Four Hot Tips to Increase Your Team’s Engagement

teamworkI’m sure you are all familiar with the horrific stats on employee engagement – at least 70% of the workforce are disengaged. The loss of productivity due to this is massive, so how do we go about fixing this? It has a lot to do with the way managers lead their teams, we just have to improve at being better leaders.

I read a brilliant article from Ron Carucci, Forbes contributor, who interviewed best-selling author Mark Crowley, author of the book “Lead from the Heart” on what leaders need to do to increase engagement. I wanted to share his four key points, with some of my own thoughts, which will help you to better engage your teams.

You will see these are not four amazingly radical points that no-one has ever heard of, they might even sound soft, but they get results, particularly in today’s new world of employees.

  • Invest in your teams – deeply. This is not just rewarding your team occasionally with a monthly prize, few beers or by sending them to a training course. It’s spending time with each of them ensuring they are growing, learning and thriving. It’s sharing your knowledge and wisdom to show that you care and you believe in them. Set high expectations for your team and set them up to succeed by helping them.
  • Connect with individuals – personally. Of course we have to be careful and healthy boundaries are important, but as Mark says “you can’t truly understand how to lead someone you only know in one dimension of life.” This is especially true of Gen Y, whose work and life are highly integrated. Get to know your individual team members, spend time 1:1 to find out what motivates them, what doesn’t and understand their aspirations so you can tailor your leadership to those aspirations.
  • Hire for heart – or as we call it hire for attitude. Leaders have to care about their people, if you are hiring new leaders this needs to be a major driver of their success. I love this old saying “people don’t care what you know, until they know that you care”, this has certainly come to the fore. Leaders need to be able to show that they have invested in people and helped them to be successful – these are the ones you want to hire.
  • Show them you love them – or in my words, show them that their contributions matter and make a difference. We all need to feel valued and that what we do makes a difference to others. Great leaders have the ability to point this out to their team. Furthermore they regularly tell their teams that they matter and their work is appreciated. How often do we do this?

The radical part comes now – I would recommend you check yourself against these four points and rate how well you do. You might even be bold and ask your team to rate you on these as well. If you do, you are well on the way to showing them you care about them and want to improve as a leader.

Roger SimpsonRoger Simpson – CEO, The Retail Solution and Author of “The Retail Solution” With over 35 years’ industry experience, Roger Simpson is recognized as Australia’s #1 Authority on customer ROI in the retail industry and as a global expert on staff coaching, customer service and selling skills.