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The Employee Experience: How to Make People Want to Show Up at Work

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Jacob Morgan, a keynote speaker, best-selling author and the co-founder of The Future of Work Community, a global innovation council of the world’s most forward-thinking organizations exploring the new world of work, gave a webinar along with Cisco to discuss how organizations should behave to create remarkable employee experiences, the ones that make people want to show up at work.

According to Morgan, the world of work is facing a transition from a “utility” perspective in which “people need to show up at work”, to a perspective of “experience” in which “people want to show up at work”. Increasing levels of transparency are creating new challenges to the organizations that now need to pay attention to the trends that are shaping the future of work: new behaviours shaped by social media and the web, technologies, the millennial workforce, mobility work and globalisation. In his research on more than 250 companies and regardless the audience, Morgan always found the technology as the most impactful trend in the future of the work.

Morgan first defines Employee Experience as:

The intersection between employee expectations, needs, and wants and the organizational design of those expectations, needs and wants (or the organization ability to design against those!).

As he identifies three environments contributing to the employee experience:

  • Cultural (organisational structure, leadership approach, work styles, pay & benefits, performance, people, purpose)
  • Technological (devices, applications, software, user experience & design, digital transformation)
  • Physical Space (demographics, workplace perks, workplace layout, workplace creative)

He also proposes an alternative definition for what Employee Experience is:

The designing of an organisation where people truly want to show up by focusing on culture, technology and physical space.

The creation of good and even awesome Employee Experiences should work like a PDCA cycle in which employees should participate and respond to feedback and organization should analyse the feedback, design and launch (which puts you at the beginning of the loop again). It should be more like a lab (experiment, get feedback, embrace failures) and less like a factory (command & control, no feedback, linear or process driven).

Morgan ended up the webinar by launching the question:

What kind of Experience do you want to create?

The webinar can be viewed here.

A new book on “The Employee Experience Advantage” will be launched by March explaining why organizations that focus on employee experience far outperform those that don’t. InfoQ will be reviewing the book and interviewing the author on this topic.

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