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How to Turn Employees into Owners

Recognize This! – Understanding the meaning and value of our works turns us all into owners.

I’m writing this post as I wait in Dallas/Fort Worth airport for a flight to Europe, where I will transfer again before I finally arrive home in Dublin. And this is my second airport today. (I started out in New Orleans.) Because my travel for work tends to be long trips across many time zones (and usually with convoluted connections), my friends and family often ask if me if the travel wears on me. The answer, in the end, is “No.”

Of course, I’ve endured my fair share of travel headaches – missed connections, lost luggage, infuriating plane neighbors – but all in all, it’s more than worth it to me. Why? Because when I travel for work, I’m not traveling to “do my job.” I’m traveling somewhere, to meet with someone, to help them create a culture of appreciation. I’m helping to turn around organization cultures into ones in which employees can thrive, ones in which “thank you” is the norm.

And that is why, even though I am not an equity holder in Globoforce, that I am an owner of the company. I own this. I do what I do because I love what I do, yes, but also because I know what a dramatic difference it makes.

Take a look at this quote on the topic from Manufacturing Pulse:

“’People want to make a difference, to know that what they do from day to day is important,’ according to Loren Rodgers, executive director for the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO).Rodgers noted the importance of keeping employees informed about their own progress and about the company’s performance, adding that individual and team recognition also contribute to involvement. Working Better, published by NCEO, offers counsel by the organization’s founder Corey Rosen about developing a sense of ownership throughout an organization.”

Our CEO intentionally and very transparently updates all employees every quarter on how the company is doing financially, and by every department – major accomplishments, goals, targets for improvement. At the highest level, these updates give us all context for the meaning and value of our work. This cascades down to all employees through our recognition  program, Globostars, as the primary method of daily connection and acknowledgement of individual and team successes and achievements.

We are all owners. We own this.

Are you an owner in your organization?

(For more on the importance of meaningful work, check out my post today on Compensation Café: Finding Meaning at Work (and Why Compensation Doesn’t Help).)

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