Luke Smith offers some methods to improve relationships with your staff and greater success
As the dust settles on the COVID-19 pandemic and the year 2023 is now well underway, there has been a noticeable shift in how employees think about work and how companies are adjusting to these evolving viewpoints. The standard workplace is now more remote than ever before, and a greater reliance on technology forces HR and leadership to think about how they can adjust to ensure the success of their company going forward.
What should HR and leadership teams be focussing on to ensure a promising future for their organisations.
Improve communication with remote employees
Moving into 2023, one of the most significant trends will be a greater organisational focus on clear, transparent, and helpful communication. This is especially important if your organisation continues to hire and work with remote employees, and if you encourage collaborative projects.
On one end of the spectrum, it is important not to ignore your staff, as that can lead to feelings of isolation which can negatively impact employee happiness and productivity. For that reason, it is important to stay in touch on a daily basis and have an open-door policy so employees can reach out if they are having issues. Plus, management should acknowledge their remote workers’ contributions when they do a good job and exceed expectations.
However, on the other side of the spectrum, there is the chance that employers can go overboard with their attempts to imitate the constant face-to-face interaction that they had in the office. In fact, while it is important to stay in touch during the day, many business professionals are starting to experience burnout. This typically occurs when managers go too far by micromanaging their teams and requiring numerous video calls every day.
Leaders and managers must be able to find a healthy balance in communication. Keep in touch with the team but allow them the space that they need to be comfortable and confident in their work.
Improve messaging and a strong vision
In the last couple of years, there have been many employees who have been quitting their jobs as part of the Great Resignation. The COVID-19 pandemic made many people realise that there is more to life than working for a business that doesn’t care for them as people. To remedy the issue, many employees are looking for an employer that has a true company vision and wants to see them succeed.
If you don’t have a strong vision statement already, then make it an imperative to develop your company vision and share it with your employees and the world. Your vision should describe the type of business and work environment that you want to create and the solutions that you hope to achieve by working together as a team.
Once you create that vision, share it with your teams during meetings and team-building exercises. You can also make your vision official by sharing it on a public forum like LinkedIn. Many employees expect their managers to be active on social media because it is a way to attract high-quality sales leads and more customers so your company can grow. You can also use LinkedIn to advertise new products and the services that you hope to offer in the future.
Just remember that when it comes to Linkedin, timing is everything. Generally, the best times to post on LinkedIn are between 7 am and 6 pm on Tuesday through Friday, as this is when most professionals will be online. Try to avoid Mondays when everyone is busy, and they may not catch your message.
Improve benefits for improved retention
As mentioned, employees think differently now than they did only a couple of years ago, and if you want to keep them happy and retain your best workers during the next year, then consider improved pay and benefits. Start with their annual salary. As time goes on and the price of living increases, employers should factor that into the employee’s compensation. Over the next year, many companies are planning to increase salaries more than in previous years, and your company may want to follow suit to stay competitive.
However, money is only a part of the equation. Over the next year, think about how you can invest in wellness by providing perks and programmes that can help your staff when they are feeling anxious at work. Provide resources where they can get mental health support, offer stress management classes, and consider providing additional paid time off when they are feeling mentally exhausted.
You should also consider opportunities for improved physical health. Provide an annual membership to a local gym and nutrition coaching and advice. Management could also consider offering a programme where an employee gets a reduced monthly insurance premium if they meet certain fitness thresholds. The point is to ensure that your staff are happy about returning to work day after day. If they are happy, then they are likely to refer their high-quality friends to your organisation.
Employee upskilling will be key
Another way to improve the happiness and productivity of your workforce is to teach them the skills necessary to excel in their current position and move up through the company as they see fit. Currently, only 40% of employees say that their company is upskilling, and you can help to increase those numbers.
Bring in each employee and ask them what they want their career to look like a year from now, and give them a roadmap to achieve that success. HR and learning development teams can then help employees along during the year with performance reviews and training adjustments when necessary. If your employees see a future at your company, then they are more likely to stick around.
These are just a few of the HR and leadership ideas that should be considered now and beyond. Think about the well-being of your employees, and you will have a productive and happy workforce that will stick around for years.
Luke Smith is a freelance writer