In my advocacy for people empowerment there is a prominent obstacle:
People are still working in silos
In my work with Human Resources groups, I have found consistent requests for:
- Better Management
- A Clearly Defined Path to Success
It seems to be popular opinion that the way to gather employee feedback is by issuing a survey. There are a few reasons why these surveys might fail:
- They do not ask the right questions
- They do not produce actionable data
- They come from a place of mistrust
Asking an employee for their feedback in private may only produce selective data. If an employee invests in the process of stating their mind, leadership action is necessary. Otherwise, a survey will work as a demotivator.
Protecting the flock
It has been said that people leave bosses, not companies. This is not always the fault of the boss! If transparency is a fear factor in your organizational, your culture will be broken!
Everyone loves social media....we facebook our faces off, we use twitter, and LinkedIn is our professional bible. So, if we know that our employees love social interaction, why are our processes for management still anti-social.
Performance reviews suck, one-on-one calls do not produce action planning for career development, and top down direction does not create a holistic approach to organizational development. There has to be a better way!
To the former point, your employees can use social media to build their personal brand. OR your company can utilize the social enterprise to enhance your employee's career path within your organizational culture.
If my career goals are confined to a talk with my manager, only he/she can guide (or discourage) my success. If my goals are not clearly defined, documented and/or actionable...all I can do is assume my effort will fulfill the company's expectations. Hardly motivating!
Let's Break Down The Silos
Why are we still protecting employee feedback?
Why is only our manager in control of our career development?
Why are we still coaching with the office door closed?
Too many organizations have employees who are fearful to interact. They believe anything they say can, and will be, held against them. There are employees who believe that if they ask for feedback, they are only inviting criticism. Managers are forced to micro-manage to keep employees on track instead of inspiring them to grow. All silos in a field with no crop circles of interaction.
I have 3 simple suggestions in conclusion to the pain this post has revealed:
1. Discontinue performance reviews...now!
2. Promote socialized goal setting!
3. Solicit feedback from all angles as a means to career empowerment!
Lack of transparency only leads to mass exodus of talent!
Don't Forget to Remember!