Creating a dynamic workplace

This month we’ve been focusing on employer trends and changes such as sustainability, the influence of technology firms and recent plans to make it easier for firms to dismiss workers. We’ve also noticed that there is increasingly more integration between employees and business goals.

Recycling schemes at workThis month we’ve been focusing on employer trends and changes such as sustainability, the influence of technology firms and recent plans to make it easier for firms to dismiss workers.

We’ve also noticed that there is increasingly more integration between employees and business goals.

The benefits of employee integration

At the Sustainable Brands 2012 conference, a survey found that employees who think their jobs are meaningful channel their “discretionary effort” into their work. High complexity jobs can show up to a 48% improvement and sales have increased 48-120%.

Many employers are now incorporating sustainability to bonuses and embedding it into the heart of their company. Net Impact’s Talent Report: What Workers Want in 2012, found that employees who have the opportunity to make a direct social and environmental impact through their job report higher satisfaction levels than those who don’t.

Involve employees in making a positive impact within the workplace and they can help to develop your business at the same time.

Examples of integration

  • Global tech firm Intel links employee bonuses to completion of sustainability goals
  • US organic yoghurt producer Stonyfield Farm was named one of the best companies to work for in its state due to its employee programs “Making a Difference”, volunteer hours, employee training hours and associating employee bonuses to energy savings
  • Natural skin care product creators Burt’s Bees requires that all employees complete 30 hours of training per year in environmental stewardship, social outreach, natural wellness and leadership
  • Timberland, active wear manufacturers, gives cash incentives to workers who buy a hybrid or alternative fuel car
  • Sony Pictures Entertainment offers employees up to $5,000 for installing solar panels on their homes
  • Clothing company Patagonia will pay an employee’s salary for a month if they take a leave of absence to volunteer for an environmental cause

SC Johnson’s Cindy Drucker says: “If we give people their own goals, it doesn’t inspire the same sort of collaboration that it does if you integrate it into the business, because what ends up happening is that people start working in teams and you end up with procurement working with your supply chain working with sales, and that, in and of itself, is very valuable from a business perspective.”

Happy employees equal a happy, productive business!

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