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How an Engineer Wrecked Employee Experience

Posted by EmployeeChannel on 8.8.2017

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Thousands of words will be penned and spoken in reaction to a document titled “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber,” an engineer’s 3,300-word document on “ideological diversity.” Some will argue that we must respect dissenting voices in the workplace, and others will express outrage over flawed thinking about gender. 

One thing is clear:  this ‘publication’ will profoundly affect the employee experience at Google and elsewhere -- potentially harming people, relationships, and (thinking like a manager here) productivity.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I confess my bias. I was angered not only by what I consider destructive thinking about gender, but deeply frustrated by a manifesto that is likely to be harmful to people, relationships, and company culture. 

And, no, I don’t think it will drive intelligent discourse. I think it will fuel the divisiveness and polarization that are making public and private institutions dysfunctional (thinking like a cynic here).

Bias aside, news of this document made me think about the role of the employee in employee experience

At EmployeeChannel, we embrace the notion that culture, technology, and physical workspace create the employee experience. And we focus on employee communication software that creates a more compelling experience for all. 

We have many conversations with HR and internal communication leaders to discuss ways to improve the employee experience. 

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We talk about HR as the stewards of this experience, but argue that all leaders share the responsibility of creating a positive experience at work.

But this news also serves as a pointed reminder that employees play a meaningful role in employee experience.  

As employees, we, too, are responsible for creating a work environment that, minimally, does no harm, but at its best, supports the personal and professional goals of peers, fosters strong and healthy relationships, and improves our ability to perform as an organization.

As leaders, let’s acknowledge our critical role as stewards of the employee experience, but let’s also remind our employees of their responsibility in creating a positive work experience.  

It begins with communication that fully considers the impact and effectiveness of what you’re saying before you hit ‘send’ or decide to ‘share.’

Topics: employee communication, employee experience

Human Resources Today