Investors like that company managers see employees as investments and partners in the business. But many today reflect employee relationships through political, metaphorical, or even villainous eyes.
The tightening labor market, coupled with the coronavirus pandemic’s reshuffle of people priorities and flexible workplaces, has empowered employees. Employee turnover is across industries; the large number of senior staff is quit smoking and junior staff expect more from a job over high salary and basic benefits. What was once a privilege – work-life balance, flexible hours and remote options – is now a mission.
Employers’ responses to employee requests vary, from outright refusal to outright agreement, no Ideal for shareholders. Some employers cater to specific employees by adopting political identities, such as Dish Network
above correct. Politicizing a company can be a good economic strategy in certain industries and beyond endure more than it ever has. But in most areas, political extravagance creates no value, as it cuts off addressable markets.
Others try to break free of ideology. Eg, Basecamp bans political talk between staff and Coinbase Global
abandon social activism by the company. But in each case, some employees felt alienated.
If polarizing positions don’t appeal to investors, consider that some companies are explicitly investing in what employees value. For example, KPMG, a longtime winner In terms of employee satisfaction, recently announced expanded employee benefits reflect an investment in both employees and the company.
KPMG will contribute directly to the company to 401(k) rather than limiting them to outcomes that match employee own contributions. The company is reducing employees’ health care premiums by 10% with no change in benefits. It currently grants new parents 12 weeks of paid leave (up from two to six) and separately provides an additional three weeks for employees who need to take on other caregiving roles.
KPMG CEO Paul Knopp wrote: “As a company, we grow best when our people grow too. . . . We are committed to continuing to invest in our extraordinary people – their careers, their futures, their happiness and their families. ”
Across the board, employees continue to share investment views when it comes to benefits that increase their satisfaction. For example, in a compilation out of 10 highly rated employers, all employees but one are rated 401(k), profit sharing, and equity incentives – features that align with shareholder interests. They also cite benefits that reflect new expectations from the workplace, largely referring to free meals and social events, and many noting new parents’ leave, school allowances and more. college fees and charity gift matching.
This approach seems right for a society that continues to look to the private sector, not the government, to generate resources for its people. Even as Washington is exploring ways to thicken the social safety net, it is corporate America that provides the life-changing benefits for most Americans.
Such beneficial innovation is said to respond to market and societal changes without getting too deeply involved in politics. And while the KPMG-style approach may seem edgy, it’s more anachronistic than fashionable and more conventional than contemporary. It is adaptive, not revolutionary.
After all, the best companies never put shareholders’ profits above all else, and certainly not the welfare of their employees. They also don’t prioritize employee happiness, as opposed to satisfaction. Simple measures like worker rotation don’t bother good companies, because in order to create the most satisfied and productive workforces, unhappy or unproductive employees should leave. company.
Such realities underline the difficulty some CEOs face in defining their businesses from an employee perspective. Many people talk about them companies like family, but few take it seriously because it prevents the flexibility needed to remove those who should leave. Others, such as Netflix
talk about their employees as teammates, applicable in some settings but can obscure the value of internal contests and individual initiatives. Other companies identify as a community or a village, but these also describe the workplace as something unlike it.
We’ve got the word CEOs are looking for: company. The medieval origin of the word refers to how merchants and investors got together (com = together + panis = bread), take risks and think about profits together. Today’s managers would do well to embrace such an investment concept to keep employees and shareholders engaged.
Lawrence A. Cunningham is a professor at George Washington University, the founder of Quality shareholder groupand publisher, since 1997, of “Essays by Warren Buffett: Lessons for American Business. For an update on Cunningham’s research on quality shareholders, Register here.
https://www.marketwatch.com/story/heres-what-happens-when-employers-see-workers-as-investors-not-family-or-teammates-11637227743?rss=1&siteid=rss Opinion: This is what happens when employers see workers as investors — not ‘family’ or ‘teammates’