5 Ways to Inspire Greater Employee Loyalty

Every business owner knows that in order to grow their company, they need to invest in all aspects of their business. From innovative marketing efforts, clever content ideas and stellar social media strategies all the way to product and service updates, every modern brand focuses on constant evolution in order to gain more momentum and remain relevant in its industry. However, one particular aspect of your brand growth pushes more managers to look inward for smart solutions: because happy employees translate to a strong brand that attracts loyal customers.

A portion of your corporate efforts should focus on keeping your employees engaged, inspired, and above all, happy. The following are some of the most effective ways to achieve just that, so make them your 2019 priorities in order to see your business flourish!

Seek out and act on feedback

There has been so much buzz around looking for regular feedback from your customers that most brand owners have neglected to implement the very same principle inside their own walls, physical or otherwise. No matter if you work in a digital office or you have a physical one where you see your employees daily, their opinions should be heard regularly and you need to act on them as often as possible.

It’s not enough to just conduct surveys or have those one-on-one meetings if you will only stick all the files in your drawer and forget all about them as soon as the last employee goes back to their desk. Whether they feel as if the office should be more transparent about management decisions and practices or that you need different team structures to work more efficiently, a little can go a long way in helping your employees improve their performance and know that they are heard.

Incentives still make sense

The idea of fair compensation has always been a point of struggle for the vast majority of the business world, whether a manager fails to understand their employees’ living conditions or if they somehow neglect to consider moving forward with their payment systems. In today’s world of tech advancements, you can use simple solutions such as personalized payroll cards that enable your employees easy access to their salaries without losing any money on unnecessary transactions.

Add to that regular bonuses, not merely for the most relevant holidays, but for their notable achievements such as closing a new sale, getting a promotion, landing a relevant client or wrapping up a major project. Financial incentives will always have their place in the professional world, so don’t leave them as your last resort, but rather utilize them as an ongoing reward program.

Provide a healthy balance

This hectic world of ours lacks one very crucial piece of the puzzle: more focus on our wellbeing. Employers who encourage their workers to live healthy are far more likely to have a higher employee retention rate and better workplace atmosphere than those who simply focus on project results and numbers. Before you move forward, create together with your employees a wellness program which you’ll monitor and track on a regular basis, and improve if need be.

From prevention measures such as office doctor visits and conversations with your residing psychologist through offering comprehensive health insurance all the way to perks such as gym memberships, meditation classes and on-site massages will definitely help your employees feel better and work better. Offer them healthy snack and meal alternatives, and more of them will also start building healthier habits outside of the office, which will significantly increase their work-life balance. You can also have a nutritionist visit your office from time to time to give advice on better eating habits!

Acknowledge each employee’s contribution

While it’s fine to encourage a healthy level of competition among your staff, it’s equally vital to recognize each of their contribution to your organizational growth. More often than not, managers are too busy with numbers and celebrating abstract success and results rather than celebrating the people who’ve accomplished them in the first place. The modern employee rarely tolerates such lack of recognition, and every modern manager needs to focus more on making sure each employee feels like a valued member of the team.

Simple gestures such as sending out a company-wide email where you give a shout-out to each team member, giving them a gift basket of their favorite snacks, or giving them a couple of extra days off or a wellness weekend for them and their spouse; all of these can help build a stronger bond with your teammates.

Encourage progress and learning

The modern employee also craves more than a static work position that feels like a dead-end job. They need opportunities to master new skills, gain new knowledge and stay informed on the latest trends in their field of expertise. You as their employer will benefit from such progress, so make sure you give them ample opportunities to visit conferences and seminars and to grow both on a professional and on a personal level.

In-house mentorships also help develop a learning mindset within your company, and your employees will continue to reinforce their existing knowledge through teaching others. Simply offering raises and titles is no longer enough – you need to provide true challenges and growth for them to stay and be happy.

 

The work of a business owner never truly ends. However, with these tried and tested methods, you can help your employees thrive under your wing, and consequently, your business will be able to grow stronger and more successful with every happy employee you nurture.

 

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Employee Engagement and Experience Driven by “Culture First”

This is no more a secret that engaged employees are more likely to perform better and improve organizational success. And as the companies move more towards agile organizational models, there will be more increase in the employee engagement rates.

