Gravity Never Stops Working. How About Your Company’s Policies?
What does this have to do with business? When I talk with companies that are dealing with high turnover and low morale, one of the frequent culprits is that they don’t treat their policies like gravity. In other words, they apply them selectively. People show up late, and sometimes someone says something. They say inappropriate things, and people mostly let it slide.
When this happens, resentment builds. Managers get quietly resentful while their employees don’t act the way they “should.” Coworkers get resentful while their managers don’t provide the accountability they “should.” And when someone finally does call out these missteps, the transgressors get resentful because of the inconsistency. Everyone’s resentful! It’s no wonder people are leaving.
If you want your people to follow rules, then apply them like gravity. And if you’re unwilling to apply them, then get honest and get rid of them. Holding people accountable to rules is a drag. But it’s only a drag for the short amount of time it takes to have and document a conversation. Having rules and only sporadically applying them is a drag that will pull your culture down. If you really want a great culture, you’ve got to get willing to deal with the small discomfort of holding people accountable. No one will thank you for it, but you and your team will be a lot happier.