Employees play a critical role in the success of a business. Whether you run a small, medium-sized or large company, it’s essential to understand the importance of getting the best out of your workforce. In this guide, we’ll outline effective ways to build a top-tier team.
Promote clear communication
Clear communication is crucial within any team. Whether you employ twenty or two hundred employees, it’s important to encourage and facilitate open communication. Organise meetings with your employees, get together in small groups and teams and give each individual the opportunity to speak, share ideas and put suggestions forward. Make use of technology to bring individuals and teams together and create a culture that is underpinned by speaking and listening. Every individual should feel able to come to you as their employer or talk to their line manager or another colleague if they have concerns or they’ve got an opinion or idea they want to share. Issue clear instructions, take time to listen and make time and space for people to come together.
Understand what matters most to your employees
Getting to know your employees is a brilliant way to enhance your leadership skills and make positive steps towards helping them to fulfil their potential and achieve goals. Take the time to talk to each employee, ask them about what their hopes and aspirations are and understand what makes them tick. Use discussions, surveys, polls and appraisals to find out what your employees want from their job and what matters most to them. Studies show that a focus on flexibility and well-being and a generous salary and benefits package are the most important driving factors for employees who are deciding whether or not to accept a job offer. Over 60% of people view benefits and a healthy work-life balance as the most important factors. Over 55% of people want a job that enables them to do what they do best.
Encourage employee engagement
Employee engagement has incredible benefits for employees and employers. Research shows that high levels of engagement can decrease the risk of staff absence, improve productivity, enhance well-being and morale and create more inclusive workplaces. Listen to your employees, encourage socialisation and communication and make use of tools like an employee engagement platform. Provide training, ensure that each employee is able to play to their strengths and collect and analyse feedback from your team. Strengthen ties through cohesive work policies and strategies and external activities. Away from the office, why not plan team outings, an away day or organise Friday night drinks once a month?
One of the most common reasons people leave their jobs is a lack of recognition and reward. The average employee spends 36 hours per week at work. When you devote a lot of time and effort to your job, it’s natural to want to feel that you are valued. Employers can promote well-being and boost productivity by recognising and rewarding effort, hard work, commitment and achievements. If your employees don’t feel appreciated, they’ve been working overtime without recognition, or there is no reward for hitting targets, they could lose motivation and look elsewhere. Acknowledging loyalty and celebrating dedication and achievement will encourage your employees to continue working hard and help you increase employee retention rates.
Champion health and well-being
Over 60% of employees now consider well-being as ‘very important,’ according to a 2022 Gallup survey. Employees want to enjoy a healthy work-life balance and they want to work for companies that recognise the importance of good physical and mental health. As a business owner, there are multiple ways to champion health and well-being. Start by reviewing your employee benefits package and consider adding benefits that promote healthy living, such as health insurance or perks like discounted rates for gym membership or meditation classes. Research courses and workshops to learn about improving health and identify and address pain points. If you have employees taking days off sick for the same reasons, for example, stress, be proactive in finding solutions.
Analyse the average working day, talk to your employees about their workload and look for ways to increase flexibility. Are your employees getting work emails at 8 pm, are people still at their desks long after they should have gone home, or have your employees expressed a desire to work from home more frequently? Use feedback to inform decision-making. Simple changes like putting a deadline on sending emails and establishing core hours can help to give your team more freedom and flexibility. Manage your expectations. If your team is working 12-hour days on a regular basis, you should consider hiring more staff or outsourcing. If you expect too much, you risk losing employees to other companies.
Almost 90% of millennials believe that career development is very important when searching for jobs and considering offers. Many people want to climb the ladder and fulfil their potential. Employers can encourage growth and progression by providing opportunities and giving their teams the tools and resources required to get ahead. Identify talented employees who have ambitions to go further and help them to reach their goals. Consider recruiting internally before you advertise vacancies externally and be proactive in supporting employees by offering access to training, courses and further study. Have confidence in your employees, let them learn from senior members of staff and help them to develop their skills and expand their knowledge base. Internal recruitment will save you a huge amount of time and money, and it can also help you to improve employee retention. If people feel like there are no opportunities to progress or increase their earnings, they may be tempted to look for other jobs.
Achieving success in business often depends on building a strong, talented, cohesive team. If you run a business, and you’re eager to get the best out of every employee, take these tips on board. Encourage open communication, outline clear instructions and objectives and get to know your employees. Understand what matters most to your team, facilitate employee engagement and champion health and well-being. Provide opportunities to grow and develop and recognise and reward hard work and individual and team achievements.