People-centered and New Work

In our new podcast episode, we discuss with New Work expert Maria how New Work principles help shape a human-centered enterprise.

Here you can listen to the whole episode

Is New Work human-centered?

"Per se, New Work is not human-centered" - waaas? But how can that be?! Isn't New Work exactly about improving the world of work and giving people the work they want and need?in principle, yes - but Maria and Sebastian see New Work principles as a method box that can be helpful. Nevertheless, a guaranteed human-centeredness is not given by the application of arbitrary principles! And this is important to understand.

New Work can move things in the right direction. For example, removing barriers between people in the company and customers and thus promoting much more human-centered processes and product development. The New Work principles have helped to create a framework at Metafinanz, for example. A framework in which decentralized structures can develop. Especially in the change process to a new decentralized organizational model, New Work principles can help to build new structures. If we say we want to be human-centered as a company, we can think about what New Work principles can help with that. One of them, for example, is a vision around which self-organization happens.

What New Work principles can help build a human-centered enterprise?

A fundamental New Work principle is self-organization. This goes hand in hand with the freedom to make decisions without being dependent on management. Self-organized teams make decisions independently. In addition to freedom, this also means greater responsibility. People in the company have to accept this and learn to deal with it. Another principle is shared knowledge. It is important to create structures that encourage teams to communicate and share with other teams. What works for a team A might also work for team B. But how do you make sure that team B finds out about it? Regular exchange and making knowledge transparent is one step.

One principle that we like very much is that of eye level. Breaking down hierarchical structures naturally leads to more eye level in communication. And here we have an experiment for you listeners: Try communicating at eye level in a hierarchical relationship, whether with superiors or customers, and pretend that New Work principles apply. Of course, this is not always possible or possible with every person, but maybe there is one or the other person in your network who would welcome this. As Maria says, it starts with us and how we communicate.

We wish you a human-centered experience that will make you think!

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