Workplaces Have These Things In Common
you enjoy most about your job? At one time or another, we have all had a
chance to think about our work and what we like and don't like.
Thanks to the Indianapolis
I.A.B.C (International Association of Business Communicators) and the
Gallup Organization, here is a list of what differentiates great work
groups from the pack. As you read the results of their research,
consider whether you and your employees could say the same.
"I know what is expected of me at
work." Often times, business are too operational when
defining steps to follow to get the work done. Today's most effective
managers define outcomes first, then let employees figure out the best
route to take. This approach recognizes that people are individuals and
have different ideas about how to get from Point A to Point B.
"I have the materials and
equipment needed to do the work right." It goes without
saying that to be effective, you must have the right tools to do the
job. Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman, authors of First Break All the
Rules: What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently, suggest
managers ask employees to evaluate why they need certain tools. They say
that by asking them to evaluate their needs based on how it will help
them, the company and customers, you will get them thinking about
outcomes rather than personal preferences.
"At work, I have the opportunity to do
what I do best everyday." People are most effective when
given the chance to integrate their talents, skills and knowledge.
"In the last seven days, I have
received recognition or praise for doing good work."
Although recognition can be either positive or negative, effective
recognition has the following characteristics: it is positive in nature,
immediate and real-time to performance, specific about what is being
praised and close to the action, remind the authors Buckingham and
"My supervisor, or someone at
work, seems to care about me as a person." This shows how
important it is to ensure that everyone has someone within the
organization who can guide them.
"Someone encourages my
development." Coffman and Buckingham recommend managers seek
to understand employees as a way to play off their strengths. They
suggest managers talk with employees about why they took they position,
what keeps them there and their desired recognition. The best managers,
they say, hold a mirror up to their employees so they can see how to
"At work, my opinion
counts." People want to share their opinions regularly.
There's nothing more frustrating that to be left out of a decision.
"The mission/purpose of my
company makes me feel my job is important." Excellence
happens when people feel a deep sense of purpose.
"My associates (fellow employees) are
committed to doing quality work." The research showed that
work groups that realized their actions affect customer loyalty were
able to pull together to make needed improvements.
"I have a best friend at work."
We tend to thrive in social settings, and like it or not, work is a
social institution. Here we are reminded that company loyalty can be
built around social relationships.
"In the last six months, someone at
work has talked to me about my progress." People need
regular feedback to let them know how effectively they are applying
their talents every day at work.
"This last year, I had opportunities
at work to learn and grow." Not only should we give
employees opportunities to grow and develop, we should allow them to
challenge how the business is run without fear of retribution.
days, productivity comes not from working harder, but from working
smarter. And in order to work smarter, we must consider what each
employee brings to the table and how to motivate them to achieve
mutually agreed upon outcomes.