I often find myself responding to company leaders who want to get more out of their employees. They place that desire under the veil of employee engagement. It is flawed thinking, getting more from an employee is one sided, usually pressure driven and undoubtedly will not deliver the needed results.
There is a better way, one far more likely to result in the outcomes desired by the leader. Focus on getting the best out of your employees.
The best starts with clarity of purpose, vision, values and desired outcomes. Employees need to fully understand why they are there, where they are going, what the company stands for and what the finish line looks like.
Another key to cultivating the best from your employees is validating their importance to the organization and as individuals. This is accomplished by making sure that employees feel heard, valued, cared for and respected. Integrative leaders know the importance of the mind-spirit component. An organization may have an employee base that is infused with tremendous clarity of purpose, vision, values and outcomes. However, without employees who feel validated and valued it is just like having a great engine without any fuel.
Let me pose two questions. Do you feel that your employees get the opportunity to do what they do best everyday?Do you know how much time each day your employees are engaged in tasks that they do not like to do? Don’t know the answers? Go find out, talk to your people. Consider hosting an employee focus group or find some other mechanism for feedback. It may be a bit idyllic to think that you can create an environment in which every employee spends every hour of their day engaged in the things they do best. Yet, it is not unreasonable as a leader that you work to provide them with as much time as possible to focus on the things they do best. Further, a little investigation may result in complimentary findings. One employee’s, least desirable task may be another’s most favorable. A simple adjustment in task alignment could afford both an opportunity to improve output and efficacy.
So many questions come my way about how to get the most out of employees. I hope the above has encouraged you to pivot that thinking towards getting the best out your employees. The source of that information is not external to the organization. Rather, it is from your employees themselves. I challenge every leader to engage in a conversation with your employees about how together you can get the best out of them. Spend the time to provide clarity around purpose, vision, values and outcomes. Share with them your thoughts, concerns and aspirations. Validate them as respected members of the team. Listen, let them be heard and learn.
I may be an optimist, but I believe the vast majority of people want to do a good job. So often, organizations just fail to align skills and passion to tasks and outcomes.
We can help you cultivate employee enlightenment. Together we can develop a pathway to better efficiency and productivity. For more information, please schedule a growth session.