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Bee School Session 2: “National Culture” Q&A

On Tuesday we hosted the second session of our new educational series, Bee School. Thank you to those of you who joined or plan on joining us in the upcoming weeks!

The topic of this week’s lecture was “National Culture” where Dr. Linda Herkenhoff discussed why understanding national culture is so important and how ignoring it can negatively impact your bottom line. As a manager, recognizing cultural differences can help you redesign motivation systems for a more satisfying and productive work environment. She also described the power of taking the qualitative concept of culture and building it out as a more quantitative variable. Something tangible that can be measured and used in the workplace.

Some of you had some questions for Dr. Herkenhoff and you can read her responses below. Your questions are not only helpful for us so we can get to know your needs and challenges better, they also enrich the learning process for everyone in the program. So keep them coming!

Hopefully these answers help you apply these theories to your own team.

Q&A with the Professor

1. How can you apply this knowledge to the differences in national cultures when communicating about benefits?

No matter where your company is located, paying your employees fair wages and benefit packages is always in style. I would recommend speaking with similar companies to yours to get a better understanding of salary ranges and benefits offered in your city or region as a benchmark to work form. Then you can consider cultural values to determine if your employees place a higher value on things like time off versus larger bonuses or higher pay.

 

In a global organization, creating a pay and benefit structure that motivates all nationalities can be difficult. Since I’ve been working with Beekeeper, let’s use them as an example. Their employee base includes people from 22 countries and one of their core values is Bee Open which allows employees to give and receive feedback in a constructive manner.  When there are major changes that happen within the company,  employees care enough to give honest and direct feedback on the initiatives rolled out. This feedback is discussed within the executive meeting and action is quickly taken.

There are so many types of benefits to consider that extend beyond the standard ones we think of. For example, some cultures have dietary restrictions so benefits can even be in the form of providing free snacks that are aligned with their values. Many cultures place a high value on continuing education so you can provide internal workshops where everyone is invited to share knowledge and aid in professional development. Assess the varying national cultures and find out what benefits are important and survey your team to craft and communicate the best benefits plan.

Stay tuned for next Tuesday’s lecture, “Professional Culture,” to learn the importance of a professional culture and what steps you can take to ensure yours is sustainable.

First time hearing about Bee School? It’s not too late to sign up! Reserve your spot below for this free educational series and we can email you the sessions you missed.
Bee School Session 1: “Motivation at Work” Q&A

Bee School Session 1: “Motivation at Work” Q&A

On Tuesday we held the first session of our new educational series, Bee School. And, because of you, it was a success! We had a great turnout, so thank you to all of those who joined and we hope to see you in the next five sessions.

The topic of this week’s discussion was “Motivation at Work” where Dr. Linda Herkenhoff discussed the true definition of motivation, the three groups of theories associated with it, details and examples, and how to apply these theories globally.

Some of you had some questions for Dr. Herkenhoff and you know we would never leave you hanging! Many of you had similar questions which was encouraging to see lots of managers face the same challenges, but are eager to find innovative ways to motivate their teams. Hopefully these answers will help guide you on your quest for engagement and alignment.

Q&A with the Professor

1. As I’m from the Information Technology domain, it would be interesting to know how different domains are using motivation frameworks to keep their knowledge workers engaged and excited.

People are people—these frameworks can be used for knowledge and non-desk workers alike. The core principles of engagement and motivation are great communication on all levels. Following Theory Y, we can assume that knowledge workers fall into a different level of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Where a non-desk worker might have their Safety and Security needs met before reaching a level of engagement, a knowledge worker will need help reaching self-actualization.

A good question to ask your team is what their vision for themselves is in the next five years. Whether or not that vision has a path within your company, help give them the tools they need to grow within their existing position and beyond.

Any good manager will tell you that it is a proud moment when the people working for them grow out of their positions and progress within their careers. You can create a tremendous amount of goodwill within your team if you are helping them achieve their life goals or self-actualization. For the organization, it is always best to have your employees operating at the highest level of Maslow’s pyramid.

If we consider your question from the Hygiene Theory perspective, the principles are universal. You need to make sure your hygiene factors are always in check. This is always a good baseline to work from. As a refresher, here they are:

Hygiene Factors

1. Company policy & administration
2. Supervision
3. Interpersonal relations
4. Working conditions
5. Salary
6. Status
7. Security

Once you have a good foundation in place, you can focus on the motivation factors. We usually see that after the first year of employment, growth and advancement become more important to pay attention to. (In the first year, there is much to be done while mastering a position.)

