Technology can be an ally in promoting your company’s values.
Technology continues to transform every industry and every size of business. From the back office and shop floor to frontline sales and customer service staff, technology has become a baseline factor in nearly every business growth decision. How might we leverage the advantages offered by technology to develop a more ethical company culture that puts beneficial behavior at the forefront? Much of the work comes from fostering an environment that inspires employees to do the right thing.
Communicate more efficiently
A business’s internal communications system is one of the most important factors in determining how well it operates. Interactions between your employees are the foundational building blocks of your workplace culture and should be taken seriously, especially if someone feels uncomfortable, or worse, unsafe.
Example: Slack. (https://slack.com)
Slack is a suite of team collaboration tools unified in one sleek program. It allows your business to set up chat rooms and assign them to teams or topics as needed. Your employees can also start private groups and send direct messages to anyone who has access to the program. Tools like this offer great benefits to your business, as it gives managers extra tools to “listen up” and better build a community of value.
Protect privacy to establish a community of trust
Any time an employee feels threatened or is engaged in a conflict at work, they have to weigh the benefits of reporting the violation against the risk of potentially offending a person who could fire them, or having their complaints dismissed outright. Businesses that accidentally or incidentally protect offenders run the risk of creating a culture that scares away good employees and suffocates talent. Leveraging technology that allows confidential reporting of incidents is one way of making your employees feel safe.
Example: STOPit (http://stopitsolutions.com)
STOPit is a new entry into the market and was designed to facilitate the process of reporting bad workplace behavior. Meant to replace reporting hotlines, the app allows employees to report harassment, intimidation, bullying, discrimination, and workers’ comp fraud anonymously. It’s the kind of technology that will help companies address abusive behavior proactively.
Inspire community engagement
Part of fostering a community where people are inspired to do the right thing is providing members the opportunity to congratulate and uplift their co-workers. Positive feedback is a way to get your employees to invest in their team, and that produces people that are more excited and enabled to succeed.
Example: 15Five (https://www.15five.com)
Designed as an internal network for feedback, recognition, and communication up the supervisory chain, 15Five offers ways for employees to praise colleagues and check-in with each other. It’s a great tool for building morale by simply recognizing those who deserve to be praised.
As technology becomes a ubiquitous force in the workplace, it has the opportunity to be an engine that drives ethical action. Leveraging new tools to promote a sense of shared values and ethical standards will create a more powerful culture. The outcome? A company that is better at listening, learning, and adapting to the needs of its employees and all those who come into contact with it.
This article originally appeared on U.S. Bank’s Financial IQ site. Used by kind permission of U.S. Bank.