Monday, 21 April 2014

The Dehumanizing of Others

The dehumanising of others is what we often refer to as 'stereotyping'. It starts from a deep insecurity within the self which is also where conflict begins. Psychologists know that most of us tend to remember negative things about others more than positive things. We hold people responsible for their bad behaviour and dont give them credit for their good ones. This happens because seeing others in a negative light helps us to feel superior to them. When people develop a healthy, REALISTIC regard for themselves, the negative memories fade away. This is why the paradigm "I See Myself" preceedes the paradigm "I See You". By reducing people to the status of things, we think we can better control them. That's why companies refer to their employees by the ironic term "human resources" as though they were just another liability on the balance sheet, like taxes or accounts payable. Thats why most people im most organisations are seen only in terms of their function, even though they possess far more creativity, resourcesfulness, ingenuity and intelligence than their Manager's realise. It is the responsibility of Managers to work with their teams/subordinates to cultivate these strengths and talents to address any weaknesses. So often during performance management time, Managers find it easier to base feedback on isolated incidents which have not highlighted the strengths of an employee leading to unbalanced performance reviews.

1 comment:

  1. I feel stereotyping is more about attaching particular traits to a group of people e.g. people from Asia study a lot. Agree with companies de-humanising; I am fortunate to work for a company which refers to its employees as talent - a much nicer description which encapsulates the traits you mention, and also makes us human. If you're on LinkedIn you will likely enjoy following Liz Ryan, founder of the Human Workplace.