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Job Satisfaction, Dealing with Others and Caring Attention

Today I was at a management workshop of my office at Red Cross. In the morning we were informed about the results of a staff survey done by an external institute. The lady who presented the results mentioned that she has done numerous surveys and always there was a higher job satisfaction with women than with men. This is found across different professions and countries, and they can’t definitely explain why. Also part-time employees generally have a higher satisfaction than full time workers…. The satisfaction at our office is generally quite high… People very highly appreciate when they feel accepted in how they are.

In the afternoon a university philosopher spoke to us about power and leadership. It was partly a dialogue with the audience about what are the attitudes and values determining how we deal with other people – superiors, subordinates, team members. We read short extracts from philosophers like Marx, Macchiavelli, Socrates and Kant where he showed attitudes we encounter in our everyday lives: It is normal that we are being used at a job, but what happens if we start feeling we are only used, like objects and not like personalities? What happens when the use is getting less, be it through disease or old age? Do you meet the other as a fellow being or as a function to be filled out? When you notice that you are just being used, you feel unwell and easily being misused.

The philosopher had a brilliant mind and raised many questions. I liked his style but at the same time the image of a mental juggler, a player rose up in me, and memories of the times of my studies of philosophy came where I felt fed-up with these and those concepts. Listening to the philosopher I felt tattered with the time, and I sensed the need to be centred in me, to get aware of the foundations of values for which I take my stand and which guide my actions.

In the evening when meditating I felt well diving into silence and leaving the waves of mental agitation back at the shores of the ocean of the mind. I later thought that reliability and meeting the others on a fair and equal basis and with trust in one one another is essential for being and working together.

When opening my computer I found an e-mail of Sri Kumar just with the words “Thank you Ludger.” I had written him twice the last 2 weeks asking for the next texts of the Vaisakh Newsletter (VNL). He wrote yesterday: “I was touring a lot. In two days time I will send you the text. Please bear with me. There are too many issues happening here demanding frequent tours. All were emergencies.” I answered him: “Yes, emergencies always have priority. At my work there is also a flood of emergencies…, and the VNL will come when time gives a window.”

I highly appreciate his reliability in our cooperation and the attention he gives to minute details. It has been an inspiration for me since years in my dealing with others, especially via e-mails, be it at my job or at home, with the good-will activities. I thought, you don’t need big philosophies, but a loving, reliable and consistent relation with your fellow beings to create trust and comfort. A short feedback expresses a lot of caring attention.


A bee using a flower, but fertilising it at the same time

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