Tsunamis, earthquakes, mudslides, floods – they’re all part of life on planet Earth no matter how destructive they are. When they happen, the world stops for a moment and the toll on humanity becomes the primary focus.
With the recent tragedy in Japan, appeals have gone out from every humanitarian organization for assistance. Schoolchildren are collecting pennies and dimes, churches are taking up special collections and drives are underway at workplaces around the country to collect money for the Red Cross.
I was speaking with someone the other day who told me she received an email from the HR department where she works asking employees to make a donation to the Red Cross. While she had every intention of donating without the prodding of her employer, she thought this was a great gesture on her company’s behalf.
That feeling of pride for her company quickly turned sour. She found out that while her company was asking employees to donate, the company had no plans to pony up even a single cent to the cause.
What kind of message does this send to employees?
Not a very good one.
In this case, the company took a good step by organizing a drive amongst its employees to help the Red Cross. Employees felt that their company was being part of the solution and they wanted to participate. However, when word spread that the company was not making even a small donation, employees had a different view of their employer.
Keeping morale high in the workplace should be management’s number one priority. After all, happy employees make for happy customers and happy customers make for a successful company. Employees want to feel as if they are part of the solution, whether it be in improving things within the workplace, or in this case, across the world.
One of my key philosophies in business has always been, “Don’t ask your employees to do anything that you wouldn’t do yourself.” It’s a philosophy that shouldn’t be too hard to live by.
Or is it?