They say life isn’t fair, but in the workplace, fairness matters — especially with more distributed teams. Organizations that prioritize fairness are committed to treating all employees justly, helping them achieve their individual potential without regard to any stereotypes. Fairness at work means all employees are treated with the same amount of respect and value as their peers.

Most employees don’t feel like they work in a fair environment, according to Ted Kitterman, a content manager for Great Place To Work. He points out a recent study from Gartner that reveals 82% of employees say their workplace is unfair. Professionals who work in high-fairness environments perform at a level 26% higher than those who don’t.

Kitterman says that fairness is a key piece of the Great Place To Work model for high-trust workplace culture. How can you tell if your organization cultivates fairness? Read on. We share insight from Kitterman in this issue of Promotional Consultant Today.

What Are Some Measures Of Fairness?
Fairness can be a difficult concept to exhibit, but you can start by asking these questions:
• Do employees feel treated fairly regardless of race, gender, age or sexual orientation?
• Do employees feel fairly compensated for their work?
• Do employees perceive equal and fair opportunities for advancement?
• Do employees see management as impartial?
• Do employees feel they could appeal a manager’s decision and expect a fair hearing?

With a shift toward more remote and hybrid work, organizations and managers should pay close attention to how unfairness can appear. But keep in mind, Kitterman says, that even great companies struggle to create workplaces that employees perceive as fair. Here are some ways you can check for fairness in your company:
• Do all employees have the same opportunity to work a hybrid schedule?
• Is pay consistent with the concerns around inflation and global economic trends?
• Are people being treated fairly regardless of their race?

Playing Favorites Or Being Fair?
Managers play a crucial role in creating fair work environments, and this role is growing. For the past 30 years, Kitterman says Great Place To Work research has identified the importance of managers not playing favorites. He adds that in the world of hybrid and remote work, it can be even more challenging to build a sense of trust.

Leaders can ensure they are being fair by considering some key points, including whether they share the same news with everyone or only certain people, and whether all employees receive public recognition or only those who get face time with the boss. With some employees in the office and others working remotely, leaders should strive to be sure everyone is informed, no one is left out and everyone gets a chance to speak up.

If creating a fair work environment for all employees isn’t top of mind, you risk losing your talent. Kitterman says that workers who are concerned with fairness aren’t innovating or giving extra effort, and that lack of trust can create a pernicious cycle. To get past the Great Resignation, take a look at how you can create a workplace with fairness at the foundation.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers

Source: Ted Kitterman is a content manager for Great Place To Work.