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Don’t Fake the Funk: Authenticity is Everything

People at desk

It’s all about being real, truthful and transparent. In today’s environment, that applies not only to individuals, but to HR and to the organization as a whole. An authentic, transparent environment impacts not only employee retention, but recruitment as well.

Authenticity is a critical component of effective leadership and organizational success.

As an HR Gazette article points out, the ability to bring your authentic self to work has some very tangible results: organizations that value authenticity see higher engagement, morale, productivity, and retention rates. In short, their employees are happier, and business is good.

3 Tips for Creating More Authenticity in HR

1)    It starts with leadership. Authenticity in the workplace begins with upper management. Employees who observe authentic behavior in their leaders are more likely to feel they have permission to do the same. Engage in self-reflection around authenticity. It’s about being your best authentic professional self, not engaging in the expected. 

2)    Don’t sugarcoat the not-so-good news. Tell the truth whether it’s an employee review or a significant company change or re-organization. HR can play an important bridging role here, communicating the change in a non-threatening, supportive way.

3)    Practice what you preach. As HRDive reports, when it comes to recruiting, Millennials, the largest generation in the workforce, want authenticity. Make sure that benefits package, compensation and the work experience reflect the values the company claims to purport so that the culture the company builds will in turn be welcoming to all generations of employees.

What They’re Saying

A Forbes.com article documents some C-suite comments about authenticity:

•    “How can your company learn, grow and succeed if people are afraid to be themselves, voice their opinions and genuinely show that they care about the brand and team?”

•    “An authentic workplace means:  1) mutual respect between the employer and employees; 2) trust and goodwill; and 3), clear and consistent communication.”

•    “Employees expect it nowadays, and they’re looking for employers to be authentic and transparent about things, because they want to help. When work environments invite everyone into the process of improvement, they excel in the marketplace and end up with employees that become extremely loyal. One of the many benefits of creating this type of workplace is that you’ll be able to attract and retain the best and brightest people.”

And while these comments are from a few years ago, they still hold true today. 

So let's go out there and be ourselves.