The War on Fun
It’s fun to work at a company that’s competitive. But it’s not fun to work for one that’s combative. There’s a big difference between the two.
A lot of companies want to create a culture where there’s an internal war for talent, where the best people compete to be on the leading teams, and where employees are praised for being the best in their field. But how can you build that culture without encouraging political warfare, “stealing” team members, and sabotaging others’ success?
Business leaders often talk about the “war for talent” as if it were a purely external issue. Your company competes with other firms in your marketplace, trying to hire the strongest talent. But, too often, there’s also an internal war – one that can ruin an employee’s enjoyment of their job, and ultimately, threaten a company’s ability to survive.
Building a positive, friendly but competitive culture begins with three things:
- Accountability, and
- A connective vision that engages and energizes the whole organization.
If your organization has those things, people will be passionate about their jobs; they’ll have fun building and expanding their talents and your business. They’ll be raising their hands to put in extra time, to get involved in projects, and to be involved with ideas and innovations that help them succeed. And you want to create systems and processes whereby people want to compete and grow their skills in order to get on those teams because they have something to contribute.
Every CEO needs to consider what they are we doing today, to strengthen the core of our business? But you also need to think about where your company will be five years from now. How are you going to stay relevant in the future? You want those projects to succeed, and that means you want your people to develop new skills and encourage their talents, so you can put the best people on the job. If you encourage friendly competition, talent development, and cooperation, all of your employees will benefit – not just the top 10%. And that makes the whole company succeed.
So, what can you do to foster healthy competition within your organization?