Movements are being started, protests are happening, and people, through the sheer power of their actions and voices, are affecting change across the globe. It doesn’t matter rather you agree with it or not; what matters is that it’s happening, and people are incredibly powerful when they want to be.
The people that sit behind desks within the walls of your organization are no different. They might not be holding placards and marching around your office, but once unrest starts in your business, there are plenty of ways to sow dissent other than protesting visibly. There are also many ways to ensure your employees are engaged and committed to what they do, which is why it’s shocking that so many companies choose to ignore it. Once your employees are unhappy, it’s incredibly difficult to claw it back, so start implementing some things that won’t get you there in the first place:
It starts at the very beginning
The on-boarding process used to be an annoying routine of admin and showing your new staff the nearest fire exists, but now, it’s so much more than that. Make your new employees feel like you have been waiting for them and are excited for them to be joining your team. Don’t schedule them in back-to-back meetings on their first day. Little touches like having their desk ready with everything they need is also a great idea. There’s nothing worse than starting on your first day and having to go find a stapler. Additionally, be there for them and eager to answer their questions; starting a new job can be a little intimidating, so make sure your new employees know where they can find support.
You are no better than anyone else
As managers and CEOs, it’s easy to get carried away with the notion of a ‘leader,’ but stop that immediately. It’s 2017, not a military barracks in the 1900s. Get out of your glass box and sit with your people on the floor. Be open, be accessible, and most of all, lead by example. Being holed up in a corner office with a big door won’t allow you to set an example. And anyways, no one wants to work hard for someone they don’t even know.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Be open, be accessible, and most of all, lead by example.” quote=”Be open, be accessible, and most of all, lead by example.”]
Mind your manners
Say thank you, a lot. You may be rolling your eyes, but trust us, this isn’t always obvious to some leaders. A simple ‘thank you for your work’ can be the difference between someone loving or hating your organization. It doesn’t matter how busy you are or what meeting you are rushing to or the other bigger problems you need to fix that day; stop and say thank you to those that do work for you.
As in, the days of “work you” and “home you” are over. Stop splitting your personality and be authentic instead. Just because you crack a joke with your employees, tell them what you did last weekend or speak to them about something other than the latest report or management meeting, it does not mean they’re going to lose all respect for you. In fact, they’ll have a whole lot more for you and like you as a person.
If you have to sit down and share a meal with people, it’s really hard to hold onto grievances, and if you do have them, lunch provides a more causal opportunity to discuss them. Nothing will bond people more than breaking bread together, and whether you do this once a week for lunch, once a month for dinner, or just random coffee breaks with some cookies, it can have wonderful results for your team.
We could go on forever with this list, but obviously we all have very important meetings to get to, so we won’t. However, it’s always the simple things that are easiest to implement and often have the greatest effect.