Businessweek reports that Gap headquarters followed the lead of Best Buy and went to a results only work environment, where you can work whenever, wherever you want – it’s only the results that count. You can read more about ROWE here.
Obviously this kind of decision requires a culture with a high degree of trust, but just look at what they got in return:
“A post-pilot assessment conducted in February 2009 revealed that productivity increased 21 percent and quality improved 15 percent among the pilot group. Turnover plummeted 18 percent, down to 5 percent in 2008 over the year prior. Engagement scores spiked from 67 percent in 2007 to 86 percent in 2008, and work/life balance scores rose significantly from 72 percent to 82 percent”
This is the future of work.
It’s time we moved past the management principles of the assembly line. In this blog, I’ve posted articles on managing in a time of turbulence, the why old-school management fails in a recession, and why ideals are the new business models. Thought leaders everywhere are proposing radical new models of management and leadership in response to the turbulence that has become our new normal.
ROWE is how employees want to work, and the initial evidence would seem to indicate it’s how you get the most work out of them. So, if the results continue beyond media stories, we will surely see more employers going this way … Well, at least employers who want to be attractive to employees who take ownership of their results. But, if you want to be like most employers whose poor management causes the morale of their new employees to plunge within 6 months, then feel free to ignore this idea. It’s probably just a fad, like the internet.