Image source: http://aum.ca/workplaceethics.ca/canstockphoto1669220cropRBGbluecorrect.jpg
Are all the world's best inventions and creations only made by one person? And this person is immortal? Our world is no longer populated by 7 billion people, but only this one single person living beside Lake Ontario, lonely watching as times goes by?
Well, that scenario would only be possible in some movie director's mind, as part of one of those apocalyptic movies. In the real world, this are not like that. We've seen human beings of any gender, sex, age accomplish some of the world's most amazing inventions, creations, market-changing theories and all else we could imagine. Now, please carry this scenario to your workplace. Consider yourself as as interactive media professional. You have just arrived for your first day at the new job in that great digital agency you've been dreaming to be hired to. You want to help redesign the website for your favourite burger chain. But there's only one problem. You are an alien. You are not from this world. The world is only populated by one person. The name of that person is Unequell.
Unequell, or Une, as he auto-nicknamed himself, is the only existing human being ever in this planet. He built that agency alone, and he built the whole city alone. He built TTC. He built Tim Horton's. He built the CN Tower. And he was the founder of Toronto Maple Leafs. He's everywhere in the hockey rink. He has founded the Pittsburg Penguins and all other hockey teams as well. He shoots and defends. He passes and he intercepts. He's the referee.
You see? That would simply be impossible to work in a digital agency founded, directed and employing only this Unequell guy to do all the stuff. So, if that digital agency wants to continue being the reference to you and to many others, what does it need to do? It needs to know that the world is not only populated by Unequell, a 35-year old, white Catholic swedish guy who was claiming that the whole world was...himself. And also...in consequence, the agency was himself. That agency need to know that it's gotta hire catholics and muslims, man and women, young professionals, and experienced ones, to be able to manage egos and lack of experience. It needs to welcome that great blind musician who will be able to create some amazing original soundtracks to the company's portfolio of clients who demand original music to its media experiences on apps, websites, events, crossmedia storytelling efforts and it goes on and on.
We call it equity in the workplace. And Unequell will need it. Your great digital agency will need it to sustain all its status as a great place to work. If it wants to be part someday of Forbes list of Best Places to Work, it needs to provide an outstanding work environment and company culture for its employees.
Image source: Forbes.com
Air BNB, not satisfied in topping Forbes' ranking, also topped the Glassdoor ranking. And for those of you who still haven't heard from Glassdoor, its ranking reflects itself as a business: it's based entirely on employee's feedback.
Image source: Glassdoor.com
The Interactive Media Professional who arrives in that great digital agency where Unequell is struggling to adequate himself, will have to understand the we're watching a media revolution. All audiences these days, and it doesn't matter which target audiences they're part of, are claiming for equality, for honesty when creating or transmitting information, for sincere and human pieces of communication. So, it doesn't matter if you are a designer or a copywrighter. You must be able to fit in that workplace. You will need to be able to work with a fellow swedish guy, a pregnant woman who's leaving her job to give birth in 15 days and will stay out for one year, and that buddhist guy who need to meditate every friday afternoon for 3 hours longer than the usual days.
Unequell's world only populated by himself does not exist, but the world dominated by ethical leadership exists. The world, in which he will only be able to create an award-winning campaign for that burger chain, will have the company of yourself (there you go!) and that 22 year-old single mom that just arrived in the agency last month, for Unequell's initial despair. And for Unequell's best of lucks in the future, as that single mom just happened to be the most amazing talent in UX design in the whole agency since day one.
Unequell will have to read the book "7 Lenses: Learning the Principles and Practices of Ethic Leadership", by author Linda Fisher Thornton.
That will be an journey for ethic in the workplace that you will all benefit from. Not only because the laws are telling you to do so. But because you are a leader and you need to be ahead. You need to be part of this ever-changing world that we are facing now. And as an interactive media professional, you and Unequell will need that even more. As all our decisions are in the publics eye to be judged, every day.