By Elizabeth Berg, HR Business Partner, Trüpp.
R-E-S-P-E-C-T, find out what it means to … your employees. As the labor market and social climate evolve, employees are more willing to speak up or leave a job where they don’t feel respected. With that in mind, here are some proactive steps that can be taken to ensure you are building a respectful workplace.
Focus on culture
When it comes to fostering a respectful workplace, developing a healthy company culture is a great starting point to instilling change for the long term. Review your mission, vision, and core values and assess whether these align with your company’s current behavior. It’s common for your culture to shift, especially during times of growth. You may find it necessary to do some defining or reestablishing work. Culture is your company’s immune system, if it’s not healthy it can wreak havoc. So, make sure you’re taking care of your team.
Lead from the top
Too often, big-name companies make the news over harassment and discrimination allegations allegedly committed by top executives. When it comes to a respectful workplace, it’s important to remember that leading by example is crucial. Employees look to leaders to understand and navigate how to model their behavior. Leaders who model respect and treat others with dignity create a ripple effect though an organization.
Educate and empower employees
We would like to believe that all employees will come to work with an understanding and ability to act respectfully, but in reality, this is not the case. It’s important you provide employees with resources to learn your company’s expectations. This can be done by clearly establishing and educating employees on company policies; such as a code of conduct, anti-discrimination and anti-harassment, and conflict resolution. Additionally, it is important to provide training to all employees on how they can effectively intervene in disrespectful situations and ensure they are familiar with processes and procedures for addressing and reporting incidences.
Here are some resources to help get you started with your respectful workplace initiative: