In an act of organizational daring, the company decided to make a face-to-face toast by the end of the year. The call exceeded expectations and the allowed capacity of the place. Gustavo was told many times “I imagined you short”, Teresa was told “I didn’t know you were so thin”, Miguel was asked why he never turned on the camera and, consequently, it was the first time they met. And, above all, the glasses, the food and the lights, there was million hugs, over and over again, like those that occur in a station, a port or an air terminal. The triumphant return of memories.

In his book Humankind, the Dutch Rutger Bregman tells about a study carried out with monkeys and children, where several factors were compared such as the ability to know spaces, the cognitive ability of cause and effect. In all these categories, humanity was fairly even with monkeys, really insignificant differences. However, when the social learning ability, humans are significantly superior.

In his own work, Bregman explains the primitive tribe and negative tribal man, showing the power that society had in the development of the wise man, not only in its intellectual aspects but also the gradual and subtle change of the anatomy.

Among the inherent, natural qualities of the human being, there are three interdependent but fundamental factors, they do not exist in other species: dignity as the basis of existence, Liberty as an exercise of being and purpose as an end that illuminates the reason for existence.

It also has the human species exceptional senses that it shares with other species, the ability to have a system that, through sight, smell, touch, taste and listening can understand its world. The senses are so important that if someone does not have any, such as sight, they are considered a “person with a disability.”

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In this plague of biblical proportions that we live in and that seems inexhaustible, there are those of us who have limited our ability to interact, learn and know two senses: hearing and sight. Two out of five, while our ancestors managed to interact with all five.

The question that arises is whether we are limiting our knowledge by deciding to use only two senses, missing three. It could be said that knowledge is not smelled, that it is tasteless and immaterial, therefore it is not touched. This would imply limiting knowledge to a very small and limited space.

As in the test reported by Bregman, learning and the generation of knowledge of the human being is significantly greater and multiplied by the ability to social learning, which we do collectively and using all our biological and anatomical capacities.

With certainty in some years we will be studying if the boys and girls who have had to study their primary school remotely, if the university students who did not step on the university learned more or less than those who did so at the time. The results are genuinely uncertain, but we could be present to one of the least educated generations in nearby history. How to develop social and emotional skills in a five-year-old who has not seen or lived with others?

If we transfer these questions to the business world and the Human Capital world, the same doubts arise. It is not clear if the organizational learning suffered a detriment, if we go back to the times of individual learning. In the same way, the question of leadership competencies arises, so much so that articles are written on “remote leadership competencies”.

Although everyone tends to agree that the current model has improved productivity (it must be understood if it is actually an increase in productivity or hours worked), and that flexibility and remote work has changed from benefit to employment status. It will also take time to understand the effects on organizational culture, there will certainly be winners and losers.

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The truth seems more than evident that learning whatever it is should be less effective when two senses are used instead of fifteen. Needless to say, learning algebra or developing new code may not require smell or taste, that’s an easy answer. The reference is to the ability to know and grow holistically, deeply, in the way we stand out as a species.

We are already in the moments where the presence or not in the work places, until the very existence of these. The return to schools, universities and offices.

This will imply that over time the results of the companies that did it in a comprehensive way, partially or that simply did not do anything about it will be evaluated. If in fact the behavior and effects of the past allow us to predict the future, it would seem that those who return to the offices they will win – the truth is that there is no comparison that is real, this modality is new and was never massive.

What is clear to me is that we have five senses and that we are operating in a limited way with two. We cannot know if someone is tall or short, thin or not, and the emotional leadership takes on new dimensions.

Companies will make their decisions, and many of them will be valid and successful. I believe that it is time not to detail the importance of the reconquest of hugs.

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