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Employee involvement is the key to a good work environment
Why should employees be involved when it comes to workplace decision-making processes? It is no secret that employee involvement or influence on one’s own work contributes to increasing motivation, commitment and responsibility among employees. Employee involvement can thus have many positive effects on the workflows, if one manages to do it right.
In an article, the National Research Center for the Working Environment explains that the context in which it is attempted to implement employee involvement is not completely indifferent. There is no single and uniform formula for how to properly involve your employees. It all depends on the context and the topic. But at the same time, lack of employee involvement can result in sick leave, work injuries and termination of his position prematurely due to poor physical and mental health. It is therefore a hard balance which is up to the individual employer to establish.
And it is precisely the importance of involving its employees that Europe Direct sheds light on in their study of even the same subject. They point out that employees possess a unique knowledge and experience of how the work should be performed and how it affects them and their health. The fact that employees gain influence and take ownership can contribute to new methods for preventing occupational accidents and work risks. As an employer, it is not always possible to anticipate the bumps in the road that one may encounter in connection with a task. By taking your employees on board, you are more likely to be able to address the problems before they occur, and you get a more elaborate product, as different work roles are represented in the decision-making processes.
A shared responsibility
As an employer, it is your responsibility to have the necessary control and supervision so that your employees do not suffer work-related injuries or illnesses. But most people probably know the term – it takes two to Danish tango. Both employer and employees have a responsibility when it comes to safety and health in the workplace. The employer must set the framework and introduce preventive measures that can promote a healthy work culture, but it is the employees’ task to assist the employer in this, which is why they are dependent on each other’s input and experience. In this context, Europe Direct emphasizes that employees must not accept passive cooperation and follow the rules they are given by their manager or the legislation, respectively. Instead, they should gain influence by asking questions, raising topics, and discussing their suggestions or concerns with their leader face to face. In this way, the employee shows responsibility, commitment and a motivation to, together with the manager, create a healthy and safe working environment for everyone.
5 benefits of employee involvement
- You get insight into the employee’s knowledge of what works and which areas can be optimized
- The employee acquires ownership of the workplace, the environment and the culture
- The manager and the employees are part of a mutual learning community
- One finds the cause of the problem rather than guesswork
- All the different levels in the organization are taken into account and one gets a better understanding of how they play together