Every action counts. What one does in an hour or a minute leaves an impact on the bigger picture. This also stands true to an organisation.
The Japanese philosophy of Kaizen puts an emphasis on a similar concept- improvement should be continuous. This stems from the unfaltering belief that productivity is a gradual and well-organised process which increases when an organisation makes sure that all of its employees are completely involved in the office.
The philosophy of Kaizen seeks to create an effective work environment by promoting team spirit and ensuring employee engagement. Let’s move forward and understand this theory better.
Pillars Of The Kaizen Theory
Standardisation involves a practice of catching up with team members, doing constant follow ups, aligning work with end goals, and setting up a standard quality of work. It simply revolves around the idea that in order to improve something you need to first have a standard set for where you see yourself in the future.
ELIMINATING THE WASTE
This refers to removing the things that are not adding any value to your work. As an organisation, this can include unfair deadlines, overburdening employees with work, a flawed communication strategy, and anything that can make the employees feel like they are not appreciated in the workplace.
This element talks about managing the workplace in a way that it is open to continuous improvement. This pillar highlights three points- a workplace should be clean, neat, and efficient. The goal is to have an upstanding environment that gives employees a clear space to be productive and have everything in order. Afterall, the space one works in gives the first impression of a work culture.
How Is Kaizen Related To Employee Experience?
In a lot of ways, honestly. When we bring it down to productivity, Kaizen literally means to bring an optimistic change to the work culture through continuous improvement. This also means opening doors for empowerment. When an organisation empowers the employees to find improvement in their work, when they are involved in decision-making and given timely feedback, that is when they realise the scope of improvement and get motivated to work on themselves.
Once an organisation starts moving forward with continuous improvement, it slowly begins to build a culture where employees feel comfortable in sharing their opinion and develop a mindset that gives importance to team spirit and dedication.
Using Kaizen To Inculcate Employee Experience
Now that we have established the fact that Kaizen and employee experience are somewhat related, here’s a guide to how an organisation can use this philosophy to develop a culture of engagement and leadership.
Do you remember how, in school, teachers used to randomly ask general questions to students, in order to connect with them? Why don’t we do that in workplaces? Improvement begins by recognizing what needs to be better and, in order to recognize something, one must first be familiar with it. Therefore, begin by establishing a culture of connection. This can be done through constant group catch-ups, organising offsites, going on team lunches, and random small conversations that do not always have to be around work.
Be More Than A Manager
One key emphasis of Kaizen is to inculcate improvement through the efforts of every single person- the employer, the employee, and everyone who is a part of the organisation in some or the other way. In a workplace, this attitude can incorporate a sense of team spirit. When a manager particularly starts seeing himself or herself as more than someone who is there to give orders, the senior-subordinate relationship also starts to improve. It is an equal partnership that makes an organisation grow. This leads to employees gaining more experience at their workplace.
Create An Environment Of Control
Don’t get confused by the heading. Control doesn’t have to be negative all the time. In order to reinforce the Kaizen mindset in everyone, an organisation needs to strategically work on the basic human need to be in control. Learn to give employees certain control over office work with a defined boundary under leadership. This means that the organisation needs to recognize their skills and show a sense of faith in them by allowing them to lead certain tasks that align with their skills. This not only creates a sense of leadership and discipline in the employees, but also makes them feel more engaged and ready to improve further.
The Kaizen philosophy encourages growth as a team-work. This concept, if applied correctly, can lead to an employee experience that is rich in critical thinking, problem-solving, and collaborating together for a better outcome.
We definitely promote a Kaizen way of working!