Business success relies upon the performance of employees. Rank and file staff are as crucial to a business’s growth as the CEOs or upper-level managers who make the decisions. That is why you need to be on the good side of your packaging officers, inventory personnel, admin assistants, and office custodians. Remember that a task performed poorly by an uninspired staff member will have a ripple effect across the organization. For instance, an email a clerk fails to send, for one reason or another, will affect the delivery of to-dos by other members of the organization.
The first step to inspiring employees to rise above mediocrity is to build rapport and camaraderie with them. If they know you regard them as human beings with interiority and not merely automatons expected to carry out deliverables, they will be more motivated to do their jobs competently. Here are some best practices for building rapport with your staff.
Ask about how your employees are doing
From time to time, get out of your secluded office to mingle with your staff. Ask them how they are doing. Some might not readily give you an answer. They might come off as evasive. But if you keep at it, soon your employees will know they are not being spied upon. That your motivations are sincere.
In due time you will get more specific answers that fall outside polite utterances. By then you know you have gained your staff members’ trust. Do not shy away from engaging in personal conversations. If a staff member wants to talk about the marital woes they are going through, listen. If you are equipped, provide solicited advice.
Engage in conversations regarding hobbies and lifestyles
Management needs to encourage work-life balance. There’s no better way to communicate that unofficial policy than engaging in conversations where your employees get to share whatever they are passionate about.
For instance, you might have a staff member who’s into cooking. Ask them for recipes they would like to recommend. Better yet, share a dish you’ve perfected. It could be the adobo sa gata recipe passed down from your grandparents or the vegetarian pasta you found online. The important thing here is you let your employees know you value their interests outside work as much as you do their quarterly performance.
Talk about promotion and development
Don’t keep your employees in the dark concerning their career’s growth and development. If a staff member does not see any promising future in your company, they will become detached from their job and colleagues. Maintain rapport by communicating to your employees that the company has a career plan for them.
You do not have to promise them promotion outright. But at the very least, assure them that their hard work is duly noted and will figure into their career trajectory within the business.
Provide employee perks and privileges
Maybe the hobbyist chef we mentioned earlier is not alone. Perhaps they are but one of many other kitchen enthusiasts from your team. Why not sponsor a cooking lesson with a professional chef to give them something to look forward to?
Here you show you do not just talk the talk. You walk the talk. You are willing to go out of your way to reward your staff’s loyalty and industry. Such a gesture will organically improve your rapport with your employees. They cannot help but be grateful and that gratitude will manifest in their future dealings with you. Not to mention they will be more inspired to do their job as best they could.
Bond with your staff outside work
An excellent leader can spend some good time with their subordinates without losing their sense of authority and respectability. If you can go out on a social drinking group date with your staff without losing face, you are fit to lead.
However, there are safer bonding options you could share with your employees. Think fun runs. Or biking sessions. Whatever it is, the only rule here is you get to share time with your staff in a more relaxed environment.
A lack of rapport between managers and staff members builds an office culture where everyone fends for themselves. That is the exact opposite of teamwork and collaboration. And it’s counterproductive to the goal of creating a cohesive organization with one vision in mind. At all costs, make sure your employees are on the same page as you are and the rest of your corner-office colleagues. Follow the recommendations above and see the difference.