December 6, 2021
About a year and a half ago, I became a mother. I joined the world of working parents, who have always juggled multiple priorities, but who have faced increased challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic.
I am lucky to work for an organization that honors my dual roles as a parent and professional. As my family has been introduced to daycare germs and worked through a required quarantine, I have been supported to take the time off that I needed. One of EdFuel’s guiding principles is Sustainability for each of our employees, and this value has been reinforced for me through our written leave policies, as well as through managerial practices.
DO YOUR WRITTEN POLICIES ALIGN WITH YOUR VISION FOR CULTURE?
The Society for Human Resource Management states that “the key to a successful organization is to have a culture based on a strongly held and widely shared set of beliefs that are supported by strategy and structure.”
Written or unwritten, your organization most likely has rules, and your employees have intuited them. But if you don’t have a common, comprehensive, and clear set of organizational policies, you might find that the lived experience of your staff is not aligned with the culture you hope to create. For example,
- A similar situation may result in two different outcomes for two different employees, leading to confusion and dissatisfaction for one or both.
- This may also mean that some employees – consciously or unconsciously – are being advantaged over others.
- You may have simply outgrown some of the policies that governed your organization previously – our practices have certainly evolved over the past two years!
We speak with leaders every day about the kind of environment they hope to create for their employees, and the situations described above do not reflect what most leaders want to be true. For example, we have heard the desire to:
- Provide clarity and continuity whenever possible (in a world where these things seem increasingly elusive)
- Treat each employee as a complex and complete human being, with needs to be met both inside and outside the workplace (or virtual space)
- Live out an ongoing commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Antiracism
One way to start living up to these ideals is to holistically examine your organization’s policies, processes, and practices, and make adjustments where necessary.
USE THE EDFUEL ORGANIZATIONAL POLICY TOOLKIT TO REINFORCE YOUR CULTURE IN PRACTICE AND IN WRITING
To help you do that, we have developed and are excited to release the EdFuel Organizational Policy Toolkit, a people-centered approach to defining human capital policies. The Toolkit includes:
- A process you can follow to create an employee handbook or policy manual, whether you are crafting organizational policies for the first time or conducting an audit on practices that have been in place for awhile
- A system to review your current policies to see if they meet the needs of your workplace and workforce, including promoting Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Antiracism
- Tools to help you research, write, and communicate any new policies you may need to create
- Checklists at every step to ensure you have covered all of your bases
We must be clear: these tools alone won’t make your workplace everything you want it to be. Having a fair and consistent set of rules is only the foundation, and the work to roll out your policies and ensure their consistent implementation is ongoing. But if your employees feel the gratitude to you that I do to EdFuel, it will be worth it.
LET’S GET STARTED
Our toolkit is designed such that you can pull the resources right from our website and begin applying the guidance today. However, we know this can feel like daunting work, and we are also available to provide shoulder-to-shoulder support for you if you want more guidance as you take on this initiative. EdFuel provides dedicated support in each of the areas listed in the toolkit, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in discussing a customized engagement with a member of our team. We look forward to hearing from you!