While advancement and growth aren’t options, make sure you are recognizing individual contributions and team wins. Communicating these to the team, in addition to your 1:1 praise, will go a long way to show appreciation. It will also shape your team’s expectation of rewarded behavior and make them strive for their own recognition. As a refresher, here are the motivation factors:

Motivation Factors

1. Achievement recognition
2. Work itself
3. Responsibility
4. Advancement
5. Growth
6. Salary

2. I’m going to take over a team that currently finds itself in a reorganization process. It would be great to learn some skills, how to approach them as their new boss, and how to keep their motivation high.

Uncertainty breeds fear. If we take a look at Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, engagement can only happen after the first few levels are satisfied.

To get your team to a place of engagement and motivation, I would recommend approaching your team with open communication and transparency. Schedule a series of 1:1 meetings with each of your new reports to get to know them. Listen to their concerns and get to know the lay of the land. Then show them you’ve listened through your actions. Lay out your vision in a clear and transparent way that is shared with everyone in 1:1 meetings and again in a team session.

Stay tuned for next Tuesday’s lecture, “National Culture,” where you’ll gain the knowledge and tools for working with varied cultures around the world.

First time hearing about Bee School? It’s not too late to sign up! Reserve your spot below for this free educational series and we can email you the sessions you missed.
bee school is in session

Bee School is in Session!

Today marks the launch our first educational series, Bee School, designed to help managers lead their teams and operate successful companies. This initiative is our spin on business school, taught by renowned MBA professor and senior management expert, Dr. Linda Herkenhoff.

Although classes start today, it’s not too late to enroll for free. If you missed today’s session you can still sign up and we will email you the recording. This is your chance to receive a postgraduate education without the cost!

Our mission to pave the future of work for non-desk workers and those who manage them is at the core of why we started Bee School. Over the span of six weeks, course participants will gain valuable insights on how to keep employees motivated and engaged at work, as well as how to build and navigate inclusive work cultures.

See the full details, including the schedule and curriculum.

Are you ready to take the next step in becoming a proactive, organized, and motivational leader? Reserve your spot below for this free educational series.
Beekeeper "Future of the Non-Desk Workforce" Panel Featured in Huffington Post

Beekeeper “Future of the Non-Desk Workforce” Panel Featured in Huffington Post

On October 10th we hosted a “Future of the Non-Desk Workforce” panel discussion to accompany our big announcement of the Beekeeper Marketplace and custom integrations. The three panelists included two Beekeeper customers, Jennifer Pappas, Internal Communications Manager at Wireless Vision and Anja Luthje, Group Director of Rooms and Quality at Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, and experience design expert Sarah Deane at EffectUX.

marketplace panelists

From big data to organizational culture, these industry leaders shared their insights on where they see the future of non-desk workers in the next five years and what they are doing now to arm their employees with tools that will help their business maintain a competitive edge as we move into a new era. They discussed the real value of big data, AI, cybersecurity, nextgen internal communications, and the operational impact of the digital workplace.

Following the event, Sarah Deane expanded on key topics from the panel discussion in an article for the Huffington Post called “Culture, A.I., and the Non-Desk Workforce.”

About the Author

As the Founder of EffectUX, Sarah Deane is a thought leader in the space of Experience, having written a UX primer and how-to in 2014, presented at SXSW on the topic of Workplace Experience: UX, Technology, and Humans, as well as frequently writing on the Huffington Post and Business Value Exchange. At EffectUX, Sarah guides and creates Index algorithms and success models, a process which has been recognized by IDG (2016) for the process of measuring experience.

Before founding EffectUX, Sarah served in Experience Design Leadership roles and has grown and managed CX and UX teams. She built the first Global IT 360 Experience Lab during her tenure at HP. She has a Masters in Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence with a concentration on algorithm design, data modeling, and computer vision.

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I was recently honored to participate in a panel at Beekeeper’s announcement of their integrated workplace feature, alongside Jennifer Pappas (Internal Communications Manager at Wireless Vision), Anja Luthje (Group Director Rooms and Quality for Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group), and facilitated by Beekeepers VP Corey McCarthy.

The theme was all about the hot-topic of culture, A.I and especially how they impacted the non-desk workforce. There were lots of great food-for-thought, so we wanted to share a summary of a few of them as they may be helpful for those that are working on digitizing or engaging their non-desk workforce.

Android-Oberfläche

Beekeeper Announces New Android Interface

The Beekeeper app for Android devices is getting a fresh new look and even simpler interface. The new user interface aligns more with the iPhone navigation, providing a better user experience and making it easier to help colleagues using a different device.

What is changing?

