Volume 17: Mutual Respect

RoyIn today’s world, that has companies stretching as far as they can (and then some) to be politically correct, you’d think Mutual Respect would be a pretty standard thing around the average work environment. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.

Employees tend to treat management with respect; you don’t bite the hand that feeds you, after all. But the reverse is not true as often. I get calls every single day from people looking for new jobs because they feel they’re not respected enough at their current jobs. Their manager curses at them and belittles them, or simply doesn’t listen to what they have to say.

This has never made sense to me.

The reality is that a company that displays Mutual Respect, a situation where management is respected by employees and employees are, in return, shown the respect they deserve, reaps huge benefits from such an arrangement.

Here’s the biggest reason why: Open and Honest Communication

I know I’ve beaten the topic of Open and Honest Communication to death over these past couple months, but Mutual Respect is a huge factor in achieving the goal of open communication. If a manager is constantly belittling or berating his employees, they may not tell him or her when they have an issue or they see potential for improvement.

Who wins from this arrangement? Sure, on the surface it may look like this is productive: the machines are running because the workers are just keeping their head down and pushing, but there’s so much lost potential.

On the other hand, if the employees feel that their safety is an important factor in management’s eyes, they may speak up about a potential issue or hazard they see. If an employee feels that his manager respects his opinion, he may speak up when he sees a way to reduce waste or otherwise make the plant run more efficiently.

Open and Honest Communication, the biggest factor in driving Hard Results, is 100 percent based on the concept of Mutual Respect.

In Conclusion:

Growing up, I was taught one very simple rule of thumb: Treat the Janitor with the same respect you show to the CEO. A rule that is simple enough in theory, but can sometimes take a little extra thought in execution.

But, it’s that level of Mutual Respect that allows companies big and small to work as one cohesive unit and allow every employee to feel validated and respected.

And at the end of the day, we all know that’s the goal, cohesiveness towards a common goal: Hard Results.

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