Risk & Business Magazine General Insurance Services Magazine - Page 9
The Four Ss Of
ever retire. I believe
retirement is a false concept
based on assumptions
that are no longer true.
Retirement at age 65 was
invented when average lifespan was 67,
and there’s a big reason the healthiest
societies in the world have no word for
So what’s the solution?
And make sure whatever you’re doing
includes the 4 Ss of meaningful work:
S — SOCIAL
We are the most social mammals on
the planet for a reason. According to
Stumbling on Happiness by Harvard
psychologist Daniel Gilbert, our social
relationships have a greater effect on our
happiness than our income, religion,
gender, or even health. So what does a
good workplace foster? Team breakfasts.
CEO AMAs. Lunch walking groups. Work
sports leagues. If these are missing, start
can each person bring in from outside
of work? Can the word nerd start a book
club? Can the hospital volunteer start a
company volunteer program? Can the
late-night DJ plan the Christmas party?
Work structure should allow and create
outside work passions to be big parts of
S — STIMULATION
Always learning something new. In
every job you have it means ensuring
the steepest possible learning curves
between “value giving” and “value
getting.” Examples to make sure this
happens are things such as maximum
two years in roles, job sharing or job
trades, regular development sessions,
and quarterly growth meetings with one-
and two-up managers. Making sure you
can always say yes to the question “Am I
learning a lot and adding a lot? ” If your
answer is tilted one way it means you’re
giving something else up.
S — STORY
Feeling as though you’re part of
something bigger than yourself.
Ensuring the company’s mission and
higher level purpose captures the
heart — and bringing it to life regularly
through customer stories, printing it
on walls, and talking about it to open
or close meetings. There’s a reason that
Medtronic, the medical devices company
famous for popularizing the pacemaker,
has family members of patients read
letters at company meetings. How would
you feel about your job if an eleven-year-
old girl thanked you for giving her five
extra years of memories with her father?
At Facebook you’re connecting the world.
At Wikipedia you’re giving the world
the sum of human knowledge for free.
At your town paper, you’re increasing
community. What’s your workplace story?
So, I say never give up work. Meaningful
work. Work you love. Because you’ll
be giving up the Social, Structure,
Stimulation, and Story you get every day
from being there. Forget the money.
You’ll lose the 4 Ss, and they are much
more important. +
S — STRUCTURE
There are 168 hours in a week: 56 for
sleep (eight hours a night if you can get
it), 56 for work (including commuting
and extra work at home, etc.), and 56 for
On structure, there are two things to
point out. One, work helps create and pay
for your third bucket. The fun bucket.
The passion bucket. And two, if everyone
in this structure has a third bucket, what
BY: NEIL PASRICHA, AUTHOR,
THE HAPPINESS EQUATION
Neil Pasricha is the New York Times-best-selling author of
The Happiness Equation and The Book of Awesome series,
which has been published in ten countries, spent over five years
on bestseller lists, and sold over a million copies. Pasricha has
a Harvard MBA, and is one of the most popular TED speakers
of all time.He has dedicated the past 15 years of his life to
developing leaders, creating global programs inside the world’s
largest companies and speaking to hundreds of thousands of
people around the globe. He lives in Toronto with his wife and