If you’re just jumping into our series, we’re discussing how to create a great business culture. So far, we’ve discussed the need for strong communication and company wide value alignment. Now we need to discuss how to empower employees to maintain the culture.
Our third and final installment of Create a Great Business Culture 101 is all about how to empower employees. The best way to ensure that you’re creating a healthy environment is to tighten up communication and value alignment with a nice strong support system.
Supporting your staff inevitably leads to your staff not only supporting you, but also themselves. By showing your employees support, you’re letting them know that you’re on a team together—It’s not just them on your team. But just exactly how do you go about supporting your team consistently, while aligning it with values and promoting strong communication? Here’s how:
Empower Employees with Real Recognition
…Both good and bad. It’s obvious that everyone wants to be recognized for his or her hard work, that’s an easy one, but how well are you communicating it? It doesn’t have to be in the form of bonuses, it does, however, have to be clear.
Are you effectively communicating to them how impressive their contribution to the last project was? Are you being specific? Saying good job is nice and all, but it doesn’t clearly convey what you’re recognizing. Telling an employee that you’re impressed with precise examples not only encourages, it also gives them a better idea of what you expect from their position.
The same goes for bad recognition. If you’re not specifically telling your team what they’re doing wrong, you’re not doing your job either. A leader is supposed to be vocal about the good and the bad in order to improve as a whole, and you need to feel comfortable being transparent.
A flump always goes a long way too!
Trust Your Staff - The'll Blow Your Mind
This means no micro managing your team, and a lot of owners have trouble with this one. if your going to empower employees, they need to know that you believe in them.
Micro managing puts a cloud of uncertainty over your team, which means they’re never able to truly prove themselves. Understand that mistakes will happen regardless of how much you’re in the office. If you allow employees to handle obstacles on their own they’re growing confidence will continue strengthening your business. It may not be easy relinquishing total control at first, but it’s necessary if you want your employees to truly thrive.
Healthy Conflict Helps Empower Employees
Is an important step in overcoming obstacles, both as a team and individually. Just like you shouldn’t hold back your honest opinions and concerns, neither should your employees. If everybody bites their tongue there will never be room for new ideas, suggestions and thought-provoking discussions, all of which improve your business and morale.
Rather than encourage staff to be non-confrontational, encourage them to be progressively confrontational. Make sure that your team feels comfortable voicing their opinions, and encourage forward-thinking discussions that improve team relationships. If the conversation stands to better the environment, it’s a conversation worth having.
So there are my tips to empower employees and promote a healthy culture. Combine those with open communication and employing company values and you’ll be on your way to a healthier culture in no time. Remember, the point of creating an environment is to increase productivity, efficiency, and loyalty, all of which enhance your organization on every level.