Hello, Leaders! From whatever level you lead in your organization, you undoubtedly know the importance of a team that is fully engaged. If you have worked on a team that wasn’t engaged, you understand and appreciate the value of working with people who come together for the common goal of making each other successful in accomplishing company objectives.
I have had the honor of working on teams, both in the military and in business, led by people who understood the importance of highly engaged followers. Those teams highlighted the value of engagement and made me appreciate the positive power it has.
After all, the more a team is engaged the better they contribute to the company’s overall success. Productivity, profitability and retention rates soar as a result of engagement. As leaders, it is up to us to help create this type of atmosphere. It also makes our jobs easier and more enjoyable!
We often hear about companies that provide fun atmospheres like free cereal all day, or slides to take rather than stairs. Bean bags, beach balls and ping-pong tables make for an exciting workplace, for sure. Even companies that provide free on-site daycare or health club memberships offer obvious beneficial engagement perks.
Free food and fun activities are excellent surface level engagement tools, but there are better ways to get your teams locked in and engaged that will outlast fun fads.
It does not cost you very much, if anything, to go beyond surface level engagement ideas and create long lasting employee loyalty through the following leadership habits:
Go Beyond the Surface…
- Go beyond simply asking employees for their opinions about a direction you are planning to take them. Get them involved in those decisions. Whenever possible, have your team come up with solutions and then implement their ideas if it will help improve your situation. Nothing creates buy-in better than team involvement!
- Go beyond simple high-fives. Showcase successes by highlighting achievements to the whole team. If your workplace is divided into departments, make sure all the departments hear and see the celebrations. Make commendations important and the employees will give you ample reasons to celebrate!
- Go beyond just saying thanks. Instead, look for creative ways to show true appreciation. Give your team handwritten thank you cards pinpointing what they do to make a positive contribution. Send them an encouraging email or take them to lunch out of the blue. Genuinely invest in team appreciation and you will see huge engagement returns!
Going beyond the surface by implementing these simple habits will develop stronger loyalty in your employees. It will not happen overnight, but if you consistently include your employees in decisions, make a big deal of successes, and show true appreciation, your teams will become more engaged over time. The key is to keep at it and make it the norm for the way you lead.
Continue to have fun, but don’t neglect the more meaningful leadership habits that solidify loyalty!
Thanks, and go lead well!