THE CHANGING DYNAMICS AT THE WORKPLACE;

Azima Wellness Talk 22/2018

THE CHANGING DYNAMICS AT THE WORKPLACE;

why we need to support the campaign to humanize the work place

We are in the month of June. Just the other day, we were celebrating the New Year and making resolutions and setting goals that seemed too far. We have now gone half way this year. It’s time to review our progress towards achieving these goals. Time to evaluate how far we are to the goals and match this with the remaining time.

Personally, I can admit the year has been quite eventful these 5 months. My top goal this year is to build partnerships to entrench wellness in the workplace. When we adopted Sustainable Development Goals in 2015, I noted that workplace wellness had the smallest share in the wellness economy at only $43B out of a massive 3.7 trillion. This had to change.

 

I come from the background of human rights activism as a member of civil society.  We were instrumental in pushing for a humane world to the United Nations level which was accepted and informed expansion of MGDs from 8 to the 17 goals in SDGs that are mainly pro people. We had also played a big role in entrenching the bill of rights in our 2010 constitution. What we now require is to build strong partnerships for implementation as covered in goal no 17.

Building this partnerships is my main goal in 2018 focusing in goal no 3 Good Health and wellbeing.  I have been privileged to get repeat opportunities to take the wellness message to all our  main media houses in Kenya. – KTN, Citizen, NTV, K24, Inooro TV, Kameme TV and to several radio stations. I thank God for these opportunities. I have also been able to take the message out of Nairobi to the Counties. I have also worked with Almasi Beverages who are the Coca Cola franchise holder in Kisii, Eldoret and Mount Kenya Bottlers in Nyeri. I took Financial and Health Wellness to their staff in all their stations of work in February.

The Climax of my outreach to Corporates was the opportunity to address HR Managers during the 5th Annual IHRM Conference on 23rd – 25th May 2018. I was honored with the opportunity to give the opening address in this important Conference at Whitesands hotel Mombasa. The theme for this years’ conference fitted well with what Azima Wellness stand for. Humanizing the workplace in line with SDGs to expand our share in the emerging wellness economy that place people and planet before profit.

The way we organize wealth and economic activities has been changing over the years. We started as hunter gatherers in the Garden of Eden. Then we fell out of God’s favor and He declared that we will eat from our sweat. We embarked of a long journey to fend for ourselves. This Journey has now came full circle.

In this Century, we have moved from Industrial age to information age and now we are in the Knowledge economy. We have gone full circle. We destroyed our forests to build advanced cities but we now going back to basic wisdom. Air Pollution in the name of modernity has caused a lot of health complications and spiraling of respiratory diseases. The world realized this during MDGs and started incentivizing preservation of environment with carbon credit rewards for afforestation. The earlier competition around who will build the most expensive house has given way to ecofriendly homes that emit least pollutants and respect the environment for planetary sustainability. We regarded consuming animal products as “good living but we are now moving back to sage wisdom and choosing to be vegetarians. There is a growing organic food ecosystem even in Kenya.
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The move back to basics has taken to extremes. We are witnessing crazy behaviors like our beauties  choosing to adorn rags instead of wearing expensive looking clothes. How can you explain this!!

 

These are changing times in deed. With the advent of SDGs which advocate for people first before profits and sustainability of the planet, the world is set for major realignments.

This is the background I was invited by IHRM to address their annual conference. This was a perfect opportunity for me. Traditionally the role of HR managers at the work place has been to deal with mundane personnel matters like hiring and firing staff and dealing with disciplinary cases. With SDGs, the ground has shifted to their favour.

They are going to be the key drivers of productivity as we role vision 2030. The hitherto leading careers like Architecture, Engineering, Lawyers, Doctors and Actuaries have been taken over by Artificial Intelligence. Robots are taking over production lines rendering many people jobless. This will accelerate towards 2030. We now have drones delivering goods and driverless vehicles are now a reality. Most airports have been automated and check-in is done online. Hotels are now using robots as waiters in places like China and Singapore.  In UK they recently unveiled a tractor that can do fully automated farming from preparing land, planting, weeding and harvesting without any human involvement.

This is taking automation to a dangerous level for workers. Jobs are under threat everywhere. We urgently need to find ways to regain a human face at the workplace. Its HR managers who must stand up for the rights of workers. By training, they are the most humane people in the work place and their services are not be easily automated. The HR Managers have responsibility to come up with programs that take care of their workers first. Happy employees will make good products for their customers who will by extension make the shareholders happy.

What is the way forward for the HR managers of 2030?

Join me next week to for part two of what I shared in Mombasa.

With profound regards,
Maina Azimio
Founder and CEO
Azima Wellness Consultants LTD
Conference Speaker & Corporate Trainer in Total Wellness.

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