mobile learning platforms kind of take off and it will be a part of Workforce training and onboarding to have those as pretty significant parts of your learning platform and even those things require a certain amount of study and best practices for example when we do our e-learning training it’s interactive it’s designed to appeal to the auditory the visual and the kinesthetic learner it’s not passive because so many things nowadays people can put it on in the background and then they can be busy over here doing the laundry ours requires a direct interaction so that people are engaging and then they go into a group review model where each person on the team takes turns leading the group’s review session and has to prepare for it and to you know look at their leader guide and watch their group module and then lead the group and that really causes people to have a level of agility that they didn’t even know they didn’t have you know we don’t know the hardest part is what we don’t know we don’t know and what I see when I oversee some of those kind of group sessions is that the weaker leaders tend to get rescued by the stronger leaders and we have to go no no this is where you need to encourage them to step up and to be strong and that they can do it you don’t want to take over for them and and rescue them and exempt them and so it becomes a natural pool of how do we develop leader follower agility and then how do we make sure that this is handled again a third time in mentoring and then it’s handled again in the way that the the leaders and the Committees and the teams build it into the operations of the business that’s when you take the best of techno and the best of human and they’re working in tandem yeah I agree any other thoughts since we’re about ready to wrap up here Jacob Yeah you mentioned Rescuers you know I think it takes there’s a real intentionality that comes behind growing as an organization and developing human systems and I think that that’s you know we’ve talked about well you can do this and you can do that and this is how this works and this but at the end of the day what that really boils down to is a decision a decision for each and every member of that team to want to hold themselves accountable to overcome whatever barrier that is it could be Big T it could be a repeated little te it could be just them in the moment to be a participatory member in that community at that organization or at that work and be able to hold themselves accountable also holding their peers and their supervisors accountable to what healthy Dynamics and healthy relationships are at the end of the day it really is almost a vulnerability and a courage that’s going to be the foundation for all this to thrive yeah I would say courage vulnerability and personal responsibility and the only way people can be personally responsible is if they are committed to high levels of compass passion and curiosity and a huge drop even an elimination of negative judgment and criticism because we need to understand that we’ve had these human systems neglected for a long time we can’t be good at them until we learn how to walk first in them and in order for people to feel that courage to be that personally responsible we have to keep recognizing that they’re often afraid to do that I struggle with that after all this time Jacob that I’m so passionate about these changes I’m so excited about the healing properties of these changes I forget that sometimes people are freaked out by these changes that I’m asking them to do people are freaked out and that’s a pretty normative response when you take into consideration that they might have been bottling as I mentioned way earlier or they might be trying to avoid or trying to escape anything that might put them in experiencing whatever those negative feelings um techn the technical term is negative effectivity the negative effectivity that they’re kind of in when they experience that experience of having to be vulnerable yeah I mean what we have found that this part of the system that we develop and deliver it happens in month four where people are asked to identify who they are and what they’re causing when they’re at their best which is purpose what is your purpose like mine is to create a world where people love their lives because I know whenever I’ve been at my best that’s what I just do naturally it isn’t even an effort I just do it I love doing it I love helping people love not only love their life but love their life but you wouldn’t believe how much push back we get in month four when that whole section comes up of of identifying what who are you at your best I remember one time one of my customers said well gosh if I read this whole process right who I am at my best is causing greatness I that’s like what the dolly Lama does and I said who says you can’t be like the doy Lama but he literally was freaked out for a long time he could only say I observe greatness because it felt too weighty and too scary for him to own or put a stake in the ground for that because he was probably too perfectionistic what if I fail at it and it’s it’d be better to put a stake in the ground and fail than to be afraid and not put a steak in the ground but sometimes people have to just be aware first that they’re scared so that’s kind of the microcosm of trauma is being aware of our fear of our own power and our fear of our own responsibility and it’s actually as beray brown would say it’s the gateway to Joy and freedom and that can be from Big te or little te yes the good news about big tea and little tea is they’re always giving us opportunities to grow learn and to strengthen something in us that would not otherwise be strengthened and that’s the good news of our topic today trauma informed means let’s be informed about how to treat one another despite some of the traumatic events that come up in our lives before and during and after pandemics and so I want to thank you so much Jacob I always learn new things from you I learned a few new terms in here that I want to write down and and I still need to have a conversation with you about neurodiversity and some of the other things you’ve recently raised but I you’ll come back again another time because you just have so much knowledge and you’re one that just loves to study what the larger systems are and how those patterns play together and you’re really in that eight% and I’m so glad to know you oh I appreciate you saying that Judy let’s talk about why neurodiversity is needed right now okay should that be one of our next topics since we’re out of time today yes yes okay Jacob says he’s going to do that with me so I I hope that you all can join us for that talk down the road but I want to thank all my listeners for listening to Life Works today the podcast today is brought to you by Life Works systems and myself Judy Ryan the host and my intent in this podcast is really to provide you with hope and to give you new ideas so that you have Greater Joy in your life please visit our website subscribe to our podcast and if you feel inspired by any of these podcasts please give us a fstar rating because it really helps other people decide to listen to our podcast and so we can help more people so I end with inviting you please join me in creating a world where all people love their lives and where you can grow masterful in making sure that your life works today thanks again J thank you Judy thank you for listening to Life Works today this podcast has been brought to you by life work system CEO and host Judy Ryan the intent of this podcast is to provide you with hope and new ideas for Greater Joy in your life and work for more information on our organization and earlier podcast episodes related articles videos and more please visit our website at Lifeworks be sure to subscribe to our podcast and mailing list we invite you to join us in creating a world in which all people love their lives and where your life works today

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