ReWork co-author and Basecamp founder David Heinemeier Hansson advises beware of employers who say they live together as one big family at work.
Whenever managers say that their subordinates are like a big family, be careful. This probably does not mean that you will be protected from problems and troubles, or selflessly loved (as is usually the case in strong families). Be prepared for the sacrifice of only one party – you.
After all, when a family model is created, it is quite logical to conclude that everyone should do everything that this family needs. You work long nights or give up a well-deserved vacation not to get a raise or make more money as soon as possible. No, not at all! You do it for the sake of the family. Such an outspoken emotional appeal is needed only when the leader tries to make you forget about your rational interests.
If you aim for your work atmosphere to be based on politeness and kindness, or for everyone in the team to stand up for each other, then it is not necessary to pretend to be a family. You can simply express all these values in principles, approaches to work, and, most importantly, in specific actions.
Also, don’t you have a family of your own or close friends who are like blood relatives? The modern team is not a street gang of orphans trying to achieve something in this cruel world. Trying to displace a family you already have is just another way to put the needs of the company above the needs of your real family. Agree, this is a completely meaningless idea.
The best companies do not pretend to be families. They support families. They become allies of families. They provide a healthy work environment, so when employees close their laptops in the allotted time, they remain the best husbands, wives, parents, brothers, sisters, and children.
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