If you manage a company, you’ve probably heard the term ïemployee engagement’ and understand its importance, but do you know what it actually means? Simply put, employee engagement is the degree to which a person’s feelings about his or her workplace, position and coworkers influences his or her performance. A good manager will have leadership qualities that fuel engagement between employees and management, which boosts the company’s culture and business practices and makes the entire business more effective. Do you have the qualities necessary?
Values and Vision
Values and vision are two of the most important leadership qualities that fuel engagement. Do you back up your company’s values or is it just a set of pretty words to put into your training manuals? Have you created a clear vision statement that supports the direction in which you wish to take your business? Is your vision simply to better your current model or to expand and create something truly innovative? A good business will have a set of values and a vision that not only reads well, but is actively pursued by both management and employees.
The Ability to Compete Effectively
Any successful business is going to have to compete with similar companies. In order for your employees to do so effectively, they cannot be focused on competing among themselves. When you encourage competition between departments, you create a lack of teamwork, leading employees to be disengaged and unwilling to work together when they need to. It could even lead to mistrust as employees try to decide whether their colleagues are simply out for themselves. Focus instead on creating a team environment that allows for close collaboration between departments as well as between employees and management.
Keep Yourself Accountable
Leadership qualities that fuel engagement often revolve around being honest with yourself. Holding yourself accountable is one of the best ways to do so. When a company project fails, it might be tempting to blame the guy at the bottom of the ladder, but is it really his fault alone? If you’re honest with yourself, probably not, because who was in charge of training him? Even if you aren’t directly responsible for ensuring entry-level employees do their jobs correctly, you are probably in charge of the people who are responsible for doing so. True accountability is a shared responsibility between both employees and management. Consistently blaming employees for failures leads to a team that doesn’t even want to be in the office, let alone do its best work.
Practice Servant Leadership
Servant leadership does not mean treating your employees as servants, but that is exactly what many employers do. In reality, servant leadership means serving your employees. Your job is to help your employees become their best selves, and they can’t do that if they constantly feel as if they are under your thumb. If you truly want leadership qualities that fuel engagement, help your employees reach their goals. When they accomplish them, be sure to show your appreciation. It doesn’t need to be an elaborate gesture. Even something as simple as a letting them know they did a good job will make them strive to achieve even more goals.
Have an Open Door Policy
Many companies claim to have an open door policy, but don’t actively encourage it. Employees who feel their concerns are simply unwanted interruptions are not likely to speak to management about important issues. Whether they simply have questions about their performance or want to offer some constructive criticism, you can use these moments as opportunities to provide coaching and mentorship. Actively listen to what they have to say and never become angry or defensive when receiving criticism. Doing so will lead to a fearful company culture, the exact opposite of showing leadership qualities that fuel engagement.
Use Your Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence should not be forgotten when coming up with a list of leadership qualities that fuel engagement. Emotional intelligence is the ability to monitor and properly deal with your own emotions as well as the emotions and feelings of your employees. As you consider your feelings and use body language and tone of voice to determine how your employees are feeling, you can use the information to guide your feelings and help you determine the proper course of action. If you truly want an engaged workforce, you must show empathy to those around you. A lack of sensitivity paints you as a mean boss and makes it less likely that employees will come to you when they need to. These leadership qualities that fuel engagement are a partial list, but will get you on the right track to creating a solid employer-employee relationship. To learn more about becoming a better leader, use the tools available at Mighty Recruiter.