Nothing disrupts performance, productivity and profitability quicker than poor staff morale. In fact, according to a recent poll by Gallup Inc., on average, “17% of U.S. workers have been actively disengaged over the 18 years of tracking. The remaining 53% of workers are in the “not engaged” category. They may be generally satisfied but are not cognitively and emotionally connected to their work and workplace; they will usually show up to work and do the minimum required but will quickly leave their company for a slightly better offer.”
Often unhappy people tend to withdraw and bring the overall mood down. Voltage is one of the most important predictive performance barometers a company can use in managing the work community. When the staff starts to own the voltage of the company, when they see the impact it has on productivity, a subtle shift happens in the organization.
A wide range of elements contribute to the voltage. Think of it as the spirit of an organization. Are people eager to talk with the CEO? Is there laughter? Are there interactions, small groups’ meetings and employees having animated conversations? Does the leader know everyone by name? How does the environment look? Are people proud of their work areas?
Voltage very often starts with the staff being given an opportunity to express their feelings and perceptions about the company through survey or assessment. While getting the feedback can be uncomfortable for leadership, it’s a critical component in creating a culture where employees feel valued, listened to and respected.
Staff morale and staff voltage are the responsibility of every manager in an organization, and that responsibility starts with the leader of the company.
Critical Questions to Ask
- How are employees recognized for their contributions?
- What is your employee performance management plan?
- Are managers conducting one-on-ones with each direct report?
- How does the company help employees feel empowered to make critical decisions that involve customers?
Why This Challenge Must Be Resolved
In reality, most people spend more time interacting with others in their work environment than they do with their family. That makes the success of a work community a high priority for any business leader. Modern studies support the belief that when people feel good about their job, their manager and about the work itself, they are more productive. More productive employees means better results: higher margins, better performance and a positive impact on customers.
By being proactive in creating a culture where employees feel valued; where their ideas count; where they are empowered to make decisions that contribute to the well-being of the organization – a business leader is allowing the company the opportunity to not just survive, but thrive.
Need help with this topic or leadership coaching? Contact Mission Critical Teams.