Consider that employees come into your organization expecting to be valued, trusted, challenged and treated well. They want ongoing constructive and positive feedback, autonomy and teamwork, effective communication, and more.
Doesn’t all of that sound a lot like the same things we want from our spouses, partners, family and friends? And vice versa?
When it comes to employers, however, the feeling may not be mutual. Many employers want employees to work hard for whatever pay was offered. They want to give feedback but may not be interested in receiving it. They probably want communication about the status of employee projects, but may not deliver the same courtesy. The list goes on.
But work is a relationship. You wouldn’t be in a relationship with someone who expected you to do things that they weren’t willing to reciprocate, and why should your employees?
Suddenly giving the annual performance appraisal doesn’t seem like a great idea. Imagine if we delivered that same conversation to our spouse or partner. Yikes.
I really liked this comparison when I heard it from Jason Lauritsen, author of, Unlocking High Performance: How to Use Performance Management to Engage and Empower Employees to Reach Their Full Potential, who opened up an engagement conference I spoke at last week. The conference was put on by Achieve Engagement, and I picked up some great nuggets from several speakers that I’m going to share with you over the next few emails.
Jason’s speech reminded me of this blog post I wrote about psychological contracts with employees. I asked you to consider that new hires are essentially thinking, “this employer better furnish a safe and respectful work environment free of harm where I can be my best self,” while most employers aren’t even close to thinking about that.
Wouldn’t it be great to talk with employees about expectations on both sides? And rather than leave them as unsaid things floating around in our heads, we put them in writing?
Check out my old post if you want to learn more about psychological contracts.
You might also remember we have a cool little tool we call Employee Engagement in a Box. Use the code eiabenewsletter to get it for $99, since you’re my email peeps. It’s normally $147.