ROWE: Results Only Work EnvironmentAUTHOR: Francisco Sáez
“An empowered organization is one in which individuals have the knowledge, skill, desire, and opportunity to personally succeed in a way that leads to collective organizational success.” ~ Stephen Covey
A Results Only Work Environment is a human resource management strategy in which employees are remunerated depending on their results instead of the hours they have worked.
Implementing ROWE in a company favor both the company and the employees, although it implies a very important cultural change. Businesses (or some of their departments) benefit from a fairer system when the effectiveness of an employee cannot be measured by the number of hours they spend in the office. Employees, for their part, benefit from total autonomy in the performance of their work.
The first company to implement such a strategy was Best Buy, an American company that distributes electronic devices. They say that the workers working under this framework report a better relationship with their families and friends, greater loyalty to the company, and greater focus and energy at work, than the ones who simply must comply with the number of hours that the law forces them to work. The productivity of these employees has increased by 35% and turnover has declined significantly, which means they are happier at work.
Some studies suggest that the relationship between salary and job satisfaction is very weak. Once our basic needs are met, an increase in salary only produces very short-term motivation. This is why a ROWE company must appeal to the employee’s intrinsic motivation. They must therefore create the right environment for the worker to enjoy the mere fact of working.
For this to happen, the worker must feel completely autonomous. Autonomy is one of the basic pillars of our motivation. Normally, when an employee is allowed to define how they are going to do their own work, control their schedule, and work from any place, it turns out that they enjoy a lot more their job and become more productive. This benefits the company and benefits the employee, who in addition to enjoying working can reconcile his work with his personal life.
However, implementing a system in which each worker is completely responsible for their job is a major challenge. The company has to offer the worker an adequate environment and a purpose that endows meaning and commitment to his work, as well as an honest and performance-based remuneration. A knowledge worker must be in continuous development and reinforce certain skills necessary to be 100% autonomous. He must know how to get organized, prioritize, obtain the necessary information to make good decisions, identify causes that originate problems, think strategically, take risks, be disciplined, staying calm in stressful situations, etc.
What do you think? Is that possible?
Related article: Self-Determination Theory