The culture of a business has a huge impact on productivity and employee engagement. If there is a blame culture which penalises people for failure, employee engagement and morale will be low. But if there is a culture where achievements are celebrated, employees will feel more valued, be more committed and motivated to do well, which equals a more productive and successful business.
How can you create an achievement culture?
Recognise a job well done
If employees have performed well or gone the extra mile, recognising this and rewarding it is a form of positive reinforcement which is more likely to motivate employees, make them feel appreciated, and want to do well.
Set clear objectives
It can be difficult to keep employees motivated if they aren’t clear on the goals they’re working towards. If employees know exactly how their job role contributes to the overall success of the business, this will motivate them to achieve their targets.
When incentives are used appropriately, they can be used as a tool to encourage employees to collaborate and motivate each other.
Lead by example
Employees do take note of the behaviour of managers, so pay attention to what messages your behaviour gives them. This will impact on employee performance and what they think is expected of them.
If employees feel far removed from managers, this can create feelings of mistrust. If however managers are seen to be visible and accessible, it builds trust and a feeling of ‘we’re all in this together.’
Be clear about standards
Be open and honest with employees about what you expect from them in terms of performance. If there is evidence of poor performance, deal with it sooner rather than later as this can undermine your authority and perceived leadership abilities.
Commit to learning and development
Employees should have the chance to develop within their role, for their benefit and for the benefit of the business. The world of business is constantly changing, and competitors will always spring up where you least expect it. Would you want to be in a position where you have stagnated or lack the expertise in your workforce because you had failed to encourage anyone to develop? Offer training in service standards and industry-specific training to keep employees’ skills up to date.
The culture of a business is often developed at the top but it pervades every level of an organisation. The culture will either motivate employees to do well for the good of the business, or it will make them feel undervalued and disengaged. Which do you think makes better business sense?
Maureen O’Callaghan is a Member of the Chartered Management Institute and has an MSc in Mindfulness-Based Approaches. She works with organisations, teams, and individuals to create less stressful working environments, improve team working, enhance performance and productivity and develop leadership and management skills. For more information visit www.mocallaghan.co.uk or e mail firstname.lastname@example.org