The Industrial Age lasted a very short 150-200-ish years in the ten thousand years of recorded human history. It brought us a lot of cool toys and a cushy life, but we’ve been afflicted with a lot of Business Diseases that came from the Industrial Age. Here’s just a few of them:
I’m addicted to big. I can’t help it. Giant Corporation, Inc., giant government, giant megalopolises, giant houses, giant movie stars, giant cars, giant malls, giant markets – it’s all so very alluring. I know my ancestors use to live in small, committed communities, but I’ve got a garage door to hide behind.
Employee Mindset Disease
It’s not my job. Tell me what to do. I leave “me” at home. I don’t think at work. I work at work, I play somewhere else. It’s not my fault. I’m a victim.
Employee Contribution Disease
I’m not significant. I believe what the Industrial Age taught me – Shut up. Sit down. Live invisibly. Go out quietly.
I’ll wait until I’m 65 to live significantly. I’ll go through the motions for the first 65 so I can get there. Until then I’m just marking time.
I live in a world of scarcity. You either live in a world of scarcity or a world of abundance, and whichever one you choose affects every decision you make. Industrial Age scarcity rules. Abundance doesn’t exist – it’s woo-woo crap.
Competitor Disease (symptoms are similar to Scarcity Disease)
Everything is finite and I need to get mine before I help someone else. If someone gets the work and I don’t, then I “lose”, because there is only so much to go around.
Me First Disease (just another name for Competitor Disease)
The more complex things are, the more impressive they are. Surely they must be better, too. Just because the profound things are always simple doesn’t mean I should embrace them. Complexity is good.
I don’t move unless the entire route is planned out. I’m waiting for all the lights to turn green between Chicago and New York, then I’ll start moving.
I’m a thinker. My 3rd grade teacher applauded me for it. So did my college professor. I’m really good at it. I’ve heard that committed people make history and thinkers write about them later, but that’s just crazy talk by committed people. I’ve thought about this a lot, and I can come up with 100 reasons why they’re wrong.
Safety, Security, Stability Disease
My mother told me to put my mental galoshes on before leaving kindergarten. I’ve had them on ever since. It may not ensure I’m safe, and it does ensure I’ll never do anything remarkable, but she has to be right and Maslowe was wrong – safety, security and stability are the pinnacle of human experience.
You give me money and I’ll give you the best 50 hours of my week and the best 40 years of my life. I’ve heard that time is the new money, but I’m not buying it. I’ll retire on cue at 65, then live significantly if I have any time or energy left.
The cultural carnage of the Industrial Age was broad. It will take us a few decades to fully recover. But identifying the diseases will help us get there faster.
What Industrial Age diseases have you been afflicted with? Add yours.
by Chuck Blakeman, Author of the #1 Rated Business Book of the Year, Making Money is Killing Your Business