Growing up, I thought everyone hated going to work. I always felt invisible. As an hourly employee, no one asked my opinion or knew my name.
At social gatherings and amongst friends, work was rarely mentioned because it was very separate from who we were or how we identified. We never thought to ask about work.
That was a long time ago.
When I ventured out in the world years later, I met people who loved their jobs. I discovered the workplace could be different.
A company’s reputation is built on how people feel about its culture and their ability to succeed in the organization. If your employees love the culture, they’ll spread that love to their customers, who in turn will spread the word to the social media universe.
Long-term financial success is directly related to a culture of inclusion. The culture of an organization will motivate people to want to jump out of bed and get to work every day. It will make employees want to do their best work over and over. And it’s the leaders of organizations that envision, enact and engage people at every level who contribute to that culture.
When people in organizations can articulate the culture, know the written and unwritten norms, and have a structure to work within, they have a lot more freedom to be creative, are more secure and make better decisions on their own.
What makes people jump out of bed
Over the last 20 years, I’ve asked thousands of employees at every level and in every industry I’ve worked, “What would make you jump out of bed every day to come to work?” Here are seven of the most consistent responses:
- People greet me when I come to work and are happy to see me. I feel a sense of belonging.
- My manager asks my opinion, listens to what I have to say and implements my best ideas.
- The people who run the company know my name and talk to me about the company.
- I feel listened to and get recognition for my experience and skills.
- I’m comfortable interacting with everyone.
- My company doesn’t tolerate racism, gender inequity or homophobia, and everyone is welcome.
- I feel part of a community, and I’m seen as a whole person. I don’t have to hide who I am or think like everyone else.
What are you doing to make your employees want to jump out of bed every day and come to work? Why not pick one or two of these responses and put them into practice for 30 days? After 30 days, ask employees if they notice a difference in the environment. If you take action every day, your employees will feel it and do the same.
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