The company should behave just like a good user interface -- support people in doing what they're trying to do, and stay the hell out of their way. Applying the employer-as-UI model, the best company is one in which the employees are so engaged in their work that the company fades into the background.
I don't know if I agree whole-heartedly but something in the concept rings true. If more companies focused on ensuring the "environment" the employee works within helps achieve personal and professional objectives they would see improved results. I know this is how I look at things.
The idea makes an assumption that all employees know what they want. I'm convinced that 60% of employees are direction-less. They come to work - wait for the list of "to-dos" to come down from their manager/supervisor - then plug away until the list is complete or the time runs out. This is both the company's and the employee's problem.
A friend of mine once told me when I was promoted to manager that the hardest part of the job was now I was responsible for creating my own workload. If I have to create my own workload and care about accomplishing it, then having a great User-Interface would be a blessing. My father always said that he was amazed that so many people couldn't see the work right in front of them - meaning - if you care about your job/profession/industry you can always see work that needs to be done - and you should act on it. Again - a great U-I would be a blessing.
If I don't care and I'm just putting in my time - does the interface really matter? Should we focus more on teaching/motivating people how to recognize work or is it an issue of not having a passion? I think it's an issue of passion. Once you have a passion you have the ability to see what needs to be done. This a recruitment issue.
Either way, if your employees are complaining that the infrastructure or tools of the company are hindering their efforts - fix it fast because you have passionate employees. If you never hear complaints about the system, process, tools be warned - your folks might simply not need a good UI - and therefore - don't need you either.