This post is part of a 95 post series discussing the 95 theses of the Cluetrain Manifesto as they relate to business in 2009. Read more about the series in the introduction post. And check out the rest of the series!
Thesis #13: What’s happening to markets is also happening among employees. A metaphysical construct called “The Company” is the only thing standing between the two.
So we’ve established that every day a trend continues to pinch companies out of the equation of providing products to consumers. Consumers rely on each other more every day for things like marketing, acquisition, even support. That change of working together, flattening the heierarchy, is allowing for greater efficiency and better experiences for customers.
Interestingly, that same pinch is happening within companies. It’s a fairly common occurance for a couple of employees from the same company to jump ship, get their bearings, and regroup as a smaller collective later, especially when the type of work they do allows the flexibility of being mobile.
“The Company” as we know it is becoming more of a formality, and more very real, very successful businesses are existing without all of the structure once thought necessary to be win.
- Employees are human beings, not the departments they work in. Those human beings know how to do their job better than you do.
- Employees speak a real human language when they are at home and out with their friends, because they are humans not robots. The business rhetoric and buzzwords you’ve beaten into them are all a facade.
- Fear (of rejection, disapproval, or overstepping boundaries) is the most common thing keeping employees from sharing what they know is better for the business. That, and apathy.
- Employees will confide in one another before they confide in an employer.
- Blocking Email and IM doesn’t stop employees from talking to each other. You do know that, right? They’re talking, with or without you.
- Don’t put roadblocks in the way of your employees accomplishing their work unless you want them to subvert the system.
- Separating employees into departments is like separating all of the ingredients in a meal. Fragmentation does not equal control. Unity also does not necessarily equal control, but it sure does equal productivity.
- Once employees realize they can collaborate with one another to get their job done easier/faster, the more they will seek opportunities to collaborate.
- If you aren’t giving your employees what they need, they are smart enough to figure out how to get it. That might include leaving you.
Are you the company that’s in the way of your employees’ success? Do you realize the implications of that? Your employees’ success is your success.
You’re not as in control as you thought you were, and your employees knew it before you did.
Time to stop being big brother, and instead, be big mother.
Start by asking yourself, “what can I do to guide my employees towards successful experiences, besides getting out of their way.”
Whatever you do, don't build your coworking community alone.
Join the 3000+ community builders who get my newest posts, lessons, stories, and tips like "How to fund your coworking space" and "Why I hate the title Community Manager"