Employee Engagement refers to an employee’s job satisfaction, loyalty, and inclination to spend discretionary effort toward organizational goals. Companies measure engagement through an annual employee survey or by a continuous feedback culture.

The important characteristic to remember when thinking about employee engagement is that, it is a real-time assessment of how employees are feeling about their organization and their work.

Culture First

But this is not the only important one. We need to care about culture as well, for understanding what is happening within our organization. And engagement is a critical output of a strong culture.

For organizational culture, the definition centers on the concepts of values and assumptions which contribute to the development of norms, behaviors, and other cultural activities. Because employee engagement and organization’ culture both involve an individual’s relationship with their workplace, it is necessary to bring them always together.

But why the organizational culture is important here?

Check out the below INFOGRAPHICS on Organization Culture from Multigence. They are providing an efficient and scalable technology based solution that measures, evaluates and matches your organization culture with individual profiles of employees and candidates.

Organisation Culture in Infographics from Multigence

According to Multigence, organization must focus on fitting individuals into the corporate culture. Culture isn’t for your employees. It starts the moment a candidate first comes across your brand. And this immediate activate the drivers for your organization growth and success like below.

  • Right hiring and promotion
  • Proper alignments of skills, including the soft skills
  • Taking the right talent decisions
  • Fitting to the corporate branding

The culture of the organization is shaped by each single individual. Successful talent decisions will be driven by cultural fit.

And in the long term benefits, it also

  • Reduce in recruitment cost and higher success rate of recruiting with right hiring match
  • Increase in retention, employee satisfaction, performance indicators and productivity
  • Build and choose better leaders and find the right successors

According to Bersin by Deloitte, organizational culture, engagement, and employee brand proposition remain top priorities in 2017; employee experience ranks as a major trend again in 2017. “Employee engagement has become the top issue on the minds of business leaders, directing us to an entirely new model of management”. And companies need a new approach—one that builds on the foundation of culture and engagement to focus on the employee experience holistically, considering all the contributors to worker satisfaction, engagement, wellness, and alignment.

And according to them, the below figure shows the factors that contribute to positive employee experience. So it pretty clear that today organizations must focus on the employee engagement to have the right employee experience on the foundation of culture.

Simply Irresistible Organization Model

Back in 2015, Graham Massay, the Business Head of The House, came up with an interesting article Culture First Engagement Second. Where he mentioned the risk is that engagement becomes a once-a-year, box-ticking exercise, designed to prove that everything’s OK rather than actually making sure that everything’s OK. By contrast, a strong values-led culture keeps your organization healthy and your employees inspired.

Focusing on culture rather than employee engagement doesn’t mean giving up on measurement. Culture is an outcome. And the business cannot afford to focus solely on engagement at the expense of culture.

So the next question comes to our mind.

Why organizations should focus on employee engagement based on culture first approach?

Multigence has tried to bring the benefits of employee engagement driven by culture or based on a foundation of culture, with the below INFOGRAPHICS.

Employee Engagement Driven by Culture in the Infographics from Multigence

Now if the organization is looking to apply for these benefits, they must focus on employee experience and the world of digitalization. There are many digital tools available in the market which delivers great employee experience. These tools can be categorized as:

  • Productivity and Collaboration tools
  • Engagement and Feedback tools
  • Performance Management tools
  • Well-Being tools
  • Culture Fit tools
  • Employee Services tools

If one can commit to managing these aspects of your employee experience along with employee engagement and culture, then they can be surely a few steps ahead of their peers. The important thing is to consistently care about the employee experience and culture. The role of technology makes a great impact here and one should plan accordingly.

In beginning of this year there is also came up an article Culture First. Digitalization Second. (In German), by the writer Daniel Fuerg, an entrepreneur and according to him.

“It is about a cultural change in our society, triggered by the possibilities of digital technologies and innovations. But the change is not digitalization. The change is what the new possibilities with us humans make. It is a cultural change, which was triggered by technological changes. Companies must thus respond to cultural change and at the same time equip themselves with technology.”

So it’s clear that before we should plan and start considering about engagement, experiences, we must also consider culture the individual culture and off course the organization culture.

