Three Wishes for Workplaces in 2011

As we swiftly glide toward the end of 2010, many of us in the blogosphere turn our thoughts to the changes we wish would come true in the New Year ahead. In this post, in keeping with an age-old tradition, I will make only three wishes. At the same time, I will keep in mind the saying "Be careful what you wish for..." because you might get something you did not intend at all.

Wish 1 - That more workplaces will become truly great places to work, i.e., ones where management understands their stewardship role that putting Purpose, People, and Planet ahead of short-term Profit is the true path to sustainability.

Wish 2 - That more workplaces will become Results Only Work Environments (ROWE) where people are expected to produce, are supported to excel, and trusted to do what needs to be done to serve the customer.

Wish 3 - That more workplaces will become high engagement systems that bring out the best in people, leading to extraordinary results for customers and for employees.

As you can see, these wishes are all about the workplace. That's because most of us spend a heckuva lot of time there. So our workplaces should be as positive (i.e., happy, friendly, welcoming, and pleasant) as humanly possible, in my view.

These three wishes depend upon two critical factors: leaders and employees.

Leaders determine, to a great degree, the culture and climate of an organization, especially its values, its trust level, and how engaging a place it is. Their job, as Jack Welch once famously said, is NOT to control and stay on top of people, but rather to guide, energize and excite! And as Warren Bennis once said, "Good leaders make people feel that they're at the very heart of things." Such leaders see their people as vibrant and creative assets, not costs. Yes, people can be difficult to handle, like herding cats sometimes, but imagine trying to stay in business without them.

At the same time, employees have a major impact too. Both parties make the choice, each and every day, whether to bring their Best Self to work or not. The Best Self asks, What can I do today for my customer? How can I strengthen my team? What can I do to help the business improve, prosper, and grow?

It's up to you.

See you in 2011! Let's choose to make it great!

Posted by Terrence Seamon on December 22, 2010. For more ideas on building positive and productive workplaces, contact Terry and invite him to your organization.


Anonymous said…
Excellent set of wishes: I desperately hope that more professionals, whether managers or reports, would read this.
Your 3 wishes are so important! Hopefully we like-minded folks can create some critical mass and make a difference. To support your wishes, Judah Schiller, CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi S reminds us to forget the rabbit and recognize 2011 as the Year of the Human!
Janice Lee Juvrud
Terrence Seamon said…
Ed and Janice,
Thanks for stopping by and commenting.
All the best to both of you in 2011!

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