Organizational structure and staff empowerment

During my master I’ve been focused on the methods that the organizations use for manage the persons who work inside them, in order to promote the effort, to create involvement and to enhance the human potential. Now I have the possibility to see in first person which kind of methods are used by AMURT, a private voluntary organization founded in India in 1965.

When I arrived in Paùl my first impact with Amurt has not been simple.

I’ve never expected that the adaptation process to the project would have been so hard. I had different expectations (we all have some) and I was sick, so I had mostly negative impressions about everything. It is my first experience of work, and also the first experience in the ecological field, so for some doubts about the feasibility of the project and the credibility of some aspects (that I still have, for example about the proposal of a new socio/economic model), I was really scared by the idea of spending one whole year here. Also because in the last months of my life I needed to make short experiences and change from one to another. After three days I already decided to move away.

But then I faced the situation in a transparent way, explaining my problems and my feelings in the most honest way. I found the conditions to do that during the meetings, perceiving in the coordinators a certain predisposition to dialogue and an openness.

It took time to me understand in which way present my doubts, to whom, when ecc. At first, the organizational structure of this association is not easy to identify and it could appear complex, specially for understand how to attain informations and how to identify the roles that people has. Actually there are not strict and divided roles, there is no hierarchical structure, but there’s a division of tasks following the interests and the talents of the people, in a meritocratic system for which who works since more time and spend more time than others in the work activities has also more informations about the whole project, so he (or she) would be more visible, would have more decisional power and also more responsibilities.

  About me, who am the last arrived, I have the possibility, inside the limits of a preset number of work time and with some advices for the activities to implement, to freely explore every part of the project, as physically as speaking with everybody, choosing where I prefer to work, in which schedule and in which way, if doing some research and investigations in the office or in the library or also at home, interviewing people, informing by myself or visiting the master unit. people

 It’s a particular method of work and staff management, strongly different than the traditional methods, that at first can leave disoriented, because you don’t receive specific guidelines, but mostly advices and informations for independently develop your own working plan. But if at first this can be disorienting and the process of planification of the activities could be longer, for sure it can put you in the conditions for identify your principal interests, involving you in your work, because you’re doing something you like and you’ve choosed.

brainIt’s not easy to find out our talent and understand which kind of work is the most suitable for us, for giving us a personal satisfaction, valuing our human potentiality, and at the same time inspiring or doing something for other people. Often we have the perception that this choice is moved by economical reasons and expectations that people have on us. This makes sense, for sure, because you have to work hard for live and reach a stable economic situation if you want to maintain a family, and people who have expectation for our future often are worried and care about us, so they just want we reach a stable condition, mental and economic. But the choice of how to use our time it’s still up on us, we are the only one who know what makes us happy, and often due to external factors we forget this and we have hurry when we have to choose a profession to which dedicate our time. So we risk to take a decision, that looks the most reasonable but don’t reflect what we want and what we are. I’m not saying that we just have to do what we like, without thinking in the future, some planification and a guideline to follow is necessary, if not it would be the chaos. But we have to feel free to decide for what concerns our lives, with our times and rhythms, even if we have to change our mind. Follow what makes us happy, our dream, is a brave decision, and in the modern society is often the more difficult (not the easier) decision to take.

I’ve always been sure that I would have spend my time working for something that gives meTalent satisfaction, enjoying. This certainty has guided me through a path, in which I’ve choose some ways against others, and sometimes made me turn back on my decisions and choose something I rejected before. All this leads me here now, involved in this project in Portugal, where I have the opportunity to work and be useful and maybe understand which are my talents and what will I do in the future, in a coherent way with my modalities and rhythms of personal development.