I help businesses discover and create a Meaningful Work culture for their employees.
What Philosophical Consultation Can Do For Your Business
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
“Todd brought specific expertise and knowledge to create an approach that got the desired outcome we needed for transforming our corporate ethos.”
— Simon Rees Goddard, Partner at Quorsus
What is meaningful work?
A case study of how meaningful work can help your business
It is not job satisfaction, which can often mean one merely puts up with a job because it provides some external reward (e.g. high pay).
Meaningful work is about creating a symbiotic relation between work and life where work becomes a key part of living one’s life well (as opposed to being a means to retirement or a pension).
One way to think about this is to ask yourself what features of one’s work contribute to making oneself a better person? Some qualities of self-development feed into this:
Autonomy or self-reliance
Character trait development (e.g. courage, resilience, empathy)
A sense of giving back to others
A sense of a flourishing life
A great deal of philosophical and sociological research is showing that meaningfulness in work is essential for employee trust and loyalty as well as organizational success.
Why should it matter to your business?
Taking care of business becomes a way of taking care of oneself. When work and life are symbiotic, the place of work takes on a more significant place in the life of an employee.
It helps immensely to have an external view when it involves how workers feel about their employer and their roles. Discussion tends to be more candid, and having an external facilitator can help inject new life and exhilaration into a workplace environment.
Remote working conditions often mean employees spend much of their time in isolation from others. Meaningful work can help overcome this problem when employees are allowed to explore together questions about how work fits within a broader conception of a flourishing human life.
Trust and fairness are the two most significant factors employees often cite when asked about why they like or do not like their employer. A significant part of creating trust and fairness rests on the “soft” side of demonstrating and supporting employees in life. Meaningful work is a way of investing in employees as people who have lives (and are not merely resources).
Thinking outside the box is often best served by bringing unfamiliar or little-explored ideas and situations to the table. Seeing work, procedures, roles, and relations in a new way can be achieved by allowing employees to expand the view through which they see their careers.
Concerned about the bottom line? When employees get a strong sense that their employers genuinely care about their lives, it engenders a sense of loyalty to the business. While this helps to reduce costs related to training and retention, as sociological studies have shown, happier employees are simply more capable and hardworking when performing their duties and meeting goals.
What I do
I act as a philosophical facilitator, helping to bring the points above to actualization through individual and group sessions. My approach to facilitation is a process of self-discovery through a variety of exercises informed by 15 years of teaching and research at university-level on ethics, the philosophy of work, and existentialism. I use a variety of techniques based on Socratic, Aristotelian, and modern psychological methods.
I have a personable and informal style of engaging with discussants that is shaped and nurtured (unintentionally!) by a broad range of personal and professional experiences—such as, independent filmmaking, adventure and conventional sports, coaching, loss adjusting, public oration, and various leadership and team-playing roles.
How much does it cost?
It depends what on your company needs. I tend to work with small discussion groups (1-8 employees). These groups can be a sample of employees or more comprehensive. Anonymity is maintained when reporting contributions from the groups. Hourly session fees will include preparation, discussion time, writing reports, and a follow-up meeting with management to discuss appropriate changes and action plans.
My consultation can help pinpoint initial areas for development and/or occur as an ongoing interaction (e.g. meeting with a group once a month).
Because soft consultation often relies on the “harder” side of human resources to implement changes, I am happy to work in conjunction with in-house human resources officers.
I can do all my consultation remotely via Zoom or your preferred platform.