Dear CEOs and HR execs:
There should no longer be any excuses. This special section provides plenty of information on how to treat employees the right way for the right reasons.
The survey results indicate that the cost is little. Pay and benefits are clearly less important to most metro Atlanta employees than intangibles like appreciation and strong leadership.
Employee comments like, “0ur opinions are solicited, and our ideas are implemented,” are one of the reasons these organizations stand out.
Does yours? If not, what can you do to change things? Unfortunately, many workplaces need to change.
I hear from workers all the time, in e-mails about my columns and postings on my blog. The overall picture they paint is not a pretty one.
It’s in line with what Woodward Academy dean Anthony Thomas told section writer Mike Tierney: “You’d be surprised how many people in corporate America who make twice as much as me would trade places.”
Many employees tell me the same thing they’ve told Thomas: They plan to leave their firms if they can find another opportunity as the economy improves.
Many say the balance of power between employers and employees has shifted so much in the company’s favor that fear has become the normal emotion.
It’s the fear of what shoe is going to drop next — another layoff or wage freeze, paying more for medical benefits, losing a pension plan or seeing the veteran worker who was laid off last year get replaced by two new employees making half as much.
Many say they are doing more than they ever did before, picking up the slack from laid-off colleagues who were released in one of several “restructurings.”
In my view, nearly all employees understand the mounting financial pressures from an increasingly global economy. What they don’t understand is a lack of respect.
That’s why the accomplishment of the companies and organizations in this section are noteworthy. They represent “best practices,” one of two contemporary buzz phrases in corporate America.
The other is “customer service.” Often, delivering superior “customer service” requires the use of “best practices.”
But unlike companies in this section, many workplaces don’t get it.
Providing first-class service often depends on employees who are willing to go the extra mile. And that often depends on how they’re treated. Companies also should be judged by how they treat prospective workers. It can tell you a lot about their true feelings.
Does a company reply to job-seekers after advertising for positions, or does it let candidates swing in the wind?
In Georgia, we are facing an unprecedented situation. More than half of the jobless have been unemployed for at least 27 weeks. Many of them have worked for decades prior to this Great Recession. And it’s not easy searching for a job when the unemployment rate is in double digits.
It’s all about treating people — employees and prospective employees — with dignity. After all, aren’t we in this together? Isn’t that the real message these good employers are sending?
- Henry Unger, The Biz Beat
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