Despite the growing popularity of the collaborative corporate culture, the more traditional directive model is still common today. In a directive organization, leaders give their subordinates specific orders on what to do and how to do it. Admittedly, there are cases where it is critical for staff to follow certain regulations, procedures and rules, but a culture that is too authoritative suppresses the growth and development of its employees.
“We have to consider where we can loosen up so that people can participate more,” says Timothy Clark, author of The Employee Engagement Mindset, and CEO of TRClark, a consulting and training organization that focuses on leadership and engagement.
A great example, he says, are companies that support a “figure it out” culture: Whenever possible, managers give employees every opportunity to figure out solutions to problems and process improvements on their own. “Allowing employees to figure it out accelerates their professional development,” he adds. “If there is any opportunity in the work environment where employees can participate and collaborate on skills or knowledge development, then they need to be given that opportunity.”
Practical pointer: Give agents a voice in contact center process improvement by getting them involved in feedback forums, quality reviews, agent councils and Six Sigma initiatives. Empowering agents to contribute to contact center policies not only gives them more control over their jobs, it helps to streamline processes and creates a more positive work atmosphere.