A Great Leader Knows How to Inspire Those Led
It’s well known, and backed up by research, that happy employees equal productive employees. There are many ways this can be achieved and they often differ from company to company, but if YOU don’t believe it’s something worth your time and attention, it will never become the priority that it should. And even though methods differ between companies, research has shown that there are at least 3 common rules that bring about employee fulfillment and inspiration.
1. Thankless Jobs Need to be Appreciated Too
Every level within your company is important to production/service or the job wouldn’t exist. Even if some of the jobs in the company aren’t as “sexy” as others, or don’t seem to be involved in closing deals, they are still very important. You must acknowledge that importance in every level of your company. Employees need to know the impact of their work, to feel valued and inspired to continue.
2. Reward the Outstanding
On the flipside, any employee (at any level) who goes above and beyond, does a great job, etc… needs to be recognized. It demonstrates their value to you and the company AND has the added benefit of inspiring the other employees to up their game. Be careful not to recognize one employee repeatedly or it will build resentment amongst the others instead. If one employee consistently outperforms the others, move him or her into a mentoring position. Their job becomes more important and their skills shared with others.
3. Know What Really Matters at the Office
If you provide free company tee shirts that no one wants to wear or coffee to a crowd of soda drinkers, your efforts are wasted and even insulting. Find out what type of reward your employees would really respond to (use surveys, focus groups, interviews). They might prefer monetary rewards, a half day off, bowling night – but if you don’t provide something meaningful, you demonstrate that you don’t really care and therefore, why should they?