“People who enjoy what they do, do it better”. That is what Henry Engelhardt had as his doctrine when he began Admiral Insurance in 1993. He wished to enjoy performing. He realized that if his team enjoyed work also and were happy, there could be greater productivity, therefore he chose to use a company philosophy putting employees in the middle of his business design.
One initiative to promote this philosophy would be to have a business team called the Ministry of Fun, a team specializing in organizing weekly social activities for employees, such as a way to work in fancy dress days, such as Superhero Day, nights out, or computer game championships in lunch breaks.
For 14 years in a row, Admiral Insurance has been at the 100 Best Places to Work in Britain. The business has grown to a $5.6billion valuation, is in the UK’s FTSE 100 stocks also has 7000 employees across Europe and India.
ARE YOU MISSING OUT ON SOCIAL CAPITAL?
Venture capital, human capital, financial capital, leveraging, share offerings are all sources of value that are used in business. And businesses can miss out on a key source of funds to help them grow – Social Capital!
The Admiral Insurance story is one of a deliberate culture setting out to build and use powerful Social Capital.
Work is also, and always has been, one of the most defining aspects of our own lives. It may be where we excite ourselves, meet individuals and feel at our most innovative and creative. It might be where we could feel our taken for granted, exasperated and frustrated.
Together with the typical employee now spending over 90,000 hours at work in life, the office is now a”center of meaning, membership, and mutual assistance”, and of friendship. Indeed, a lot of people count some work colleagues as pals that are great.
Work organizations are inherently social. Organizations rely and on their collaboration with each other and clients, to attain the goals and mission of the business. The 2016 Edelman Trust Barometer indicates that the confidence of the majority cannot be taken for granted.
Failure to admit Social Capital and to build an environment to cultivate it may mean that your business is missing out on this very important form of funds and the chance to advance to the next level.
WHAT IS SOCIAL CAPITAL?
Social Capital is the amount of goodwill and possible resources available to individuals and groups stemming from their networks of relationships.
When the members of networks have established some level of knowledge and trust, it brings them to a degree of commitment to each other and also a desire to exchange resources with each other, and this gives a context in which innovation can flourish. People have the desire to do things for and with others. People today have a tendency to do things encourage and to assist those in the same social network, making a cycle of reciprocity. Learn more about ASSET here
Like financial capital, Social Capital has some value. It invested can be gathered and exploited, through withdrawals and deposits. Fun initiatives in Admiral Insurance’s Ministry are cases building deposits’ of Social Capital with the employees.
The results of Social Capital are:
- Exchange and Reciprocity -“I will scratch your back because I will trust you to scratch mine when I need it”
- Good spirits
- Follow through – a willingness to go the extra mile with people on your network
- Trust beating uncertainty – it is far easier to come to an agreement with someone with whom you get a positive connection than with a stranger. There is a banking adage that says, “A connection is worth one basis point”.
- Team Identity, even ‘team pride’
The’value’ of Social Capital can be seen by imagining a workplace where Social Capital was lost, one in which:
- competition trumped cooperation
- there was little hope, with too much suspicion, whispering, and cynicism
- there was little willingness to:
- share information to share it in a timely manner
- share sources
- help each other
- business units stay stovepiped in their silos
HOW IS SOCIAL CAPITAL DIFFERENT FROM HUMAN CAPITAL?
Social Capital differs from Human Capital (like in HCM). Human capital may be said to be focused on the education, expertise, and skills of a worker for pathway or a particular function. It’s the main focus of HR. There might be some overlap between Individual and Social Capital depending on how a business’s culture and wellbeing are described. Many businesses decide to invest in the happiness and well-being of their workers since this investment benefits the bottom line by cultivating a more joyful, more energetic workforce.
IS SOCIAL CAPITAL THE SAME AS EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE?
When Billy Aydlett became the 7th principal in 6 years at Leataata Floyd Elementary, a school with a very long history of disorder at a low part part of Sacramento USA, he immediately discovered the young students weren’t going to be able to make progress on the academics until they’d gotten help with their social and psychological troubles. Start now in Becoming Your Own ASSET Curriculum!
But, although Aydlett had risen through teaching positions to become a leader, he had been a socially awkward guy who confessed to being”awful” at ordinary individual experiences, so he attended social-emotional training. Since starting the emotional-literacy work, Aydlett said he’d become aware of interpersonal dynamics, and even made going on a holiday with his wife a priority-. (“I didn’t see the point in that type of connectedness,” he confessed. “But I’ve discovered that it is vital.”)
Emotional Intelligence is the ability to recognize emotions in oneself and others, to be in a position to exploit and handle them. They are the individual skills that are used by each individual to construct his or her Social Capital within alternative or work networks.
The encounter of Mr. Aydlett demonstrates that building social connections does not come naturally for many people, even successful ones!
Deliberate action needs to be undertaken to boost Social Capital throughout the team in the business. Some may be able to make flourishing relations naturally, as an example,” She’s a people-person'”, but many are unable to do it by themselves.