One size does not fit all
I find it interesting that whatever article you read there is always a counter argument. ..
This week I read that Wellbeing strategies aren’t necessarily the solution to counteract rising mental health issues. Whilst still important to consider the wellness of our employees, there’s no use simply providing yoga if it’s the internal workings and processes within the organisation that are causing the stress in the first place.
Then I heard that a 17 year old entrepreneur thought it wasn’t in fact the millennials that were lazy, but the issues lay with all the other, older generations who have just worked 9-5 in offices making their money (most of which, to be fair, is funding the entrepreneurial leanings of the millennials – but who’s counting?!)
Finally, I read that 57% like open plan offices, but 99% of those find it distracting at times. So should we revert back to cubicles or battle on with open plan?
What I did learn this week, is that clearly everyone has their opinion and one size does not fit all. So what does this mean for businesses? How do businesses deal with the varying needs of their employees and clients?
1. Profit is a common aim, purpose and values are individual
Business profit and success is an outcome that everyone wants. Those businesses that define their purpose demonstrate the value they are creating, and this is highly individual to every organisation. When employees understand the organisation’s purpose they can then decide how they will support the achievement of this purpose.
Employees can understand the strategy of an organisation but without truly defining the organisation’s purpose those employees will struggle to understand how they as individuals can contribute to the success of that strategy. There are numerous studies showing that “purpose” is not simply a buzzword but rather demonstrates that those organisations articulating their purpose can attract and retain top talent, increase their profits and improve engagement throughout their workforce.
Defining and communicating the organisation’s purpose will all employees to individually decide how they will contribute to the success of the organisation through the work they do.
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2. HR alignment to the CEO and CFO
Over the years the HR function has transformed from being considered a relatively administrative function to a trusted advisor relationship sitting, in most cases, at the executive table. With the rise of AI and automation there is a risk that many roles within the HR function will become redundant. Those businesses that see the value in HR as a valuable input to their strategy will reap the rewards.
With employees needing variety in how they work and differing employee experiences, business success will come through an HR team that is aligned to the strategic direction of the organisation through close alignment to the CEO and CFO.
3. Create a people experience for all stages of the employee life-cycle
Whilst everyone is different there are some opportunities to provide support at the various stages throughout the employee life-cycle. By having flexibility within your structure you can ensure that at whatever stage the employee is at, or the preference they have for working, it can be accommodated.
Most people understand that the needs of graduates differ from the experienced hires, and the needs of those commencing as a new starter will be different to the needs of those close to retirement or leaving. However, providing support and flexibility at each stage will ensure as a business you are appealing to all levels and roles within your organisation.
Consider key stages such as: on-boarding, graduate program, new manager, senior leadership development, remuneration review and performance management framework.
Taking an employee centric approach to your business will, in the long-term, lead to increased engagement, improved talent development and ultimately increased business profit.