He knew that if his staff could see the company as their customers saw it they would feel more pride in the work that they were doing and would have a greater sense of belonging to something that is “more than just a job”.
Opportunities to meet customers at events like a Boat Show are often reserved for the company boss but this CEO knew that it would be good for business, ultimately resulting in more orders and gelling of customer relationships, if his employees felt good about themselves, their work and the company.
Fostering a sense of pride and ownership in your employees is particularly important when times are tough and money available for wages and salaries is restricted. It is easy for morale to fade at times like this so if you can find ways to make your employees feel good about their contribution to the company you will be one step ahead of many other businesses.
Most business owners focus on resources (e.g. new computers) and organisational structure, most accountants focus on numbers, most managers focus on changing employee behaviour for better results.
All of these areas of focus and initiatives cost time and money and all of them miss the one thing that matters most: people.
People are not computers or machines; how they feel matters and it’s essential that you let your people know that you value them, and just as important for your employees to let each other know that they value each other.
So investing in your people as people, and not just as a cog in your machine, no matter where they are on the ladder will boost their morale and motivate them to produce better results and to achieve better outcomes for the company.
How people think and make decisions and what they value has an effect on how they act, how they choose to use their abilities and how they apply themselves in your business to produce the results you need. There is always a balance between the self-interests of each employee and the common interests of the business.
As the boss of the company, your challenge is to find ways to create an environment where your employees are happy and motivated so ask yourself these questions:
- How do you show genuine appreciation of your employees?
- How do you move away from rigid rules and provide flexibility in the workplace?
- What assistance is available to your employees? For example, if they are having personal problems, what can you do?
You might not be able to take your staff to the Boat Show but with a bit of thought you will be able to put initiatives in place that will show them how much you value them.
And you’ll be very happy with the outcome.