Here at Worksighted, we are proud to give our West Michigan community enterprise-class and relationship-driven IT support. In addition to that, we are honored to provide a community within the walls of our workspace that empowers and inspires our employees to be the dynamic leaders and IT specialists that they are. So how do we cultivate this? How does a growing company attract talent? How do we curate strategic growth and an energetic company culture without taking our employees’ attention away from crushing their daily goals? Our Co-founder and CEO, Mike Harris, spoke at the Wake Up West Coast Leadership Breakfast and shed some light on a few ways we have approached this.
There Must Be A Greater Sense of Purpose
As Mike stated in his presentation, people no longer want to work for a job, they want to work for a cause. While this may seem like the people in question should seek out employment at non-profits, we have found this is a desire to be proven across disciplines and business sectors for Millenials and Gen-Xers. As employers, it is foundational to have a vision that is deeper than the bottom line in order to attract and retain up-and-coming talent as well as set the tone for a thriving culture. Once the purpose is in place, strongly communicated and regarded by your staff, it will carry your team through times of transition and reconfiguring.
Values Are the Vehicle to your Purpose
If simply stating a purpose to your employees to find the success that Worksighted has experienced seems reductionistic, it is. Mike expounds more in his presentation on purpose and also offers the stepping stone of values to achieve the intended purpose. He poses that values are what get workspaces to the end goal of the purpose, while also advising the way they should be communicated to the team: as a set of positive behavior traits. Leadership staff at Worksighted found that communicating the core values of their company by way of positive behavior traits improved their ethos as a business and began to inform all major processes within the company. We have found this to be an enduring truth- today, every employee here is aware of and their work informed by the values that Worksighted communicates to us. Click here to watch the video and find out the uniquely creative ways Worksighted continues to communicate their values.
Trust- The Transcendent Solution
So is that it? Find a motivational purpose, pinpoint the values you want your company to embrace in order to get to said purpose, and your employees will just do what you want them to do and enjoy doing it? Actually, no. The goal of all of this is not alignment. It is not getting everyone on the same page and running on the wheel of task and efficiency day in and day out. Mike effectively points out that when we focus on an agreement, we focus on the decision and not the destination. If you want your company to cultivate a powerful and creative work environment that is producing innovative results in your niche, with employees like me who feel confidence from my leaders, you have to trust who you are working with. When you hire individuals with pointed experience or educational focus, trust them to try out their ideas- even if they are under you in rank, even if you disagree and even when it risks failing. While this can feel like a hazard and can be very difficult, know that innovation rarely happens without risk or failure. Setting up your purpose and values- no matter how motivational or creative- will not attract and retain talent as much as real, risk-taking trust will.
While we are always learning and developing who we are as a company, these are just a few of the tactics Mike has embraced while leading Worksighted and growing their notably thriving office culture. After nearly 20 years of leading a steadily succeeding business, 8 consecutive years making INC 5000 list, and a whole company of happy and efficient employees, Mike expounds on these points, shares his approach and offers so much more in his presentation here.