There is more turmoil in corporate America today than in the last fifty years. Companies are merging, downsizing, moving abroad and undergoing traumatic changes. This increases stress tremendously and, in many cases, impairs productivity. Employees feel compelled to work harder, do more, and thus ensure their jobs. But is that really the right answer?
Glenn Van Ekeren from Sheldon, Iowa, says in his People Building Institute publication entitled Potential, that 82% of American workers "don't like being at work and can't wait to be freed from what work does to them." He observes that few people in America get up in the morning, prepare for work and announce, "I can't wait to do a really bad job today." Yet, "surveys indicate nearly 85% of the workers in the United States say they could work harder on the job and nearly half claim they could double their effectiveness."
That last observation about doubling effectiveness is the key. The question is, how do we do more? And what can leadership in companies do to encourage an increase in productivity while reducing the stress? Mr. Van Ekeren says that all organizations need more people who actually inspire others to do things. These are the people who constantly renew their own commitments to being their best. They not only do what they're told, they do things without being told. Initiative is the key word. He points out that "giving everything you have makes your work far more satisfying. It's a great anecdote for boredom as well as stress, and is ultimately a gift you give to yourself." He says, "The constant upgrading of skills is required to face the changing nature of the world around us. Job security isn't earned by showing up. We need to reframe our thinking around the value we offer the organization. Feeling entitled to climb another rung up on the ladder, salary increases, or even maintaining our present positions is a defeating trap."
Mr. Van Ekeren is "right on." I encourage you to take his advice and I will SEE YOU AT THE TOP!