Your employees are the backbone of your business. Here’s how to make sure they’re happy and productive.
Here are some shocking statistics to make you worry about how happy and engaged your employees actually are.
According to officevibe.com, 70% of US workers are not engaged at work, 89% of employers think their people leave for more money, but in actual fact only 12% leave a company for this reason – 75% of people don’t quit their jobs, they quit their bosses. Not worried yet?
Then what about a monetary motivation: A study of 64 organisations revealed that companies with highly engaged employees achieve twice the annual net income of companies whose employees lag behind in engagement.
So, what kind of organisation are you? Do you have an employee engagement strategy in place?
Most business owners will agree that their employees form the backbone of their companies, and yet very few have processes and policies in place to keep those employees happy and productive.
Godfrey Madanhire, professional motivational speaker, business consultant and founder of Dreamworld Promotions, shares his top ten staff engagement tips.
1. Sell the company’s mission.
You’d be surprised how many people don’t know what the company’s mission is. Simply having a few statements displayed on a wall isn’t good enough.
Create opportunities to discuss the company’s vision, and ask individuals how they can contribute to it. Take the conversation away from recited statements to an internalised group goal and vision.
2. Know your employees as individuals.
Don’t underestimate the power of calling people by their names. If the leaders don’t even know your name, why would you feel like giving anything to that organisation?
Spend a few minutes each day chatting to employees, from the cleaning staff to the receptionist. You want everyone to feel a part of the team.
3. Encourage growth within the company.
Don’t keep someone in a position because you need them there - you’ll just lose them anyway.
Rather give them growth opportunities and encourage them to groom their own replacements. Remember, it’s incredibly frustrating for talented and ambitious individuals to reach the ceiling in a business.
4. Appreciate your employees’ efforts.
Employees who receive constant positive reinforcement want to give more to the company. Don’t wait for mistakes to happen and then complain.
Too many business owners only speak to their employees when something’s gone wrong. Instead, highlight the positive. Say thank you, commend a good effort, and share highlights with the full team.
5. Offer incentives.
This doesn’t need to be a monetary reward, just something that says ‘thank you for all the good work’.
Spa and restaurant vouchers or even weekends away are great gestures, and many of these types of incentives can be secured through trade exchanges.
6. Encourage feedback.
Foster a professional atmosphere that encourages open dialogue. Embrace a democratic leadership style, be transparent, and don’t victimise any employees.
Let them know that you want their feedback, and then really listen and act on it when they give it to you. If something is not possible, explain why.
7. Encourage open meetings.
If all you’re going to do as a business leader is walk into a meeting and tell everyone what to do, save everyone the time and send an email.
Meetings are about brainstorming and sharing ideas; collaborating to find solutions to problems and the best way to deliver on projects. You have a team for a reason – use them.
8. Look after the physical space.
You can’t expect people to perform well in areas that are depressing, have bad lighting, or are poorly looked after.
You’re sending a message that their comfort isn’t important, and their subconscious reply will be that neither is your business to them.
9. Don’t avoid conflict.
Conflict will rarely resolve itself. Instead of ignoring or avoiding it, learn to manage it. Conflict doesn’t need to be a negative thing: Through conflict people grow and get to know themselves and others better. As a leader, pay attention and recognise when trouble is brewing, and address the situation as quickly as possible.
10. Create opportunities for social work.
Give employees time to engage in social work during work hours. It’s a great way for team members to spend time together out of the office, while doing some good, and will generate internal goodwill towards the company.
Set goals together as a company, and then work together to achieve them.