Training increases productivity by 22%. Follow-up coaching combined with training increases productivity by 88%.
International Personnel Management Association
How many employees receive the support they need to develop skills and contribute even more?
A leader’s job is to ensure their team effectively handles the volume of work and delivers the desired results. Effective leaders know their employees are their most valuable asset, thus, their primary internal customer. They teach their people everything they know and focus their efforts on helping them become the best they can be.
Imagine what a team of highly motivated, skilled employees can accomplish when they put their minds to it. When leaders light the way and actively engage and support their team, there is nothing they can’t accomplish. Environments like this attract and retain the caliber of people who will carry the organization successfully into the future.
Grow and develop employee skills
Employees want to be part of a winning organization. They want to perform meaningful work and make a difference for their team and organization. They need to know that management values them as much as they do their customers. They also need to have opportunities to learn and grow, and receive recognition for their contributions to team and organizational success. So, the overall support their managers provide is vital to having highly engaged, committed employees who go the extra mile.
As you reflect on your management team, think about the impact of the following critical success factors on the quality of support they provide to their employees.
Managers need to:
Provide ongoing support
Successful leaders embrace their responsibility for supporting their employees. They hold regular one-on-ones, observe, and provide coaching and reinforcement to help employees get better at what they do. They remove road blocks and provide tools and resources to help employees acquire new skills.
These respected leaders also know that training alone is not enough. Their role is to reinforce what has been taught and help employees apply what they learned in their daily work. In return, grateful and motivated employees regularly go the extra mile to help the team and organization achieve success.
Foster learning and growth
The best leaders understand how much importance employees place on learning new skills and seizing opportunities to grow. And, organizations that recognize the value of having a bench of candidates to fill open positions ensure that people at all levels of the organization are committed to continuous learning and professional development.
In today’s environment every employee needs to have a development plan, whether they’re striving to get better at their current job, or they are preparing for a change in responsibility or advancement in the organization. And, every manager needs to tap into their own undying curiosity and commitment to success, to find new ways to hone their leadership approach. By strengthening their leadership skills, they will be able to provide additional learning opportunities for their people, and serve as effective mentors who support their employees learning and growth.
Conduct regular coaching and feedback
When people in management positions shy away from providing regular coaching and feedback, it is often because they fear it will generate conflict. The tone and approach managers take will determine how well or how poorly the coaching and feedback is received. At the root, the problem may be that performance or behavioral expectations were not clearly established up front. That makes it difficult to provide feedback within an established framework.
Done effectively, coaching and feedback are the greatest gifts a leader can give their employees. They are tools in the leader’s tool kit to help their employees learn and grow, and get better at what they do. As a result, the employees add value to the team and organization, and work hard helping the team and organization prosper.
Recognize employee contributions
Recognizing employee contributions and reinforcing professional behavior is vital to creating a winning culture. In addition, addressing sub-par performance and unprofessional behavior is also vital to building a culture of winning. Does the recognition your organization provides help drive the behavior and performance you need to support organizational success?
A highly valued, often underutilized form of recognition is simply. . .catching people in the act of doing things right and saying “Thank you for a job well done.” or “I really value your contributions to the team.” When employees know that management is aware of their contributions, and expresses their appreciation, they will continue to find ways to help the team and organization achieve even greater success.