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Did you know that almost 50% of employees consider leaving their companies due to bad bosses? We are suffering from a lack of good leaders today, causing a negative ripple effect throughout companies. Good managers are key to deriving employee engagement which impacts productivity, customer satisfaction, and, most importantly, profits.
So how do great leaders inspire teams to improve productivity? Here are five things you can do to inspire your workforce.
1. Build on your employees’ strengths
A leader’s most important job is to identify every individual worker’s strengths and weaknesses. That helps them assign tasks and responsibilities to the right employee.
For that, leaders must pay close attention to their employees, especially if they are new to the team. Observe how each one collaborates on projects or interacts in meetings. You can also invite employees to submit new ideas and tips through presentations. If you run a large organization, assign this task to your senior management.
Related: 9 Ways to Become a Better Leader
2. Empower your team
When does team empowerment happen? You empower your employees when you give them the authority and responsibility to make decisions. An empowered team organizes itself around a leader instead of waiting for instructions. Empowered employees don’t need to wait for approvals to implement a decision.
Granting this authority gives a new voice to your employees. They start owning their opinions as well as becoming accountable for their actions.
However, that can only happen when you empower the right employees after assessing their strengths and weaknesses. Otherwise, this strategy can backfire.
3. Walk the talk
There is only one way to walk the talk: Be the change you want to see in your team. In simple words, before you communicate any changes to the team, first implement them in your own work life.
Every leader’s personal core of ethics must align with the company’s values. If it doesn’t, you will have trouble enforcing it on others. On the other hand, when leaders consistently follow company rules, even in turbulent times, employees follow suit.
If a leader fails to walk the talk, employees are less likely to follow the leader’s decisions. So, as you try to lead a business unit or an organization, remember that even the most minor actions can create huge ripples in camaraderie and trust.
4. Communicate wisely
Another important thing is to keep your employees in the loop. That way, everyone stays on the same page and remains focused. Use your persuasion powers to impart the right messages at the right time. When sending an official email, ask yourself before you hit the send button:
Is this the right time to make this statement? Would it sound better if said in person?
The tone and timing of your message can make all the difference. Harsh words and an aggressive tone can harm your employees’ productivity. When your objective is to motivate and inspire, reflect on the timing and medium of your communication.
5. Offer employee incentives
Do you know many of today’s most successful leaders rarely take credit for their successes? Instead, they commend their employees or colleagues who made it all possible. Humility is a trademark attribute of successful leaders.
Don’t forget to create a weekly or a monthly honor roll or paste names/pictures of the most productive employees in your office. Pay homage to an employee who performed well in front of your entire team for motivating them to deliver the same results.
Organizing quarterly dinners/lunches is another fabulous way to reward a team after finishing a project. But what is the best way to acknowledge your team’s efforts? Rewards and incentives.
Offering monetary rewards to the most productive employees is one of the best ways to acknowledge your team’s efforts. While sending an email or a personal note is a grand gesture to thank your employees, incentives and rewards can infuse gratitude and confidence in your team.
But another important question arises: How to track employee productivity?
Use gamification for setting up a transparent performance tracking system. Gamification means turning work into games so projects become fun and engaging. Designing games with strategies and embedded corporate goals is the best way to monitor your employees’ performance.
According to a recent survey, almost 90% of employees believe that gamification makes them more productive at work. That’s because managers and leaders can check every employee’s points and offer rewards fairly. So, naturally, it boosts the employee’s morale.
End the era of bad leaders
Gone are the days when draconian and authoritative leadership strategies worked to make employees more productive. Today, the best ways to inspire teams are to value your employees, create an agile work environment and foster open communication. Define your expectations clearly and communicate work goals to inspire and motivate your team.