Are you loading up your company with policies?
So often I see SMEs feeling like they need to add a detailed policy for expenses, another for travel, for mobile phones, for toilet paper folding, male sandal-wearing and on and on and on.
Sometimes, a policy makes sense.
But often, sense makes more sense.
This welcome announcement by M&S reminded me of this. A well-intentioned policy (we must protect the taste palette of our middle-class customers from the ravages of a stale vol-au-vent) ended up causing a lot of good food to go to waste. Food that might have been perfectly fine if only it had been smelled or tasted, rather than policied.
As you scale up, don’t add policy just because HR or an advisor or a website tells you to.
Don’t do it because one person once did something stupid.
Do the maths. It’s obvious, but often just not even sanity checked – only add a policy when to have it makes more sense than not to.
And recognise that each policy you put in place at some level is trying to replace trust. Occasionally that may make sense. All too often, it doesn’t.
P.S. no need for a policy for male sandal-wearing. The answer is always “no”.
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