Employees are the life-blood of any company, the only reason a business is able to profit, be productive, and grow. However, this isn’t just the result of their labor; it’s also because of the invaluable feedback they provide.
Continue reading below to learn just how implementing their feedback can benefit your business and ultimately ensure it flourishes in the days and years to come.
1. Increased Employee Morale & Decreased Turnover
We’re not telling you anything you don’t already know, but it deserves repeating: a heard employee is a happy one.
Recognition of not only their work performance but also of their life circumstances, unique personalities, struggles, and successes is undoubtedly an essential piece of the employee satisfaction puzzle. Why? This kind of acknowledgment crafts a more positive, supportive work environment, and research has shown that might be even more instrumental to company success than we’d previously thought.
According to survey findings from The Society for Human Resource Management, 56% of people indicated that workplace recognition efforts increase recruitment, and almost 68% agreed that they positively affect job retention. Considering that these two things are among the most commonly cited struggles within workforce management, this is definitely worth your attention.
Just how are you supposed to increase this employee recognition, though? Health programs and ongoing education are an excellent move, but listening to (and implementing!) worker feedback is equally as essential – if not more.
The proof is in the pudding, too, as the same SHRM survey findings cite that a whopping 89% of HR professionals report ongoing peer feedback as either somewhat or extremely positive for their organizations.
2. More High Level Goal Contribution
Organizations that take their employees’ suggestions into account and use them to better the workplace environment have an easier time keeping and recruiting quality talent. However, if you pay attention, you’ll also notice something else.
Not only does supporting workers and implementing their feedback secure employment numbers, it also generates motivation that will increase their contribution to the company. The reason for this has everything to do with respect.
Listening to employees’ needs and taking up the helm to create a kinder space for them to thrive demonstrates that they’re valued. This, in turn, will make them appreciate their company more highly, which has a profoundly positive effect on their approach to work. Dedication, initiative, and eagerness to participate all immediately improve.
Aren’t completely sold that simple respect will hold this much weight for employees? You might be left changing your tune once you ask your workers.
A recent collaborative study between the University of Missouri and Kansas State University also echoes what they’re assuredly saying, reporting that the young workers of today value respectful communication and a good workplace environment even above the trendy perks frequently pushed in the hopes of attracting and recruiting employees.
Keep in mind, though, that quality talent can tell what’s genuine and what’s not. If you want to reap the benefits of a respectful workplace, you’ll need to put the work in.
A good way to take the first step? Make it a concrete part of your company’s mission. This will then guide all your actions in the future and help ensure you make the choices that will cultivate trust and respect at all levels within your business.
3. Novel, Game-Changing Ideas
Have you ever had to work in an environment where you were treated as a machine that spits out ideas rather than a full, complete person?
If so, then you know full well and good how detrimental that can be professionally and personally alike.
This kind of negative workplace is enough to make anyone deeply loathe their job and think twice about the amount of effort they are putting in. We mean, why go the extra mile for a company comprised of those who would never do the same in return? Output and performance is sure to suffer and you’ll soon be feeling the heat right along with them.
Naturally, a scenario like this is a nightmare for all involved. Luckily, it’s incredibly easy to avoid. Simply fostering a good environment where employees can thrive ensures they stay involved, sharp, and imaginative.
Those closest to potential problems and pressure points can then do what they do best: create novel, game-changing solutions, all without the resistance they’d feel working for a colder company. That’s good for them but good for you, as well, allowing your organization to save your time, money, and reputation all in one go.
4. A Self-Managing Workforce
In business, it’s just a fact that deadlines must be kept to, quotas must be met, and innovation must continue to be pushed forward. These are absolute requirements for any organization that wants to be able to keep up in these increasingly competitive times. As they say, if you’re not ahead, you’re already behind.
One thing that companies need to be more mindful of is that the means for achieving the above can vary. Contrary to seemingly popular belief, you don’t have to harp on employees or put extreme pressure on them to motivate them or get results. This may, in fact, actually prove too detrimental to your mission.
Pressure, stress － those aren’t what inspire motivation. According to the SHRM’s resource on creating a more human workplace, that honor belongs exclusively to meaningful work. As they explain, “Meaningful work is a fundamental need that motivates all of us… [It] encourages personal growth, work engagement, and well-being.”
At the end of the day, it is only through providing employees meaning that they’ll become self-managing, driven to be attentive and responsive to their work because they believe in it.
5. Higher Levels of Productivity & Goal Achievement
Ensuring that the work you’re putting on employees means something more than adding to your bottom dollar is essential should you want a self-motivated workforce. However, you can only achieve this if you actively listen to what they have to say. After all, how are you supposed to know what’s meaningful to them if you don’t ever get feedback about what’s important to them?
Listening, just using your listening skills and providing appropriate meaning to their work is (unfortunately) an action too frequently skipped. But we urge you to avoid this trap.
On top of proving super discouraging for your employees and reducing their likelihood of becoming more self-managing, it serves to decrease the amount they contribute to company goals, too.
As with all things, it comes right back around to our point at the very beginning. A heard employee is a happy employee. And you know what a happy employee is? The answer is someone who is highly productive, who is innovative, and dedicated to success. Or, in other words, they’re an invaluable boon that no company can afford to lose.
The Key Takeaways
Companies big and small are all too often resistant to hearing their employees out, but this is exceptionally misguided. Encouraging workers to share their thoughts and opinions, and implementing the frontline employee feedback gathered from that, is one of the most important tools an organization has in their arsenal to positively build a brand.
Finding areas to put employee thoughts into action improves nearly every aspect of your business. Employee satisfaction, goal contribution, self-management, levels of innovation, and productivity all see steep increases, and the price is simply to foster a more attentive, human environment.
So, anytime an employee has a suggestion for ways to improve or shares their viewpoint, don’t be dismissive. Listen and learn. Let’s not forget, your business is nothing without them. If they don’t thrive, you won’t thrive.