In thinking about the silver linings of the pandemic one that keeps coming back to me is the time our team gets back in not having to commute and assimilate into their workspace. COVID-19 blew up the way we all went about our normal lives, school; grocery shopping; personal appointments; the gym; shaking hands; and co-working space, all has had to evolve. It demonstrated that technology can keep us together if we make it a priority and dismantled the old notion of time in office = productive.
As a working mom, the stress of eliminating the daycare/school drop off while getting stuck behind a school bus; a dump truck going uphill while competing with a strict 8 am start time
in which your boss walks by your door to ensure you are there; not having to travel to multiple locations or limit my outreach because of physical distance; has been one of the most liberating feelings as an entrepreneur. All to common (I realized after I stepped out of the box) that I had control of my life and could be successful outside of the corporate square, I should have done it sooner (is every entrepreneurs thought).
This liberation birthed AMS Practice Managements and our commitment to being an employee centered organization. Our commitment to that has been implemented since our fruition:
- Employee led meetings where everyone has a voice
- No set schedule – you do your work on your schedule and are committed to excellence
- No vacation policy – we take what we need, when we need it and have built a team we can rely on
- Tools and resources – we talk about what we need together and create a plan
- Communication and transparency – we each show up as our authentic selves because it makes us better as a community
- 100% employer paid benefits program – what you earn, you receive
- employee profit sharing
I recognize that not all models of business have us much flexibility as we do at AMS.
I ask you to reflect on how things were done and how things are being done now?
- Have a chat session or post-it break to talk through ideas from the team directly to hear what can be changed, what is working to carry forward and what is causing a road block.
- Review your KPIs what do they tell you?
- Regular 121’s to determine professional goals and get to know you, how can you support them to be fully human in the workplace
How they are doing? Not just small talk to start a conversation but REAL how are you doing in this life right now?
- What they are excited about outside of work.
- About any projects you can help with.
- What are they currently streaming?
- What are you reading?
- What podcast have you listened to?
- What new hobby have you taken up?
Get people moving
- Dance it out via Zoom – shake off the mid-day slumber
- Bring in a yoga instructor or meditation expert to get people moving and connecting to their body.
- Online games or competition
Build in space for team connection
- Coffee time, lunch or happy hours
- Each team member thinks of a weird talent they have and provides a 2-3 minute presentation about it.
- Casual chat time
- Virtual escape rooms
- #small wins challenge; #iappreciateyou challenge; #kudos challenge
- Celebrating birthdays, anniversaries, etc.
- Being an employee centered organization does not always equal having the highest compensation package. It means you have built a culture where your team knows that each human is an individual wheel on the road to success and without them you cannot move. Break the molds and create your own. Do what is right for your group. Be bold and brave to create and sustain a culture that puts your team in the center.