An article in The Times this morning caught my attention. "A prime example of life imitating art", Alex Spence proclaimed on page 5. He is of course referring to the latest offering from The Twenty Twelve Team - 'mockumentary' W1A. The BBC Two comedy pokes fun at "bureaucracy, management speak and an obsession with blue sky thinking ", so it's hardly surprising that, being aired on the same day as news broke of the BBC headquarters' "creative" and "inspiring" revamp, more than a few have pointed out the irony. Organisations need to remember that employees want the full package - and I'm not just talking about 'comps and bens'. I'm talking about how you feel when you leave the office at the end of the day: do you feel motivated and satisfied by the work you've achieved in the last 8 hours? Companies must create inclusive, supportive and engaging company cultures that strive to ensure their employees are as happy as they can be. Part of this is of course creating the right physical environment in which creativity, innovation and a good dose of hard work can thrive - so yes, I can certainly see what the BBC is trying to do here.
It's vitally important that changes such as this go hand in hand with good, clear and consistent communication. Employees should not only have been aware of the changes and why they are being made, they should be actively involved in the decision making process wherever possible - as, in fact, they were through the BBC's 'committee of employees'. Management should be using focus groups, internal social networks, good old fashioned face to face conversation - whatever it takes to make sure their people accurately inform their decisions.
So whilst the BBC's revamp has made for an interesting news story, let's consider it more a great example of a large organisation listening to their employees' opinions and acting upon them.