The time has come to focus on the need for a change in the traditional settings of organizations to boost employee engagement, motivation and thus performance. But what truly are the incentives that drive people at work? Is it merely just finances, titles and material benefits or is there more to look at from management’s perspective? With Dhaka now a city thriving on the pulse of youth and bustling with its constant energy, it’s time for our industries to understand the utmost significance of work culture and its integral impact on employee groups. Spreeha Bangladesh is a social enterprise that has redefined work culture to focus more on the individual employee’s success rather than just the organization’s.
Defining work culture
In all simplicity, work culture is nothing but the dynamics of relationships shared by people who work together in an organization. It is a combination of the everyday interactions that take place within work settings and the resulting energy created. An organization’s success depends heavily on the culture it fosters and the relationships shared by the employees whose performance, drive and motivation are all interconnected.
While Dhaka has slowly but surely grown into a bustling land of opportunities for the youth, there is still a large gap in effective organizational management. Companies are characterized by rigid hierarchies, strict dictation of employee timings, intense and sometimes unhealthy competition within peers and endless micromanaging thus leaving little room for the average employee to grow, learn, contribute and be innovative.
Tapping into the mindset
When reaching out to youth groups regarding their experiences at work, most responded with tales of stress for not being able to ‘clock in’ on time, frustration for inability to take decisions without approval of higher authority and a lack of fun at work. Interviews reflected a lack of motivation, interest in tasks and a need to escape from the rigid settings existing in companies.
Despite working in an industry reputed for its orthodox systems, Spreeha Bangladesh, a non-government entity, has successfully been able to break through these barriers to foster a culture that leaves its employees with more freedom, flexibility and a sense of purpose. The values held dearly by the Spreeha team include challenging old ways, failing often to learn, creating one’s one way to success and a love for innovation.
What makes the Spreeha culture different
Leadership at Spreeha invests in instilling purpose within employees and rejects rigid hierarchies so as to bring team members on the same platform, working towards the same goal. The organization not only encourages innovative ideas but firmly believes that the way to create space for innovation is through a breakdown of time restrictions, excessively formal dynamics and unhealthy competition. “We believe in a positive atmosphere and creating a platform for our employees so that their work is in line with their individual career growth and success. We cater to the strengths of our team members. Also,work hours relatively don’t exist at Spreeha; it is all about the purpose which brings about passion.”, says Tazin Shadid, CEO, Spreeha Bangladesh as he explains the vision of having people on the same journey and working towards the same goal. With over a decade’s experience in organizational development at Microsoft, one of the leading companies internationally, Shadid stresses on how necessary it is to instill employees with purpose and a sense of vision.
A look into the dynamics of the organization reveal a culture of positivity, innovation and nourishment for young employees seeking to enhance skills and committing to a purpose. Ownership is built through rejection of micromanaging and team members are encouraged to learn through direct experience and failure. “You have to allow people to fail to help them learn, trying out new things enhances performance and ability to innovate.” shares Shadid.
With emphasis on the youth, change in work culture is increasingly becoming an issue of concern. Young individuals have needs which differ from that of older generations. Young employee groups are more curious, seek purpose and require flexibility. With life becoming more complex for technology and social media, boundaries of work are also not as defined. Organizations thus need to be more adaptable and open to the changing dynamic to help their young employees find freedom in work, enable them to create their own work-life balance and contribute with high levels of performance and motivation.
“When your team is purpose driven, their work is not just work, it becomes their life and they are able to seek out passion from it. It depends on leadership of organizations to be able to instill that sense of passion within individuals. We need to slowly come out of our rigid policies to help organizations effectively cater to their employee groups”, explains Shadid. With times changing rapidly, the need for transformation of work cultures in the country is apparent with increasing levels of frustration and stress within employee groups. The time has thus come for industries to acknowledge the need and reform policy accordingly.