November 23, 2022
Killing employees well-being - Twitter edition
“Hardcore workplace” means no perks, no flexibility, no autonomy. What's in it for employees then?
“Hardcore workplace” means no perks, no flexibility, no autonomy. This is what awaits the remaining employees at Twitter. Day after day, more and more employees are quitting. So not only is talent exiting at a higher rate than seen anywhere else, but I wonder how will Twitter retain and attract new talent? What’s in it for the employees?
Over the past days and weeks I have been having this unsettling feeling that I need to put into words. I am shocked to realize that everything we work so hard to build within companies for weeks, months and even years can be ended by a single man almost instantly. Yes, I am talking about Elon Musk and employees' well-being.
While the entire world is moving towards an employee-centric culture, where well-being comes at the center of any company’s success, it seems like Elon Musk didn’t get the memo.
Requests to work “long hours at high intensity” or ““extremely hardcore”, ultimatums, threats and other erratic decisions have given employees many reasons to leave and they are leaving. This is proof that people do leave good companies and even dream jobs when well-being is disregarded. Even more, work environments quickly become toxic and undesirable when there is a lack of psychological safety to support a culture of trust and respect.
Now, I am no business guru, but I can almost guarantee this will have a massive negative impact for the years to come in Twitter's books. I am of the opinion that it’s never too late to change, to improve and to do things better, but the time is running out for Twitter. A swift change of direction and approach is needed, where the employees’ well-being is once more placed at the heart of the company.
“The greatest asset of a company is its people.”
Jorge Paulo Lemann (Co-founder, Banco Garantia)
Having happy employees has been proven to have numerous positive returns. Investing in happiness at work increases productivity by more than 45%. That alone is something that any CEO would want, yet Twitter’s employees are beyond unhappy. How will they be able to continue to deliver even acceptable results in the current environment?
Furthermore, investing in happiness at work increases innovation by more than 300%, something at the core of Twitter’s brand. Lastly, investing in happiness at work reduces the risk of burnout by 125% and absenteeism by 66%.
All in all, it can have a positive overall effect of 33% increase in profit.
So, why would someone decide to disregard the impact of employee well-being when attempting to build a better company? Better comes from putting heart, love and care into your interactions with your employees, who in return will put heart, love and care into what they deliver for the company.
Expecting employees to deliver “excellent” or “exceptional” results in this current environment is simply impossible. It takes an excellent or exceptional environment to create excellent or exceptional results. It takes a clear strategy, a vision and mission that employees can get behind. A way for employees to align their purpose to the company’s purpose. A way to find meaning in their work and their contribution to the greater good.
We live in an era where we don’t have to survive anymore, we are here to thrive.
“The secret to amazing performance is empowering talented people to succeed at meaningful work."
Teresa Amabile (Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School)