A post in honour of #NationalHandshakeDay – One of our policies at Mason Alexander is that you must greet all colleagues with a handshake when you arrive in the morning.
“One of the biggest challenges I think facing businesses today is the culture that exists within them. Companies have gone to great lengths in the past few years to create better work-life balances, more modern offices and added benefits like gym membership and bike-to-work schemes. But where companies can really let themselves down is how senior executives interact with employees across all levels of the firm.
A number of years ago, I worked in a company where managers wouldn’t speak to people beneath them (unless necessary) and I can recall a few occasions where my “good morning” was ignored. I’m not sure why the people I had greeted felt it necessary not to reply (obviously because I was a junior member of staff) and if by doing so, I would look at them in awe or be impressed by their stature; but whatever it was, it had the opposite effect. You see, the very best leaders are aware of their surroundings and make an effort with everyone from their management team right down to graduates.
The easiest thing for us is to get caught up in our own self-importance. Not in any malignant way, but our lives are so busy that we don’t recognise the people around us and our behaviour to them and how the smallest acknowledgment can change how people see you and react towards you.
Although my business is relatively small compared to a large corporation, I make sure that everyone is treated equally and everyone is available and approachable to one another. This, I feel, has created a comfortable and enjoyable working environment and has built a team spirit where we like to see each other doing well instead of competing against each other or hoping someone doesn’t succeed. If a manager can take time out of their day to acknowledge people in their business, this small gesture will create a trust, loyalty and a following from their employees who will feel appreciated and motivated to do their very best for the company. And the beauty about this is, it can been done with a simple handshake and “good morning”.”
Andrew Lynch, Managing Director