Toxic Work Culture

There’s a hidden hero in every workplace that can fix that toxic work culture

There’s something weird going on in the world of enterprise tech.

IT support—often stereotyped as being distant, detached, and uncharismatic—is somehow becoming a source of inspiration to fix toxic work cultures and enable employee productivity.

Most think a Sales Manager, C-Level Executive or HR Leader should be the ones to repair a toxic work culture. This line of thinking isn’t necessarily wrong—it’s just incomplete. Yes, those roles are well positioned to influence employees, they shake hands, lead public speaking events, and represent the face of the company.

But the people that can uncover and fix real root problems work in IT. They are your Head of End-User Computing, CIO, or IT Project Lead. Unfortunately, these decision makers work with support tools that only offer limited insight into the employee digital landscape—they solve problems exclusively based on what they see in the data center without taking into consideration all of their endpoints and end-users. By default, the rest of the company views IT support as one-off problem-solving technicians, incapable of seeing the bigger digital workplace picture.

There are of course solutions available today that can equip these new heroes with the power they require, but we first must define what we really mean when we say “employee productivity and happiness”.

What truly makes employees productive and happy at work?

There are a number of factors that can be attributed to a productive and happy employee work experience but we think two in particular stand out:

  1. The ability of an employee to make progress (known as the Progress Principle); and
  2. The ability of an employee to self-regulate their work by balancing both demands and resources.

Conventional wisdom has us thinking employees only care about things like tangible incentives, clear goals, and recognition. While those factors are certainly at play, research from thought-leaders like Forrester proves that employees care most about their ability to make “small wins” throughout their work day.

The modern digital worker expects zero technology interruptions. They want to work in a safe computing environment where they can rely on their digital applications to perform well and help regulate their time. When a digital worker enters into a “state of flow”, or an uninterrupted period of work, they are able to comfortably complete their projects and feel accomplished with their work experience.

That’s an oversimplified explanation for what makes a worker productive and happy, but by and large a smooth and safe end-user computing environment yields a positive overall work experience.

So, understanding what makes an employee productive and happy is quite simple, but why then do so many organizations fail to deliver?

Problems from the start

Unfortunately for most companies, their IT department takes the standard incident-centric, inside-out approach to technology monitoring and service. This means that IT’s perspective is almost always reactive and distorted from the world of their colleagues.

Here is a common scenario we hear from companies:

IT sees nothing but green lights on their end, all networks appear to be running smoothly, memory space is normal, and there are few if any tickets in the pipeline.

Life seems pretty good, right?

Wrong.

Most employees rarely submit tickets because it either takes too long or the process itself is too confusing and frustrating. Workers lose precious time fighting through disruptions like error messages, reboots, and blue screens. The daily struggle of getting knocked off course triggers many employees to feel helpless, unsafe, and annoyed. And unfortunately, most employees develop a negative opinion about their IT department. With each technology disruption, the divide grows deeper between the two camps.

Who’s the victim? Who’s the culprit?

It doesn’t really matter.

The bigger picture is that a poor digital experience breeds nothing but a toxic work culture. Fortunately, there are powerful IT solutions out there that support teams can use to boost their profile and their company’s work environment.

A new type of hero, with the right IT solutions, is exactly what you need

Let’s be clear: maintaining a happy, engaged work culture requires collaboration between company-wide leadership, HR, and technology. No one entity working alone can serve as a “silver bullet”, nor can the right CIO, or head of EUC magically fix all of your enterprise problems.

But here at Nexthink we believe the role that IT leadership can play in fixing employee culture has been grossly underestimated.

With our solutions, IT departments can finally adopt a legitimate, continuous people-centric approach to their tech support. We collect invaluable hard metrics and user sentiment data directly from employee devices, helping to feed IT leaders with meaningful, real-time insights that measure their employees’ digital experience. Based on this information, support teams can quickly execute one-click automation and remediation techniques. Our solutions integrate with every imaginable tool on the market and we can solve one-off tech problems to deeper, cyclical challenges that naturally arise for any competitive, agile business.

No more guessing whether your employees are satisfied with their digital work environment. Collect hard metrics and user sentiment on your company’s devices, business applications, web browsing, and security, and operationalize that information to boost productivity and collaboration.

If you or anyone you know would be interested in Nexthink’s solutions, schedule a 30 minute demo today to see our platform in action.

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Check out an overview of our platform here.