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Archive for the ‘Meaningful work’ Category

Over the past several years there has been a lot of buzz going around about “Meaningful Work”. Companies are incorporating the phrase into their recruitment and performance management strategies stating “We offer a meaningful work environment”. However, most of the time it is exactly as it seems a catch phrase to help recruit or retain talent. Most companies do not have a clue what it takes to establish a meaningful work environment.

In my opinion, this type of work environment would see each and every employee bring a sense of passion, creativity and meaning to the workplace every day because they feel and see on a personal level that it makes a difference. How? Because management is continuously recognizing, rewarding and celebrating the successes of its employees no matter how large or small.

A couple of years ago I was introduced to a company which stated it offered a meaningful work environment. Senior management was running around giving “lip service” to providing meaningful work” and the majority of the employees were scratching their heads wondering what is so meaningful about this work? Actually, the company did have a good foundation – the problem was too many antiquated managers ingrained in an “old style” of management. Hence if a company is committed in creating a cohesive meaningful work environment it must start with its management to insure each and every one is a leader capable of inspiring employees to bring their best to work every day.

The organization is responsible for creating a meaningful workplace where each and every employee is a part of and contributes to its success. You got it, a cohesive culture continually fostered by the organization. Hmm sounds a little like human resource management – what a concept!

The only way a company can honestly say they offer a meaningful work environment is if each and every employee buys in and understands the concept. Herein is the challenge – each and every employee not just the “superstars” or those deemed to “have potential” but all employees even those who are struggling. All too often struggling employees are mislabelled as underperforming or “poor performers”. It just might be that the employee is under-challenged, and finds the work boring subsequently showing up for work every day becomes a chore. On the other hand maybe the employee finds the work too complicated and does not feel he/she is getting adequate training. In a true meaningful work environment struggling employees become the priority and it is up to management to help inspire the desire to bring their best to work every day.

Let me know what you think – does your company do a good job of offering all its employees meaningful work?

Lee Koren is certified as a Professional in Human Resources (PHR). She is an expert in career transition management, recruitment and selection.


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