Yesterday I came across this article published by Entrepreneur.com: 5 Ways to Become a Better Manager. The article highlights a really important and often overlooked fact: the primary reason people leave a company is a bad boss.
We can talk all we want about things like money, benefits and job perks but at the end of the day, your employees' relationships with their direct managers is the most important influencer of employee engagement and productivity.
The article lists some great tips for managers to improve their management and coaching skills (tips #2 and #4 are my favorite). But leadership development also needs to be important to the organization as a whole for it to truly impact employee engagement.
When it comes to leadership development, remember your front line managers
Often the focus of leadership training and development is concentrated on the executive team. Of course it's vitally important that the C-suite be strong and engaging leaders, but the reality is that 70-80 percent of the workforce reports to a front line manager, not to an executive.
This is why organizations need to put their focus on ensuring managers have the tools and resources they need to effectively communicate with, coach and engage employees. Here at Halogen, we believe that everyone deserves to work for a great leader. And this isn't just something we say; this belief is ingrained in our corporate culture. For this reason we invest in the development of our leaders at every level of the organization.
Drive up employee engagement through leadership development
No one would dispute the fact that employee engagement is good for business. So, if you want to drive up employee engagement, I'd suggest focusing on developing the leadership skills of your front line managers. Don't leave it up to them to figure out for themselves what is the best way to communicate with and coach their employees.
With this point in mind, here are some articles that discuss the value of leadership development and different approaches to it:
- Unlocking High Performance: Why Every Manager Should Coach: The role of coach is all about unlocking what gives people meaning and purpose in their work. Read how great managers-as-coaches understand what makes the heart of others beat and constantly look for ways to enable even greater performance from them.
- HR Trends with Benefits and Why Performance Management Should be a Trend That Lasts: Great leadership is key to building a world-class workforce. Read about the importance of good people management, including the ability to coach and develop employees, to high performing organizations.
- Participation Mandatory! Using 360 Degree Feedback to Develop Great Leaders: This post explores how a robust 360 feedback program contributes to the development of strong leaders.
- Everyone deserves to work for a great leader: Halogen's philosophy is that everyone deserves to work for a great leader. Read this post to find out the path we've taken to great leadership. Teaser: part of our journey has involved creating a culture of no surprises.
Your Turn: I'd love to know how you're fostering leadership development in your organization. Share your story in the comments section below.