People are the lifeblood of any business organization. It’s safe to say that a company would not reach its full potential without its people.
Naturally, one of the major goals of the leadership team is to motivate their best people to stay. And there are a lot of factors that make professionals want to stay with their employer for the long term.
We’ve compiled them in this handy guide, and each week we’ll be outlining the best steps you can take to sustain each factor.
FACTOR 5 – MENTORSHIP
Step 1: Develop your leadership strategies.
The structure of most business organizations makes it a reality that members will look to certain individuals for guidance and initiative. This is due not to a lack of initiative among members, but to the need to have a unified and decisive direction; if everyone followed their own initiative without any alignment and coordination, nothing will get done.
That is where a leader fulfills their role – to keep members of the organization united and focused on particular goals that have been identified and agreed on. And to succeed in that intensively difficult task, a leader needs to have effective leadership strategies.
Frequently test and refine the strategies that you use to manage your people, because they will respond accordingly. If your strategies are inefficient and cause harmful stress, they may become unmanageable or even leave. But if your strategies are well-considered and motivating, they’ll be convinced to stay and become even more involved in the growth and progress of the organization.
Step 2: Help them set realistic goals.
One of your most important roles as a leader is to keep your team or the organization focused on specific, actionable, and achievable goals. Unfortunately, some leaders forget that last part – providing enough guidance to ensure that their subordinates’ goals are realistically possible.
Without that kind of mentorship, which is built up through experiences of both success and failure, your employees won’t be able to learn from the lessons you
Assure your employees that you’re helping them set realistic goals because you want them to reach those goals. There are few better ways to convince them that their success means something to you.
Step 3: Open paths for learning and growth.
As your team’s or unit’s leader, you have access to bargaining opportunities they don’t. You can directly ask the management for certain types of support – such as training or consideration for promotion – that your subordinates need. And you can freely justify making such requests through documented reports of your team’s or unit’s performance.
But if that kind of negotiation is not included in your leadership strategy, you’re wasting one of the most important advantages of your position. And employees tend to lose their motivation to follow a leader who won’t negotiate with the top management on their behalf.
The best employees recognize leadership that encourages learning and growth. If you want to keep those employees that are driven to excellence, make room in your leadership strategies for learning, capacity-building, and position-related growth.
Step 4: Set examples, not models.
One of the most frustrating things for any professional is not being able to reach a certain standard they aspire to. If that standard is based on merely copying someone who performs better, however, it’s an unrealistic target.
Not only are two given professionals different in the way they learn and achieve, they’re also quite different from the rest of their peers. No two employees succeed in the exact same way, and forcing them to be a carbon copy of someone more successful is not an advisable thing to do.
Instead, support their uniqueness and provide an example. Give advice, or point out general factors that help someone perform at a high level. Then, give them leeway to apply these ideas in their own way according to their personalities and learning styles.
Leadership is less about commanding people, and more about working with them as a guiding influence so that the entire group or organization can achieve its goals. This is the kind of leadership that inspires professionals to invest their careers and stay.
Be the leader that builds people up to be genuine representatives and champions of your organization. And of course, stay tuned in the coming weeks for more ways you can show your people that they matter!