Open Workplace Key To Success

I attended the National Wooden Pallet and Container Association last week in Tucson, Arizona.  More than 400 participants were on hand for the meeting.

As part of the educational program, I was asked to sit on a panel for questions following a speaker who spoke about employee retention.  She said one way to run employees away from your company is to “micromanage” them.  Following the speech, I was asked what “micromanagement” was to me.

Here’s how I responded:

“I have learned that people love jobs where they get to do what they do best and that they have more control over what they do as compared to less control.  So, micro management is doing things for a teammate that they can do better than you or doing something for them that they would do differently if they could make the choice.”

That’s a tension we manage isn’t it? Sometimes you get stuck doing things that don’t fit your particular skill set.  Sometimes you get stuck doing things the way you are told when your experience and background tells you there is a better way.  What do you do about it?

What eases the tension is when you feel free to speak up.  Some folks don’t speak up.  They figure that the boss is the boss and to make a suggestion or initiate a discussion about change isn’t worth the hassle.

As a company, we will get better when we don’t make those discussions hassles.  We need leaders that will listen.  We need leaders that will try new things.  We need leaders who won’t let a difference of opinion cause a rift in a relationship.

Leaders who encourage an open discourse will win.  The more “open” the environment, the more ideas get generated.  The more “open” the environment, the greater our collective intelligence, because no one holds back.

My goal is for this to be a great place to work for you.  I hope that everyone in leadership is with me on this.  So, take a shot here.  Speak up about better ways.  Tell  us about skills you have that you aren’t using.  Tell us what you desire to learn as you move ahead.



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Posted in: Communication, Improvement

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