Managing employees is no walk in the park. Try as you might to make reasonable requests, you will always end up the bad guy. It’s not completely your fault either; humans are just wired to dislike authority from the get-go. But while you can’t change your employee’s psyche completely, there are a few easy steps you can use to maneuver their mind in your favor.
Step 1: Know your employee
Your employees are not cattle that uniformly respond to your beck and call. They are people, and each is different to the other. Try getting to know everyone a little bit to see what motives them. Here is a helpful cheat sheet you can use:
And so, a few useful tips to keep your employee happy are:
- Ensure they have a work-life balance
- Recognize their work often
- Let them listen to music at work (as long as they use headphones, of course!)
- Allow a 10 minute break to lift monotony
Step 2: Know what turns them off work
Now that you have gotten to know everyone a little bit and have an idea of what drives them, you should probably find out what ticks them off. Frustrated workers will never be productive. Here is a great chart to help you with this problem.
Here’s the gist to help you keep up:
What turns off employees from work is
- Absence of easy communication
- Lack of recognition
- Too much work
If you have figured out how to remedy these problems, you are good to go to the next step.
Step 3: Don’t be stingy with compliments
Your employees want to know that you cherish them. If you let them remain only a face in the crowd, you’ll find it reflected in their performance as well. You don’t have to go overboard either. Again, it helps if you remember that they are people, and people like to be appreciated for the work they put in. A simple, but sincere expression of a job well done should do the trick. Check out another info graphic by Habnet for more ideas.
Employee appreciation is much easier than you think—a simple thank you note will work wonders. A little morale boost is all you need to provide to keep 68% of your employees from leaving.
Alexander Stajkovic suggests that you refrain from generic compliments and spend some time coming up with more meaningful ones. Instead of saying “good job”, say something like “I know you had to work overtime to finish these reports. I could not have completed this project by morning without you.”
Now that you have mastered the art of compliments, let’s move on to the next step.
Step 4: Engage your employees
Simply put, an engaged employee loves their work. And when they feel like their potential is being substantially used, they work to make the entire company better. Why would anyone work beyond their personal goals, you ask? Well studies have proven that organization that practice employee engagement perform better than those who don’t by 200%. And that sure is an unbelievable number, isn’t it? Unbelievable but true.
So you know your employees, you know what ticks them off, you’ve been giving them compliments and they are well engaged. What’s next?
Step 5: Know when to slow down
Frustrated and overworked workers will never perform as well as you would like. Look out for sign of stress, then learn to take a step back. If you are not too good with reading faces, let TechRepublic guide you with this chart:
Anger and irritability from one employee will ruin the atmosphere of the entire workplace and make your job way tougher!
Step 6: Don’t be a slacker, either
You are the manager after all, and it is your job to make sure they get the work done. To avoid being labeled as the overbearing boss but get your job done anyway, get hold of some nifty employee tracking software. Cell phone trackers can be very useful, too. This way, you don’t have to breathe down their necks all the time but still know if someone is taking too long a break or trying to give away company information.