I found myself in strong disagreement to this post on Lifehack.org, Reining in the Rule Breakers.
I understand the need for policies and rules to insure employee safety. This post might be appropriate for those situations. It also might be justified when attempting to standardize jobs and activities that require no creativity or individual decision making in order to function correctly. I sense the post was geared to managers dealing with these type of positions.
This approach toward strict adherence to the “rules”, just smacks of a 1930′s factory or grade school, and is the exact opposite of what I feel a workplace in 2006 requires to remain creative, enthusiastic and productive.
I do think it’s important to define limits. Very different from rules. Limits give maximum or minimum boundaries, but do not bind individuals into procedures and don’t stifle creativity.
It is important to define goals and objectives, basic coordinated procedures and time limits. Allow the team, organization or individual to find the best path to the goal. Before you scream chaos and anarchy, understand that standard operating procedures and existing policies will normally be the jumping off point for most of the organization. Any changes that occur to those procedures will often be evolutionary, not revolutionary.
Focus your energy and your people on objectives and not on blindly following the rules.