Creating a Human Organization

Innovation can be a key attribute for helping a company stand out from the competition, especially in the fast-moving world of software development. At Menlo Innovations, CEO Richard Sheridan and his team don’t only create innovative programs, but their entire company culture is also based around the innovative concept of workplace joy.

While a word like “joy” may seem unproductive and unprofitable to many businesses, Sheridan has found that keeping employees joyful also keeps them inspired to bring their best to work everyday. In a recent Google Hangout interview to promote his new book, Joy Inc., Sheridan sat down to discuss how he’s able to keep his employees both happy and hardworking:

–       Eliminate fear to creating a positive environment where employees are never scrutinized for suggesting new ideas for a project or assignment

–       Working together in randomly assigned teams of two people each week allows employees to build a cohesive environment and also ensures that projects gain a fresh perspective each week

–       Making workspace liveable by getting rid of walls and cubicles allows for further employee interaction. Employees are also encouraged to decorate their workspace to their heart’s content

–       Eliminating unproductive meetings and replacing them with a daily all staff meeting (10 minutes maximum) where each team of two briefly discusses their plan for the day (while wearing a Viking helmet and holding a two-handed token) Creating a work/life balance by never working employees overtime or denying them a vacation helps everyone stay focused

–       Hiring the right people through an “extreme interviewing” process ensures that new employees are more likely to fit with Menlo’s culture and prosper in the company’s unique environment

This method has been highly success for Menlo and Sheridan, but the CEO advises that companies looking to re-model their work system should do so slowly. A sudden and drastic change may be too overwhelming, so be sure to slowly transition into something new.

If you want to watch the full interview check out http://www.managementexchange.com/blog/hangout-richard-sheridan

Human behaviour has been a constant source of fascination for Adrienne. From university through each step of her career it’s been the common thread – first leading her to event and incentive management and ultimately to providing strategic consultation on employee productivity and business effectiveness. Adrienne knows from experience that collecting and distilling information is essential to generate insight. She views this process as a necessary discipline for all organizations seeking to elevate employee engagement and performance results. Adrienne is a sharp strategic thinker with a keen attention to detail. Her extensive expertise in employee engagement and corporate communications allows Adrienne to deliver strategic recommendations that energize businesses and generate results. Adrienne was the chief catalyst and founder of Dentsu Canada Inc’s Employee Engagement and Meetings & Events division. She has produced results for clients like Lexus, EMI Music Canada, City of Brampton, Toronto Hydro, Cognos Incorporated, National Bank of Canada, Shoppers Drug Mart, Sobeys, Computershare and UNICEF.

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