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How do you inspire your employees?
By David Robert, CEO of Great Place To Work® Gulf.
October 20, 2013 5:21 by kippreport
You’ve just hired the perfect employee and welcomed him or her into your organisation through a robust and personal onboarding programme. Now comes the challenge of helping that employee reach his or her full potential. What can you do to inspire that employee to come to work each day energised and with full of fresh ideas?
Do what you say.
If your words and actions do not align, it will be nearly impossible to inspire an employee. They tend to hold back, if they feel that their manager is not a role model. So make sure that if you say you’ll do something, you do it. If you expect others to behave a certain way, be sure to mirror that same behaviour.
Open a line of two-way communication.
Meet frequently with the employee. Set up meetings well in advance for routine updates and performance feedback, as well as personal development. Inspired employees tend to prefer frequent feedback and opportunities to talk openly about their ideas and career goals.
Involve your employees in decisions.
It’s important to include your employees while making decisions, especially those that may impact their workplace experience. Seeking your employees’ perspective and giving them an opportunity to shape their work environment is an important source for inspiration. Not every decision can be put forward for discussion, but many can, so when you are able to seek your employees’ input, give them a chance to react before the decision is made.
Recognise your employees’ contributions.
Inspired employees like to know they are making a difference, so remind them often that they are. In your weekly staff meetings, take a moment to acknowledge an individual or team. When meeting with your employees individually, make it a point to recognise a contribution they’ve made. If you haven’t done so already, launch a formal recognition programme that rewards employees for significant contributions. Make sure the recognition is specific and meaningful.
Encourage risk taking.
Nothing kills inspiration like a set of rules and policies, or worse yet, punishments for failures. Yes, rules and policies are important, but don’t let them rob the organisation of innovative and fresh ideas. Every company seeks innovation and that comes from inspired employees who are able to take risks. To motivate them to take calculated risks, add an award to your recognition programme for ‘near misses’ or ‘the most intriguing failure’. Your organisation’s next big product or service can only come after many near misses or unsuccessful tries, so it’s imperative you encourage your employees to keep trying.
Emotionally connect your employees to their jobs.
Employees are more likely to perform at a higher level when they have an emotional connection to the work they do. Try to find ways to show your employees the impact their contribution is having on the company’s customers or community. Launch a corporate social responsibility initiative, in which employees can contribute to causes that are important to them. Showcase examples of how your customers’ lives have improved through the products you offer.
Follow these recommendations and you’ll have employees who are inspired to commit fully, think creatively and reach their full potential.