Did you see the one where Rose tells the other Golden Girls she was absent “the day they taught everything?” Absolutely priceless :)
Personally, I was fortunate not to miss that day. But those close to me argue I may have been absent the day they taught basic navigation. As in, I have ZERO sense of direction.
As a junior in college, I took an Environmental Design class; we studied the layout of spaces – buildings, cities, etc. – for function. One day we were assigned the task of drawing a map of the campus as we saw it in our minds. As we drew, the teaching assistant rounded the room commenting on people’s notice of roads and open spaces.
Arriving at me, she peeked over my shoulder and said “Oh Rachel – you never mentioned you’d just transferred here!”
Readers, I had not. I’d been living there for nearly three years, and I’d drawn exactly one dorm (mine) and all the dining halls. Hey – priorities!
Am I directionally deficient? Absolutely. But also… I never missed a meal. Come to think of it, I never missed anything important! So maybe my brain was just doing an excellent job of filtering out all the less important.
It’s actually kind of a superpower if you think about it… and the same applies in the realm of the Employee Experience (EX).
Countless things may touch the EX. But shifting the EX in meaningful ways means understand where the impact lies. And filtering out the rest.
When I guide organizations through this filtering process, I focus on weeding out 4 the “IN’s” when it comes to EX. If you’re on a journey to enhance your team’s or organization’s experience, try filtering out the below, and see where you land.
- The IN-tangible. Think about your organizational culture – you know, the norms, values and beliefs that underlie how work happens. Your culture absolutely impacts the EX. We feel it – it influences how we go through our days. But culture is like climate. Powerful, but hard to shift. It takes many actions over long stretches of time to truly move it. It’s intangible. And it’s not where we get bang for the EX buck.
- The IN-accessible. These are things like the layout of your physical workplace (if you have one), the technologies your company uses, your benefits, etc. These are tangible things that impact our EX. But the shape they take is defined by a small number of decision makers. And we’re looking for factors that can be touched by leaders at any and all altitudes of the organization. Again, not where we see bang for that buck.
- The IN-delible. These are the unerasable. The things you must have in place – like reasonable market-rate compensation or fair and equitable workplace policies and procedures. Erasing any of these would destroy your EX. But having them in place just gets you to baseline. No one wins workplace of the year with these.
- The IN-case-you-have-money-laying-around. Finally, these are your sizzle factors. Your sexy extras. Things like free food and foosball, fancy holiday parties, team yoga sessions. I always tell clients “if you can swing ‘em, bring ‘em.” But these are like a sugar rush for your EX. You’ll get a short burst that will quickly fizzle. No long-lasting impact here.
Great. We’ve filtered out the noise. But…um…what’s left?
Where do we get that bang for our buck? We move the EX meaningfully forward when we create the conditions in which our teams can DELIVER (great work), DEVELOP (new skills and capabilities), CONNECT (to team and purpose, feel included), and THRIVE (feel well, balanced, and appreciated).
When we find and implement the tiny collective of strategies that allow everyone to live THIS brand of the EX, the company wins stronger talent engagement, more meaningful business results, and greater loyalty to the customer.
We would love to help you filter the INS out, and define your best EX. Here’s how we can do it.
- Bring a keynote to your executive leadership team, providing the business case, language, and immediate next steps.
- Run an EX Kickstart with your HR team, informing, equipping and empowering them to take the ball and run with it.
- Conduct a Pulse Check with your teams, hearing directly from them what changes it would take to get them in the Deliver, Develop, Connect, and Thrive zone!