Regularly review your investment in people development to hit your KPIs, measure its impact and create a workplace culture in which your people thrive.
Investment in your workplace culture enables your leaders and teams to have healthy, open and constructive dialogue. It creates the conditions for innovation to thrive, productivity to flourish and a ‘speak up culture’ where your people treat each other fairly.
Making the case for investment in physical and digital infrastructure is straightforward. The impact is usually swift. You produce more, deliver more and automate more. And, it either works or it doesn’t. Success/failure is easily measured.
Investment in your people infrastructure however can be harder to justify in busy organisations where margins are tight. Margins often made all the tighter by poor recruitment, succession planning and retention decisions. This is why any investment in people development should be monitored through regular reviews and include the ability to flex in line with what the business needs as it develops. ‘Off-the-shelf’ development plans rarely result in a little more than a tick box exercise. Instead, a bespoke-designed strategy allows organisations to create and elevate a workplace culture environment which is fit for purpose.
When planning and evaluating your strategy, consider:
- What are the KPIs you want to achieve?
- What observable/measurable impact is your investment making on your workplace culture?
- What adjustments need to be made to close any gaps between the defined objective and actual performance?
IDENTIFY: What are your KPIs?
Really think about the outcome that you want to achieve from your investment. The overarching aim may be to improve relationships and communication, but how do you want that to manifest in your workplace? At the extreme, it might look like fewer grievances or costly resignations. It could be the reduction of your recruitment costs through a more strategic approach to filling roles. Or perhaps your aim is to reduce employee absence through improved well-being at work.
We know that when people are happy in the workplace, they do their best work. And, that the quality of the workplace is dependent on how well your people work together. Therefore, identify how your organisation can support your people to be the best version of themselves. We guarantee that it’s neither gym memberships, nor (provocation) higher remuneration that will make your organisation an employer of choice.
MEASURE: What measurable/observable impact is your investment having on your workplace culture?
As we mentioned earlier, the impact of your investment in your workplace culture will not be as instant as that new piece of machinery or tech. However, you should start to see the green shoots of change very quickly. A strong plan, well delivered using fit-for-purpose tools, will raise the level of self-awareness in your organisation. This could be as simple as thinking and regulating before speaking. It could be a more constructive attitude towards change and challenge amongst your people. In the early days, these are difficult to measure, but they are observable through open dialogue across the organisation.
360 surveys and ‘test-retest’ assessments will also measure the impact of your investment. And, over time you should see lower costs associated with recruitment and disciplinary processes. Think of your investment as preventative medicine, rather than life-saving treatment.
ADJUST: What can you do to close gaps between the defined objective and actual performance?
Treat your investment in workplace culture development as a journey of discovery. You may learn that despite thorough examination at the outset, your objectives shift over time. Perhaps the causes of workplace dysfunction are more deeply rooted than first thought. For example, your initial goal may have been to improve collaboration. However, during the course of the programme, you discover that it’s actually a lack of emotional and social intelligence that prevents your team from being able to work together.
It’s this identify-measure–adjust approach that gives real value to your investment in your people.
Let’s talk about your workplace culture
There can be no one size fits all development strategy. Every organisation, every team and every leader is unique. It’s crucial to use tools, training and coaching that can drill down into the challenges your people face. This safely encourages them to make often small changes that have disproportionately large impact. Start a conversation with us to learn how we support organisations of every size and sector to develop workplace cultures that everyone can feel proud to be part of.