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Friday, November 5, 2021

Lean Quote: Respect Employees, Make Them Feel Valued

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.

"The employer generally gets the employees he deserves.  —  J. Paul Getty

Much about the employee experience is directly related to treating your employees well and making sure they have the resources they need to succeed. Bad bosses drive people to quit their job. Managers should focus on being leaders, being a role model and resource for employees, because when this is lacking, it generally leads to a negative experience with the business. Employees are happier when they have a partnership relationship with their boss. It is important for the organization to prepare management for this non-traditional arrangement. When all employees regardless of rank or role view each other as partners, the workplace environment is more open to collaboration. There are four important traits that management should have to facilitate these partnerships:

1.     Put employees first

2.     Connect with employees

3.     Release control when necessary

4.     Aim to improve the lives of others

Positive employee experiences lead to higher employee engagement, which brings benefits to the workplace culture and the organization as a whole. Some companies take the idea of employees as “partners” more literally by providing a way for employees to acquire stock in the company. As employees build real ownership in the company they work for, they will be more invested in the company’s success. When an employee has higher stakes at risk in how well the company is doing, it is more likely that they will work harder and want to contribute more. Once again, if the workplace culture is poor and employee morale is low, then the employees might not want ownership in the company. So it is important to treat employees like partners whether they actually have any ownership in the business or not.

For increased innovation and faster success, collaboration in the workplace is essential. Collaboration is proven to lead to happier and healthier employees; however, it can be difficult to motivate already unhappy employees to participate in collaboration. This ties into how respected employees feel, which is critical to the overall employee experience. After all, collaboration is the assumption that everyone can add value.  Making employees feel valued will increase and improve their engagement, and being active in the company can help them truly understand the importance of their role. Together, these things build a partnership between your employees and your business. The more that employees are viewed as and treated like valuable partners, the more likely it is that their employee experience will be positive and rewarding. Ultimately this creates an engaging work environment in which employees go the extra mile.

Respect employees, make them feel valued, and create a partnership for lasting success. There is nothing to lose by treating employees well, but there is everything to gain.

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