Have you ever felt at least once being in a boat like the one depicted above? Which side you were?
Shared or collective responsibility is widely applied in corporations, where the entire workforce is held responsible for failure to achieve corporate targets (for example profit targets), irrespective of the performance of individuals or teams which may have achieved or overachieved the targets within their area.
So here, in CEP Plant Timisoara we decided to involve ourselves more and more in developing a responsibility culture that contributes to improvements of the performance, results and internal collaboration. We began to focus on the activity within the location and to constantly appreciate the colleagues who do more than good work. We encourage and award those employees who are involved, take attitude and act responsible for the good running of our business.
How did this project start?
My colleague Elena Tomus, a charismatic HR Consultant with a strong background in Psychology designed this amazing concept so we all decided to give her the necessary support in this mission.
We acknowledged the responsibility specifics and the actual status, and understood that we need to make some changes because we need more responsible people inside our company, than the population average. So we start measuring the actual level of responsibility among our employees by applying a work locus of control questionnaire (considering that an internal locus of control is a significant factor influencing the responsible behaviors). This was the first part of our measurement system. The second part is more interesting than this.
After a brainstorming session with all HR CEP Plant Team, we designed a set of experiments that simulated some “abnormal” situations that could appear in a “public” space, like the one presented in the following images.
Analyzing the responsible behaviors by calculating the time spent until the problem is presented to the responsible (e. g. Facility Management) and quantify the number of persons that did not notice the problem was the hard part. We visited frequently the ”crime” places to see different reactions of our employees, so that day was a day that we will remember forever. The result was ok, but we can do better.
Therefore Elena developed a training program for promoting, at 4 interaction levels, the benefits of responsibility, focusing on important social concepts on each level:
1. Individual Level – Locus of Control Theories
2. Team Level – Social Loafing phenomenon
3. Interpersonal or inter-groups level – The Fundamental Attribution Error
4. Organizational level – Diffusion of Responsibility
Long story short, after measuring the actual level of responsibility and having defined the training concept, I started to deliver the training to our colleagues and 170 colleagues out of the 220 informed attended the training. The results were immediately visible in their attitude change. I have to admit that the high interest showed by my colleagues for psychological theories made me very happy :-).
Clear awarding standards have been defined for responsible behavior. Until now we awarded 35 colleagues for their actions, and thanks to their initiatives we avoided customer claims, unjustified costs and other incidents at the work place. Because we are proud of them, we created a board with their pictures. Take a look:
The good results and the feedback provided by our colleagues who participated in the training convinced us to extend the program to the production area, so in November we’ve done 8 training sessions for the shop floor colleagues at which 50 people attended .They were impressed!
I am proud to announce you that our project, dedicated to the growth of the responsibility level of the employees, has been nominated as role model inside Continental and is recommended to be implemented also in other locations.
Ohhh….and don’t worry, I will keep you updated about our project also in 2014! 🙂
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