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《經濟學人》:企業老板與員工的意見分歧

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Corporate culture
企業文化

The view from the top, and bottom
老板與員工的意見分歧

Bosses think their firms are caring. Their minions disagree.
老板們認為公司對員工關懷備至,但其下屬卻不以為然。

AS WALMART grew into the world’s largest retailer, its staff were subjected to a long list of dos and don’ts covering every aspect of their work. Now the firm has decided that its rules-based culture is too inflexible to cope with the challenges of globalisation and technological change, and is trying to instil a “values-based” culture, in which employees can be trusted to do the right thing because they know what the firm stands for.
隨著沃爾瑪發展成為全球最大零售商,其員工在工作的各方各面都受到了一大堆規則的限制。如今,沃爾瑪已經認識到其以規則為基礎的公司文化過于死板,無法應對全球化和科技變革所帶來的挑戰。所以,沃爾瑪正嘗試逐漸培養一種以價值觀為基礎的公司文化,在這種文化中,員工了解公司的主張,所以能夠得到公司的信任,去做他們認為正確的事情。

“Values” is the latest hot topic in management thinking. PepsiCo has started preaching a creed of “performance with purpose”. Chevron, an oil firm, brands itself as a purveyor of “human energy”, though presumably it does not really want you to travel by rickshaw. Nearly every big firm claims to be building a more caring and ethical culture.
“價值觀念”是管理學思維最新的熱門話題。百事可樂公司已開始宣揚一個信條:“目的性績效”。石油公司雪佛龍在自己的商標上印上“‘人類體能’的供應商”的字樣,盡管它大概并非真的希望你用人力車代步。幾乎每一家大型企業都宣稱自身正在發展更為關懷體貼、合乎道德的企業文化。

A new study suggests there is less to this than it says on the label. Commissioned by Dov Seidman, boss of LRN, a firm that advises on corporate culture, and author of “How”, a book arguing that the way firms do business matters as much as what they do, and conducted by the Boston Research Group, the “National Governance, Culture and Leadership Assessment” is based on a survey of thousands of American employees, from every rung of the corporate ladder.
一項新的研究顯示,實際情況與商家們所標榜的有差距。LRN(一家企業文化顧問公司)的老板、同時也是《怎么做到的?》(本書主張企業的經營方式與其經營的業務同樣重要)的作者多弗•塞德曼委托波士頓研究集團進行這項“國家治理、文化和領導能力評估”的研究,該研究是以對來自公司各個級別的數千位美國雇員的調查為基礎的。

It found that 43% of those surveyed described their company’s culture as based on command-and-control, top-down management or leadership by coercion—what Mr Seidman calls “blind obedience”. The largest category, 54%, saw their employer’s culture as top-down, but with skilled leadership, lots of rules and a mix of carrots and sticks, which Mr Seidman calls “informed acquiescence”. Only 3% fell into the category of “self-governance”, in which everyone is guided by a “set of core principles and values that inspire everyone to align around a company’s mission”.
研究發現,有43%的調查對象對其公司的文化有以下描述:以命令和指揮為基礎、自上而下的管理模式或強制式的領導——塞德曼先生稱之為“盲目服從型”。所占百分比最多的調查對象,即有54%的人認為其公司文化自上而下型的,但公司的領導也有技巧可言,只是規則繁多并存在軟硬兼施的手段,塞德曼先生稱這種為“知情服從型”。只有3%的調查對象屬于“自我管理型”,即每個員工都被一套“核心原則和價值”所引導,這套原則和價值激勵每個員工以公司的宗旨為中心進行工作。

The study found evidence that such differences matter. Nearly half of those in blind-obedience companies said they had observed unethical behaviour in the previous year, compared with around a quarter in the other sorts of firm. Yet only a quarter of those in the blind-obedience firms said they were likely to blow the whistle, compared with over 90% in self-governing firms. Lack of trust may inhibit innovation, too. More than 90% of employees in self-governing firms, and two-thirds in the informed-acquiescence category, agreed that “good ideas are readily adopted by my company”. At blind-obedience firms, fewer than one in five did.
研究也發現一些證據,證明這些公司文化之間的差異事關重大。在盲目服從型企業中,幾乎有過半數員工都稱在前一年目睹過有違職業道德的行為,而在其他類型的企業中只有四分之一的員工有此經歷。但是,在盲目服從型企業中只有約四分之一的員工說他們可能會揭發這種行為,而在自我管理型企業中卻有90%的員工會進行揭發。同樣,上下級之間缺乏信任會抑制員工創新。自我管理型公司中超過90%的員工承認“絕妙的想法很容易會被公司采納”,選擇性順從型公司中也有三分之二的員工這樣認為。而在盲目服從型公司中,持這種想法的人少于五分之一。

Tragicomically, the study found that bosses often believe their own guff, even if their underlings do not. Bosses are eight times more likely than the average to believe that their organisation is self-governing. (The cheery folk in human resources are also much more optimistic than other employees.) Some 27% of bosses believe their employees are inspired by their firm. Alas, only 4% of employees agree. Likewise, 41% of bosses say their firm rewards performance based on values rather than merely on financial results. Only 14% of employees swallow this.
令人哭笑不得的是,研究還發現老板們時常對自己瞎掰的那一套信以為真,即便員工們不以為然。老板們相信其公司是自我管理型公司的程度比普通員工高八倍。(人力資源部那些心情愉快的職員也比公司其他員工要樂觀得多。)大約27%的老板認為自己公司的員工能夠被公司所激勵。奈何,只有4%的員工同意此說。同樣,41%的老板稱其公司對績效的獎勵是建基于價值觀之上的,而不僅是業績。然而只有14%的員工接受此說。

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