2011-10-06

10 ways to create an employee-centred workplace

Pat Lynch

10 ways to create an employee-centred workplace

Drake Business Review | Volume 3, Number 2 | drakeintl.com

The employee-centred workplace does not occur naturally. Rather, management must make a conscious decision to create an environment in which everyone and everything align with employees’ success.

In an employee-centred workplace, all individuals, programs, processes, and systems are focused on helping employees become fully successful. Individuals who feel valued provide excellent products and service, resulting in the achievement of organizational goals. In such an environment, everyone wins: workers, management, customers, vendors, and other stakeholders.

The employee-centred workplace does not occur naturally. Rather, management must make a conscious decision to create an environment in which everyone and everything align with employees’ success. Below are listed ten actions organizations can take to create or enhance a workplace that motivates employees to perform their best: Some practices can be implemented immediately, at little or no cost; others will take some time
and effort. These actions are not one-time fixes, but rather a long-term way of interacting with employees. Short-term solutions for long-term issues are seldom effective, and workers can tell the difference.

1. ASSESS your employees’ level of satisfaction with their supervisors. For example, consider whether supervisors listen to what they say, and how they treat employees when they make mistakes. Take immediate action to correct any deficiencies.

2. ENSURE that every employee sees the organization’s “big picture” and how they contribute to it. Employees who feel connected to the organization have a vested interest in its success.

3. LEARN employees’ names and use them often. As well, learn a little about their families and outside interests. Ask them about things that are important to them personally on a regular basis. Be genuine when you ask; people know when you are being disingenuous.

4. RECOGNIZE employees’ contributions to the organization in ways that are meaningful to them. The most effective forms of recognition are those that create memories for workers and their families.

5. ENSURE that employees view organizational procedures and decision-making processes as fair. Even when employees do not like a decision, they are likely to accept it if they believe that it was an outcome of fair rules, that were transparent, free of bias, and open to employee input.

6. ENSURE that such values as trust and respect are a core part of your organization’s culture. This is apparent when each employee knows what those values look like in terms of their own behaviour on the job and when leaders exemplify those values every day.

7. PROVIDE employees with a meaningful voice, so they can offer their opinions freely and safely even when they disagree with management, and they believe that their views will be taken seriously.

8. INCORPORATE appreciative approaches in the workplace. Seek out things that people do well, and build on those strengths. Ask questions that have them searching for positive answers instead of negative ones.

9. ENSURE that all employees are in the right jobs, that their talents are appropriate for the work they must do. It is far too miserable doing a job for which one is not a good fit.

10. HOLD every manager accountable for helping employees become fully successful.


Pat Lynch, PhD is President of Business Alignment Strategies, Inc. www.BusinessAlignmentStrategies.com), a consulting firm that helps clients optimize business results by aligning people, programs, and processes with organizational goals. Contact Pat at Pat@BusinessAlignmentStrategies.com or in the US at (562) 985-0333.

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