The hustle and bustle of the working world can make it difficult for employers to stay in tune with their employees. However, not doing so can be costly — think decreased engagement and job satisfaction, and increased turnover. Employers don’t always get a behind-the-scenes look at the goings-on within various departments and their employees, but it’s time to remove the curtain.
In an effort to hold on to the company’s best and brightest, employers need a bit of a reality check when it comes to their workforce. Here are five data-backed facts every employer needs to realize about their employees and what to do about them:
Employees might appear happy in their current positions, but what employers don’t know is that many employees are actively searching for new work. According to LinkedIn’s 2015 Talent Trends survey of more than 20,000 employed professionals worldwide, nearly one in three said they are actively looking for a new job.
What to do about it: Keeping employees satisfied in their positions requires communication. Consider meeting with employees on a regular basis to elicit feedback and discuss job expectations and concerns. Employees won’t always speak up when there’s a problem, but giving them a safe, comfortable environment to discuss work-related issues and goals will encourage and support ongoing communication.
An engaged employee is a productive employee. Unfortunately, for every engaged employee there are a handful of disengaged employees. Gallup’s 2014 employee engagement study of more than 80,000 employed adults revealed that more than half of employees are not engaged (51 percent) or are actively disengaged (17.5 percent) on the job.
What to do about it: The key to employee engagement is purpose. Employees need to feel that their work efforts contribute to the overall company goals. Actively communicating these goals to the rest of the organization can help employees connect their individual goals to the company vision, which employees find both rewarding and motivating.
Take it a step further by sharing company success with the entire organization. Celebrating successes with employees is a great way to build momentum and organically create engagement.
Compensation is a leading driver of employee attraction and retention. In fact, according to Tower Watson’s 2014 Global Workforce Study, regardless of employee age, base pay is the reason most frequently cited by employees for joining or leaving an organization.
However, while 61 percent of the 600 employees surveyed by SHRM reported compensation or pay as a very important job satisfaction contributor, only 24 percent were very satisfied with the benefit, according to SHRM’s 2015 Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement report.
What to do about it: Don’t hesitate to spark the discussion with employees. If employees aren’t happy with their pay, employers need to know about it before they look for better compensation elsewhere. While giving a pay raise or bonus isn’t always an option, there are plenty of budget-friendly ways to compensate employees for a job well done, from providing professional development opportunities to offering creative workplace perks.
The employee-manager relationship has a huge impact on performance and overall job satisfaction. So much so, that one in two employees have left their jobs to get away from a bad manager, according to Gallup’s 2015 State of the American Manager Report of more than 2 million manager-led teams and 27 million employees.
What to do about it: Improving the employee-manager relationship requires managers to do more than just manage. Successful managers act as coaches, mentors and teachers.
The study by Gallup found that employees whose managers help them set work priorities and goals are more engaged. So play a role in helping employees succeed in their roles by taking part in the goal setting process and meeting with employees on a regular basis to discuss individual development.
When it comes to motivating and engaging employees, there’s only one thing that truly matters: respect. In a study of nearly 20,000 employees worldwide by Harvard Business Review, being treated with respect was revealed to be more important to employees than recognition and appreciation, useful feedback and even opportunities for growth.
When employers respect employees, the rest follows. Unfortunately, more than half of employees claimed that they don’t regularly get respect from their leaders.
What to do about it: Employee respect begins with inviting employees into the circle of trust. Respect means trusting employees enough to be transparent with them. When it comes to company successes (and failures), keep employees in the loop.
Not only will keeping employees informed make them feel valued and respected, but knowing the goings-on within the company can help them better contribute to successes and solutions.
I just watched the Blue Collar Millionaires TV Show and I loved how they pointed out, multiple times, that you must take risk to reap rewards! In addition each millionaire stated they believed in themselves and success when others called them crazy!
Common words that each blue collar millionaire used was; hard work, work ethic, never give up attitude, tenacity and a passion for what they were doing!
I must say I love all these new reality shows that spotlight free enterprise and capitalism. I don’t watch tv but when I do its, Shark Tank, The Profit, Bar Rescue and now Blue Collar Millionaire, and I am really working as I am typing this blog post and working on budgets as I watch the show!
These shows are great for our country.
Highly productive entrepreneurs aren’t necessarily special, but they are usually very driven and have unlocked the secrets to achieving their goals. When you know how to attack any objective with the right approach, you too can become unstoppable.
I’ve learned over my successful entrepreneurial experiences that good goal setting is easy to hypothesize about, but challenging to execute. As I figured out over the years how to go from making lists of goals to actually getting them accomplished, I learned a few steps that made the process of goal setting transformative.
Here are five simple steps for every entrepreneur to achieve any goal.
The vision of the goal has to start out big, and even a little vague, but then you have to turn that into several of what I call “something smaller” goals. This transforms a big lofty ambition into tent-pole moments along the path that you can achieve in smaller steps.
