“I live in the Managerial Age, in a world of "Admin." The greatest evil is not now done in those sordid "dens of crime" that Dickens loved to paint. It is not done even in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see its final result. But it is conceived and ordered (moved, seconded, carried, and minuted) in clean, carpeted, warmed and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voices. Hence, naturally enough, my symbol for Hell is something like the bureaucracy of a police state or the office of a thoroughly nasty business concern."
[From the Preface]
― C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters
In The Screwtape Letters, CS Lewis writes as Uncle Screwtape to his nephew Wormwood. The letters are his advice on life as a “tempter” or “demon” and how best to ruin the life of the “patient” he is assigned to.
This excerpt from the preface shows some of what CS Lewis thinks about the possible evil in our world.
He tells us what we should be wary of as modern office workers and business people. We’ve seen this happen in our society as some businesses have chosen to prioritize profits and shareholder value above all else. Many lives have been ruined “by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth-shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voices.” Many in our society are unhappy with their work and their workplace as a result.
Our opportunity lies in heading the other direction. To put people first. To consider what’s most important and to firmly plant those values above others.
We can create a workplace and business where people get filled up. Where they move closer to their best self. Where they move closer to God.
We can build relationships that lead to a life filled with meaning and purpose. Where value freely moves and all involved end up better for having been involved.
That seems worth getting out of bed in the morning to me.
Make it a great day.