Most business owners dream of a team of people who work really hard, come up with creative ideas and go above and beyond their job descriptions. Here’s how to make that happen for your business.
It’s no secret that, as a business owner, your venture is your baby. It’s needy, it’s frightening and you’re completely devoted to it. If only you could make everyone else feel the same level of devotion.
The first step to getting employees excited about your company’s direction is to look at how you’re doing with employee engagement. Engaged employees are connected both at the head and the heart and are willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done for you. A lack of employee engagement can manifest in the form of poor customer service, low morale and missed business opportunities.
On the flip side, if you can sell your employees on your company’s future and the importance of their role in it, there are some great advantages. They will be more likely to generate their own ideas, to contribute with enthusiasm and to keep slogging on when it becomes difficult. They will also experience a sense of camaraderie and togetherness.
So how do you communicate your vision to your employees?
- Clear Communication – this crucial first step of sharing your business vision with the company to get people to buy in might seem obvious, but especially in the lower ranks of a team, employees often know very little about what’s going on at the top. This can hurt engagement and productivity. Employees need to have a sense of how their roles interweave with the larger goals of the company in order to take pride in the importance of their work and to do the best possible job on every project. Tap into as many methods of communication to reach out to employees as you can, including email, Facebook, Twitter and even regular meetings and conversations. Remember also that different members of staff will respond to different messages. For some, breaking down quarterly efforts, the results they achieved and where they could be improved will go further than a joke-filled speech.
- Keeping an Open Ear – make a commitment to listen to your employees when they talk about your products and services; listen to them when they talk about what’s going on in your company. The best news for the state of your employees’ engagement is if they’re constantly complaining. Oddly enough, when people complain, they are actually showing you that they’re engaged. Your challenge is to take those complaints and the glimmers of pride and enthusiasm, actually hear them and turn them into suggestions for change.
- Measuring Engagement – you’ve just come out of an all hands staff meeting, your speech went off without a hitch, but did it help to engage your employees? It can be hard to step back from your intimate perspective of your business and try to accurately gauge how your employees feel about it.
Rather than taking a quantitative approach, the best tool is simply to observe the human interactions that go on every day at your company. The level of engagement is revealed in the very subtle things – the feeling, the spirit, the warmth and the level of concern in people’s voices. That’s what will show you the level of engagement.
How to do you get your team excited about your business vision? Focus first on clear communications from the top all the way to the bottom. Then listen to what your employees are saying and how they’re saying it. Finally, measure the level engagement amongst your employees. If you’ve clearly communicated your vision to them, listened to what they have to say about it, you’ll have a much more engaged team, who is excited about delivering a shared vision for your business.
What’s your vision for your business over the next 12 months? If you don’t have one, or you would like some help with delivering on your vision – and making sure that your team is excited about your vision – then do get in touch. Call Jonathan Lane on 07503 891 331 or Pippa Hutchinson on 07941 819 169, or click here to email us.