If you Google the words, working together in the workplace, you come up with over 28 million references. It sounds like they’re is a real need to do that.
This week on the CALMC Facebook page, I posted a link to an article from Harvard Business Review. It was called Creating the Best Workplace on Earth by Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones.
It was a long article but it provided some interesting examples of working together. One was Arup, an engineering and design company, that has done some creative designs such as the iconic structure in Sydney, Australia, the Sydney Opera House. Instead of doing traditional performance reviews, the Arup performance review system is the supervisors laying out the expectations to employees and employees identifying how they will meet the expectations. Another example was from Waitrose, a popular British employee-owned retail food company. To encourage individuality and creativity, employees determine their training. If they would like to learn about a specific craft or how to play a specific musical instrument, the company will pay for it because they want their employees to be themselves which helps the company be successful.
These examples show how much the employees at these companies are valued. This is part of the foundation needed for people to work together in the workplace.
Everyone is an individual with their own set of perspectives, ideas, needs, values, experiences that help to make us who we are. Organizations need to value that individuality and those ideas so they can help companies look at new ideas which can beat the new competition and meet customers’ expectations and demands. The article said too many times companies invest more in their employees when times are good instead of difficult times or in slack times such as now. By working together to look at new ways during down times, it can help maintain or increase the profit margin, save jobs and prevent organizations from closing the operation.
Schools are teaching teamwork and the power of everyone working together. My nephew is attending the local vocational school where he is going into IT. Teamwork is emphasized as they do teamwork exercises and work together to actually build a computer.
I am taking some classes in the healthcare field and the need for everyone working together as a team is also heavily emphasized. In class, we learn to value the ideas of our classmates as we work on issues that pertain to the workplace.
More than ever, embracing individual ideas and bringing those ideas to the team are encouraged as working together is emphasized. We can’t wait until we proclaim things are better. The time to begin as now. Things might improve much sooner if we all work together.