Your employees are the most important part of your company. Without them, there wouldn’t even be a company. So keeping them satisfied should rank high on your priorities for the new year!
Every year, most businesses like to generate some kind of report on the overall happiness within their company. It’s a good way to check in when one year has passed to make sure everyone is on the same page. If you’re not doing that, we recommend getting in that habit quickly. Because it’s pretty clear that employee happiness breeds success. In fact, employee satisfaction should take priority. It can be a pretty daunting task, though. So is there an easy way to make a game plan to set your employees up for success? There is now! Zeynep Ilgaz of Entrepreneur stepped in to give us some pretty awesome ways to make sure employees are successful and satisfied. Check out her list and our thoughts below!
1. Discuss personal goals alongside professional aims.
It’s important to not only make sure your company is going in the direction that you desire, but that your employees feel as though you’re involved as well. That means really getting to know their own personal wishes, too. So why is happiness so important? Well, the University of Warwick found that happy workers are 12% more productive. Therefore, take the time to find out what their goals are. Ilgaz gave a great example where her company included a gym membership in their benefits because they knew most of them had voiced their desire to lose weight. This not only shows that you’re listening but you care about their health and well-being.
2. Connect employee aims to larger company objectives.
Each worker contributes to the big picture. Everyone has their own separate duties to complete so that the company’s objective can be reached. Sometimes, employees can begin to feel really disconnected from that end goal. A good way to get everyone involved and seeing where all their hard work is going is to share your goals for the year. Let them see where their hours of typing on a computer or talking on the phone is going towards.
3. Set challenging yet achievable targets.
The key to everything is balance. Setting goals for your company is necessary, but so is making sure that those goals are realistic. If your objectives are challenging yet over ambitious, employees will feel the stress of not living up to those plans. Let your employees know the reasoning behind your objective so they have a better understanding of how to succeed. There is an art to creating goals that are not only demanding but attainable as well. As Ilgaz said:
Make sure you ask, “Will these goals make a difference to both you and the company as a whole?”
4. Write the goals down.
This may sound simple, even a little silly. But studies have shown writing down your future goals is necessary to achieve them. MBA students from Harvard were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” The results were surprising. 3% had actually taken the time to write them down, only 13% of them actually had goals that weren’t written down, and 84% had absolutely no plans at all. Researchers waited 10 years and approached them again. The students who had goals were earning twice as much as those who had none. But that 3% that actually wrote their goals down? Their earnings were 10 times as much as the other 97%. Combined. Let that sink in.
5. Create a plan for success and stick to it.
Get everyone involved. Once your goals are set, let the employees tell you how they plan to meet them. Let them come up with ideas and tasks on how to reach the end zone. It actually takes some pressure off of you to figure out how to divvy up responsibilities. But stay on top of the process so you can make sure everyone is still comfortable with their tasks. Generate progress reports or hold monthly meetings. That way, your employees can let you know their concerns and you can ensure they’re satisfied should any arise. Keeping your workers happy will allow you to thrive!