An employee's relationship with their manager sets the tone for their level of commitment to the organization's success says Brigette Hyacinth, author of The Future of Leadership: Rise of Automation, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence.
Gallup research shows that a mind-boggling 70% of an employee’s motivation is influenced by his or her manager. It’s no wonder employees don’t leave companies; they leave managers.
Disengaged employees can cost companies millions of dollars from lost productivity, damages from employee negligence and negative publicity due to poor customer service. Organizations know how important it is to have motivated, engaged employees, but most fail to hold managers accountable for making it happen.
7 Things a Manager can do to Improve Employee Morale:
1. Connect with staff- As a leader you should be seen. Make your presence felt. Don’t just lock yourself in your office whole day and only communicate with staff when you want something done. Get to know your employees. Find out about their interests.
2. Show employees that you genuinely care. If an employee is dealing with an issue whether personally or professionally, show empathy. Advocate for your team. Stand up for them. Don’t throw your people under the bus when things go wrong.
3. Practice Open and Honest two-way Communication. Keep employees informed. Don’t let them have to be hear of upcoming changes through the grapevine. Listening to employees - Have an atmosphere where employees’ ideas and suggestions are valued. Don’t have surveys and suggestion boxes then when feedback is given, you simply ignore it.
4. Be fair and neutral. Treat everyone fairly. Don’t pick favourites. Lead by example. Be known as a person of integrity.
5. Empower Employees. Provide them with the proper tools, then give them room to get the job done. Don’t micromanage!
6. Reward and Recognition - Offer incentives. Show employees how much you value and appreciate them. Always reward staff for good work, and not only top performers include those who are improving or doing their best. Be generous with "Thank Yous".
7. Recommend employees for training and new opportunities. Staff members can interpret an employer’s unwillingness to invest in training as a disregard for their professional development. Acknowledge and encourage strengths, recognize the different skills they possess and recommend training and development opportunities.
If you believe, that employees are your most valuable asset, you will create a healthy work atmosphere and provide them with the tools and support to do their jobs effectively.
It's important as a manager to focus on relationship building and encourage a positive and grateful work environment. You can't buy loyalty, but you can certainly foster and nurture it.