Friday, December 10, 2010

Organizational Culture, Sexual Harassment, Performance Appraisal & Top Management...

Organizational Culture has to be emphasized by the Top Management

Work ethics which includes sexual harassment practices encompass a set of behavioral norms expected from all employees in an organisation. It is also the embodiment of the core values on which the organisation has evolved. What is needed is to make work ethics an integral part of the culture and core values in an organisation.

It is necessary for the top level to set the precedent. If the top brass falters, it reflects on the morale of the employees. The top management largely contributes to the work ethics of an organisation. They are the trendsetters and guide the organisation in times of crisis. If the ‘saviours’ or the leaders of the organisation by any means become the destroyers of its own practices and indulges in these activities, then the situation becomes magnified. Work ethics are drawn from core values. When you say you are going to be honest, it has to extend to your employees, your vendors and your customers. Everyone in the company must know it and practice it. And an example has to be created from the top.

A single mistake by the top management can have a disastrous impact on the morale of the employees. It casts aspersions on the top management of the company. The employees feel bad when someone from the senior or top management is involved in these incidences. They start asking themselves what type of company are they working for and whether it is the right place for them to stay? This, in turn, has a considerable impact on their productivity, commitment and also the retention of employees. Also if the company is preaching something but the top management is doing just the opposite, no employee will take the rules and guidelines seriously and the work ethics of the company would be severely compromised. It is critical that the senior management set the highest standards of integrity, honesty, transparency and respect for the individual.

Appraisal Procedure has to more transparent

The appraisal system should be such that it is not unfair to the employee and should not be a weapon in the hands of the appraiser such that it is only based on his whims and fancies. A better approach would be to involve a larger number of people in the process or to take into account a larger time frame when conducting appraisals so that it becomes impartial. Some of the things that can be done here are:

1. 180, 270 or 360 degree appraisal programs so that the appraisal is not in the hands of a single person.

2. The organization looks at the performance of the employee over the last 3 yrs preceding the appraisal and if the employee has not been for so long then the total time frame is taken into account.

3. If an employee is not satisfied with the appraisal given then there should be grievance resolution mechanisms to sort out the concerns.

4. The appraiser can be asked to list out specific details of performance appraisal with examples relating to why such a rating was given.

Only when such steps are implemented to safeguard employees against the vindictive agenda of the superiors will the performance appraisal become a meaningful tool in the hands of the employer to ensure productivity and commitment from the employees.