Remember Office Space? The 1999 cult classic about cubicle dwellers spoofed the worst aspects of modern organizational culture. 16 years later, the film, and it’s caricatures of the corporate world still hold up.
While obviously an extreme example, many modern offices suffer from the same issues as the fictional Initech. Unclear goals, muddled management structure, and a tendency to see employees as mice in wheels, instead of humans with brains.
There are potential stormy waters ahead. A tidal wave of Millennials is entering the workforce, and that generation has shown a severe allergy to traditional office practices. They’re also proving to be leading indicators for other generations, who have no problems following Millennials’ lead on corporate issues such as flexible working arrangements, corporate perks, technology, and much more.
Yet one survey showed that as much as 80% of employees say they’re motivated to do their jobs through coercion. Most people still aren’t getting invested in their jobs, they’re doing just enough to keep their bosses off their backs.
Regular employees aren’t the only ones suffering. A Harvard Medical study found that every one of the senior executives interviewed suffered from burnout.
We’re having a culture crisis in American offices, and it’s hurting employee engagement, which hurts customer engagement.
It’s a good time for every company to take a serious look at their culture, where it comes from, and where it needs to go.