By Carsten Graff

Businesses are spending billions developing their employee's self-awareness, but self-aware people have no future in the dominant business culture. If you have self-awareness you are not fit to push your colleagues to the max, cheat customers, sell unhealthy products, develop an icy attitude, or to work your butt off without making any difference for yourself or for the rest of the planet. 

The success of Adolf Hitler

When someone is undergoing personal development, in an honest process, no one can predict the outcome. This makes it interesting that the goal-oriented business community spends billions each year on personal development. Naturally, the hope is that employees will develop emotionally and become more self-aware, but the truth is that, for the most part, our present business culture has little to no actual interest in their employees developing self-awareness. If you aspire for higher levels of the prevailing business culture, being out of touch with yourself and emotionally off-balance will most likely be an advantage. Whoever seeks to pursue a career in a sinner’s culture will need a sinner’s mindset to achieve success. Hitler and Stalin both were so-called good examples of this. In the present, dominant business culture, people who reach the pinnacle are often driven by an inferiority complex, insanity, paranoia, dishonesty, egotism, greed, fear of inadequacy or they have remarkable skills in self-promotion. One might therefore question the sanity of spending so many resources on personal development; money which would no doubt be better spent on personal vandalism instead – i.e., on training to restrain, confuse, stress, and frustrate employees.


Growing awareness that self-awareness can be dangerous

is not the same as being a better competitor – in most On a regular basis, I meet business people who seek personal development while also having a well-founded fear that increased self-awareness will make it impossible for them to find meaning in their jobs. Numerous business managers have sent employees on personal development courses, only to find that the employee would develop so much that he or she would resign in order to pursue a more meaningful career. People who choose to self-develop often find themselves in the dilemma of having even more difficulty making sense of the job market where one has to be better, faster, first. Being self-awarecases t’s the opposite. For many of the most successful, competitive people, their very ability to shut things out and be self-centered and ruthless is what has made them successful. Therefore, in the predominant business culture, we often find a colossal gap between personal and business related success. To achieve success on a personal level – building a good life with your near and dear ones and having a functional love life – self-awareness is an absolutely critical factor. But in being the best, fastest or gaining fame and fortune, self-awareness may be an obstacle.


Our culture separates the healthy and the functional. Many companies design products that make us fatter, dumber, apathetic, or just plain unhealthy, and they are enjoying enormous success. If their employees would develop more self-awareness they would surely leave their jobs. People who have a high degree of emotional tolerance, inner calm, and an ability to be in touch with themselves will usually also want a meaningful job that enables them to create something that has a positive impact on the world. People with self-awareness usually don't want to spend their lives manipulating others through commercials, sales gimmicks, or marketing, nor do they care to brainwash themselves into sounding convinced about something they do not truly believe in. Self-aware people are not fit to push their colleagues to the max, cheat customers, make dangerous products, develop an icy attitude, or to work their butts off without making any difference whatsoever for either themselves or anybody else.


Grow your imbalances

For the established business community to continue on its present course, along which success is predominantly achieved without meaningful content, cutting down on personal development training might be the best idea. People who are out of touch with themselves are more easily manipulated, made to chase after a task without needing any deeper significance, and more readily made to neglect their families in favour of work. Consequently, my recommendation is that traditional career seekers should grow their imbalances as a means for achieving greater professional success. Be warned though, that actually following this recommendation may entail one small problem: whatever you are running from will sooner or later catch up to you. So if you are trying to escape your own good health, inner harmony, or just your good sense of humour, it may be that you will be haunted by exactly these things. Should you then happen to develop higher degrees of self-awareness and a better attitude, I will be happy to offer compensation for any unfelt pain and suffering – for example, a discount on a personal development course. But beware! Such things could easily make you a modern business failure.