Company culture and organizational challenges are often taken for granted. But your employees, at the end of of the day, are complex and diverse human beings — not robots(yet). And humans are unpredictable from moment to moment, if you hadn’t noticed.

Imagine this: One of your direct reports, usually at your beck and call, has been acting erratically for the past week: missing meetings, late for client calls, distracted and making more mistakes than usual , and you have no idea why. You try to ignore it at first, but it becomes increasingly obvious.

 

You might think a few bad days are not a big deal. But Gallup’s ‘State of the Global Workplace’ study of 2017 estimates the cost of poor employee engagement in the US to be between $960 billion and $1.2 trillion per year.

I would call that a big deal.

You may start speculating on why this employee is acting this way:

Is he/she having problems at home? Conflicts at work? Unhappy with a project? Unhappy with something you did? Unhappy with an IT change? Bored with work? Dissatisfied about a performance evaluation and raise? Angry with a colleague? Angry with their spouse? Did someone hit their car? Did they forget to take their medication? Forget to eat lunch?….etc. etc.

 The problem is — it could be anything. Every single person in the organization is different, and there is no way we are going to understand and please everyone, all the time.

Let’s look at a simplified equation of all the variables that could possibly conflict in the workplace:

 {Different personalities x Different ages x Different situations x Different work functions x Different priorities x Different values and mindsets x Different living situations x Different financial situations x Different preferences and work styles x Different expectations from the workplace x Different skill levels and education x Different cultures/backgrounds x Different perspectives x Different appearances x Different deep-seated traumas, resentments, insecurities from the past……}

 …….etc etc., the list continues.

 

 Not to mention those factors we actually ‘officially’ call “Diversity,” which by themselves contribute significantly to variation :

 Gender, Race, Sexuality, Ethnicity, and Disability.

 The good news is, according to Maslow’s hierarchy, we do know that every employee in our organization has these 7 attributes in common:

  1. He/she wants to feel valued and important to the team.

2. He/she wants to be comfortable and be at ease.

3. He/she wants to have relationships that contribute to their wellbeing

4. He/she wants to achieve and fulfill their full potential.

6. He/she wants to have safety and job security.

7. He/she wants to have enough money and resources for basic survival.

    NOW, all you have to do is to ignore everything else, except for those 7 basic needs of each human being.

    That means, teach yourself, as well as everyone in the organization, to ignore personal feelings, opinions , values, preferences, desires, situations, judgments, interpretations, outward appearances, impressions, beliefs, assumptions, life experiences, and conclusions.…..

    Encourage Ideas Over Complaining

    This is typically a pretty impossible task for 2 people to do between themselves, let alone an entire organization.

    So in other words….no, you don’t have organizational culture under control, not nearly as much as it could be. While it is definitely a big problem to solve, it is also worth addressing: contemplate that a 1% increase in employee engagement across your organization could result in $50–$60m more in annual profit.

    You could be multiplying employee engagement 6x with our help, like our clients.Contact us about how we can help you quantify feelings, sentiments, and behaviors at your organization to see how they are impacting the performance of your organization.

    We combine our expertise in neuroscience, analytics, and change management to make a measurable impact for our clients.