When it comes to Growth, the Coach can’t want it more than the Player

When it comes to Growth, the Coach can’t want it more than the Player

You know the old adage, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink?  Well the same goes for your employees and their growth and development.

As a senior leader, it is your job to provide opportunities for your employees to learn and grow, and to make their learning accessible, actionable and accountable.  However, if your employee is not engaged by your company and culture, then you can’t force them to learn and grow. Read more about how to engage your employees with Servant Leadership.

Here are a couple things you can ask yourself and examine to have better engagement in your organization:

  1. Did it start with your hiring practices?  I think today, more than ever, it is critical to hire employees for their interpersonal skills over their technical ones.  As long as they have basic abilities, many technical skills can be trained.  However, many interpersonal skills such as friendliness, fun, and authenticity cannot be trained, they are often ingrained in the person from an early age and they’ve either got it or they don’t.  Perhaps this person is just not a good cultural fit for your organization.
  2. Are they not engaged by your organization’s culture? This is where you can step in and re-examine your culture and how you can enhance it to make a better overall experience for your employees.  This might include offering better benefits, examining outdated policies and procedures (e.g. strict dress codes, flex time, and vacation policies) and whether they feel recognized and valued in your organization.
  3. Are you recognizing and rewarding them for their exceptional performance? If your employees were consistently providing exceptional performance but you did not recognize them for it, why would they even try to grow and give you their discretionary energy and motivation.  You can enhance this experience for your employees with both formal and informal rewards and recognition.  The best organizations recognize their employees at every touch point.  Non-monetary recognition is also a big motivator for employees, and can include acknowledging an employee at a team meeting in front of their peers, sending them a personalized thank you email or sending them a formal award certificate for going above and beyond their duties.  You can also recognize them with monetary rewards such as spot cards, bonuses, incentives, and points in their employee performance portal that they can redeem for merchandise and gift cards.

There is a critical overlap between employee engagement and learning development.  When your talent are engaged with recognition and enabled with skills and competencies from learning, they will be able to provide better service internally with their colleagues and externally with your customers, which will result in customers (and employees) who stay longer, buy more and positively refer others. Watch this quick video below for more information on the Intersection of Employee Engagement and Learning.

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Why our Society Sucks at Engagement

Why our Society Sucks at Engagement

Companies are continuously offering surface level forms of employee engagement to attract and motivate their employees.  The problem is, that their effort is half assed.   Organizations feel the obligation to do something for their employees, but their intentions are not heartfelt.

In order to not suck at engagement your intentions must align with your actions. Leaders who have the mentality of service and being a servant to their employees are the ones who will often find the most success with employee engagement (and also profitability).  Read more about the benefits of Servant Leadership here.

When it comes to engagement, intention is so important.  Your senior leaders must have good intentions and care about their employees in order to have engagement that is effective and creates significant change.  They must care about the betterment of their employees and creating an environment that they can continuously learn and grow in. Plus when you invest in your employee’s development with learning and growth opportunities this shows them that your care about their future at the company and are willing to invest in their future.

Part of this positive engagement isn’t using and abusing employees and pushing them to the brink of exhaustion. It’s checking in and making sure that your employees have a good work/life balance and manageable workload. 

Unfortunately many organizations and our society in general often focuses on measuring success by putting in long hours, working to the bone and making tons of profit.  But I can assure you that if profits are what you’re after, a lack of positive intention and engagement in your organization will tank your potential profits.

When you have good intentions with your engagement program it creates a trickle down effect.  The senior leaders role is to motivate and support their talent, their engaged employees will be happier, more productive and provide better service internally with colleagues and externally with customers, and your customers will stay longer, buy more and positively refer others based on their exceptional experiences with your organization.  Makes sense, right?

For more information about how to create this kind of meaningful engagement in your organization, get in touch for a complimentary consultation.

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