One of the benefits of being in management for 37 years is the insight gained on how to create a high production, high morale, and low injury rate culture.
Years ago, when first promoted to a management position, the company I was with at the time had a pretty nasty employee culture. If I was going to be successful as a manager, I needed a team all pulling in the same direction.
In actuality, the poor morale was costing the company a great deal of money. The resultant turnover was outrageous which sapped management’s time and resources by having to interview, train and mentor the newly hired employees. Production was affected as new people take time to learn their job duties, and it was an emotional hit for managers to see their time and energy investments walk out the door.
There was much wasted time amongst employees bemoaning their lot in life (euphemism for bitching and moaning). In fact, their misery was almost the primary common bond that served as a basis for the morale.
In a couple of short years the company’s turnover became virtually non-existent; we had a waiting list of potential employees wanting to work there; sales increased more than 5 fold and we honestly enjoyed being around and working with each other very much.
How did this cultural turnaround happen?
Management Attitude and Responsibility
Management connotes leadership. I wanted to create an atmosphere that people enjoyed being in. The old mindset that “you are here to work, not have fun” is, well, old. Many employees spend more waking hours at work than at home. People are more productive if they enjoy their job and work environment.
How does one start to create a better culture? In retrospect the fundamental catalyst for change was “to care”. I cared for the people that worked for me. They were my “team”. It was my responsibility to create an environment that allowed them to produce as much as possible; to grow personally; and feel like they mattered. Most employees responded very well to this new “company” attitude despite the attention on increasing individual production.
However, there is a small percent of people in the world who actually wake up every day and instead of wanting to help make things better and to see people win, their intentions are to cause disruption, chaos and incredibly to see people fail! This is a hard to imagine cold-hard fact.
One of the most powerful management lessons I have ever learned was you can’t be successful with these character types on your “team”. Have you ever wondered why your favorite sports team imploded instead of making the playoffs despite great talent? It was because 1 or more of these types of people were covertly or otherwise busy causing failure, disharmony, and bringing others down. Well, my team didn’t just have one…I discovered over time I had 2 working against the good of the “team”!
With the help of HR, we were able to “let loose” the 2 characters and this immediately changed the feel, vibe, and fate of the company. I took it as a good sign when some employees actually thanked me for letting them go.
My job as manager was to hire well, train well, care for our employees, create an environment that was conducive to high production, and then get the heck out of their way!
When I started FIT 27 years ago, I wanted to help companies to create this type of environment for their employees. Our Backsafe® and Sittingsafe® Injury Prevention Programs are highly successful because we get employees to have “aha” moments during the training that lead to significant reductions in back, shoulder and ergonomic injuries. What is the secret sauce? It starts with We CARE! We care about people that we train—we don’t want them in pain, or getting on opioids, or not being able to work! When a company brings us in, the employees also know that their employer cares!
We help enhance morale and by being preeminent experts at real world biomechanics and work related stretching routines, we prevent your most expensive claims—back, shoulder and other ergonomic injuries.
Change your workers’ comp trends in 2020! Don’t “manage” claims, STOP them! We “prevent tomorrow’s injuries today.”
If you want to prevent expensive work related injury claims and give employee morale a boost in 2020, reach out to us! Let’s do this! 1-800-775-2225
Dennis Downing, CEO