[email protected] Encourages Organisations to Humanise the Workplace and Create Kinder Work Environment
Be kind to family and friends; be kind to neighbours; be kind to strangers. Kindness is a topic often discussed but sometimes neglected in the professional context. The Singapore Kindness Movement (SKM), in partnership with MDIS, today held the [email protected] C-level Conversation, bringing the attention of organisations to humanising the workplace and creating a kind work environment.
The discussion was applauded by the 200 attending senior management and human resource managers, and concluded with recommendations of actionable ideas to practice [email protected]
Mr Manoj Sharma, Founder and Chief Facilitator of the Singapore Service Academy (SSA), led the conversation. He laid the context of [email protected] with the state of workplace nowadays, observing that as the job market become increasingly fast-paced and competitive, people tend to be self-absorbed, often failing to exercise kindness and recognise others’ acts of kindness at work. The absence of kindness in today’s workplace has resulted in a trend of high turnover, employee disengagement, absenteeism and diminished profitability, according to studies done by, among others, The American Institute on Stress and Gallup.
Mr Sharma introduced the three pillars of graciousness – consideration, courtesy and gratitude, and how to transform them into action in the workplace. Commenting on the benefits of a kind workplace, Mr Sharma says: “A kind and healthy workplace is an important aspect of employee well-being. A humanised workplace can elevate profitability, performance, and fulfilment levels in an organisation. Employees will feel happier at work and are more likely to be engaged and retained.”
The [email protected] programme is an initiative of the SKM, and developed and run by the SSA. Together, they encouraged attending organisations to run an in-house [email protected] programme over the next 6 to 12 months. They recommended practical ideas such as sending colleagues “Thank You” cards, setting up “Kindness Corners” within the office, and organising a “Kindness Week” to seed a kind corporate culture. “Good morning” greetings, and face-to-face conversations instead of faceless emails or texts, are simple yet effective steps in achieving a gracious working environment. Organisations can seek SKM’s assistance in providing resources such as videos, graphics, and posters to place in the office or distribute in the organisation.
Last year, SKM worked with individual companies on a small scale to help them cultivate a kind workplace. SKM and SSA recognise the need to introduce [email protected] as a standard practice, making it a norm in the society.
Dr William Wan, General Secretary of SKM, says, “Professional life takes up a quarter or even a third of our life, and more than half of our waking hours as working adults. A kinder workplace will bring us a better life in many aspects. Employees will enjoy their work more, and organisations will benefit from the boosted morale, resulting in better productivity and higher profits. Kindness not only makes us richer in spirit, but may just as well make us richer literally.”
Concluding, Mr Sharma noted, “Senior management as well as human resource personnel in organisations are key to leading the trend. It will not just benefit their organizations, but through their employees and customers, it will help our society too.”