Entrepreneurship & Lean Startups / Random Musings

3 Things I May Never Understand

I know everyone has different philosophies when it comes to running a business, or what kind of employee they want to be. I can go on for at least 100,000 words on the things I don’t agree with, but in the essence of time, here are just three that I really don’t get when it comes to the work place, with a focus on startups:

1) Why do people feel that its okay to rag on (v. to tease, give a hard time) the newbies, especially after they have been ragged on before when they first joined the company?

We are not in high school anymore. It shouldn’t be case of ‘oh, my seniors gave me a hard time when I first got here. Now that I’m a senior, it’s my prerogative to give it back to the freshies.’ If you experienced first hand how it feels to be left drowning and not given help at work, you should be even more empathetic about the newbies who just joined your organisation. Unfortunately, many people feel that they should execute the bad practices that their leaders have demonstrated, instead of thinking about how they can make it better. On the other hand, if you have been given lots of mentorship and now you’re not paying it forward — there’s nothing much left to say.

2) Why would you burn relationships with partners / employees / members in your community just to save a couple of dollars?

We spend lots of time and money to recruit new employees, or acquire new customers/members. Some even consider your networth to be the sum of your networks and connections. So I don’t really get it when business leaders would make decisions that hurt business relationships for the sake of saving a couple of measly dollars. Penny wise, pound foolish much? Worse still if your leader is preaching about how important it is to develop and maintain business relationships, while s/he is carrying out actions that hurt these relationships consistently.

3) Why would leaders downplay (or ignore) the importance of company culture and employee satisfaction?

I think we all know that recruitment takes time and lots of money, and it takes even more to develop an employee to reach their full potential. It’s a tragedy if good employees become disenchanted (or “jaded”) and disengaged from your organisation’s goals simply because the corporate culture sucks. Spend some time to make your working environment a more pleasant one for your employees and you may end up saving a lot more time trying to recruit fast enough to replace all the folks who are leaving cause they just can’t take it anymore.

That’s about it for today. There will probably be a few more posts on this topic in the very near future. Do let me know if you agree / disagree.

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