The 6 benefits of social discipline: How this psychological theory drives results
Social Discipline is a strong psychological theory backed by research.
August 29, 2018

‍Social Discipline is a strong psychological theory backed by research. It incorporates meeting expectations, social persuasion and accountability to individual responsibilities to encourage adherence to commitments. The driving force of Social Discipline involves making loyal promises to deliver on one's commitments in a public setting.

An organisation’s success is largely connected to engagement and motivation levels of the entire team. If staff members aren’t given a good reason or can’t see the benefits of working hard, many will do the bare minimum. Keep reading to learn about the six benefits of Social Discipline and how you can start using this powerful concept in the workplace.

1. Fosters Employee Efficiency and Productivity

Goals that are recorded in a transparent setting are key to what makes Social Discipline so effective. If someone makes a promise to themselves, who holds them accountable? Even if they make the commitment to a colleague or a group, if it isn’t documented and tracked, who can enforce it?  

Smart businesses leverage the power of Social Discipline to hold people accountable to their promises. If everyone can see who is responsible for completing tasks and hitting targets within a specified time frame, natural competition takes place and deadlines are conquered.  

2. Increases Focus and Motivation With Social Accountability

Low productivity is common when goals aren’t tracked where everyone can see them. When no one can else can instantly view your progress towards goals and tasks, it’s easy to succumb to the temptation of getting distracted by social media or every notification.

However, when employees know everyone else can see what they are responsible for, productivity increases organically. Team members become motivated to make priorities, stay focused and prove they are capable of continuous high performance.

3. Enhances Employee Engagement and Motivation

Employee engagement is critical for a productive, motivated workforce. Without it, employees aren’t motivated because they can’t perceive that their efforts matter and they won’t be tied to the organisational mission.

Research clearly shows companies with high employee engagement enjoy the advantages of higher customer satisfaction, increased revenue growth and excellent employee performance. Engaged employees have higher work attendance, increased productivity and better relationships with their co-workers and clients.

When team members are well-connected and engaged with one another, they experience a feeling of camaraderie around reaching individual goals in a transparent work environment and they can see that their individual contributions are recognised.

Employees become more personally engaged with the overall goals of the company. Morale and motivation levels peak and teams are more reliable and consistent than ever.

4. Improved Teamwork and Collaboration

From small businesses to large corporations, teamwork is necessary. Otherwise, everyone would work alone.

One of the challenges of teamwork is getting teams on the same page. Co-workers have varying work and communication styles. Managers and direct reports see things in different ways. What matters most is that there are social controls in place to foster adhesion to individual responsibilities.

With Social Discipline, no one is in the dark. There is absolute clarity regarding what needs to be done, so teams work together and collaborate to reach desired outcomes.

5. Swift Organisational Agility

When commitments and promises are public, organisations can move quickly when requests are made from customers and internal teams. It’s common that teams need to make fast decisions when problems arise or new business opportunities must be acted on with urgency.

The benefits of Social Discipline help ensure that those responsible for taking action do so when it matters most. No one wants to be the person that drops the ball, forgets to close an important deal or respond to a customer’s request. With Social Discipline, accountability is maximised and easily enforced.

6. Maximises Overall Performance

When the advantages of Social Discipline work in tandem, performance soars and organisations reap the benefits of social accountability, transparency and employee engagement.

Businesses that understand and incorporate Social Discipline also have the opportunity to incentivize rewards, address poor performance and fill gaps in areas that require improvement. Individual team members have a desire to see visible rewards for high performers and consequences for Free-Riders. Assigning individual goals as larger part of group efforts helps to motivate employees more than group goals, because they have autonomy over fulfilling them.

Bring Social Discipline Into Your Work Culture With the Right Tools

Introducing modern software to your team offers a sensible solution to tracking performance and productivity. Samewave is social performance management software that brings together social technology with performance management software to create a work setting that is based on measurable results. Our software allows organisations to create, track and measure promises and collaborate on their commitments.

Our simple user interface, robust communication tools and automatic reporting features make measuring the impact of Social Discipline easy. Organisations can track individual performance with real-time ratings so everyone knows who is on target and who needs help reaching goals.

Approach Social Discipline With a Thoughtful Plan

What’s the best way to bring the power of Social Discipline into your work environment? How do leaders get their teams to adopt new methods?

While the heart and essentials of Social Discipline are easy to comprehend, creating an atmosphere where they come to life can be a bit more challenging. Social Discipline is most effective with constant monitoring and evaluation, but that doesn’t have to be difficult with the right tools.  

Even the best software tools require a plan for implementation. Don’t expect every employee to adopt a new program or process overnight. Develop a that allows plan for gradual adoption of any new process, so teams aren’t intimidated or worried about the change.

Train managers of one department on how to use the program first and provide the rationale for the change. Once they have bought into the program and have witnessed the positive impact it can have, give them autonomy over rolling it out to the rest of their team.

Once one department is successfully working with the new software, they become advocates for change. Have them help train other teams who will likely be eager to begin reaping the same benefits and watch the advantages of Social Discipline spread across your organisation.

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