Why Engage Employees in Decision-Making

When you include employees in your decision-making on issues that directly impact their work, there is a greater chance that they will embrace the decision as their own and effectively  implement it. You are also more likely to make a practical decision informed by the collective wisdom and experience of the work unit. Through the free marketplace of competing ideas, the truth marches forward.

There are times when it is necessary to abandon employee participation in decision-making. For example:

>Time is limited

>You are in a crises mode

>The decision is mandated from above

>There is only one viable course of action. Any other decision will lead to a compromised result.

> The group lacks the cohesiveness, mutual acceptance or commonality of purpose to   decide. They also lack the knowledge and competence with respect to the problem.

But in general, when you don’t listen to employees, it’s all too easy to jump to conclusions and commit to actions that are ill-advised. When you don’t listen, employees believe that you don’t care about them as thinking and feeling individuals–that their role is to simply follow directions and not ask questions. This perception ultimately leads to  employee complacency, resentment and feeling of victimization.


About mhc68

Michael H. Cohen is a nationally recognized author, workshop leader, and consultant specializing in leadership and team development, organizational communications, employee relations, conflict management, and customer service. Mike Cohen is committed to the belief that employees are responsible for their own intrinsic motivation, work ethic, service orientation, positive attitude, and constructive behaviors. He has developed a reputation for providing practical and motivational presentations, and tailor made consultation services that exceed participants' expectations. Mr. Cohen served as Director of Employee Relations and Development and later as Vice President of Human Resources at Weiss Memorial/University of Chicago Hospitals for twelve years. He has taught Interpersonal Communications, Group Process, and Organizational Behavior at Northwestern, Roosevelt, and Dominican Universities, Triton, and Oakton Community Colleges.
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