The Purpose of Workplace Discipline
Workplace Discipline is a culture imbibed by employers and superiors to create and sustain a suitable operative structure as well as manage the activities of employees and subordinates. Workplace discipline is usually misconstrued by both the parties, i.e. the person presenting the disciplinary measure and the individual at the receiving end.
Discipline is corrective and not punitive. It is not supposed to be a witch hunting exercise, or a pay-back time game, nor the opportunity to quote the Law of Kama. Misuse of the disciplinary measures have watered down the effects of discipline, making it more of a demoralizing tool rather than a corrective measure meant to instruct and communicate expectations.
Research has proven that incessant issuance of disciplinary measures such as queries, warning letters, suspensions, termination of appointments to team members by a superior is a signal of poor leadership qualities. Also, it has been discovered that the most compliant employee may not necessarily be the most productive. The irony, however lies in the fact that in some cases, the most creative and novel of staff may often fall out on discipline issues. Certain employees would wait for orders each time while some use their creativity and discretions which in some cases had won them several trophies of proactiveness, spontaneity, ingenuity, etc. but in certain unpredictable circumstances has earned them sanctions.
It is important to note that misuse of workplace disciplinary measures can create a toxic atmosphere for both the management and the managed. It can reduce team bonding and team effectiveness. Also, shying away from effecting discipline by a superior in order not to be called names and tagged tyrants can cost the organization all it has built up for the years of its existence. It is therefore important to understand the purpose of workplace discipline so as to maximize it. The following are the purposes of workplace discipline;
The Purpose of Workplace Discipline to the Employees/ Subordinates
1. Personal Branding: Adherence to the Workplace Discipline Culture brands an employee as an individual with high level of professionalism. Employees are also entrepreneurs as far as personal branding is concerned. This means while the company has a brand image, each individual in the workplace project a brand model that blends with organizational policies. Personal Branding is a process of building a positive self-image, professional expertise, and inter-personal work ethics that suitably position an individual for a better catch in a competitive career or professional terrain. Employees with positive personal branding are always marketable and ready for a pick by prospective employers.
2. Goal Setting Skills and Goal Achievement: Workplace Discipline enables an employee to understand goal setting and become sufficiently skilled in goal achievement. Employees learn how to prioritize tasks, delegate, supervise delegated duties, report progress to superiors and seek advise or support when necessary. These are core principles of goal setting. Hence, workplace discipline builds an employee who is goal oriented and a go-getter.
3. Leadership Skill: Leaders are marked by their high level of discipline. An undisciplined employee would have struggles coping in a leadership position. Constant exposure to workplace discipline sharpens the leadership skills in an employee. The ethics of the workplace, culture and policies both written and expressed are well-entrenched in the mind of an employee who gives priority to workplace discipline. Employees unconsciously equip themselves for leadership responsibilities and positions by adhering to workplace discipline.
4. Workplace Rewards: Employees who reveres workplace discipline have higher probabilities of receiving awards, recommendation, prizes and commendations for a job-well done. There are instances when this reward is not extrinsic but intrinsic. Extrinsic rewards may be in the form of increased pay, official car and apartment, promotion, etc. while intrinsic rewards are high self-esteem, high self-efficacy, self-actualization and self-fulfillment.
5. Entrepreneurial Skills: Compliance with workplace discipline prepares an employee to become a seasoned entrepreneur. The employee has a clear understanding of what makes small businesses to thrive. Also, he has an in-depth knowledge of what crashes this kind of business enterprise. Hence, such employee has been trained and certified not only in the theory but in the blending of real-life circumstances and theoretical propositions to create an enviable business entity. Positive discipline in the workplace helps build the self-discipline successful entrepreneurs must possess.
6. Social Connection and Relationship Building: Employees are organizational representatives. This is done in different capacities such as, human resource persons, business agents, management staff, etc. This connects the employee with significant others in his professional career. These are important connections that can enable quality personal professional development. This can only be possible when an employee radiates acceptable standards of behavior based on the ethics and principles that guide the profession in focus.
The point above shows how employees that observe the rules can thrive both in and outside the workplace.
The Purpose of Workplace Discipline to the Organization
1. Expunge Non-productive Workforce: Disciplinary actions such as written warning letters, query, suspension, pay deduction, termination of appointment. Etc. have been effectual in sieving out the weak links in an organization. Those employees that are deficient in adjusting to the demand of workplace discipline are excused out of the system to promote efficiency and workplace goal achievement.
2. Establish a Structure: All organizations with enviable progress have a solid structure on which their activities are based (code of conduct). Structure gives direction, provides constant focus on the vision and mission of the organization. Policies, rules and regulations, organizational creed, employee handbook, etc. are structures that guide humans within the system to work in direction with the purpose for its’ establishment.
3. Prevention of Corporate Liability: Certain lousy behaviors may cost an organization its goodwill since inception. It can capsize the ship of a thriving and enviable organization. Hence, such is prevented by establishing a firm discipline culture. Instead of the company going down, individuals with such tendencies would have been excused or corrected using various disciplinary procedures.
4. Creation of a Competitive Brand: Certain brands had owned a larger share of the market in the past but lost it over time. Workplace discipline guarantees longevity in business. Thriving among competitors is not a mere feat. It requires extreme dedication, commitment, evolving, upgrading, rebranding, etc. to stay in market and thrive in it.
5. Global Relevance: Global ethical practice is infused into the structure of an organization to guarantee global relevance. Organizations that have shaky and inconsistent organizational discipline sink while those with strict adherence to globally approved standard of operations soar with enviable accolades. This creates global impact and recognition.
The points above shows the importance of discipline in the workplace as discipline ensures an organization achieves its set goals.
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