The trend of employees abandoning their company management, rather than quitting their jobs, is having a greater and greater impact in the business world. Randstad US conducted a study to find out the top reasons why employees quit their jobs, and it all boils down to feeling disrespected at their company. High employee turnover rates are not something to be ignored because they can become detrimental to the business’ success. Positive employee experiences lead to higher employee engagement, which brings benefits to the workplace culture and the organization as a whole. One of the best ways to ensure your company is building a positive experience for employees is by treating them like partners and never like pawns.

Employees as Partners

For increased innovation and faster success, collaboration in the workplace is essential. Collaboration is proven to lead to happier and healthier employees; however, it can be difficult to motivate already unhappy employees to participate in collaboration. This ties into how respected employees feel, which is critical to the overall employee experience. After all, collaboration is the assumption that everyone can add value.  Making employees feel valued will increase and improve their engagement, and being active in the company can help them truly understand the importance of their role. Together, these things build a partnership between your employees and your business. The more that employees are viewed as and treated like valuable partners, the more likely it is that their employee experience will be positive and rewarding. Ultimately this creates an engaging work environment in which employees go the extra mile.

Some companies take the idea of employees as “partners” more literally by providing a way for employees to acquire stock in the company. As employees build real ownership in the company they work for, they will be more invested in the company’s success. When an employee has higher stakes at risk in how well the company is doing, it is more likely that they will work harder and want to contribute more. Once again, if the workplace culture is poor and employee morale is low, then the employees might not want ownership in the company. So it is important to treat employees like partners whether they actually have any ownership in the business or not.

Much about the employee experience is directly related to treating your employees well and making sure they have the resources they need to succeed. Employee engagement software, the holistic agile methodology, and other strategies can be useful in increasing employee engagement and satisfaction. However, it is just as important to make sure the right attitude and philosophy is being implemented within your culture. This is where viewing employees as partners fits into creating a positive experience. People in management and human resources positions are essential in making sure the company’s values reach the employee.

The Role of Management

Bad bosses drive people to quit their job. Managers should focus on being leaders, being a role model and resource for employees, because  when this is lacking, it generally leads to a negative experience with the business. Employees are happier when they have a partnership relationship with their boss. It is important for the organization to prepare management for this non-traditional arrangement. When all employees regardless of rank or role view each other as partners, the workplace environment is more open to collaboration. There are four important traits that management should have to facilitate these partnerships:

  1. Put employees first
  2. Connect with employees
  3. Release control when necessary
  4. Aim to improve the lives of others

The Role of HR

The employee experience begins as soon as a candidate begins their interview, which means HR is often the first point of contact an employee has with an organization. Unhappy employees might seek out solutions from HR as well. This puts HR in a very important role for establishing a positive employee experience.   Many of HR’s roles are great opportunities for building a partnership with employees. Onboarding helps set up hired employees for success, and development helps employees grow. Listening to employees and using their feedback is essential for employee retention. Each of these steps should make the employee feel valued and reinforce their engagement with the business.

Respect employees, make them feel valued, and create a partnership for lasting success. There is nothing to lose by treating employees well, but there is everything to gain. As such, providing management, HR, and other employees with the right platform and program they need to foster positive work experience is truly worth the consideration, if not the investment..