Enforcing the Unenforceable
I hear that there is pending legislation in many states, if not in Congress itself, that would “ban” texting while driving. Have any of you actually texted while driving? Are you that desperate to get a message to someone that the best way you can think of to do it is to try to type it on a tiny keyboard, possibly even hitting the same key three times to get a “C”? And is the best way to get you to stop doing that the threat that you could be pulled over and fined at any second by a state trooper who “catches” you with his or her eagle eyes as you speed by at 77 miles per hour??
This is such a wonderful example of creating rules to make someone feel like they’re making a difference and controlling a situation they have no control over. Sure texting while driving is stupid. Sure it’s dangerous. But so is riding a motorcycle without a helmet and many states actually REPEALED laws that made that mandatory. And oh by the way, it’s just a tad easier for a cop to spot a motorcyclist without a helmet.
Here’s another one: trying to “ban” employees from using Facebook or Twitter (or any of a dozen other popular uses of the internet these days) by creating a policy that “forbids” their use, or simply shuts down access from your network.
Two quick thoughts here:
1) how many of your employees are walking around with iPhones or some other device that let’s them use these applications anyway in spite of your ban? How many will have those devices in 3 years? Let’s be conservative and just say ALL OF THEM.
2) Don’t your employees have better things to do than ‘tweet’ with their friends all day? Don’t they know that?
If you want to encourage your folks to focus on the task at hand, not unlike driving, isn’t a well-understood relationship between their focus, energy and dedication and outcomes that equally benefit your company AND them a better approach? Oh wait, that’s a lot harder than issuing a policy or buying some super-duper firewall software…communication, Culture, Employee Management, Expectation Setting, Fairness, Hypocrisy, Retention comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.