An extensive research program with over 32,000 participants conducted since 2005 by the iOpener Institute for People and Performance at Work concludes that happiness at work drives employee engagement. (Pryce-Jones, Jessica. “Positive profits: How happiness at work impacts the bottom-line.” Choice, Volume 11, Number 4, pp 27-28.)
A happy employee is a high-performing employee. Team members who are happiest at work:
- Use 1/10 the sick leave of their least happy peers
- Are six times more energized
- Express the intent to stay twice as long in their organizations
- Report being “on task” 80% of their work week, compared to their unhappy peers who report being “on task” a mere 40% of their work week.
Investing in solid strategy to maximize the number of team members in the engaged and effective quadrant is just sound business sense. Here are three immediate actions to take. Investing in solid strategy to maximize the number of team members in the engaged and effective quadrant is just sound business sense. Here are three immediate actions to take.
- First, systemize your onboarding and training to move your new hires (i.e., your Engaged & Ineffective team members) to be effective as quickly as possible. If it currently takes you six months to bring a team member fully up to speed, what needs to happen to cut that time in half? And then cut it in half again? That’s an opportunity to innovate. Remember, the time that is saved by becoming more efficient leads to more profit.
- Second, set strong accountability expectations for each position and let those disengaged, ineffective team members know about the accountability expectations. Track progress. They will likely look for work elsewhere soon. If not, encourage them to find work that is a better fit for them and let them go.
- Third, attempt coaching with disengaged and effective team members. Keep in mind that not all of those team members will be coachable. If their Immutable Laws are not matched with yours, support them in moving on!
If there are other reasons for their disengagement, coach them in addressing those issues, set clear accountability expectations, and keep a tight time frame for change. If you do not see a significant improvement in their engagement within that time frame, let them go. Remember, letting one disengaged employee go creates the opportunity for you to hire your next top performer. This is what we call “hiring up!” It’s a good thing for your team and your bottom line.
Dr. Sabrina Starling, The Business Psychologist™ and author of the How to Hire the Best series is the founder of Tap the Potential. At Tap the Potential, we work to free business owners from the constant demands of a growing business. We believe work supports life, not the other way around. Through our proprietary Better Business, Better Life™ coaching program, we transform cash-sucking businesses into highly profitable, Great Places to Work, then send business owners on a 4 Week Vacation™ to celebrate that accomplishment. After the first year in our program, our clients have more time for what matters most and more money in their bank account than ever before. Never one to accept the status quo or back down from a challenge, Dr. Sabrina’s How to Hire the Best series grew from her desire to solve the toughest hiring challenges interfering with her clients’ growth and profitability. What sprang from her experience working with entrepreneurs in rural areas catapulted her into becoming the world’s leading expert in attracting top talent in small businesses — no matter what hiring challenges those businesses are facing — and earned Tap the Potential’s reputation as the go-to resource for entrepreneurs committed to creating Great Places to Work with thriving coaching cultures and highly engaged team members working from strengths. Her latest book, How to Hire the Best: The Contractor’s Ultimate Guide to Attracting Top Performing Employees, is an International Best Seller on Amazon! In this powerful book, Dr. Sabrina shares crucial hiring strategies to transform your small business AND improve your personal life. With her background in psychology, and years of driving profit in small business, Dr. Starling knows what it takes to find, keep and get exceptional performance out of your biggest investment — your team members. Dr. Sabrina is working on her next books: How to Hire the Best: The Entrepreneur’s Ultimate Guide to Attracting Top Performing Team Members (available Sept 15) and The 4 Week Vacation: Work Supports Life, Not the Other Way Around (available Dec 1; featuring many of our Trailblazing 4 Week Vacation™ Retreat Participants!)