If you think you should always be customer focused, you are right, but you should also put your employees first. If your employees are taken care of with sufficient pay and thoughtful benefits, are well-respected, given opportunities to learn and grow, as well as have flexibility in how they do their job, the returns to you, your customers, and your business will increase many times over.
What the doctor said
When my son was a toddler he suffered from repeated ear infections. Neither of us got much sleep, and we spent a lot of time at the pediatrician's office. Finally the doctor told me we needed to take a different approach because I was getting worn down, and he reminded me that if I was run down, everyone else would suffer. I needed to make sure that I was taking care of myself first, otherwise, how could I expect to take care of my two young children. He was right of course, and that idea stuck with me.
As my work responsibilities increased over the years, and I was now responsible for others, I realised that this advice actually applied really well to our staff as a whole team. When our staff was well-taken care of, and feeling engaged in our work, involved in decision-making, and appreciated for their amazing contributions, our work output soared, our clients were delighted and it was a great place to work.
Focusing on our staff well-being actually flowed directly to client satisfaction because when our staff were happy and engaged, they worked hard, came up with creative solutions to our clients problems, and our clients loved working with us as the energy was infectious.
Does this sound like your organisation? Is there anything you can do to improve how well your staff are engaged with their work? Take a read through the articles below for a few other perspectives on staff engagement and how focusing on your staff creates benefits that flow directly to your customers and to your organisation's financial performance.
People desire to be the best in their field
By creating a culture where every staff member feels valued, your staff will perform at levels that are thrilling for them and rewarding for you and your business. Here is a short article that explains why:
How work and health can go together
I first was made aware of this 'radical' new way of thinking when reading an article by Steelcase, the furniture manufacturer. While Steelcase focuses on the way the workplace itself can be physically organised to improve your health, this article (and soon-to-be-published book) focus on how reducing stress in the workplace can make us more successful and yes, even more healthy. Makes a lot of sense, and I am looking forward to reading the book.
Unleash your employees' super powers
This is another recent article about a relatively easy way to convert your successful but not rockstar staff into super-performers. It requires you to make a connection with these staff individually in order to find out what they love about their work. Then try to recast the job so that it focuses on those things. You don't have to exclude everything they don't like, just re-jiggy their assignments as best you can and see if that doesn't provide a quick boost. Read more here:
Fun Friday Workplaces