Your best employees are your most authentic ones

  • Posted on: 18 May 2022
  • By: Hushoffice Team

90% of employees think authenticity in the workplace is extremely important. Turns out, it’s actually a significant indicator of job success. Makes sense because, at a high level, authenticity boosts autonomy — the awesome yet ephemeral thing behind all extraordinary performance.

Your best employees are your most authentic ones

Let’s take a look.

Authenticity in the workplace – key takeaways:

What is authenticity in the workplace?

Sincerity. Openness. Vulnerability. Authentic employees live by their values. How they present themselves to colleagues and clients is merely a natural extension of who they really are.

Sincerity saves time and energy. It’s easier to be genuine from the get-go than it is to put on a front. When people are readily forthcoming, they’re frank about issues and address them quickly. They don’t beat around the bush. And they’re more liable to praise a peer that’s done good work deserving of recognition

– says Mateusz Barczyk, Senior Brand Manager, Hushoffice.

The benefits of authenticity are many.

Bringing your whole self to work is proven to boost well-being and happiness. It results in increased job satisfaction and productivity gains.

Intuitively, this makes sense.

People who are true to themselves have solid self-knowledge, which guides them in working how they work best. They are ultimately more autonomous, with greater command over their energy and greater poise in executing unique approaches to assignments. In short, they’re empowered, and it shows.

Authenticity and confidence go hand and hand.

Employees who are authentic at work feel, above all else, more confident.

Employees who show up as their full selves are typically more confident taking on challenges, whether it be a high-priority client call or a critical decision regarding the contents of a proposal

– says Mateusz Barczyk, Senior Brand Manager, Hushoffice.

Employees who can be themselves in group settings feel more psychologically safe.

Psychological safety is the assurance you’ll always get rewarded for speaking up, not punished. It allows teammates to speak candidly, which instills trust and results in stronger team bonds. The psychological safety observed in more authentic workplaces is the reason some teams outperform others.

Camaraderie is the hallmark of authentic teams.

Work relationships matter big time! Consider the enlightening research from Harvard Business Review demonstrating that employees who feel closer to their peers are more productive.

The hushMeet 4 person meeting pod for collaboration.
The hushMeet 4 person meeting pod for collaboration.

A team with raw synergy is at ease. A beautiful thing. We do our best work when we’re at ease. To be calm and collected, handling urgent deliverables and random obstacles as they come, this is the goal

– lends Mateusz Barczyk, Senior Brand Manager, Hushoffice.

There are even benefits of dressing true to yourself.

Casual, comfortable home attire is shown to increase engagement.When we’re comfortable, we do better work. We feel more like ourselves and can engage with problems and teammates authentically — directly — rather than as a persona or through a “mask.”

All-around comfort, becoming the norm.

On this, it’s interesting to note that, by and large, the workforce has gotten accustomed to comfort. A 2020 survey of U.S. remote workers found most people wore pajamas or athleisure wear consistently throughout the pandemic.

Hushoffice large conference and meeting pod for up to 8 persons
Private pods like hushMeet.L help introverted people shine in group settings. Inside, you’re protected from distractions and listening ears.

Speaking authentically is “in” as well.

We’ve gotten more relaxed in the way we speak, too. Curse-word usage on conference calls soared in 2020. Perfect, considering that high-performing teams are more likely to use colorful language than low-performing ones. So the ability to be real even through speech clearly affects our work.

All in the name of connection (which is golden in a hybrid world).

Lax language can be a good thing because teams that are authentic are more likely to crack jokes and keep it light, embracing their work through tranquil and turbulent times alike. They’re more likely to relate truly and depend on each other fully

– offers Mateusz Barczyk, Senior Brand Manager, Hushoffice.

Real-life social interaction is necessarily limited in our hybrid world. But authentic communication gives every email, text, and video call that “human” touch we so fundamentally need.

Authentic communication leads to great working partnerships.

It can also be more effective. Employees who don’t mince words get straight to the point. They simply say it how they see it. Unconcerned with communicating perfectly, they communicate more fluidly.

HushHybrid is a video conference pod that maintains connection between on-site and remote employees.
HushHybrid is a video conference pod that maintains connection between on-site and remote employees.

A relevant read: How “isolation” pods make the office more social, not less

Flexible working, part and parcel of slackening workplace formality.

The embrace of authenticity at work coincides with the shift toward flexible working policies. More and more, employees want to work when, where, and how they work best. Most thoroughly enjoyed the freedoms of working from home and expect to maintain much of this freedom moving forward.

In sum, authenticity boosts autonomy and has a beneficial impact on work.

The preference for authenticity helps explain why many work well at home. At home, you dress how you want, break when you need to, and speak naturally. You have more autonomy over your work. You’re also literally “at home” in your space. WFH got us used to comfort — to being our real selves around the clock.

3 pointers: how to develop a more authentic workplace…

So how do we promote authenticity in the workplace — and prime more autonomous employees?

1.    Encourage people to dress how they want

For some, this looks like dressing down. For others, semi-professional attire is always preferred. The chief thing is for people to be comfortable.

2.    Embrace a flexible working policy

Flexible working policies obviously give your team more autonomy. They support work-life balance by letting employees plot their days according to energy levels and obligations. With autonomy, with more command over one’s workflow, one is more inclined to be their whole self.

Are you figuring out hybrid? Here’s a resource for you: 4 Keystones of an Effective Hybrid Working Strategy

3.    Make the office homier

Since we’re more comfortable being ourselves when we feel at home in our space, the office should be welcoming. Perfect its acoustics (see: The quick, comprehensive guide to office noise). Then divide it into cozy, functional zones. For this, consider a solution like hushWall — a large, multifunctional space divider.

Office work pods are an important piece of the puzzle.

When you jump in a pod, you claim a personal workspace. You’re free to be yourself. In a work booth like hushWork.sit&stand, you’re free to murmur as you think through a problem out loud. In an office phone booth like hushPhone, you’re free to project loudly and proudly on a call with a client, no worry of bothering others. Pods make the open office work.

For inspiration, check out the Hushoffice collection of pods.

HushWork.sit&stand is a comfortable, convenient acoustic work pod
Sublime acoustics. Adjustable lighting and ventilation. Sit-to-stand desk. Charging module. HushWork.sit&stand is a comfortable, convenient workspace.

Authenticity in the workplace – summary:

Authenticity in the workplace – frequently asked questions

What is authenticity in the workplace?

Authentic employees are comfortable being themselves. They feel safe and supported speaking up. They have a sense of belonging at work. And they enjoy real, raw relationships with colleagues.

Why is authenticity important in the workplace?

Authenticity in the workplace matters because it boosts well-being, happiness, and psychological safety. As a result, it leads to increased job satisfaction and productivity.

How do you encourage authenticity at work?

Let people dress how they want. Embrace a flexible working policy. And make the office homier.

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