A Question to Managers and Leaders:
“How Can You Sustain the Organization of Work ... Where You Like What You Do and Do What You Like While Meeting Organization Mission, Vision and Values, Stakeholder Wants, and Client Needs While Living a Dynamically Balanced Life?”
Positioning the Question
Open any magazine, read blogs, listen to podcasts and look/listen for commentary on workplaces today and you will read how and why people seek to work in organizations where they can like what they do and do what they like while meeting organization and stakeholder needs and wants sustainably.
Accompanying this commentary are consultants and futurists who prescribe what is best for the workplace. They tout the need for engaging employees in team-managed teams or adopt a lean-agile management program that will result in clients receiving products that are error-free.
Others believe if you simply improve relationships among the employees work will be better.
And, others suggest if you make the mission and values clear to everyone through training then the ideas will catch on and employees will respond accordingly.
A few of these interventions work. More often, they last for a while until the next idea comes along.
Why are these interventions not working?
One simple reason … they are implemented at the symptom-cause level rather than the cause-paradigm level. That is, these interventions address the symptoms (foreground conversations along the lines and in the boxes of the organization chart) rather than the paradigm (background conversations in the white space of the organization chart) of a situation.
Consider these symptom-cause examples:
Symptom: Employees are bored and return late from lunch
Cause: → Employees are not challenged in their work
Action: Manager enforces use of a time clock.
Symptom: Employees pilfer from the stationary cabinet
Cause: → Employees are not paid for overtime
Action: Leader issues a policy that stationary is to be distributed by written requisition signed by a manager from a locked cabinet.
Symptom: Manager is confused when encountering problems
Cause: → Manager is promoted without management orientation
Action: Employees loses trust in manager to make appropriate decisions and begin to find ways to move the manager out or they leave.
While these three examples are somewhat extreme, the point is leaders and managers are leading and managing at the symptom to cause level which is not enthusing employees forward in ways that truly inspire and engage them.
What would happen if you tool a different tack?
Consider this perspective … lead from the basic paradigm of organization behaviour at an individual level ... that is, lead (and manage) knowing the underlying, unspoken values each employee holds knowingly and unknowingly.
Would knowing these values help?
The resounding answer would be yes!
Unfortunately, you too often experience employees negatively expressing their values. Because when and where employees are not matching their work with their values they can express themselves negatively through escalating labour unrest, taking stress leave, quitting their jobs, and/or transferring to another section of the organization to name a few.
What is the hierarchy of values?
Every person has a hierarchy of values. This hierarchy of values moves the person into contributory action because the person likes to be involved with what she or he is thinking, feeling, and doing.
The task for you is to discover their personal values and assist employees to link their values with their job and the expressed mission, vision and values of the organization. This connection means you must truly learn and practice the art of ‘engaging the hands, heads and hearts of your staff’.
However, it is imperative the organization fashion and foster a workplace where personal safety is mandatory and organization values are clearly communicated in ways that avoid confusion.
What form does the expression of organization values take that helps you move forward?
Organization values are found in well written action_outcome statements that highlight and make transparent what an organization requires and requests of the employees to significantly succeed in their work as they fill the needs and wants of the marketplace of activities.
It's important to state that every action_outcome statement is well-written.
That is, the intention of the statement articulates what persons need to know and do to contribute to their organization of work. In doing so, a fair exchange is set up between the organization and the employee in financial and/or non-financial ways.
For example, a person values:
- the financial aspect of life ... therefore raises and bonuses may work.
- receiving a Friday off a month to form a long weekend with the family
- working from home two-days a week to avoid the long commute
- stretch assignments to learn and grow
There is a myriad of ways you can inspire each employee and manage the systems for the employees. And when you do, stories are told of a workplace that celebrates what works for everyone. It is these stories that need to find their way into newspapers and magazines, blogs and podcasts, and YouTube channels and Instagram stories.
WELLth Movement’s Contribution
WELLth Movement works with organizations, leaders, managers, executives, human resource professionals, workplace educators all of whom challenge themselves to be involved in a story of what works well.
WELLth Movement encourages you to restory the co-creation of the well-living workplace™.
The well-living workplace is
- a place of work where everyone works and lives well together
- through co-creation and collaborative conversations
- where and when everyone enjoys what they do and do what they enjoy.
- you manage and lead using a whole system - whole person approach
Well-Living Workplace Initiatives Linked with Action_Outcome Statements
The point has been made already that well written action_outcome statements can contribute to the well-living workplace.
When these action_outcome statements are grouped into accountability profiles they provide each person with:
- A nested learning and development contract
- An accountability agreement (including major responsibility statements)
- An auditable portfolio of what the person knows and is doing
- Collectively, traceable documentation to answer questions should an inquiry of competence or compliance arise
For the organization, when each employee is competent - fulfills their accountabilities, the organization can:
- Manage the talents of each person helpful in project assignment
- Operate the business by ensuring the correct person is willingly in the correct job
- Ensure the safety and security of each person by accountabilities
- Excite people about new opportunities - their chosen succession path
- Foster relationships that nurture collaboration conversations
- Outline ways to make things better personally and professionally
- Confirm the work impact each person has internally and externally
To be realistic to everyone involved … there is a starting point from which to ignite interest and commitment to fashion and foster the well-living workplace.
Each organization is different in character, size and type. Therefore, WELLth Movement works through different workplace initiatives, which seek to Connect Your Accountability Assignment with Your Responsibility Decisions
Can start here ...
Download the book: Creating the Well-Living Workplace for free. Click the image to the right -->
The book contains 139 insights - action_outcome statements at the organization level.
And if you want to go further faster, purchase the Well-Living Workplace online course.
Click here to learn more ...
In Closing Workplace Transition 0619 ...
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As we co-create well-living workplaces - places of work where we work well together - realize:
WELLth Movement guides inspired practitioners to become natural educators who deliver extraordinary experiences with their community of significance using eco-ethical architecture.
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