The outlook from a survey is bleak:
People of all ages, and across income levels, are unhappy with their supervisors, apathetic about their organizations and detached from what they do. And there’s no reason to think things will soon improve.
The following seems like an obvious finding:
Employees are far more likely to have new ideas on days when they feel happier.
People feel happy when they are making progress on their work, when they are doing work that is meaningful, and when they have supportive managers and leaders.
Managers can help ensure that people are happily engaged at work. Doing so isn’t expensive. Workers’ well-being depends, in large part, on managers’ ability and willingness to facilitate workers’ accomplishments â€” by removing obstacles, providing help and acknowledging strong effort.
That sounds like a model of Lean leadership to me.
Again, from the article:
Of the seven companies we studied, just one had managers who consistently supplied the catalysts â€” worker autonomy, sufficient resources and learning from problems â€” that enabled progress. Not coincidentally, that company was the only one to achieve a technological breakthrough in the months we studied it.
A final thought from the article:
Work should ennoble, not kill, the human spirit. Promoting workers’ well-being isn’t just ethical; it makes economic sense.
I don’t know what I can add. It’s a piece well worth reading and reflecting upon. Dr. Deming used to show a chart to show how intrinsic motivation would only go DOWN over time, as people were mismanaged or had their spirits crushed by organizations. Do you see Lean leadership models, including servant leadership, and the management of “kaizen” or continuous improvement having a positive impact?
About LeanBlog.org: Mark Graban is a consultant, author, and speaker in the “lean healthcare” methodology. Mark is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. Mark is also the VP of Customer Success for the technology company KaiNexus. He lives in San Antonio, Texas.