Dignity is foundational to the concept of peace. In fact, there can be no peace without dignity. Dignity is so important to the concept of peace, that in the United Nations’ milestone document, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the concept of dignity is established as the foundation of all human rights. Article 1 states, “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act toward one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”
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Tag Archives: Peace in the Workplace
If you follow my work and writing, you have heard me say many times, Peace is human security and the ability to live a life of dignity that is free of fear. Human security means that we consistently experience a fulfillment of our basic human needs such as: our need to have our identity acknowledged and honored; our need for participation and recognition; as well as physical, emotional, and psychological security. Human needs also include our need for belonging, love, self-esteem, and personal fulfillment.
Recently a well-intended and trusted friend mentioned to me that I might want to tone down the “peace” talk in the my external communications and use language corporate leadership is more familiar and comfortable with. I know why she made the recommendation. People do not want to talk about peace in the workplace. It sounds mushy, woo-woo, and soft. Adjectives no one in the workplace wants to be associated with.
There is nothing soft about peace. Quite the opposite.
Asking for a pay increase. Providing critical feedback on performance. Addressing inappropriate behavior. Apologizing. These are examples of hard-to-have, but necessary, workplace conversations.
Peace in the workplace exists when individuals experience security, dignity, and a working environment that is free of fear. This criteria for peace is the same criteria necessary for fostering a working environment in which employees are highly engaged and able to experience their personal and professional potential. Creativity, collaboration, and high-level problem-solving are optimized when people feel valued, respected, and safe.
The workplace is rife with conflict. Research shows that 85 percent of employees deal with conflict on some level while 29 percent of employees deal with conflict almost constantly. This workplace conflict comes at a hefty cost. U.S. employees spend 2.1 hours per week involved with conflict. This amounts to one full day per month spent managing conflict. And that is just the toll it takes on the corporation. The human cost is equally great. As much as 27 percent of employees have witnessed conflicts lead to personal attacks, which diminishes trust and morale in workplace relationships. And 25 percent of employees have seen conflict result in sickness or absence. Learning to communicate with honesty and empathy can have a significant impact on workplace relationships.