Two of our long-term employees are celebrating significant milestones this year.
Mo Nurani, our quality manager, is celebrating 30 years of combined service with Integrity and Lindy Manufacturing.
Ismael Franqui, a set-up operator, came out of retirement when we completed the limited asset purchase of Lindy Manufacturing and has over 30 years of combined experience with us.
Such tenure and dedication are rare these days.
These milestones led us to reflect upon how much we value not only Mo and Ismael, but all of our dedicated employees. It was also an occasion to challenge ourselves to define, if possible, our approach to “employee engagement”.
What do you think of when you hear the words “employee engagement”? You may think “keeping morale up”, “reducing turnover”, or even “having fun things to do at work.”
At Integrity Manufacturing, we focus on the first word – employees. Our employees are the foundation for everything we do and everything we are able to achieve in our industry.
We engage our employees every day by living the four values of our organization – transparency, communication, open-door policy, and honesty. We weave these four values into our culture to ensure that every employee has a positive, engaging, and rewarding experience at work.
It begins with transparency. Secrets, “silos”, alliances – any situations where employees don’t know what’s going on will kill an organization’s culture.
We strive to keep our employees informed of everything going on at Integrity – what we are working on, where we are succeeding, and where we can improve. We are transparent in our communications at every level. It could be a simple update on our goals, or it could be an introduction to a major change to the way we operate.
We engage with our team at every step, so they know what’s happening with the company, why it is happening, and their role in ensuring the success of the company.
Transparency leads to the second value – communication. The concept is simple, but it seems that many organizations fail at the basic task of talking to their team regularly. Whether we are walking around greeting everyone, or working through a problem at a staff meeting, we encourage open communication with all employees. We are a team, and we can only win as a team when we work together and talk to each other.
Open Door Policy
The third value is our “open-door policy”. Manufacturing is a fast-paced industry, constantly changing, and can be stressful at times. We can only achieve our goals if employees feel safe and valued when they come to work. Whether it relates to a safety issue, a process improvement, or someone just wants to discuss a personal matter in private, our door is always open.
Lastly, it all comes back to honesty. You can talk to someone all day, you can have an open-door policy, but these mean nothing if you are not honest with your team.
Many organizations believe that honesty will create fear or uncertainty among their workforce – especially if there is bad news or disruptive change on the horizon. Better then, to keep everything “close to the vest.” Conversely, we believe that it is dishonesty that is more likely to lead to a dysfunctional workplace.
We practice honesty in every conversation we have with our team. We address problems directly by listening to our employees and answering their questions. Our workforce drives our success, and it only takes one dishonest statement to break trust and endanger that success for everyone.
Employee engagement does not have to be difficult or mysterious. It boils down to this – treat people the way you want to be treated. Treat everyone with respect. Be available. Talk to your team honestly about success and failure and change, and you will reap the rewards of dedicated employees like Mo and Ismael.