Relationship Age

More about the Relationship Age

In the agrarian age, one definition of productivity was how much grain could be harvested in a day.

In the industrial age, productivity was addressed in the context of how many widgets could be produced in a day.

Productivity in the information age has to do with leverage: How can we use information to increase the productivity of manufacturing? How can we use information to add value to the services we offer?

We call this view of productivity “little p”.

“Big P” is about garnering big leaps in productivity through enhanced relationships — how we collaborate to reach our shared goals.

In the relationship age, anything that lowers productivity (i.e., makes it harder to reach goals by adding more time, more resources, or more stress), needs to be addressed.

At the forefront of what hampers “big P” productivity are unproductive and frustrating behaviors like backstabbing, sideways elbowing, withheld information and support, withheld ideas, not “stepping up to the plate”, and dismissing and/or attacking others and their ideas. These often encountered behaviors cause information, ideas and support to be withheld. Mutual withholding dampens enthusiasm and stifles creativity, which results in diminished productivity.

New skills are needed to understand the emotions underlying these behaviors, and to address them effectively. When this happens, ‘drama and trauma’ are transformed into ‘grace and ease’. We then create environments where everyone contributes, all wholeheartedly pulling in the same direction.