Systems Model – X vs Y

View the X-Y systems comparison

The Systems Model can be called by many names: the uneducated ego model vs. the wisdom model, the negative model vs. the positive model, the autocratic model vs. the synergistic model, or as we have chosen the X Model vs Y Model.  The name that is used depends on the group to which you are relating it.  Emotionology sees the X system as the uneducated ego or a limited way of thinking.  The ego doesn’t have any way of knowing what is right or wrong except by having rules.

To illustrate the X vs Y system, imagine Company A operates in the X system while Company B operates in the Y system. (To better demonstrate this as you read, take a piece of paper and make two columns labeling on Company A – X system and the other column Company B – Y system. Add the attributes that are under each as we go along.) Company A operates from a rule dominated model while company B does what works for the highest good of everybody. Imagine how different these two companies would be to work in.  Company A is a hierarchy.  As such, information is on a need to know basis; you have to be careful if you say too much because it may be used against you. You must follow the rules and are penalized if you think for yourself and then when something goes wrong (and something always goes wrong) they single you out as the problem by asking you, “What were you thinking?”  In Company A, what is right is what works for winning or competition, or what authority decides is right.  It is not about morals; it is about what others think and not getting caught.  If you don’t get caught, aren’t in trouble or have more power than others, then you may feel okay in this system, yet you will be on constant guard because success is fleeting.  Nothing is lasting.  Power is temporary.  Looks are temporary.  Being on top is temporary.

The X System model places a high value on hitting moving targets that few can achieve and even fewer can maintain for any amount of time. People are either aggressive or passive; if they make a mistake it is a huge deal.  In Company A imagine the boss or a part of management is aggressive.  If other people in the company are also aggressive and two people are aggressive at the same time, it creates a scenario like war.  Most people who work in Company A either avoid conflict, or choose conflict if they are good at it—gratified by how all the others have to follow or shut up.  If you work for Company A, you shouldn’t make those in power uncomfortable by being up front and you shouldn’t rock the boat.  Company A can maintain a functional existence when those without power go along with the rules (when they can figure them out) and don’t make trouble with those in power because those in power have no desire for change.

In Company B, the hierarchy has to do with skills and experience because everybody there knows that they all have a learning journey and all journeys are equal in value.  It doesn’t mean the journeys are the same. Each person is perfect for the journey they are on.  Each person is there to learn and to do the highest good for the company as well as the employees which include themselves.  They all take care of their self first, but with the consideration of others.  They respect the choices of others.  In Company B everyone knows how to “live and let live”.

In Company A, you expect the company to take care of you and Company A expects you to sacrifice for that care.  It’s an exchange until something goes wrong. Then it’s the employee that gets left holding the bag.  The authority figures in Company A can and will change the rules because they don’t have to follow the rules.  Rules are for employees, not for those in authority.  Company A consistently operates this way and the end result is always the same, maintaining the status quo. The X System operates from greed, failure, sacrifice, pity, obligation, and guilt; not happiness.  Company A may make enough profit to continue operating but it will never be a leader of industries and when the authorities that run the company die or leave usually the company fails to survive.

If you have a family operating out of the x model, you usually have one parent that is aggressive and the other is passive. Family members must follow their rules, not question authority and not think for themselves. Guilt is used to make you follow the rules and if you look too happy, you must be doing something wrong.  You are expected to sacrifice for the good of others, don’t expect to deserve a thing because the world is a world of lack.  We can also call this the scarcity model.  If you believe that everything is in scarce supply, you will end up with less.  You might have more money but you will have less of something else – perhaps less health, less happiness, fewer friends, etcetera.

What is the bottom line in the X System?  Survival.  In Company A you only work there as long as you have to (unless you’ve bought into the belief that you deserve to be treated poorly).  The pay in Company A could never be enough because there is always some dissatisfaction.  In contrast, think of times when you may have worked for  less money just because you liked the how you were treated in the company or wanted to help them.  You took less money because you were appreciated.  In Company A, true appreciation is intangible.

In Company B, or the Y system, everybody thinks life is a learning journey; everyone here has the willingness to learn with a positive attitude. They do what they can and look for the best in others.  Here the Y system is a positive model of looking for what works. Company B’’s whole focus is solution based and everybody can work together as a cohesive team.  Information is open and upfront.  More information is better than less information in the Y System.  There isn’t the same risk as in the X system.  People want to share and need to share because the diversity of viewpoints comes together in the best ideas, practices and strategies. And when they are looking for what works, instead of looking for something wrong, Company B can quickly change direction when a strategy no longer makes sense.  Everybody is equal.  The equality comes from the idea that life is a learning journey and all journeys are equal.  It is a broader perspective based on the view of humanity with each person experiencing what they need to learn in this life. We all know in this world that none of us are born equal if you are going to measure us by looks, or weight, or what we have or where we live.    In Company B happiness exists as the highest goal.  Can you see how that is possible?  Can you feel how your mind and body can relax in this kind of company and how you would feel inspired and motivated to contribute?  Can you sense how much more fun it would be because you really want to share working together and doing good things to create a better world?

What is the feeling of being in Company A vs. what it would feel like to work in Company B where you are appreciated? Put yourself in Company A for a minute….isn’t it a feeling of fear? Don’t you feel threatened or on guard?

OK, now put yourself in Company B, the positive Y system.  This system is about freedom, happiness, learning, camaraderie, humor, team work, respect, sharing, etc.  Which Company do you feel like working for?  Which system do you feel do you want to model in your life?

If you are interested in learning more about how you think and what system you model, join us for a training or at a meetup.


View the X-Y systems comparison