Invest in Them in Their Lives.
You remember 2009, right? In the wake of a nationwide economic disaster, many companies stopped contributing to their employees’ 401 Ks. Beryl Companies, which manages patient interactions for hospitals, doubled their employees’ funds. The idea was to invest–in the long term–in their employees, by creating loyalty and a sense of worth. The company’s CEO, Paul Spiegelman, wanted to show employees how invested he was in their future.
Here’s a look at how to deliver value to your employees, making them feel appreciated and enhancing your workplace in the process.
Your success is Theirs
Your employees are the backbone of your enterprise, their sweat and hard work leveraging your successes. This means sincere and well-timed praise for goals achieved and letting some of your top performers know they have possibilities for advancement.
If sales are going well, do your best to invest in improvements around the office rather than around your own home or in your pocket book.
A recent study in the American Sociological Review examines options for employers to make efforts to help employees with their work-life balance, being able to spend time with their families, etc. This study was conducted in the context of work-life conflict becoming more prevalent.
Obviously, family is very important to your employees, probably more important than money. Show them that their relationships with their families is important to you too. You can do this, as much as possible, by purchasing healthcare plans that include families; offering flex time or the ability to leave work for family issues. As with all of the items in this post, doing so will demonstrate that you are with your employees for the long haul, encouraging them to feel the same way
Allow For Failure
You don’t have to be Richard Branson to understand the value of failure as a teaching tool. If you don’t quite share his high seeming affection for failure, at least demonstrate a tolerance for it in your employees. This means reassuring them after a mistake, following up and praising them if they do better in a similar situation, and never bringing up old mistakes.
Don’t Make them Do Any Work
Wait, what? No, I’m kidding, of course. Make them do plenty of work. But it’s important to emphasize fun on the job. Maybe you can’t afford a playground or a spa in the office, but you can have theme days, contests, etc. If you bring in snacks, cakes, birthday parties, make them spontaneous and interest, not on a regular schedule in a way that makes them seem, paradoxically, a bit boring.
Your employees will be more loyal and invested if they trust you more. No one likes to feel powerless, and not knowing what’s going on doesn’t empower your workers. Be sure to give them—all of them—full information on all matters.
Ultimately, keeping your employees in the right mindset is all about attending to a broad range of issues. It’s not about just chasing the bottom line, but about attending to the well-being of your employees—the fact that doing so should be beneficial to the bottom line should be considered just a nice side effect.