Getting Your Philosophy Right

A workplace philosophy is different from a personal philosophy in more than one way. A personal philosophy can be developed and changed at your own pace. On the other hand, a workplace philosophy needs to change when productivity is low and changes need to be made. A philosophy is not rigid like rules, but more of a framework for success. A philosophy that is flexible motivates team members to adopt the philosophy and produce results. When team members have the autonomy to produce results using their own methods within the philosophy, they are more willing to go above and beyond the established standards.

If you find your business losing customers and sales, it may be time to change the philosophy. Changing the philosophy is the key to implementing permanent change. Changes that are implemented to help increase customers and sales will only have long lasting effects if your workplace philosophy matches the adopted changes. If your philosophy clashes with the established change, there will only be temporary success before old methods are followed and the sales slump returns.

Motivating staff members is a daily challenge across all businesses. The philosophy of the business is a great way to unite your team under a common vision and goal. This could be as simple as delivering the best product for the customer at the highest level of customer service. This philosophy encourages staff members learn about their customer’s wants and needs, and serve the customer with the utmost professionalism. This will encourage staff to deliver the best product for the customer while bringing in the sales for the business.

Philosophies need to be kept simple and straightforward. Philosophies that are complex and difficult to understand will only promote confusion in the workplace. This will limit your team’s ability to produce at the desired level. A complex philosophy will make implementing change difficult, as staff will each have a different interpretation of the philosophy and apply it in a different way. A workplace philosophy that is easily understood and created for a purpose will be a powerful tool for success.

Philosophy is an integral part of any business and should be understood by every staff member to ensure success for your business.


Autonomy in the Service Industry

Autonomy is a risky part of any business. It has been a part of many successful businesses throughout the last 20 years, notably IBM. IBM has had tremendous success with allowing their staff complete autonomy. Staff are only required to report into the office once a month for a team meeting. As long as assigned projects are completed on time and up to standard the company, employees are free to complete their projects whenever and wherever they please. The almost limitless autonomy has been really well received with the millennial generation as they thrive on creativity and working on their own terms. IBM has seen consistently strong productivity numbers from staff members and continues to ‘lengthen the leash’.

The concept of completing a task on your time whenever you feel like only works in specific industries. One industry that it does not work well in is the service industry. Staff members need to show up to work everyday, on time, and ready to serve. Business hours are set in stone and customers expect service during those hours. The idea of serving customers at 3 a.m. because you just crushed a Vodka Redbull and cannot sleep does not fly. This may work in a development firm where you can work at any hour as long as you are done your work by the project deadline but not in the service industry.

The service industry has room for creativity within the marketing side of the business but little room to play with in the front line service position. Being creative within a customer service position will likely get you fired for not following company standards and set policies. Staff with a customer service title need a creative outlet to keep them motivated in their repetitive job. This is an opportunity for service companies to maximize productivity within their staff. Companies need to offer creativity sessions, which allow staff members to brainstorm and share ideas on how to operate the business more effectively on a day-to-day business. A single afternoon every couple of months, where staff can step back from their daily service jobs and evaluate what could be done better on an ongoing basis.

Give it a try; what’s the worst that can happen? Your company will increase productivity and staff members will feel valued because they got to contribute to the business’ success.