Those who study or have studied English Literature may have read one of the prominent English writers, John Ruskin (1819-1900) who was a talented artist and influential art and social critic. In fact, he produced great works, but one of his best-known works in the form of essays,Unto this last (1860) would be discussed briefly in this article and it would be observed how his views presented in his work are substantially helpful and related to business management and human resource management in particular.
According to John Ruskin, sympathy for the poor and needy people is the urgent need of thehour while he emphasizes over the importance of social affections in human relationships. This would point towards the need of lending a listening ear and giving a helping hand to the poor and needy people in general regardless of their caste or religion or nationality. It would also suggest the business organizations to provide more and more job opportunities to the poverty-stricken people so that they may find the source of income to live on and may manage their living satisfactorily.
While stressing on the need of a strong relationship between the worker and the employer, Ruskin is of the view that it is not right to treat a man as a machine in order to generate more and more money by means of his services. A man is not a machine but must be regarded as human being with feelings and sentiments. This would hint at maintaining effective relationships with the employees, valuing their sincere services and preserving their talents. It would lead to the effective functioning of human resource management which is objectively committed to strengthen relationships between the employees and the organization by establishing beneficial policies through which the employees may be helped out. It is one of the tasks of human resource management to promote effective counseling methods to the employees so that they may be advised and guided in accordance with their capabilities and knowledge and know-how and skills. Human resource management is supposed to establish and run individual development programs to benefit the employees. The objective is to lead the employees to the level that they deserve for; while implementing effective counseling and guiding methodologies. In this way, the views of John Ruskin are related to human resource management and serve as guidelines in maintaining strong relationships with the employees by promoting them in terms ofjob enrichment plans and sound policies; to benefit the employees in a way that the process may ultimately lead to total organizational development.
Elsewhere he suggests that employers must learn to be self-sacrificing and helpful to the workers as the affection is a means of attaining good results at all times. They must not simply rush to get the opportunities that could generate more profits, but they must also consider the welfare of the workers by providing job securities and uninterrupted works. Yet again the above views of John Ruskin are very important to the human resource management as it is supposed to set up the policies in terms of the seniority and experience of the employees which in turn must be entitled to take benefits in terms of salary increments, promotions etc.
To sum up, the views of John Ruskin are of a great value and relevance to human resource management and they can stand to benefit any business organization by providing suggestions that are universally accepted. His views on the importance of the effective and strong relationship between employees and employers or owners are such that are to be accepted by any business organization. As regards promoting and maintaining affection amid the employees that has been stressed upon, it may be righty said it is such an act that not only leads the employees towards the accomplishments of organizational goals enthusiastically but also compel them to work within the same organization by taking pride in it. Hence, it may be rightly said that the suggestions and the views of John Ruskin are related and helpful to business organization and mainly to human resource management.
K.A.Fareed (Fareed Siddiqui)
Writer, Trainer, Author, Vba/Vb Developer
BBA; MBA-Finance; M.Phil-Financial Management; (PhD-Management)
Individual Member of Institute of Management Consultants of India
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