If you brought a friend from outside the office to your place of work, what would his or her first impression be? Is it an environment that’s exciting and full of energy? Is it collaborative? While a few of you might say yes, there are many who may feel the opposite—especially if their workplace appears stiff and subdued with low employee morale.
Business author Walt Grassl points out that businesses with high energy tend to have employees who know and understand their role and purpose in the organization’s success. Companies with low moral tend to have employees with the attitude, “I won’t make a difference.”
In this issue of Promotional Consultant Today, we share five tips from Grassl on communicating the big picture with employees to help to get the most out of your team.
1. Include all employees in strategy meetings. To the extent possible, get your employees involved. When you are contemplating a change in the company’s direction, modifying one or more processes or seeking new methods to improve delivery, get input from the people who perform the tasks before decisions are finalized. You will avoid passive-aggressive behavior that will sabotage the path forward. Done right, you will earn the respect and buy-in of your team members.
2. Stress the importance of every position. A good leader knows how every employee contributes to the overall performance of the company. Some employees interface with customers. Others provide a clean and safe work environment. Some create the finished product. Good leaders praise the individuals and the teams, both in public and in private, for the significant contribution they make to the success of the organization.
3. See the big picture. There is a common fallacy in the workplace that one job contributes more than others to the success of the project or company. It is a great thing when employees realize that what they do is important. It is not so good, however, when the needs of the other employees and other affiliated organizations are discounted. Explain to your teams the bigger picture, including your organization’s role and the roles of your internal suppliers and internal customers. Keep focused on the end-to-end process, not only your link in the chain.
4. Know your business story. The most powerful story for any business is the story of why the company exists. What problem did the company originally solve? How did the company evolve into its current state? While this is effective in external sales presentations, it is also effective in keeping employees motivated. When that story is known and repeated, employees will realize that they are part of growing or preserving a legacy.
5. Maintain an open-door policy. You can further enhance your team relationships with an open-door policy. Set boundaries and let people know, but invite people to approach you with their concerns or questions.
When you share the big picture, every employee feels valued. They know they play a role in the success of the company. Job satisfaction increases. It costs little to do this and brings back big returns.
Source: Walt Grassl is a speaker, author, and performer. He hosts the radio show, Stand Up and Speak Up, on the RockStar Worldwide network. He has performed standup comedy at the Hollywood Improv and the Flamingo in Las Vegas and is studying improv at the Groundlings School in Hollywood.