The main app navigation containing streams, chats, and notifications tabs moved to the bottom of the page. The tabs are marked not only with an icon, but also with a name so users can better understand which icons do what.

The stream will show you public posts for all colleagues. In the chats, you will find private conversations with one colleague, group chats, campaign announcements, and surveys. The notification will display all alerts you haven’t read yet.

New Beekeeper Android Interface

Additionally, the “More” tab (previously the app menu) moved from the top left to the bottom right of the screen. The icon changed from three horizontal lines to a square. This is where you can find information about the app and the customized navigation extensions that your organization might have set up for you.

In the top left corner you can find the stream switcher. Many organizations use multiple streams and here is where you can switch from one to the other.

Lastly, the stream information has remained in the top right corner, but you’ll need to tap the circled “i”, to view the stream details, suggested tags, and view who has access to that stream.

Why are we doing this?

We build our app using native Android and iPhone layouts to facilitate seamless navigation for our users. iPhone traditionally provides navigation at the bottom, while Android had it at the top of the screen. Google, who designs Android software, recently released a new navigation layout at the bottom of the screen that is more similar to the iPhone interface.

We monitored the way customers use the app and found the iPhone navigation was more intuitive. Our iPhone users were switching streams more frequently than Android users and also switch more frequently between chats and the app menu.

By aligning both versions of the app and changing to the iPhone navigation, we’re aiming to provide you with a better user experience.

To find helpful app information and FAQs, visit the Beekeeper Help Center.
Schreiben Sie sich für Bee School ein

Enroll in Bee School, A Webinar Series Dedicated to Helping Managers Lead Successful Teams

On November 7th we’ll launch our first webinar series, Bee School, designed to help management lead their teams and operate successful companies. Think of it as Beekeeper’s spin on business school, taught by an actual MBA professor.

Our mission to pave the future of work for non-desk workers and those who manage them is at the core of why we started Bee School. Over the span of six weeks, course participants will gain valuable insights on how to keep employees motivated and engaged at work, as well as how to build and navigate inclusive work cultures.

At Beekeeper, we want to empower every leader with the tools they need to run a successful team, taking into account both human connection and technology. This is your chance to receive an MBA level education without the cost. No commute, no hassle—just results.

Overview

Managers are tasked with the important job of leading their teams and ensuring everyone is productive, as well as happy. In order to drive company success, it’s important that managers learn the fundamentals of organizational processes based on behavioral sciences.

To ensure that all levels of management are equipped for success, this educational webinar series is focused on analyzing workplace behavior, improving motivation and commitment, leadership, job satisfaction, group and team dynamics, and organizational design.

Who Should Attend

Any manager who wants to learn the ins and outs of key management skills including motivation, employee and organizational commitment, culture, emotional intelligence, and leadership/followership.

When and Where

Weekly 45 minute sessions will start November 7th. All six Tuesday sessions will be live streamed at 2pm EST and CET. Detailed instructions will be emailed to you after registration.

About the Professor

Bee School will be led by Dr. Linda Herkenhoff, a full-time professor in the Graduate School of Business at Saint Mary’s College of California where she teaches Leadership and Organizational Behavior and Quantitative Analysis.

She serves as the Director of the Global MBA program where she supervises social service projects in countries at the base of the economic pyramid. These projects strive to balance people, planet, and profit.

Her varied career includes 16 years as a geophysicist for Chevron, VP of Human Resources for EDS, and a consulting role for senior management at Bechtel. Additionally, she was the past Executive Director of Human Resources for Stanford University.

Dr. Herkenhoff’s university degrees include: B.S. in Geophysics from the University of Western Ontario in Canada, MBA from Saint Mary’s College, Masters in Engineering from U.C. Berkeley, and a Ph.D. from the Graduate School of Management at the University of Western Australia.

Curriculum

Dr. Herkenhoff has a wonderful curriculum in store for you. It’s full of mission critical information for managers tasked with implementing new ideas and running successful teams.

1. Motivation at Work

Delve into the key motivational theories presented in a very applied approach and learn how to apply these theories globally.

2. National Culture

Gain the knowledge and tools for working with varied national cultures.

3. Professional Culture

Discover the importance of a professional culture and what steps you can take to ensure yours is healthy.

4. Organizational Culture

Learn what organizational culture is, how it varies from professional culture, how to measure it, and how to drive a strong one to increase productivity.

5. Emotional Intelligence

Find out how to look beyond basic emotional intelligence and fine-tune your approach by taking all three types of culture into account.

6. Leadership and Followership

Discover how these are both critical to organizational success, dive into various leadership models, followership behaviors, and evaluate what works and what doesn’t.

