- The generosity of the traffic light. Every fixed interval, it let’s you get through. Even it changes colours for you. This is the generosity of the organization that generously rewards people for what they do. Not more. It’s clear transaction, no fuss. Predictable as the green light.
- The 1/365 policy generosity. One day you decide a generous policy for employees (extra holiday, extended leave, subsidized meals…). You expect 365 days of gratitude. You don’t have to think generosity for 364 days .
- The I am making myself available generosity. It may be a pain, an inconvenience at the very least, but you make yourself available to others, all the time. (My experience? People don’t abuse).
- The I give more than I am asked generosity. You don’t have too. You do it intuitively. There is something inside you that tells you that this is right, that keeping more for yourself is wrong. (But you may not be sure if it’s sensible, after all)
How generous is the organization you work for, or you lead? Traffic light generosity? Given more than asked? People make themselves available (and this is not in the job description)? One off generosity policy? Other?
How do you spread generosity? In behavioural terms, I can tell you: 3 is first, 4 is second, 1 is effective in fooling everybody, 2 looks good in the annual report but, once in place, people will take for granted and will ask for next.
There are choices. A generous workplace is not a question of employee-employer dynamics, it’s a ‘culture of’, or it isn’t . It’s a Viral Change™ epidemic of generosity type 3 and type 2 combined.
Studies in altruism has shown (I hate this kind of sentence) that altruism spreads via social copying (‘Homo Imitans’). In a neighbourhood some people start doing ‘altruistic things’ and soon the neighbourhood does. No training, no Declaration of Altruism is Good for You.
Generosity in the organization follows the same (scale up, Viral Change™) rules. Master a critical mass going that way, you can get a little revolution.