Considering where we’re at in America (the world too) today, I felt moved to put this post from 2010 out again. I’m still learning…
I’ve been thinking lately about what we value and what we don’t. This is important because our values do define our lives.
For example, if your career is what you value most, then everything (I mean everything) will be second to that. I’m not writing to judge, just stating a reality. It’s ironic how little values are considered in our current age.
The above brings me to why men (significant numbers) don’t value their women. I know this post might generate some scathing comments, but I speak as a recovering jerk in the area of valuing my wife and her motherhood.
I worked, as many readers/subscribers know, in corporate America for many years. The majority of that was at a senior level. And yes, I drank the kool-aid, participated in the rah, rah sessions and terminated the employment of people who were deemed disposable. I was paid well and thought (at times) my path was only going to get better.
During this time my wife gave up her career to raise our two children. This decision was mutually agreed upon. The idea of her being the primary care-giver seemed like the right thing to do. To this day, I would say our children are the better for this decision.
But along the way I began to see our roles as separate and equal. She took care of things at home and I took care of things career related. There were times when we’d share the burdens, but I thought little about her struggles and work load. After all, I saw it as her role/job. The “taking things for granted” process settled in.
Many times she would call me at the office to vent or seek affirmation. I gave her words, but not my heart. Life went on, money was made and security (perceived) became the normal. We lived this way for almost ten years, and then things changed. My wife went back to work and corporate America said goodbye to me. I became a man who did many different things (author, consultant and stay-at-home dad). All of sudden the world looked strange. For example, work on the book manuscript and make sure my son got to preschool. Ironically, after about six months, I found myself longing for affirmation and encouragement from my wife for all of my hard work at home. I felt like a man exposed by his ghosts.
I don’t claim that my experiences are unique or more important than other men. But here are the reasons why many men don’t value their wives or motherhood:
The Eric that walked the halls of corporate America is dead. The post-corporate America Eric is learning how to live and has been given a chance to be remade. It’s very difficult to live differently. But I have found a life worth living-Epic if I may so.
In my last post, I rang the bell about the gap between human development and the advancements of technology. The disharmony is evident to many. Within the large and mid-market organizations, there is another disturbing trend afoot. We are witnessing the dehumanization of the employee.
Dehumanizing the employee occurs as many employers are looking to advance efficiency and innovation. It’s a false belief that those twins can move human development the way technology does with automation or research.
One area worth looking at is the process many organizations use to hire talent. Keep in mind that the talent is made up of flesh and blood. I realize this can also be a source of real frustration for those in talent recruitment. Technology has convinced many senior leaders that vast problems are solved in the hands of inventive software.
The idea of using screening software has a place. However, it’s proven, the folly of hiring based on keywords. The old saying, “we hired your resume, but what we got was you” is on mark here. More critical thinking in this spot is what we need. Seems like that would remedy the incongruent state of the talent recruitment processes.
So the dehumanizing continues. What do we do now that the horses are out of the gate?
There are so many cool things about technology. To be living in this time you might feel lucky. If you’re someone like me, who lives with a chronic disease, your literal life may be impacted by the advancements technology brings. I am thankful.
However, there is a problem with technology.
As the advancement has moved at warped speed, so has the decline in the state of human beings. The state of:
The above 5 are just my mine. Would you add something to the list? Do you agree? Do you see the trend? Do you see the danger?
I met with a development officer from a local university a few weeks ago. The research group she helps is doing some really intriguing things in the world of diabetes care, more specifically finding a cure. Their work runs the gamut, from islet cell therapy to using 3d printing as a tool to further expand breakthroughs.
By the time she had completed her story, my head was spinning. It gave me hope and it made me pause.
What good is the work if beneficiaries are determined to kill themselves despite the prospects of a better day?
I told the development officer that some of the dollars raised should be used to fund solving the problem of poor choices. Its the 800 pound gorilla. Would solving that problem fix everything? I’m not smart enough to say, but it’s clear much of what plagues us inside our head would be improved dramatically.
This irony didn’t begin yesterday.