We build relationships with our employees by drawing ourselves close to them. Ensuring that there is a win-win in every case with each one of them, is vital.
Sometimes there needs to be a catalyst – and that must be you…
As managers, it’s vital that we demonstrate that there are mutual benefits when we build relationships with our employees.
This sets a stake in the ground for what you will deliver for them and, in turn, what they can expect to get from you (as long as you are prepared to deliver consistently).
After all, asking for extra effort on both sides is a bit unlikely, particularly if there is little for them to gain. Frankly it’s impossible to continue to ask for them to give ‘one for the team’, if each individual sees little value for them personally and individually into the future.
In many organizations and teams, mistrust builds year-on-year as employees get let down. It could be a series of corporate decisions; or a really poor manager who starts it all off (or, sadly, sometimes both).
The bottom line for many employees is that sadly, on repeated occasions in their work experiences and careers, they may have experienced less than they expected from their employer and that causes deep and lasting distrust and pain.
For any manager making the effort to begin again or rekindle a barely flickering glow in their existing team, it can look a rather steep hill indeed when attempting to kick-start the relationships with their team.
The key here is to ensure that you, as their manager, start to put new focus on providing them with actions and other hard evidence that you are not just someone who only proposes changes.
You are the one who will truly deliver for them actions that will work and you have to be able to demonstrate in real terms – and pretty much in real time – that things will happen for the benefit of everyone in the future.
But that’s not enough. The clever managers out there will seek some very personal quick-wins for their people, individually, so that they recognize that effort is not only being promised, but that it is being delivered on a one-to-one basis too.
Managers who want progress that leverages every single one of their people have to make the effort to show them that it’s going to be worthwhile. Actually providing real opportunities that will encourage their team members by the actions they take are critical.
Getting the win-win relationships up and buzzing will work best when managers pro-actively come up with specific and tangible gestures, that will provide real value for the other side of the table and show they walk their talk.
In doing this, the balance of contribution may initially come from the manager’s side, but the rewards for this constructive investment will, over time, be more than worthwhile.