So it’s make sense to focus on “Culture First” approach over company first or even county first.

About the Author:

Soumyasanto Sen

Soumyasanto Sen — Professional Advisor, Consultant, Investor in HR Technologies having 12+ years of experiences focusing on Strategies, People Analytics, Cloud, UX, Security, Processes, Integration and Entrepreneurship in Workforce Transformation.

Blogger, Speaker and Evangelist in HR Technologies. Founder of HRTech Conscience.


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Customer Support and Millennials: What You Need to Know!

Written by Evan Oeflein | Originally published at AnswerDash 

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Millennials are the future! You’ve likely heard the phrase countless times and for good reason: if businesses learn to treat millennials well now, they can protect that relationship for years to come. Here’s what you need to know about millennials and customer service.

With recent counts hovering around 77 million, millennials make up about one-fourth of the US population and are a rapidly growing segment of the American economy1. Combined, they wield around $2.45 trillion in annual buying power2, which makes them a valuable market and an important customer base for any business. With their substantial importance now and eventual economic dominance, it’s crucial that businesses learn to meet their needs and preferences as much as possible. However, knowing what they want isn’t always easy — they are very different from Baby Boomers and Gen Xers. Knowing these differences is an effective competitive edge.

The key difference when interacting with millennials is primarily in how they expect to be treated and via which channels.

Millennials are extremely self-reliant, with almost 40% of them first checking a company’s FAQ page when they have a question3. If they can’t find an answer there or their needs go unmet, four out of five millennials choose to use social media for customer service instead of through web, phone, or online chat channels4. In fact, when contacting a company, most millennials use Facebook almost twice as often as the second-most used social media, Twitter4. An important side note: nearly 25% of millennials expect to get a response on social media within 10 minutes, which can be a difficult demand to meet for many businesses4. Failing to meet expectations like these can result in unhappy millennial customers and could hurt your business.

So what steps can you take to mitigate potential issues and cater to your millennial customers?

First things first: don’t make them call customer service. Make sure they can find answers on your website as easily as possible. Consider a self-service solution to help them help themselves, so they don’t need to reach out to you with problems or issues in the first place!

To drive this point home, here are a few things millennials would rather do than call a support line and sit on hold:

  • 34% would rather have their teeth cleaned4
  • 32% would rather go shopping on Christmas Eve4
  • 26% would rather go to the DMV4

Second: Bend over backwards for your millennial customers! It’s common practice to be accommodating and helpful with any customer, but 22% of millennials say that one bad experience is enough for them to leave a brand for good5. Just a heads up that this can also include boycotting a service, with nearly a quarter of all millennials saying they would be willing to boycott a company after just one bad experience4! Yikes. And with the rapid growth of e-commerce businesses, it’s not difficult for them to leave you and shop with competition. In many ways, your relationship with them now is tied to the future success of your business: once they find a company and product they like, 80% of Millennials will keep going back6.

Whatever your approach to customer support, understand that  millennials expect to be able to find what they need themselves. If they can’t, they don’t want to spend time waiting around for you to answer them (they’d rather go to the dentist, remember?), so get back to them quickly! They’re expected to eclipse Baby Boomers in spending power by 2018, at $3.39 trillion annually7, and will make up even more of your customer base.

Since 64% of millennials feel greater brand loyalty than their Baby Boomer or Generation X parents 8, they’re more likely to stick around if you give them the support they crave! Millennials are the future and they will remember everything you do for them now.

To learn how you can help your millennial customers help themselves, take a peek at our website self-service eBook “How to help your customers help themselves”.

Sources:

(1) 2014, Millennial Consumer Report, Nielson
(2) 2014, Millennials Drive Social Commerce, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
(3) 2015, State of Service Report, Salesforce Research
(4) 2015, Customer Survey: Results & Analysis, Desk.com
(5) 2015, Millennials Research Study, Aspect
(6) 2010, 8095 Exchange: Millennial Whitepaper, Edelman Digital
(7) 2010, Gen-Y Financial Services Survey, Oracle
(8) 2014, Millennial Brand Loyalty, Adroit Digital

Source: Customer Support and Millennials: What You Need to Know!