Friday, August 5, 2011

Lean Quote: Promoting Respect in the Workplace

On Fridays I will post a Lean related Quote. Throughout our lifetimes many people touch our lives and leave us with words of wisdom. These can both be a source of new learning and also a point to pause and reflect upon lessons we have learned. Within Lean active learning is an important aspect on this journey because without learning we can not improve.

"Respect is the foundation stone of organization effectiveness. It encourages us to recognise the skills and experience of every individual and to work together to maximize our collective potential." — Building and Promoting Respect in the Workplace - A Handbook for Managers

In order for any group, organization, or institution to be able to build and maintain itself as a functioning entity capable of achieving its potential, it must be able to manage its interpersonal relationships in a positive – civil and respectful – manner.

In my experience a respectful workplace exemplifies the following 10 elements:

1. People receive credit for the good work that is done.
2. Individuals take responsibility for their actions/behavior rather than making excuses or blaming others.
3. Individuals are committed to keeping each other informed and trust each other to pass along information appropriately.
4. People collaborate on important issues by seeking out each others opinions and expertise.
5. People talk in terms of “we” instead of creating “us and them” distinctions.
6. Individuals focus on the main issue or mission and don’t get sidetracked by differences in detail.
7. Individuals respect organizational structures and roles and don’t use them as weapons.
8. Individuals value each other’s background and experience rather than discrediting each other’s competence.
9. Concerns, criticisms, and conflicts are openly raised, are focused on methods for accomplishing the work, and are discussed in a respectful manner.
10. People speak positively about their work, the organization, and the future rather than negatively or expressing cynicism.

Does your workplace exemplify these signs of respect? What others would you add to this list?

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  1. Hi Tim,
    I came across your article while doing some research for demonstrating respect at workplace. I would like to add the following to your list:
    - People are given authority to take decisions autonomously

  2. Thanks. That is a good one to add to the list.

  3. Hi Tim, In my opinion,the 3rd one is the basis, trust and a team feeling. And sometimes,it's the most difficult one.

    Thanks for your blog that inspire us to keep believing.