Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Creating a WOW culture at work!

Tools of the TradeImage by punk_drizzle via Flickr

Brainstorming Human Resources

A couple of years ago I sat through a couple of days of meetings that basically were intended to be a deep look at an internal HR department. The focus of the meeting was to look how that company could revitalize their culture and increase the engagement of their employees.

Looking back was interesting. I thought I would share them. Maybe you will find something of value here.

Key Themes

  • Increase employee pride and passion
  • Create a strong culture based on innovation and fun
  • HR as business partner
  • Active communication at all levels
  • Measure success and celebrate it!
  • Talent management
  • View HR programs on global/local basis
  • Excellent people
  • Add value via exceptional pay/benefit practices
  • Define competencies for all employees
  • All employees are valued for their work
  • All employees are valued for their diversity
  • Strategies

Getting started

1. Build excellent leadership skills

  • People management processes - in/out
  • Onboarding
  • Initial selection
  • Overall people strategy
  • leadership development program
  • Practice "walk the talk" management
  • View people as our competitive advantage

2. Develop excellent talent management
3. People and culture strategies must be the leading focus of the organization
4. Drive innovative strategies through people management

  • Programs should strike with maximum surface structure within the organization
  • Organization should be flat and team based
  • Practice good leadership as a team sport
  • Top-grade talent

5. Role of Human Resources

  • Ear to the floor inside the company
  • Eyes to the outside to bring in new ideas
  • Primarily responsible for attracting/retaining the best talent
  • Always foster culture built around respect, credibility, fairness, trust, pride, camraderie
Always remember this:

"Culture doesn't create the environment. Leadership creates the culture that leads to the environment in which people work. These things can be planned and managed from all levels of the organization, but they start at the top and must permeate everything a great organization does."

How to get started creating a people driven culture

  • Solicit feedback on current culture
  • Focus groups
  • Establish recognition committee
  • Begin eliminating rules
  • Bring disparate work groups together
  • Create opportunities for fun in the workplace
  • Foster employee decision making at every opportunity
  • Foster programs to create employee ownership
  • Encourage employees to give you their elevator speeches
  • Get ideas from employee focus groups
  • Create the WOW factor with recognition programs, services employees will value, or that will make their personal time more valuable

Low cost ideas for getting strategic

  • Establish a business book library and reading program for employees
  • Establish a "2 levels up" group of mentors for cross functional learning
  • Attend budget meetings and learn how to ask for $!
  • Back to basics committee - looking for ways to simplify the organization
  • Review the strategic plans of other departments and look for opportunities to tie in your programs.
  • Brown Bag Lunch from the Leading Edge - Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, SmartBrief, other sources from the web.

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