In a recent survey, workplace expert Michelle McQuaid found that 65 percent of workers in the United States would be happier if they had a boss who recognized their good work. On the other hand, only 35 percent of those surveyed said they would be happier if they got a raise.
McQuaid also has found that bosses can affect employeesâ€™ health by wearing down their immune systems and â€œleaving us at risk of more colds, diseases, strokes, and even heart attacksâ€ by making employees so anxious and stressed that they donâ€™t perform well at work. â€œWe also take our bad mood home to the people who love us most and wind up damaging our relationships,â€ she writes.
Thirty-one percent of the respondents to McQuaidâ€™s survey said they donâ€™t feel their bosses appreciate them, and only 38 percent said their bosses are doing a good job.
How would your employees rate you as a boss? Are you responsible for poor-performing employees? Are you costing your company money because your employees leave? It might be time to take a good, hard look at how you manageâ€”and treatâ€”your people.
Do you coach and nurture your employees? This is critical, if you want to develop employees who not only will be high performersâ€”but who will make you look good in the process. Think of yourself as the coach of your favorite NFL football team. You wouldnâ€™t expect your players to take the field every week without your guidance and going on to win the Super Bowl, so why would you expect your employees to come to work every day and perform at their highest levels? Tell them what you need them to do, give them the tools to do it, and watch them rise to the occasion.
Do you treat your employees with respect? Weâ€™ve all seenâ€”and many of us have worked forâ€”bosses who rant and rave and expect their tirades to motivate their employees to perform at higher levels. If anything, the result is the opposite. Donâ€™t kid yourself; your employees can sabotage your career by making you look bad. On the other hand, if you treat your employees with respect, they will respect you and will work hard to earn your approval.
Do you praise your employees? Nothing will motivate your employees to do well more than praise, particularly public praise. Itâ€™s no secret that we all crave recognition, whether we are earning minimum wage or are at the senior executive level. When you praise your employees, you are letting them know you appreciate them and, when they feel appreciated, they will do whatever it takes to meetâ€”and exceedâ€”your expectations. Simply put, praise will drive performance and fulfillment of customer service duties.
Do you give your employees feedback on a regular basis? We all need to have benchmarks, some way of tracking how we are doing. Feedback is one way of doing so. Employees want some type of report card, something that lets them know how they are performing and that helps them to build on their strengths and improve their weaknesses. Annual performance reviews are fine and usually are conducted only as an assessment on which to base a pay increase, but they do nothing to help employees improve their performance.
Start the New Year out by making a commitment to yourselfâ€”and to your employeesâ€”that you will do everything in your power to become a better boss. You will be surprised at the results: increased productivity, decreased turnover, and a much more pleasant work environmentâ€”for you and your employees. Not to mention customer experience improvement, and isn't that what it's all about?