Engagement Practice _ 46: Keep the Physical Environment Fit to Work In

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This one is so basic, you wouldn’t think it would need mentioning, but

time and again, departing employees complain of cramped, noisy, hot, cold,

messy, dirty, noxious, or unsafe conditions. Ask yourself, ‘‘how would I

like to work where my employees work?’’ Go to their workstations and

spend some time talking with them about what in their physical surroundings

could be improved. As with tools and resources, you may be surprised

by how easy some solutions are—a fan, a heater, an occasional cleaning

may be all that’s needed.

The environment you provide for your workers tells them how much

you value them. When Las Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn designed a

new hotel, he decided to spend the same amount of money per square foot

to build the employee cafeteria as he spent on the hotel coffee shop. Wynn

also decorated the back corridors that employees use in the same bright and

cheery colors he used to decorate the guest corridors. Again, the message

he sent was ‘‘you are important, you are worth it . . . because if you are

happy, you will take care of the customer.’’