Microsoft Office is apparently a very good place to work indeed (if you use some criteria we like!).

In their recent advert about ideas, or keeping it weird, the Microsoft advert states how they work on keeping it human and keeping it real, in the workplace. The advert goes on to say how, “you have to have an environment where people are comfortable sharing ideas. Anything we’re working on has to be out in the open, where anybody can see it and feel they can build on it… so we do everything possible to keep people as connected as possible and put about as much work into the culture as you would in the products that you’ve created”.

It’s interesting to not attention being paid to the value add of culture and connectedness. This is very much “process” AND “outcome” thinking working together – get the human inputs right and focussed on allowing the talent to be free of unnecessary noise and the results that you’re after are more likely to be delivered more consistently and more effectively. Within highly competitive markets AND in an environment that is making it tough to perform, it becomes even more important to focus on the human variables that it’s clear make a difference to performance. Make sure that people have a real sense of control over their performance – how they do things and when they do them. Keeping it human means making sure people recognise how their role is valued by the organisation and is absolutely essential to the success of everybody. Keep people focused on building on each other’s work and knowing how the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

Control, Confidence and Connectedness are things we talk about ad infinitum and now, more than ever, the businesses that optimise these three elements of motivation will really differentiate themselves from the competition.