PURPOSE: Involving Employees in the Work Process
Do your leaders/managers employ practices that expand employee involvement?
Are they truly providing opportunities for involvement?
Or, are they denying access to the crucial supports needed for involvement?
If organizations are going to succeed in today’s economy, their leaders and managers must “involve” their employees; they must allow them to “participate” in work-related activities; and that they must “empower” employees as a way of increasing commitment and promoting creativity. Successful employee involvement requires that leaders/managers initiate and maintain the process of involvement and provide access to resources that people need in order to contribute. It is only when involvement is practiced effectively that human commitment and creativity will fuel process improvement. No one would disagree with these objectives, but a nagging concern remains – How do you do it?
A major component has to be the willingness and ability of leaders/managers to share their power as a means of getting people involved and allowing them to participate. Willingness, however, is only one part of the process. In promoting employee-involvement, managers actually have two jobs to perform:
- They must initiate and maintain the process of involvement and collaborative
- They must manage the work structure to provide access to the resources
(both technical and personal) that people need in order to make opportunities
for collaboration meaningful.
This module helps leaders/managers:
- Create opportunities for participation
- Refine interpersonal skills
- Provide support structure for collaboration
- Discover the powerful affects of silence within groups
Specific objectives for Module 2:
- To provide experience in working with other group members to arrive at a group decision based on individual, personal inputs and to stimulate discussion and awareness of the “content” and “process” issues operating in group and organizational affairs;
- To introduce Kurt Lewin’s “Force Field Analysis” model for problem analysis, and – within a force field exercise – to address the issue of “gatekeeping” as a key component in effective involvement practices. By identifying the specific “conditions” that must be managed in order to promote and maintain “involvement” within the organization, we can move from the abstract to the concrete by pinpointing the specific managerial behaviors, which must be performed to make involvement and empowerment a reality.
- To introduce the organizational and structural concept of “Access Management” and to provide personal feedback on how managers see themselves
addressing the issue of “Access Management” in promoting employee involvement. In addition, feedback from subordinates or co-workers helps the
participant focus on specific areas where his or her behavior may need to be modified.)
- To provide linkage back to the real world of work via a tape-driven session to help participants and subordinates/co-workers get together for critique, personal problem-solving, and action planning.
Since this training module addresses a fundamental issue in managerial performance, it is appropriate for all levels of management and supervision.
It is also appropriate as a preparation experience for those who are contemplating moving into the managerial or supervisory ranks.