The Cinderella story is a classic.
A young woman loses her father and is enslaved by her evil stepmother and stepsisters. Along comes this potentially life-changing ball, and like any young girl, she’s desperate to go. Of course, her stepmother says no – I mean, she is evil. Cinderella sneaks out to attend the event, steals the heart of the prince at the ball and lives happily ever after.
At its heart, the Cinderella story touches romantics and sports fans alike. Everyone wants to root for the underdog. The odds of making it to the World Series, the Stanley Cup or the NBA Finals are astronomical for some teams. Take the Las Vegas Knights, for instance. This past year marked the creation of Las Vegas’ first NHL team. The team was anticipated to be playing the long game, hoping to be a team to reckon with in 3 – 6 years. Fast forward to the end of their first season on the ice, and the boys are taking the Western conference by storm. Of course, their out-of-nowhere, Cinderella-like story is quickly becoming a fan favorite.
How can you translate this kind of long-shot, big-dream thinking to the performance culture of your organization? More and more, in today’s ultra-competitive environment, you’ll find that your true competitive advantage to any team, sports or business, is your people. Here’s how to turn that advantage into something that wins championships, er, I mean deals.Prepare your team to be the shocking #CinderellaStory of 2018. @Engagiant_iRevu has the top tips on how to make your dream a reality: Click To Tweet
Sometimes when a normcore business goes up against corporate giants, any task can be just as daunting. We have the 3 essential ingredients for your team to thrive when the odds against you seem enormous.
Give Frequent Feedback
We know that hitting the good and the bad of a whole year in just one meeting is close to impossible. That’s why there needs to be more to your performance feedback than annual performance reviews. It is so important to provide your team with consistent compliments and critiques on their work to help them grow, both personally and professionally, like never before. Be sure to sit down with your employees once a month to recognize both what they are doing well and what they can improve upon.
A little recognition of your employees’ efforts can go a long way – for you AND them. A whopping 81% of employees note that they are motivated to work harder when they feel that their boss shows appreciation for their work. The next time your employee goes beyond their job description (which we assure you is often!), respond to their email or write a quick note saying how much you appreciate what they do for the company.
We have a few easy tips to give great feedback to your employees:
- Keep it positive – Employees tend to think of performance reviews at a negative meeting. Keep the meeting light-hearted, and be sure to give as much positive feedback as you do negative.
- Give specifics – Use specific examples of the great things, and the not so great things, that your employees have done since their last review. Giving examples helps them know what you specifically like or dislike, whereas general direction can get lost in translation.
- Make it a habit – We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: frequency is important to performance management. Make your monthly performance reviews a habit. If you wait too long to discuss your employee’s performance, they may not remember a specific incident.
How will this take your team to the championships? By using constant positive reinforcement and criticism when it’s warranted, you create a feedback loop that motivates and increases efficiency and productivity. While your competition is waiting until year-end to give feedback on a nap that guy in accounting took in February, you’ve already confronted and fixed the issue. Plus, your staff will appreciate always knowing exactly where they stand in the organization.You took the time to source, recruit and train your employees; why avoid coaching them? Click To Tweet
In sports, one of the most important aspects of a team is their player. This holds true in businesses as well. Without dedicated, talented workers, what can your business even offer? Not all employees come to your business with the natural work ethic and talent that make them invaluable. That’s why one of the most important aspects of leadership is being able to groom your current talent. To continually achieve more, you must invest quality time into coaching all of your employees to be the best that they can be.
Coaching not only grows your current employees, but helps in retaining employees as well. More than 60% of employees who report to managers that are not good coaches are thinking about quitting, versus 22% who report to the best.
Aloof Coach Syndrome? We sure hope not! 75% of employees that voluntarily leave their job state that it is because of these bosses. You certainly don’t want to lose your employees after spending long hours and hard effort to teach them the job. As a part of the elite club of managers, you should be respected, but not feared. Avoid being “that distant manager” with these game changers for your team!
Let’s get you on the path to becoming a great coach and start retaining those A player employees with these tips:
- Listen – By hearing what your employees have to say, you’ll find out what they feel they can help others with, what they need to do their job more efficiently and how they can best grow with the company. Everyone is different, so use that to your advantage!
- Encourage and Support – When you offer encouragement and support, your employees feel valued. Along with helping establish a positive relationship, doing this well can be a tool that keeps your employees motivated.
- Drive Results – Set meaningful, achievable goals for your employees to hit. When you clarify the milestones each employee should reach and measure their successes, employees will work hard to reach the goals to see results.
How this makes your company more competitive: Today’s workforce wants meaningful work, and they want positive relationships at work. As you learned above, constant feedback lets your employees know exactly where they stand. By keeping up on your performance reviews, there will be no surprises to your team when you introduce additional coaching to the mix. Listen and learn what your employees want so that you can guide them towards the goals they have for themselves and the goals that you gave them. Succession planning for you; career pathing for them.
Encourage Employee Engagement
An astonishingly low 32% of employees are engaged in their job. We know what we just said is about to keep every manager awake at night. The good thing is, 69% of employees report engagement is a problem in their organization. Recognizing this issue is a good first step, but how do we take our 68% second-string employees and make them starters?
Communication is the cornerstone of engagement. Without it, we are unable to connect with our employees. A disconnect between the workplace and the workforce forms, and performance suffers.
How do we change this lack of employee engagement trend? Communicate with your employees like this:
- Lead by Example – An engaged company culture needs to be set by the executive suite or departmental lead. The higher-ups are the people that employees are looking up to, so you need to exude engagement! Be sure to set the tone of engagement early and often to keep employees engaged.
- Individualize – A good manager gets to know their employees’ first names, but a great leader will truly get to know their employees. Treat them like people, not like your subordinates. By forming a friendly workplace relationship, your employees will feel more engaged with the company and motivated to please you.
- Get Feedback – Show that you care about your employees by reaching out to talk about what is going right and what is going wrong with your company. Your employees are one of your biggest assets, so take their thoughts into consideration.
Like any great coach, you inspire and lead your employees by setting a great example of what an engaged employee looks like. The research doesn’t lie: companies with engaged workforces have better productivity, better revenue numbers and increased retention numbers. The business “wins” are everywhere when you make a personal investment in employee engagement.
Prepare your team to be the shocking Cinderella story of 2018. By creating a feedback loop, building your employees up via personal and professional goals, providing focused coaching to continuously to achieve more and modeling what an engaged employee looks like in your organization, you’ll be ready the next time you face off against any evil stepmothers. Your Cinderella story is right around the corner.