Originally posted by AnteBellum
I have a great relationship with all my workers considering most if not all of them friends. My feelings are if I didn't trust them, I wouldn't have
I experienced a similar situation. I worked with a team of people who were all friends. Then the business sold to a man who tracked everything that
everyone did at every moment. Everyone was outraged. And then he caught the following things:
1) people building websites for other people
2) people working on their own businesses
3) people playing online games (not just during lunch, lol)
4) embezzlement in the form of kick-backs, overly large bonus checks, and decisions based upon what would garner the employee the most income rather
than what was best for the business and all of the employees as a whole.
These findings destroyed team trust, morale, work culture and, eventually, the business. It never recovered from this blow. However, one has to look
at how things developed this way to begin with. Did it stem from an overly permissive culture? Or hiring "friends" whom received unwavering trust at
all times? Lack of checks and balances and accountability of every action, regardless of who was performing the actions?
Feeling the need to watch and record every movement of an employee, seems like a symptom of a greater issue (possibly with the leadership and
structure) rather than a solution.
The internal work culture of a business is key to the specific results which you want. People do need a certain latitude to make decisions on your
behalf in their day to job performance, or to simply reset their brain by taking a break. If they can't make decisions on their own then you may as
well be doing everything yourself, which obviously is unproductive in a large business. But it has to be managed with boundaries and accountability or
it all turns to poop. And people can not have free reign. You can not expect another human being to hold your dream and your risk in the same regard
as if it were their own. And it is unfair to ask them to. You must always check in to insure that decisions are matching your vision and your goals.
All of the people, in this situation, got off track a little at a time. None of them started out as evil entities, nor do I believe that they intended
to do such horrific things. They were just given too much trust and not enough accountability and leadership.
I have to say though, this has put me in a moral/ethical situation. Years ago I worked for a firm in which they did record screen shots and
during lunch I was playing solitaire. I was called in and received a warning for such behavior even though I was on lunch
This, which you posted above, is the danger of taking policy or paranoia too far. If it goes too far, pretty soon the entire culture of the people and
the day to day goals all become geared around "catching" people out and distrust of each other. Instead of a cohesive team and business, you end up
with a dysfunctional bunch of miserable people who's entire goal is to just get through their day and get the heck out of there. That's not where a
business owner wants the focus of the people who determine how successful said business becomes.
There is a difference between structure/boundaries/accountability versus paranoia and destructive micro management.
Hope that helps and I don't envy your position or the decisions you need to make.