How human is your business?

I was on the phone to Apple support this weekend – sussing out a problem with monitors then rebuilding my Mac Mini (a fun weekend, eh?).

Apple people genuinely seem to listen and understand. They’re not scripted, they respond when I tell them the steps I’ve already taken and don’t (usually) make me jump through hoops.

They’re more human.

We’re crying out for human, authentic organisations now, aren’t we?

But sometimes people get stuck on what being human means. 

So we came up with a model which shows where companies are on the scale of human.

You’ll easily spot where your company is, how human it is and what that looks like.

Recognise your company here?

Rigid companies are the classic corporate monoliths. They’re very hard work to deal with because you never feel like they ever talk with you in a remotely human way.

Inflexible companies feel a little more human, but they’re still pretty forbidding. They give you the occasional flash of genuineness and warmth, but that’s the exception, not the rule.

Responsive companies do a pretty good job of building a real, friendly, personal relationship with you. They’re not always perfect, but they’re trying pretty hard.

Human companies are the ones that everybody loves. They never seem to put a foot wrong, because they’re always completely genuine and true to themselves.

Now you can see where you are, you want to come up with a plan to move up the scale. If you can get to the top you’ll have happy employees and customers, which is all great for the bottom line.

Moving may be easy – give your people freedom to be themselves and do the right thing for customers. And tweak how you’re talking so it’s more human.

Sometimes it’s tougher. You might need to look deep into your culture, values and how you want your staff and customers to feel about you.

Either way, it’s an investment worth making.

And if you’re interested in knowing more about how we came up with the model it’s based on Carl R Rodgers’ Seven Stages of Growth – you can read more about that in my whitepaper How to help your company to be more human. 

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