Tips on Implementing New Office Rules
- 13 Jan 2021
Be clear about the reasons
You have to state the reasons for these changes. For instance, if you decide to have rules regarding stationery supplies, you need to say why you’re doing it. If you want your employees to be more cautious in using the supplies, you should let them know. If the rule is about being late, you also have to explain that you want to encourage people to arrive at work on time. You didn't set these rules to make life difficult. You just want everyone to be responsible for doing the job.
There should be no grey area
The rules should be clear. If possible, write them down and disseminate the information to everyone. There should be no grey area. Provide examples if possible. Open the floor for questions. If the rules aren’t clear, they need more clarity.
The rules have to be fair
The rules that you see for the employees should be the same rules that apply to people in higher positions. You don’t want employees to feel like the company is unfair to them. There should not be two sets of rules to exempt those in leadership roles. You might provide compassionate exemptions in certain circumstances, but the rules have to apply to everyone. Again, a workplace that doesn’t promote fairness is a terrible one. Employees won’t feel good working there, and they might leave.
Avoid the blame culture
In implementing these rules, the focus should be on making it easier for everyone to work. It’s also about encouraging a sense of responsibility and professionalism. Avoid promoting the blame culture. You don’t want your employees to feel bad about these rule changes because of their past behaviour. They might feel attacked. Besides, blaming doesn’t change anything. You already made these changes, and they’re for everyone to follow.
If the rules come with consequences for violation, they have to apply to everyone. You should be consistent in asking employees to follow the rules. If you’re inconsistent, it could lead to complaints and other issues. You also don’t want your employees to accuse you of favouritism because your rules only apply to a few people.
It could take a while before everyone accepts the rules. There will be complaints and questions. It’s understandable. You have to respect people who complain about the rules and give them time to adjust. Let everyone know that the rules will benefit every employee and the company in general.
You also have to remind the employees that some more changes will happen depending on how they follow the rules. They need to cooperate to prevent problems from occurring.