Since the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, team members have become more dispersed — working apart from colleagues they used to see every day. While the way we work has changed, most of our goals haven’t. We still need to deliver business results, focus on our priorities and overcome challenges. As a leader, you can make a positive impact by helping your employees work better as a team and remain productive.
Use these strategies to help your team be successful no matter what your workplace environment is.
1. Open the lines of communication
A consistent stream of communication is more important now than ever. You don’t need a full-blown, comprehensive internal communication plan, but you should establish a regular cadence of touch points with your team…
“New Year, New Me?” At the start of every year our social media channels are filled with posts from people who use this philosophy to vow to a fresh start. But really, the new year should be about creating a “Better Me” and finding areas of your life that you think need improvement.
The same idea goes for internal communication. So before you start drafting your new 2020 communication plan, think about using an audit as a “year in review.” It can help you:
You work hard to bring your communication program to life: Your objectives are well thought out, you followed best practices and carefully crafted key messages. But how do you know if it’s working? Are employees engaged? Do they feel informed and understand what they need to do?
To find out, your first inclination may be to conduct a communication survey. While a survey will be efficient, it will only provide part of the story. To get a true assessment of the effectiveness of your entire internal communication program, it’s best to conduct a full audit.
An audit is a useful tool to understand how communication is performing and typically includes several research methods designed to develop a clear picture of strengths and opportunities. …
How busy are employees? Not only are they constantly bombarded with emails, but now — with most office workers being remote — the pressure is increasing to be constantly online. The typical employee receives around 120 emails a day. If that person spent four minutes reading each email, this activity alone would take a full eight hours.
So that creates a challenge: how to communicate everything employees need to know without providing too much.
Before you start taking action steps, you first need to determine what too much looks like in your organization. There are four areas to measure:
Reciting packaged information may be okay for reporting the news, but it’s not an effective way for leaders to communicate. Employees are skeptical of formal, pre-scripted speeches filled with corporate jargon. Instead, employees crave relatable, sincere conversations.
That’s why every leader should look for opportunities to have informal communication encounters, like having coffee with a few employees or eating lunch in the cafeteria. To boost employee engagement during these experiences, here are 9 steps to follow:
1. Set objectives. Don’t just show up; think about why you’re bringing people together. Is it to share perspectives or would you like to gather ideas and act on them? …
It’s time to rethink the way you communicate performance management. Why? Employees tell us that performance management communication is too complicated.
According to Davis & Company’s research, only 11% of employees say they are knowledgeable enough about performance management to make the right decisions.
If employees don’t understand the topic and can’t make important decisions, the result could be:
· Loss of trust between an employee and his or her manager
· Low employee morale
· Poor employee performance
Here are three strategies that will help you effectively communicate about performance management:
1. Communicate your company goals so employees can set performance…
A few years ago, it seemed that performance management was on its way out; in fact, a number of prominent companies abandoned their systems.
But many organizations (including my firm) have continued performance management because we find a system helps employees set goals that support the company strategy while providing a framework for professional development.
The value of any good performance management system is communication. In fact, the true effectiveness of a performance management system lies beyond process; it’s about the dialogue between manager and team member.
Whether you are a new supervisor who has never lead an in-depth performance discussion, or a manager with many years of experience, your effectiveness depends on how well you prepare. …
Congratulations; you’ve just hired a terrific new employee. But unfortunately there’s a good chance that your new employee might not work out; in fact, according to a study by the training company Leadership IQ, 46% of newly-hired employees will fail within 18 months and only 19% achieve unequivocal success.
What can you do to increase your odds? Build an effective orientation process and program. Traditionally, HR managers focus on the orientation session, which we define as the formal event that employees attend (either in person or virtually) to learn essential information about the company.
But, while that program is vitally important, it’s not enough to ensure that new employees are set up for success. For that, you need to develop a more holistic orientation process that is well understood by managers and employees. (Some companies call this process “onboarding,” as in “getting the new hire on board.”) …
It comes around every year: benefits enrollment season. And every year you work hard to communicate benefits so employees will understand your plan (or choice of plans) and take appropriate action.
But every year the task gets more difficult. Health care costs keep rising. Plan rules get more complicated. You make changes to keep costs contained, and employees view those changes as “takeaways.” And, just when you think you’ve got it all under control, a big curve ball (can you say, “Congress?”) comes along.
It’s no wonder that every year you end up with a headache that requires a jumbo bottle of extra-strength pain reliever. …
We’ve all learned how much healthcare is a political issue. But what many of us still need to realize is that healthcare is, first and foremost, deeply personal. In companies that provide benefits, employees care about their health insurance on a primal level, just as they care about their pay, performance management and other programs/policies managed by Human Resources.
So what does that mean if you’re managing one of these programs? Or if you’re in charge of communicating about them so employees understand what they need to do?
By understanding the three things employees need most — and delivering on those needs — you’ll not only help employees. You’ll also improve morale and build loyalty. …