Imagine going to work, walking into your office or plant, and encountering a vibrant, stimulating atmospere. In talking to employees about upcoming deadline or project, you hear only enthusiasm and commitment. They are eafer to work hard, listen to your vision and strategy, and graciously share ideas. Some of the employees brainstorm about possible glitches and how to boost sales and profits. They banter with you and among themselves, their easy humor showing that they enjoy their work and they like and respect you.
As the day progresses, they on the phone, meeting among themselves, or intent at the computer, sometimes coming to you with creative ideas or special request. Each assignment is approached with a sense of urgency. These diligent employees are continously looking ways to improve their product or service to deliver it faster and better, and to upgrade their skills.
When someone volunteers to take charge, others are quick to join in to help. They know that on another project, they may be the leader and need support. They are confident that you value their input: you listen to their suggestions and are flexible enough to accomodate each of them.
The atmosphere is charged by employee voices are that sincere and remarkably human and personal. There are no awkward silences when bosses pass by, nor is there secretive scribbling of self-protective memos or sullen hostility between employees competing for bigger budgets and more attention. The usual me-versus-you antagonism has been replaced by a sharing of responsibilites and a feeling that all are working together. Teamwork and partnerships, rather than the old rigid ladders, make up the company structure.
Perhaps most remarkable about this new atmosphere is a feeling of respect. From the flexible schedules to the fair salaries and benefits to the sharing of vital information, the company shows that it truly cares about people, and employees reciprocate this trust with loyalty.
This is a sketch of what I call a Healthy Company. This kind of organization may sound far-fetched - a corporate utopia that only dreamers or the very naive would believe in. For many companies, it is. But among the millions of businesses in this country, some are quetly, decisively transforming themselves into healthy companies. They are driven by an unshakeable conviction that only a healthy company wil be alive and competitive in the coming years.
The Anatomy of a Healthy Company by Robert H Rosen, Ph.D.