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Working culture

A newly published book seeking to combine good business and good working, production organisation and people management practices

The culture of production and the culture of working. Two areas without limits, which if cultivated with a measured, prudent approach and treated as “responsible cultures”, can do good, including well beyond their usual scope of activities. However, these cultures must be fully assimilated, and before that, understood, to fully comprehend all their possible aspects. And, in relation to the world of work, this is precisely what Eva Giudicatti (a consultant and expert in organisational cultures) and Marco Grazioli (president of The European House-Ambrosetti) have attempted in their recently published and fascinating book “Il lavoro non ha età. Stili vocazionali e leadership in azione” (Work has no age. Vocational styles and leadership in action).

The basis for Giudicatti’s reasoning (supported by a series of contributions by Grazioli) is the observation – as the book’s title suggests – that work is ageless, and as such is motivated not by age but rather by multiple biographical and cultural factors, along with the link existing between the individual and the organisation. This is a special kind of alchemy which brings people closer to the company first and foremost, and then unites them through work. The two authors explore the various characteristics and tendencies before identifying 8 approaches to work, which are in turn expressions of different motivational structures. They then develop various models which serve to provide the reader with a special “lens” through which to view and focus on worker behaviour, choices and expectations. These models, among other things, appear particularly useful in the current complex and uncertain period that we are living in.

More specifically, the book begins with a snapshot of the relationships that exist between work and organisations, before continuing with a series of in-depth analyses of the various reasons that motivate people to work. It then goes on to analyse current working styles (with a particular focus on Italy). Following this, the authors identify the 8 working styles, each of which is given an unusual and evocative name, which embodies their key traits and characteristics. Indeed, these names are worth noting here: “Heroes for All Seasons,” “Saviours of the World,” “Social Engineers,” “Artisans of the Possible,” “Controllers of Fate,” “Sowers of Abundance,” “Wizards of Organisation,” and “Warriors of Knowledge.”

Everything in Giudicatti’s (and Grazioli’s) book serves to demonstrate just how much care must be taken in building profitable working relationships (and not only from an economic perspective). Reading the book, as it lays out the details of this objective, is not always easy or straightforward, but it is certainly helpful for everyone.

Il lavoro non ha età. Stili vocazionali e leadership in azione (Work has no age. Vocational styles and leadership in action)

Eva Giudicatti

Guerini Next, 2021