Employee experience | Leaders, are you inspiring your employees?

Leaders, are you inspiring your employees?
Promoted by Leaders, are you inspiring your employees?

When one thinks of a great leader, they might picture someone who can excite and encourage their employees.

In July 2019, Tiger Recruitment commissioned a survey of 1,000 employees across the UK, and the results revealed that the majority (59%) of UK workers are rarely or never inspired by the leader of their business. This surprising figure indicates that many business leaders have ceased to connect with employees on issues that concern them.

Setting a good example in the workplace is crucial when it comes to inspiring your employees, and should be done with authenticity and transparency wherever possible.

Key issues important to employees

According to our research, there are four key areas where leaders are setting a poor example around the issues that matter to them today, including work-life balance (28%), managing stress (29%), flexible working (21%) and staying mentally healthy (21%). It goes without saying that if management teams aren’t prioritising these, the company policies surrounding the issues will be negatively impacted as well.

Business cultures and employee morale must be nurtured from the top. The findings suggest that many business leaders are failing to connect effectively with their teams and are barely cognizant of the key workplace issues that employees value today, particularly wellbeing.

Over half of workers (54%) want to see work-life balance move up the leadership agenda in their business, while 42% say the same about flexible working, and around a third about mental health management (39%) and stress management (35%).

Raising the bar

If you work for a company with room for improvement on the topics of work-life balance, flexible working, mental health and stress management, examine which areas, specifically, require improvement. This should be initiated by engaging employees for feedback, which would include a 360° review into the actions and beliefs of management, and how these could be negatively impacting employee perspectives.

As part of the survey, consider asking employees questions around how these issues impact their everyday roles. This information will help to articulate the importance of addressing these topics in the context of employee retention and attraction, which will prove crucial when forming an argument for policy implementation. All leaders understand the potential cost of recruitment!

Following this, review what’s feasible for the business. Every workplace is different and due to cost, business size or time, there usually isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. However, it’s important that leaders consider all suggestions at this stage.

From there, create a set of policies or guidelines for the whole business to follow. This ensures that everyone is on the same page, and gives something tangible for both employees and employers to refer to. It might also be worth offering leaders training so that they are fully across the changes and can better support their teams.

By having management lead by example on wellbeing topics, this will encourage employees to follow suit as part of a more sustainable ongoing wellbeing strategy. Continual monitoring and measurement of these policies will keep progress in check.

Why it’s time for change

Research has shown that employees who are engaged in the vision and mission of a business can make all the difference to its success, yet our findings suggest that many leaders are failing to bring their people with them.

Candidates tell us time and again how important it is to work for an employer who values their work-life balance and wellbeing, both when searching for a new role, and when deciding to leave their current position. Businesses must therefore invest in both the policies that enable employees to stay healthy and happy at work, as well as the culture to back those up. Culture starts from the top, which means business leaders must get on board and show they take wellbeing seriously – both their own and their team’s.

About the author

David Morel is the CEO/Founder of Tiger Recruitment, London’s leading recruitment agency for business support, private, hospitality, executive search and virtual recruitment. David founded Tiger in 2001 and has written extensively in the press and wider media advising both employers and job seekers on best recruitment practice.

020 7917 1801 / [email protected]

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