It's been a sad year.
We've all felt it, whether it's senior management or an employee at the other end of the totem pole. While companies hunkered down and waited for the worst to pass, some chiefs and senior management saw the downtime as an opportunity to mingle with their grassroots and take their open-door policy a step further. Yesterday, the Wall Street Journaldiscussed how the chiefs at US Airways, Quicken Loans and PricewaterhouseCoopers took advantage of the unexpected downtime to get granular with their employees and get feedback from employees at every level.
Their efforts paid off, resulting in a loyal and productive team.
However, these steps weren't taken just to give a morale boost, although that was high on their list. The chiefs tried to cut through hierarchies to get feedback straight from the employees. These were team members who would otherwise never have had access to them, despite an open-door policy in place. The hugely popular reality show Undercover Boss (See: Learning from the Undercover Boss) addresses this well. Of course, in both situations, there is always the danger of delving too deep and ending up emphasizing on the trivial. And the personal one-on-one is not a one-fits-all formula for managers.