Culture powers performance and that power comes from leaders.
by Emmet Banahan and Matt Coulthard
In a recent survey we conducted, over 55% of businesses are planning to reopen in the month of July. If you are reopening, knowing how to get the best out of your team in ‘abnormal’ times is of paramount importance for performance.
Studies show that performance is powered by culture set by the leaders of the company, and not the other way around. An engaged culture is likely to perform to the best of their abilities, and that engagement not only helps sales: it also leads to returning customers as seen in a study in 2015.
Leading psychologist Daniel Goleman, who wrote Emotional Intelligence in 1995, says that our emotions are “contagious.” Citing a study conducted by Sigal Barsade at the Yale school of management, Goleman said they found if a team leader was in a negative mood, team members, “caught that mood and their performances tanked.” If the leader was, “upbeat” members caught that mood and their performances, “shot up.”
Why is emotional intelligence important?
Emotional Intelligence is important for interaction with others, but also for personal well-being. People who are able to express themselves and distinguish their own emotions can do better than people with high IQ scores.
“What factors are at play, for example, when people of high IQ flounder and those of modest IQ do surprisingly well. I would argue that the difference quite often lies in the abilities called here emotional intelligence, which include self-control zeal and persistence, and the ability to motivate oneself.” Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence.
In a time like this, being emotionally aware of your surroundings is of great importance for your team.
Tip: If your people are nervous, they care.
Studies indicate that workers are more anxious during pandemics. The best cure for nerves is “confidence” says author Richard Templar. If you believe in your team, that confidence will shine through. If an employee is nervous around you or another customer it could mean they want to do well by the business and for themselves.
You may come across an employee that is nervous, remember it is really important to them that they do well. Whether they are a new member to your team or a returning one from furlough, their nerves show you that they care. Sometimes that might not be very evident as shown in episode 12 of our webinar series with Operations Director to the Sim Trava Group, Jim Smith.
“The teams are quite anxious because they want to do better”, stated Smith who operates forty plus Costa Coffee franchises with Sim Trava, “they think they’re not performing well enough because they are not doing the speed of service they are used to doing.”
“It’s just to give them the reassurance that this is a whole new world we and in actual fact and it’s all about continually improving and getting better.”
We don’t measure any business against any business. We don’t share rankings because it is about their own development. I don’t have heroes in my business, it is all about how can we improve [our employees] to move the business forward.” To help them, show them how to achieve what they want.
Tip: Strong apart, better together
Praise the idea person. Sometimes they may not have the same work ethic as the quiet employee on the floor, ideas are the currency to adapting and powering forward during COVID times.
We have seen innovation from businesses serving pints of plain out the back of vans, and restaurant owners delivering cook kits that people can make at home for themselves. These services came from ideas which are certainly in need of celebrating.
If you have an idea, practice a think tank with your employees – they are after all on the ground with your customers the most. Different employees might be really helpful for one area, like social media, while others might be incredibly helpful with in-store promotions or a change in the restaurant menu.
Attack things like an army: You are going to have slow, analytical thinkers, and fast movers. Some want to know how things work, others want to know how it will make their lives better. Celebrate both in your army. Practising tolerance and patience with your employees is most definitely a must. Appreciate everyone’s efforts, because without them your army cannot function properly.
Tip: Quiet Workers
You’re most likely leading a group or a team and that means you have vested interest in making that work. Keep an eye on those employees who don’t say much. They may not have a lot to contribute right now because of their current climate but they may do so in the future. Empower them to speak when you can because the group can certainly benefit from their ideas.
Solution: Measure Morale
There are two ways you can measure morale in your business. One is a physical survey asking employees how their day went every day which in turn you can transfer to an Excel or Google Sheets file. The second is an easier approach with technology: you will be able to do the same work but without the piles of paper, the time transferring that date onto excel sheets, not to mention convincing your employees to take part in the survey. Technology has an answer to your problem.
At Bizimply, we give our customers an easy to use engagement survey that managers can use to track employee and team morale. You can ask your employees how their day was at the end of their shift and gain valuable insights for each location. Check out the HR masterclass video below for more information on the rest of the people management services.
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