Respect in the Workplace – Why Care?

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Is Your Organization Culturally Confident With Respect?

Respect in the workplace – How does respect show-up in your workplace through the communication and behaviours of your people?

Organizations either have a workplace culture by design or default.

The most successful leaders are intentional about respect in the workplace and designing a culture of respect – dedicated to achieving respect as a cultural norm. Every organization has their “normal” for culture, and when opportunities arise with respectful communication and behaviour, we need to ask ourselves: “What about our culture and leadership allows this disrespectful performance?”

Respect Honesty Honorable Regard Integrity Concept

Through brain research and behavioural science, respect has a proven effect:

  • Neurotransmitters are released in the brain as a response to both respectful and disrespectful communication or behaviour towards us, impacting our decisions and actions either positively or negatively.
  • Our thought process can contribute to disrespectful performance, when we are evaluating others based on stereotypes and prejudgements, or respectful performance when we have accurate data supporting our awareness and points of view.

Respect can be a uniting action that supports a workplace community where everyone is able to engage. When we have the foundation of respect, through calibration, alignment, clarity and thus buy-in, with respectful communication and behaviours, we set ourselves up for a trusting environment where people are valued, beginning the respect wave in an organization.

The Ripple Effect of Respect

  • Diversity: The byproducts of respect, trust and value, allow us to be open to people’s diversity, and allows people to be open with their own diversity. We can define diversity as anything different whatsoever, which includes the traditional categorizations of diversity, as well as the diversity of our experiences and thoughts.
  • Inclusion: When there is an openness with our differences, we set ourselves-up to achieve inclusion, which is diversity in practice.
  • Engagement: Once people’s differences are included, people are positioned to engage.
  • Productivity: With the engagement of people’s talents, gifts, and abilities, we will have the potential for greater individual contribution, and thus productivity for the organization.

If you take a sports team as an example, a coach can build a respectful culture for the game, teamwork, winning, and individual talent. This respectful culture supports the players to value each others diversity, including their positions and roles on the team. Inclusion is achieved when the players have a chance to get off the bench and be in the game, and once the players are in the game, their talents, gifts and skills can then be engaged, supporting the productivity and goals of the team.

The Value of Respect in the Workplace

So respect in the workplace – Why care? Well, if positively impacting the life of another human being, from both a personal and professional perspective, isn’t enough – How about maximizing the investment in your payroll? Do you believe that you’re getting your money’s worth in productivity? If not, respect can make a difference.

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