Don’t Treat Your Employees Like Kids

man with baby bottle and dummy  in mouth

They’re offensive, uncoordinated, lack communication skills and sometimes drool on themselves…and that’s just middle management (bazinga!). But honestly folks there are still people out there that treat their employees like a class of 4th graders, slow talking and micromanaging; thinking that they will burn down the office building if left unsupervised and if that happens it’s probably your fault for giving them matches. This is why you should stop treating your employees like kids.

Netflix Model

Netflix unequivocally proves this, through their development of revolutionary new HR policies that took Silicon Valley and the professional world by storm. Here’s the kicker though…all they did was treat their employees like adults. Netflix gave employees the responsibility to keep their own schedule, take vacation days when they wanted and emphasize results over long (and often unproductive) hours.

But, there is a line of fine print running all of this, though, Netflix expects employees to work exceptionally, not adequately or subpar. Anyone that doesn’t perform to that level is terminated. All these policies had another great side effect; it freed up most of the HR departments time in turn freeing up revenue. Because of these non-restrictive policies, Netflix started gathering highly talented and motivated individuals which lead in turn to their huge success.

The Reasons

Often problems with employees come from within the organization itself either as a result of an internal deficiency or due to organizational factors. I know that doesn’t seem fair but give me a chance to explain myself. Take for example the scenario in which you have a large wave of employees taking sick days. It has become such an issue that you enact a policy that forces any employee that takes a sick day to bring in a doctor’s note.

Instead of doing that, maybe ask first why your employees are dropping like flies? Is there something in the office space making them sick? (you might want start with the barrels of toxic waste in the corner). Are they “acting” sick because something within your organization is askew or demotivating? (again you might want to start with the poster on the wall with your face on it which says BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING). Is it too hard to get vacation days which forces your employees to take sick days instead? All of these things might be contributing to your employees acting like high schoolers pretending to be sick to get out of school.

Trust Issues

When you really think about it, it all comes down to trust. If you have an employee who you don’t trust enough to believe them when they say they are sick, why are you even employing that individual? If, on the other hand, you don’t trust any of your employees then that might be an even more serious situation, and it might be time for some self-assessment.

See Also: How to Deal With Cannibal Co-Workers

How do you treat your employees or how have you been treated in the past? Let us know in the comment section below.




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