There will also be a Q&A portion at the end of every session. Can’t wait to see you on your first day of Bee School!

Are you ready to take the next step in becoming a proactive, organized, and motivational leader? Reserve your spot below for this free webinar series.
Asian Hospitality Magazine Features Beekeeper for Crisis Communications

Asian Hospitality Magazine Features Beekeeper for Crisis Communications

Read how one of our customers, 1 Hotel South Beach in Miami, Florida, used Beekeeper’s digital workplace app for crisis communications to keep more than 700 employees up to date during Hurricane Irma. Yonaira Hernandez, 1 Hotel’s Assistant Director of People Operations, explains how they posted direct links to resources like food, shelter, and power to give everyone safety information as quickly as possible.

Source: asianhospitality

Beekeeper is Digitizing the Non-Desk Workforce With Transformative Integrations

Beekeeper is Digitizing the Non-Desk Workforce With Transformative Integrations

Digitizing the non-desk workforce is a big movement since this employee demographic hasn’t been prioritized when it comes to the digital transformation. For five years we’ve been listening to our customers and evolving our platform to anticipate future workplace needs.

Today, non-desk employees don’t regularly have access to operational systems and communication channels in a mobile-first solution that actually works for them. And if they do, the business environment is cluttered with so many different systems it makes workflows more confusing than they need to be.

We’re here to change that. Today.

Imagine a world where you didn’t have to open a bunch of different platforms to get your job done. A world where you could just open a single app that had all your operational systems and communication channels in one place.

Sounds like a workplace productivity machine.

Enter Beekeeper Integrations

Our mission is to digitize the non-desk workforce so everyone has access to colleagues and systems they need to get their jobs done more efficiently (and with more personality). The goal of Beekeeper integrations is to revolutionize productivity and facilitate high individual and team performance. All while keeping employees engaged, happy, and empowered.

We’re thrilled to announce Beekeeper 2.0 with the launch of two flexible forms of operational system integrations.

1. Marketplace Integrations

The Beekeeper Marketplace is an integration hub that enables organizations to design and implement highly customized digital workplace platforms for their employees. These off-the-shelf integrations are completely user-ready from the get go.

This gives non-desk employees a simplified, secure, and easy-to-use tool where anything a particular worker needs to excel in their daily routine is stored in one convenient location. You can integrate with common systems like Sharepoint, Box, and various HR software, request an app, or connect your own software to Beekeeper.

2. Custom Integrations

Connecting to your legacy systems is not only convenient, it allows management to gain access to more data and get better insights that guide operational improvements and growth. Beekeeper’s open API gives IT teams the ability to create custom connectors and integrations, saving time and resources compared to building proprietary systems.

Our customers love Beekeeper’s intuitive interface so much that they wanted to carry it across all the systems they integrate with. They’re merging their existing operational systems like payroll, scheduling, file sharing, task management, and much more into the centralized Beekeeper app. Employees already use the app to communicate throughout the work day, and now enjoy using it more operationally.

The Beekeeper Developer Portal allows organizations with deeper technological resources to make these robust integrations even more customizable. Between expanded APIs and the eternally elastic resources available on the Beekeeper Developer Portal, the possibilities with custom integrations are limitless.

Evolution is a Great Thing

Don’t worry, none of the feel-good features are going away. In fact, we are always working toward improving those features too. Our core product is an industry-leading communication tool, and by adding operational functionality through custom integrations, there are unlimited possibilities to digitize the non-desk workforce.

We just wanted to make our customers lives a bit easier by giving them everything they need in the palm of their hands. Let your hive thrive!

Schedule a demo so our app experts can walk you through Beekeeper’s integrations. Don’t see one you need? Request your own and we can add it to our Marketplace.
3 Warning Signs of Declining Employee Morale

3 Warning Signs of Declining Employee Morale

Your employees power your business, and ensuring employee morale is high is critical for helping workers maintain their productivity. Running a successful business means viewing your employees as a core asset, and morale serves as a measure of their satisfaction with their work.

Experienced managers know what studies have consistently shown: Satisfied employees are more productive than those who dread coming to work. It can be easy to miss out on early warning signs that morale is dropping, and failing to take steps early on can lead to more difficult problems in the future.

Here are three signs employee morale is dropping and a few tips for fixing the problem early.

Negativity

Work almost always causes a bit of stress for workers, and it’s common for employees to feel frustrated on occasion. However, studies have consistently shown that it only takes a single employee to cause this frustration to spread throughout the workplace, and these negative feelings can quickly lead to drained morale in the workplace.

