Does your workplace have “truths” that you function around? Are there set values, visions and belief statements that are entrenched, living, and breathing? Think of the principles you function under. What is common knowledge?
“Truths” can be positive and negative. A negative truth may be there is no respect in the workplace. Employees, supervisors and even clients use vulgar language and tell racist jokes.
The “good-truths” of an organization are evident when we look at retention of employees, customer satisfaction level and the overall state of health and wellbeing at work. A “truth” is a building block. When we can articulate those “truths”, we have a foundation for decision making, business planning, growth, and maintenance.
Established “truths” should be obvious: consistently practiced and valued by both internal and external stakeholders to your business. This includes your employees, contactors, customers, and clients. If your organization is living their “truths” it will be evident.
Some examples of desired “truths” in the workplace:
Your employees know safety is paramount for every job and task.
Example - No employee/visitor/client is allowed to ascend or descend a staircase without holding the handrail.
No one is afraid to admit a mistake and admitting a mistake is acceptable. However, lying about it is not and will result in immediate disciplinary action up to and including dismissal.
There is zero tolerance for name calling vulgar language and snide jokes or comments. If you wouldn’t say it to your grandmother, you don’t say it at work. This includes clients using vulgar language or inappropriate jokes.
Responsiveness to questions and inquiries
The company has rules regarding email and phone response times. This is both internally to colleagues and externally to clients and callers.
We answer our phones live and there are always people available to handle matters during that business day.
After two email exchanges, we pick up the phone and have a conversation.
What are the “truths” of your workplace? Negative or positive, we need to identify them and make corrections as needed to build a healthy and safe workplace. This may be a difficult conversation to have but a necessary one!