The 12 Areas of Organizational Culture: Fully-Empowered Employees

An organization’s effectiveness is a reflection of it’s culture. This blog series will explore the 12 areas of cultural assessment that Goodnight Consulting has developed to evaluate an organization’s culture. To watch the overview video, go here.

“Delegating means letting others become the experts and hence the best.”- Timothy Firnstahl

Fully-Empowered Employees |Goodnight Consulting

Defining Questions

Are employees authorized to get the job done?

Are other organizations required to authorize or supervise work?

How many signatures are required for work authorization, work validation, procurement activities, etc.?

“Help me help you.”

Bright and early one crisp Spring morning, an eager young maintenance technician prepares to make a repair in the field. Her first stop is at the warehouse to pick up the parts listed on the bill of materials. After she arrives at the site of the repair, she learns, to her chagrin, problem with the component is actually different than the original diagnosis. Consequently, she does not have the correct parts to complete the repair.

What happens now? Your answer to this question will provide a strong indicator about your organizational culture. Can she return to the warehouse, get the right parts, and continue with the work she was eager to complete? Will she be required to start the entire process over again? Some organizations stipulate that if the expected condition in the field does not match the actual situation, that the entire process must begin all over again. We have seen extreme examples of this where rescheduling the job through the work management organization and additional engineering evaluations were required. This creates a significant amount of unnecessary work.

It is important to hire good people and then train them so that you can trust their judgment. When you trust your employees, you can empower them to “call an audible” and make an adjustment in the field. You also trust them to know their limits, and recognize when a given situation does merit restarting the work process. A rigid, inflexible work-control process shows a lack of trust in your employees. More importantly, it shows that the organization does not trust itself. This lack of trust is often rooted in poor accountability standards, and points to cultural challenges within the leadership ranks.

Ways to Empower Employees

Apply an appropriate threshold for authorization requirements.

Eliminate unnecessary vertical and horizontal barriers.

Encourage employees to take initiative; emphasize this encouragement through praise and support.

Provide training to help your employees improve their skill sets.

Goodnight Consulting maintains a confidential, proprietary database of cultural assessments, which we use to develop benchmarks for our clients. Our evaluations are based on decades of experience in the utility industry. If you find that your organization is weak in one of our 12 areas, please contact us to learn how we can help you improve.

12 Areas of Culture

Goodnight Consulting has identified 12 areas of culture that help define a successful organization. You can read about the other areas of culture here.

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