The largest organ of the body is the skin which needs to be nourished from both the inside and the outside if we are to be vibrant and healthy. Our skin reflects the state of our health, so just looking at someone can help a doctor make a diagnosis. The health of an organization is reflected in the attitudes and behaviours of the people who work there. People in an organization need to be nourished from the inside and the outside, so maybe it’s time for a checkup.
Inside health is how people feel, so do they:
- Feel valued, respected and trusted?
- Come to work feeling motivated and empowered?
- Enjoy working for the company?
Outside health is the environment in which they are working. Are people provided with the right equipment and tools? The right training? Clear expectations? Regular coaching? A supportive team?
Good leaders contribute to organizational health, so maximize your influence by:
- Providing regular, effective feedback. Do so in a way that helps people feel valued and confirms that the company cares about them as individuals.
- Take time to get to know people, their motivation, and how to effectively communicate with them.
- Deal with people in a respectful, courteous manner, and ask for input about what affects the person’s role.
- Provide regular coaching that provides guidance and support: ad hoc coaching; situational coaching; and formal coaching focusing on the person and how they are doing.
- Listen with an open mind to suggestions and feedback, then be willing to change views or direction when appropriate.
Time for a Checkup
Most people would not go years without a physical checkup. Yet too many companies plod on for years without considering the health of their organization, so here are some ways to check on your organization’s health:
- Ask people for feedback. Get direct feedback from individuals, which works as long as people trust that they can be honest. Administer confidential survey tools such as CORE or Results-Centred 360 or try using an independent external interviewer.
- Determine if your results are in line with your budget.
- Assess absenteeism and the retention of top talent.
- Measure performance.
- Review client and customer feedback.
Do you reflect on the health of your organization, how healthy it is and what you need to do to improve it? It is a small investment to find the answers, but ignore it and it will cost dearly.
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