An article in the Wall Street Journal summarized a comprehensive survey of American workers. The survey found, “American workers are less loyal to employers than in the past.” Downsizing, weeding of management layers and the fear of being fired are reasons cited for declining loyalty.
Another news article highlighted an AT&T phone repair center that saved employees’ jobs by getting the employees involved. The managers reduced the cost of refurbishing telephones by asking their employees to find practical solutions. This center now repairs phones for less time and money than a sister center located in Mexico. Productivity increased as a direct result of the employees’ ideas.
Defining Continuous Improvements
Continuous improvements in quality require employee’s involvement in creating new and real solutions. How can an executive expect an employee, who fears losing their job, to stay emotionally involved? To ensure loyalty, we must do everything we can to reduce the “fear factor.” We must get every employee excited about their job, about our company and about our products and services. Three guaranteed ways to accomplish this are:
- Ask for, acknowledge and implement employee suggestions and ideas;
- Train employees to apply effective problem-solving techniques.
- Do not assume your employees know what is expected of them.
Employees who believe their employer cares about them and want them to succeed will, in return, care about their company.