Make sure to provide ways for employees to leave feedback and criticism for management, and let them know your company takes this feedback seriously. If the negativity is caused by poor management, make sure to address these issues with employees and find out if you’re doing enough to solve the problem.

It is very important to promote a positive and motivating workplace atmosphere as much as possible. Always make sure that everyone involved has a complete understanding of the overall vision of the organization, while trying to accomplish their individual goals.

Confusion

A major part of running a business successfully is ensuring everyone is on the same page. Workers need to have consistent access to job-related information and feedback, and it’s important to deliver information in a timely manner. When this order begins to break down, it’s common for employees to feel drained, and this lack of energy can lead to even more confusion, creating a self-sustaining problem.

Look for signs that employees are having trouble navigating their day-to-day activities, and find out if overall productivity is starting to drop. It’s common to find confusion in the office when bringing in new employees or when hiring new people in management positions. If your business operates seasonally, workers might become confused when demand picks up.

One of the keys for fighting confusion and maintaining your office morale is to focus on your hierarchy in the workplace. Ensure everyone knows their roles, and make sure your managers feel empowered to make decisions and delegate to others. If productivity has dropped, spend some time with your workers to find out where the bottleneck is. Small problems can snowball into confusion easily, so keep an eye out for warning signs.

Exhaustion

Those in management positions want their workers being productive at all times, and many try to find ways to increase employee productivity. However, too much work can cause workers unneeded stress on the job, which can lower productivity and cause them to make mistakes.

Even worse, being overworked and stressed out can affect workers’ personal lives, which can lead to poor sleep, health issues and distractions while on the job. Poor sleep has been shown to have a profound effect on work performance and lead to negative attitudes, which are clear signs of poor office morale. Work-related stress can also lead to high turnover, resulting in a less experienced workforce.

The key to preventing overworking on the job is encouraging employees to take breaks. Some workers try to minimize their break time to impress managers, so ensure your employees know they’re encouraged to take a break and refresh, and consider making breaks mandatory. Small breaks can be helpful as well; a five-minute breather after completing certain tasks, for example, can help your employees stay refreshed throughout their shifts. If your employees work alone, finding ways to help them take breaks together can help them remain focused.

Another factor to consider is vacation time. While paid time off is a significant expense, providing vacation time also lets employees recharge away from the office, which can result in higher overall productivity.

Workplace morale is key for ensuring your employees are productive, but it can be more difficult to maintain good morale once it starts to slip. Make sure your business regularly measures office morale, and include employees on these conversations. Encourage employees to be honest; workers are sometimes reluctant to report problems, so assure them you’re interested in their feedback. View maintaining your morale as part of running a successful business, and feel free to make investments if it will lead to a happier and more productive workforce. Guaranteed you’ll see the return.

Interested in learning more about improving employee morale and boosting productivity in your organization? Schedule a free personal demo with our app experts today.
Bay Area Council Economic Institute Highlights Beekeeper as a Successful Silicon Valley Company

Bay Area Council Economic Institute Highlights Beekeeper as a Successful Silicon Valley Company

The Bay Area Council Economic Institute recently published a report titled “Innovation Bridge: Technology, Startups, and Europe’s Connection to Silicon Valley,” with a spotlight on Beekeeper!

Innovation Bridge Report

The meticulous report delves into why so many European startups make their way to Silicon Valley and highlights numerous success stories, including Beekeeper. Leaders of many government agencies, universities, accelerators, venture firms, and private companies contributed their insights. The Institute’s knowledge partners, including Mind the Bridge, RocketSpace, Factory, and Tech.eu. also provided key data to enrich the study.

As a global startup that was founded in Zurich, Switzerland and is now dual-headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Beekeeper was given a spotlight. On page 41, you’ll learn about our fearless CEO, how Beekeeper came to be, the investors who helped get us here, and a few of our wonderful hospitality customers.

Bay Area Council Economic Institute

Since 1990, the Bay Area Council Economic Institute has been the leading think tank focused on the economic and policy issues facing the San Francisco/Silicon Valley Bay Area, the world’s leading center for technology and innovation. A valued forum for stakeholder engagement and a respected source of information and fact-based analysis, the Institute is a trusted partner and adviser to both business leaders and government officials.

Through its economic and policy research and its many partnerships, the Institute addresses major factors impacting the competitiveness, economic development and quality of life of the region and the state, including infrastructure, globalization, science and technology, and health policy. We are honored to be mentioned in one of their reports!

With over 80 employees in four countries, we are growing quickly! If you’re interested in joining the Beekeeper team on our quest to digitize the non-desk workforce, view our job listings on our Career page.