Commitment precedes performance
There are two world views about frontline shift workers. One is that they are fundamentally self-interested and therefore need to be controlled and kept in line with extrinsic motivators – sticks and carrots. The second is that they are fundamentally good-willed and that their core intrinsic motivation is to do a great job and to go home safe and satisfied.
We believe in the latter.
We believe that the vast majority of frontline workers want to commit – they want to do a good job BUT they are thwarted by the complex array of spreadsheet and whiteboard systems that surround them.
When day after day shift plans don’t match the reality crews find at the coal face, the machinery they need isn’t available or the prerequisite work they thought would be done, isn’t done it is almost impossible to keep frontline teams motivated, productive and safe. These kinds of systems are ‘Apathy Systems’ that make frontline workers feel cynical toward their leadership and indifferent toward their work.
On the other hand, when expectations are clearly communicated and agreed through effective coordination and respectful negotiation, frontline teams can commit and be confident of running a safe and productive shift.
We have been helping operations to create this commitment and in the process seeing them get astounding results from the same people and equipment they thought were the problem before.
Our systems make this kind of frontline commitment possible by providing all the information required for collaborative decision-making, to the right people, at the right time so that crews go to work with a well thought out plan each and every shift.
This reduces performance variability, improves productivity and helps people go home safely every day.