…Get Rid of Policies That Conflict with the Culture
During a recent visit with a company COO, I asked, “What’s the one thing you want your employees to understand about working here?” Without pause the COO responded, “That we’re all in this together.”
Nice thought – kinda all for one, and one for all-ish – angling towards loyalty and valuing relationship. Later, while touring the facility, I asked, “Do salaried employees have specific work hours?”
“Oh yes,” she answered. “Employees can stay as late as they want, but they must be at their desks and working from 8:00am to 5:00pm with an hour for lunch.”
“And if they’re late or deviate? Say they’re under the weather or going to a funeral.”
“Then we deduct from their sick time or vacation time,” again no real pause in the answer. “It’s the standard stuff,” she explained, “if you’re sick, bring a doctors note; if you’re going to a funeral, bring in the obit[uary].”
Ewe… I hope policies like those aren’t standard… but even if they are, they don’t exactly communicate the idea that “we’re all in this together,” do they? Sounds a little one sided to me. And bring in a doctors note or an obituary? How parochial is that? Feels like something my Mom might think of or my elementary school teacher would have wanted.
To be clear, I’m not advocating for a policy-free workplace. As bad as these policies are, they likely exist because of some form of abuse. I don’t know the specifics here (yet) but I’m all but certain that the policies are a direct result of poor hiring practices – onboarding people who do not match or support the “we’re in it together” belief.
Do your rules undermine the culture you’re pursuing? Do you’re employees act counter to your culture? If so, get rid of them both. And finally…
…Reward Behavior That Supports the Culture
Perhaps the biggest misconceptions we encounter when it comes to employee recognition is confusing it with rewards or incentives. So let’s immediately dismiss any objection relating to cost. You don’t have to spend any money to recognize employees. The only thing that is required is the acknowledgement of a job well done.