How to Create an Inclusive, Innovative Workplace
Technology professionals aren't just like everyone else. They take on tasks that require a great deal of both science-based skills and innovative capabilities. They often work under immense pressure and are essential to keeping the company running. As a result, IT pros have specific requirements for their workspace. To create a productive and satisfying work environment, organizations need to consider the work requirements of various departments and teams, including IT. In a section of the recent book, Why Should Anyone Work Here?: What it Takes to Create an Authentic Organization (Harvard Business Review Press/available now), co-authors Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones weigh in on the characteristics of companies that embrace individual personalities and work approaches. Such businesses proactively seek to hire employees who bring a variety of backgrounds and perspectives to their teams. They don't discourage creative conflict—they encourage it. And they reward experimentation—even when some experiments fail. "To attract the best people and succeed as a business," the authors write, "the authentic organization of the future will need to foster environments where creativity and innovation are at a premium, employees feel engaged and committed, and leadership pipelines are carefully cultivated for future success." The following "workplace individuality" assessment questions and best practices are adapted from the book. Goffee is an emeritus professor of organizational behavior at the London Business School, and Jones is a fellow of the Centre for Management Development at the London Business School.