Understanding the Dimension of the Wellbeing Challenges in the Global Workplace
To put in perspective the wellbeing challenge for organizations and working people, it helps to have an idea of the magnitude in numbers.
The International Labor Organization (ILO) reports that the global workforce reached 3.3 billion in 2019. Latest report by Wikipedia in 2012 shows that the global workforce was approximately 3 billion workers employed in the businesses and the productive private sectors and about 200 million people were unemployed and actively seeking employment. The 2017 Global Entrepreneur Monitor reported that in the 65 countries surveyed, the number of entrepreneurs working on their own reached 582
million. The number of employees in the public sector is far more difficult to calculate. In fact, ILO reports public employment in percentages of the workforce by country instead of numbers. Across countries, the average percentage of people employed in the public sector is approximately *4, but there is a wide variance. Cuba, Russia and China have the highest percentage ranking from 70 percent to 50 percent, respectively, in 2013. In the same year, Hong Kong with 8 percent and Japan with 11 percent showed the lowest proportion of people employed in the public/govern-ment sector. A rough estimate of 5 billion people worldwide are working (approximate 60 percent of the total world population).1 The implications for management and organizational culture are staggering.
Addressing Organizational Culture and Wellbeing Challenges
The traditional analysis of employees’ wellbeing has been addressed in psychology on issues mainly related to stress, employees’ relations, safety and mental health. In the last decade, wellbeing in the workplace is attracting a lot of scholars in organizational culture, management and leadership observing the effects of workloads, leaders and managers’ styles, impact of financial dimensions, trust in working relationships, work autonomy and work-life balance, among others. Routledge Human Centered Management Book Series includes two books dedicated to the analysis of wellbeing in the workplace: Wellbeing for Sustainability in the Global Workplace (Ochoa, Lepeley, & Essens, 2018 ) and The Wellbeing of Women in Entrepreneurship (Lepeley et al., 2020).
Life-Work Continuum: The New Human Center Organizational Culture
HR approaches to organizational culture consistently segment human life in work activities and personal life endeavors, concentrating on life at work and underscoring fundamental aspects of personal wellbeing. Concerned about the effects of pending work-life imbalance, Beutell, Kuschel, and Lepeley (2021) wrote a chapter for this book introducing a theoretical life-work continuum model as an alternative organizational culture. The purpose is to substitute the traditional HR segmenting work-life analysis as opposite dimensions of a person’s life for an integrated method to assess wellbeing. We argue that the present work-life formulas need deeper scrutiny to include workers’ wellbeing (Beutell et al., 2021).
Consolidating HCM through Sustainable Quality Standards
In previous sections, I proposed to advance the human centered paradigm to replace HR management approaches of the industrial age that fail to meet organizational demands today. In this context, I emphasized
Human Centered Sustainable Quality Culture 15 the importance to deploy management formulas targeting the wellbeing of people as precondition to optimize work engagement, performance and long-term sustainability. A rough estimate of the billions of workers affected showed the dimension of the challenge ahead. I stressed the positive correlation that exists between human wellbeing and sustainable quality standards underlying HCM. In the next section, I examine these links, which, in my view, expose the main differences between HCM and HRM and the need for transformation.