A culture of personal accountability is an incredibly powerful and misunderstood characteristic of a successful work environment.
It’s common to hear employees or coworkers say that they’d make substantial changes to how things are done but they don’t have the power. On the flipside, managers are often frustrated by their team’s lack of decisiveness, and inability to act without managerial input.
Accountability can’t be mandated.
You can’t demand accountability from your employees. Forcing someone to be accountable is like forcing them to jump higher. It’s just not possible. Accountability has to be instilled. Does your company have a clearly defined mission statement? Are there specific goals for your business unit? Does your team understand their role in accomplishing those goals?
Managing your employees requires understanding and conveying the vision of the company and how their specific jobs influence that vision. Asking your employees “How should we set your performance goals to maximize your effect on the team’s goals?” helps to make goals agreements and not declarations. It’s critical to help your employees see beyond their everyday tasks and understand that they’re a part of a bigger picture.
Employees don’t take ownership when they’re treated like employees.
Communication is essential. Visibility of the company’s goals, as well as its challenges, helps change your employees’ mindset from disconnected to invested. Invested employees are emotionally engaged. Emotionally engaged employees are more productive.
Employees who feel valued in turn value the company. If they feel like a cog in the system and not a part of the organization, we can’t create ownership. Employees who are not hired, paid, and treated fairly will never own their jobs. They’ll always feel like they’re undervalued, noncritical and at your mercy – the contradiction of ownership.
No Mistakes, Just Happy Trees
Allowing for mistakes is an important part of building an ownership mentality amongst your employees. All businesses experience problems and figure things out through trial and error. It’s important that your employees feel safe. If they feel that mistakes won’t jeopardize their careers, they’re more likely to be innovative rather than just going through the motions.
“A desk is a dangerous place from which to view the world.” –John le Carre
So how does this apply to your business? We need to shift ownership out of our offices and onto the floor. How can you get your employees to take ownership of their domain instead of following management’s processes? To get the ownership of their work, let’s give them ownership of their workspace. Literally.
Allowing your employees to have a say in the design and functionality of their workspace is a fantastic way to instill a sense of ownership in your employees. Whether it’s the location of their workstation, the proximity to necessary tools, the elimination of unneeded materials, or modifications to their individual ergonomic requirements, your employees know best. Have them think about their departmental goals when planning their workstations and how the changes they make influence the downstream and upstream processes. Allowing your employees to have input into these changes instills in them a sense of pride. The pride of ownership.
They’re not in this alone! UNEX and its vast distributor network is always available to help you plan, design, and build the ideal workstation for all situations. Our modular Flow Cell design allows for total adjustability with just a single 9/16” wrench. If you’d like a free customer layout of one of our Flow Cell modular workstations, contact one of our Pickologists today.