One in seven UK workers is planning on leaving their jobs by July. According to recent data* by Zegami, 18% of UK workers simply do not like their role. The reasons people stated for this were:
- Not feeling appreciated or missing a promotion
- Bullying or sexual harassment
According to Zegami losing an employee “costs a business £105,667 based on salary, hiring costs and productivity losses while training the replacement.”
There are a number of reasons people might “not like their jobs”, but environment and culture are big contributing factors to why people stay or leave. According to Harvard Business Review, the second most important reason someone will stay at their company is “company culture” and the level of comfort people feel within it.
Vault Platform defines a speak up culture as one where employees feel both psychologically safe to express themselves authentically, raise concerns such as sexual harassment in the workplace and bullying at work and more importantly, feel a sense of security that these concerns will be resolved safely and effectively.
So how do you ensure your workplace is building a speak up culture? When it comes to gathering employee feedback and determining the health of your organizational culture, anonymous feedback, still the most widespread form of feedback, is not the answer. Here’s why:
- Anonymous feedback is not the solution: anonymous reporting mechanisms actually reinforce people’s fears about speaking up and send the message that: “It’s not safe to share your views openly in this organization.”
- Anonymous feedback creates a culture of doubt and suspicion: a manager may associate an anonymous piece of information with a particular person which creates subconscious or conscious finger-pointing, and a subsequent change in behaviour towards that individual.
- Anonymous reporting makes it harder to actually address and resolve issues: reporting harassment or bullying is one thing, but additional data points will be needed to fully assess the extent of the problem and come to a resolution.
Building a speak up culture requires implementing the tools and resources to create a shift in organizational behaviour over time: from a place where anonymity is the norm towards a culture where people feel empowered to speak up.
Neta Meidav is co-founder and CEO of Vault Platform, the trusttech company disrupting workplace misconduct reporting and resolution. Neta worked as a senior adviser to the UK Government for over ten years and is a knowledgeable resource on solutions to the problem of harassment and bullying in the workplace.