Many companies end up wasting a huge amount of time, money and resources on practices that pretty much everyone loathes, not because these practices deliver any value but out of habit and because ‘everyone else does it.’

As 2023 is just around the corner, it’s time to rethink the future of work. While a lot is being discussed about what should be done for the progress and development, People Matters got in touch with industry experts to understand what employers need to STOP doing at work in the upcoming year.

1. Enforcing return-to-office 

When the whole world is talking about shifting to a 4-day week and continuing hybrid work, pushing your employees to return to work is not a very wise step to take. “Working from anywhere, at any time or place, will influence hiring and employee satisfaction in the coming year as well. Post the pandemic, employees value the ability to stay at home, get more sleep, avoid traffic, and adjust their work time and individual needs without interfering with work objectives,” recommended Ms Nandita Krishan, General Manager (Client Engagement, Facilitation and OD) at Marching Sheep.

2. Viewing performance as once-a-year event

Yearly performance reviews can help you track employee performance. But they should be part of a multi-pronged approach for evaluating progress, rather than a one-and-done method that only happens every 12 months. “Setting quarterly performance goals with monthly check-ins may be more beneficial for your employees and your business. The idea is to develop a model that fosters continuous performance development and creates a framework for ongoing improvement,” suggested Srilakshmi Ch, HR Manager, KL Global Business School, Hyderabad.

3. Thinking communication solves everything

Business owners are bombarded with messages about the importance of communicating with employees. Ever heard the old adage, “It’s not what you say, but how you say it?” That couldn’t be truer in this case. While there’s no denying your business won’t get very far without effective communication, communication alone isn’t enough.

“Do you know the difference between information and inspiration? One tells you what you should do; the other ignites the fire within you to do it. When you create messages that inspire your employees, you cultivate an intrinsic motivation within them,” Srilakshmi Ch, HR Manager, KL Global Business School told People Matters.

4. Forcing culture

One of the common terms that we come across in organisations is work culture. At times, especially in start-ups, it becomes a KRA for the talent team to stress the work culture. “I strongly believe that work culture should be an output of the vision of the leaders of the company. For example, at Baazi Games it is the core ethos of our company is that our work should drive the culture. We have strongly believed that if team members are enjoying the work, they would automatically promote a culture of camaraderie. Hence, in our definition of culture work and culture go hand in hand and cannot be exclusive of each other,” said Smriti Chaudhry, HR Head, Baazi Games.

5. Viewing growth through profit and loss lens

Performance typically has been measured through hard numbers. However, some of the top companies have started bringing in the happiness quotient as an important barometer of progress. “Happiness of employees is directly linked to their mental makeup and how they view the organisation beyond short term or tactical steps in their career. Mental wellness programs add to their personal growth and assure employees that the company is thinking beyond its own gains thus elevating their own performance and that of the company as a whole,” said Raman Mital, Co-founder and meditation expert, Idanim, a mental wellness application for employees to practice mindfulness.

6. Setting unrealistic expectations

Ever heard of the term “asynchronous work” or “async”? These have been the buzzwords in 2022 and continue to reign in the coming year. “An async work model means that employees are not expected to respond in real time and with the remote environment being the accepted normal, many organisations are questioning whether it is optimal for employees to be responsive in real-time, and or required to attend multiple meetings a day. As an empathetic and progressive employer, we must put an end to this unrealistic ask of every employee to be available all the time,” said Nandita Krishan.

7. Homogeneity in workplace 

A varied team is more likely to comprehend your clients’ wants and devise solutions to meet them better. “We are in a day and age when everyone is equal and an inclusive workplace is only a sign of an organisation’s commitment to bringing all communities together irrespective of gender identity, sexual orientation, physical and mental abilities, ethnicity, religion, age, work experience, educational background, military experience, or family status. The talent teams need to make concerted efforts to implement and broaden the spectrum of DE&I to include talent from multiple communities,” said Smriti Chaudhry.

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