Tara Bilton landscape

Motivating our staff in these tough times: IDG’s Tara Bilton shares her thoughts

Following the challenges of restructure, downsizing and redundancy, businesses are now grappling with the question of how to keep their remaining employees engaged and motivated against the back drop of a fragile economy and uncertain future. The difference between those organisations who survive this recession and thrive in the recovery will be those with engaged, positive and enthusiastic people who are committed and loyal to the success of the business. And in this economy, that may mean companies with engaged employees make it, and those without will not.

What steps can you take to engage your people and benefit from a more engaging culture within your business with employees prepared to ‘go the extra mile’?

Help employees understand your business goals -Work with your people to build a clear and compelling vision, strategy and business plan; staff need to understand where the organisation has come from, where it is going and how they can help deliver this.

Ensure there is alignment between the values of the business and actual behaviours people exhibit; in other words, ensure there is no gap between what the people in the business say and what they do.

Make communications relevant -Talk to employees on their own terms and use communication channels familiar to them. There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ formula that works for every organisation and every person within it. Ensure all communication is two-way, giving people at all levels the chance to feedback and suggest ideas.

Involve and listen to employees -Involve and consult them in decision-making within the business. No manager has the monopoly on bright ideas and frontline staff can offer valuable insights. Ask your employees what they think about what would make a difference to the way you do business.

Be visible and supportive -Employees need to know you’re available to give guidance, you will offer support and you’re interested in their feedback and ideas at all times. This can be as simple as ensuring there are regular team meetings and frequent updates about business plans and performance.

Encourage and support managersto facilitate and empower rather than restrict their staff, treating their people with appreciation and respect.

Employee engagement is now widely recognised to be at the heart of business success creating an informed, involved and productive workplace. What’s more, there is a direct correlation between high levels of employee engagement and better financial performance:

  • Engaged employees generate 43% more revenue (Hay Group)
  • Disengaged workers costs the UK £44bn a year (IES) in lost productivity
  • Engaged employees have 2.7 sick days per year, rather than the 6.2 disengaged employees take (Gallup)
  • 59% of engaged employees say “work brings out their most creative ideas”, compared to only 3% of disengaged employees (Gallup)

idg is passionate about making a difference to organisations helping them to improve develop and grow in what is continuing to be a challenging environment. More information about our business support services can be found on our website: www.i-dg.co.uk

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