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Undergoing organizational change? Reflect on how involved your employees feel

By Madison Hanscom, PhD

As companies plan and administer major changes or interventions to improve occupational health and safety, a participatory approach can very well determine success or failure. When employees are involved in the process, their voices shape the program into something that is a better fit for the people and the culture. There is no reason a group of leaders far removed from the average worker should be creating change initiatives in isolation. This can lead to a program that is out of touch with what is needed by the people, and it can also hurt buy-in and momentum. Many researchers have shown that a participatory approach is an explanatory variable for a successful organizational intervention (1). It also is related to increased fairness and justice perceptions throughout the process.

What should you do if your company is in the middle of a change or intervention?

Ask employees if they feel involved. If they feel in the dark or that their voices aren’t heard — this is a gap in your strategy. Listen to your people and make adjustments as needed. This could empower your people to drive the results you need.

At Propulo Consulting, we care about the health and wellbeing of all workers. We partner with you to improve the world of work using the latest insights from research. Our team has the expertise to help your business build a safer and healthier culture, and we offer training to take your leadership to the next level. For more information regarding this topic, read about Culture Change at Propulo Consulting.

Referenced article:

Nielsen, K., Randall, R., Holten, A. L., & González, E. R. (2010). Conducting organizational-level occupational health interventions: What works?. Work & Stress, 24(3), 234-259.

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