Currency:
broken window theory

The Broken Window Theory

Posted July 22nd, 2018

The Broken Window Theory was put forward by James Q. Wilson and George Kelling in 1982. The theory is based on criminology and the idea that where a neighbourhood had a home or homes with broken windows, people felt that it was already run down and so it is more likely that further crime would occur. The theory suggest that this eventually increases the rate of serious crime.

So, it seems, by removing such a seemingly trivial thing as a few broken windows, attitudes change and crime rates can be reduced.

We believe that this theory can be applied to the workplace too. Where seemingly trivial and minor issues are not corrected, employees lose their desire to maintain the cultural standards of the organisation. Principles and rules are neglected and morale suffers.

What are the broken windows in your organisation? What little improvements could have a real impact? What might be affecting attitudes and the approach to work?

Don’t underestimate the importance of resolving minor issues. And if you have any broken windows, fix them!

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