For example, wanting to improve your diet and increase physical activity are among the most common goals out there. I wouldn’t recommend suddenly going cold turkey on all your usual foods and going to the gym every day, but rather setting milestones along the road. Break the goals down into smaller lifestyle benchmarks, such as eliminating certain foods over the course of a month, then adding in more movement over the course of the following weeks.
By making small goal benchmarks to work toward, the goal becomes achievable overall because you made it actionable in smaller steps.
I always say a good goal is one that stretches you to the edge of your comfort zone, but not one that crosses over into fantasy. Everyone would love to make a million dollars this year, but if that’s not a number you can truly wrap your brain around, start with a number that stretches you but is believable.
If you are making $2,500 consistently a month, then could bumping the year-end goal to $10,000 a month actually be something you could believe? It doesn’t get you to a million this year, but it bumps your goal to something that’s believable for you and thus, feels more achievable. Once you get to year’s end and $10,000 a month feels comfortable and realistic, you can bump it again.
These smaller, realistic goals feed into the first step of breaking big ideas into smaller actions, too.
A great way to achieve any goal is to get the right support for your journey. You want to tell people who will be supportive and involved in your success. That has the benefit of bolstering you during times of challenge, but also when you verbalize your goals you tend to follow through better. You hold yourself more accountable to goals you’ve shared with others and that can help you reach them.
Breaking goals into smaller benchmarks helps to create action plans to smaller events that will eventually have a cumulative effect toward the big picture. This is a great tactic in terms of actions, but also a good tactic to help you put some metrics and measurement into the task.
If the goal is weight loss, then how much will you lose by each benchmark goal deadline you set? If it’s increasing your earnings, how can you track what you spend, what money is coming in and how you will generate more income through reducing your customer acquisition costs? Furthermore, how can you track your progress along the way to see how your overall goal is progressing against your small milestones?
As you meet your benchmarks, set up ways to celebrate or enjoy your victories. Make tracking the progress fun and meaningful. The more fun you can have along the way with your goals, the more successful you’ll be at achieving them.
The purpose of any goal isn’t just to achieve it, but often it’s to integrate it into your daily lifestyle, so learn to enjoy not just the destination but also the process of getting there.
If you’re fed up with your job, it may seem like there are only two steps to becoming an entrepreneur. The first is to quit your job, and the next step is to start a company. While it is possible to transition successfully from employee to entrepreneur, it’s a little more complex than that.
Here are the 12 steps you’ll need to take to become your own boss.
Some people call this finding your passion, but it’s more than that. Think about your skills, abilities and experience. Consider what you can realistically see yourself doing for hours each day, for weeks and years.
A viable business is the intersection between what you’d like to do and what others will pay for. Remember the “Jump to Conclusions Mat” from the movie Office Space? Todd loved building it, but no one was going to buy it. It wasn’t a viable business opportunity.
Find a few people that you think would be your ideal clients. Ask them about their biggest needs, fears and aspirations related to the business idea you plan to pursue. Are the benefits of your product or service in line with their real needs? Also, make a note of the words they use, as they’ll eventually help make your marketing more authentic.
Today’s marketing involves content creation, social media, email outreach and more. Make sure you know how you’ll approach each of these alternatives to introduce your idea to customers. At the same time, lay out a business plan that details how you intend your business to function. It doesn’t need to be super formal, but it does need to cover your operating structure, product, delivery systems and expansion plans.
If you can, test your company idea by launching on a small scale on the side, while still working your day job. This gives you a no-risk opportunity to test your ideas, get your first clients and see if the business will hold up over time before you leave the security of your current position.
Running a small-scale operation will help you determine which parts of your idea are great and which ones need adjusting. Take customer feedback seriously and make any necessary changes before you begin scaling up.
If your idea seems viable, determine who you’ll want on your business leadership team when you eventually launch full time. Depending on your personal experience, you may need help in areas such as finance, marketing, customer service and production.
For a small venture, this might mean saving up some money to get through the first few months or taking cash from your 401(k). If your aspirations are a bit larger, you may need to think about how to procure venture capital or other outside investment.
At the same time, you’ll also want to decide what kind of company structure to register. Do you want to incorporate, form an LLC or create a partnership? Get this taken care of legally and carefully define the roles and investment of each of your leadership team members.
When you’re ready, leave your day job. This may feel like an amazing relief after all the work you already put in, but trust me, more work awaits. Although it may be tempting, be sure not to burn any bridges as you leave — you never know when you’ll encounter former bosses and colleagues again, and you may need to work with them in the future.
With your full-time schedule now devoted to your business, set up a company budget. This should include payments for marketing expenses, salaries and other important purchases. Just be sure not to waste money on frivolous expenses!
Finally, all that’s left to do is to work the plans you’ve carefully laid out for yourself. Of course, that plan may change over time as you encounter and overcome obstacles. But, this is it — you’re a full-fledged entrepreneur. Congratulations!
As you can see, becoming an entrepreneur requires a lot of work before you even consider quitting your day job. However, if you follow each of the steps listed above and your idea still seems viable, you can leave your life as an employee and become an entrepreneur instead.
There are still many challenges you’ll face, but for most entrepreneurs, the benefits of meaningful work and self-direction are much more important.