Recently, I talked to a senior level healthcare employee in the U.S. who really wanted to get her COVID vaccine shot. But when her employer told staff they would lose their jobs if they didn’t get vaccinated, she and her co-workers got angry. Some even quit. Now, said employee has a very negative attitude towards vaccination — only because the organization she works for has set that rule. Wouldn’t it be great if employers could get around this issue — if legally allowed?
Control or empowerment?
When discussing this story with our healthcare customers across the globe — from Italy to the U.S. — we discovered that vaccination is mandatory in some (but not all) countries. They told us it’s not uncommon for employees to quit in response. Considering the growing shortage of employees (in the U.S., among other countries) and the high cost of finding and training new staff members, that’s a problem. As an employer, you aim to achieve the opposite effect: you want to retain staff by creating a healthy, safe, and pleasant workplace that helps them thrive.
To do so, you should empower them to make well-considered decisions, both when it comes to vaccination and issues on the work floor — if local legislation allows for that, of course. If you can provide employees with options, and they are free to choose, they are likely to stick around. At the same time, you should always ensure the workplace is safe during the pandemic. How to go about it?
Solution: remote working
The solution is not exactly a brainteaser: you should facilitate remote working where possible and allowed, so people will have a choice when it comes to vaccination. But implementing it is not as easy as it may sound. It’s crucial to provide employees with all the equipment they need to work from home — from a solid desk to a cross-silo picture. If employees operate from a variety of locations, they have to be interconnected in real time. Everyone should have access to the same topical, actionable information so they can make informed and better decisions.
Empower your employees to thrive, and they likely will. Incidentally, that will be beneficial on both sides of the spectrum. You will significantly reduce turnover, as employees will feel they can make their own decisions, as long as the local context allows for it — which, in turn, will ensure they’re happy and motivated to succeed.
Want to explore your Visual Management opportunities? Please don’t hesitate to contact us. We’d be happy to perform a Quick Scan and discuss your information sharing strategy.