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5 Reasons to Give Your Employees Room to Wiggle

It is understandable that as a manager of a business you need to watch the bottom line and will want a good ROI for every investment thst you make, including new employees. However, it can also be counter productive to only recruit when staff are at full capacity. I have experienced it myself when a Managing Director at a previous company I worked for wanted a full breakdown of what the new employee would be doing every minute of the day before he would give his authorisation for the recruitment process to go ahead.

However, in a lot of cases, you are paying professionals for the expertise and not necessarily for the time they put in, so if you provide clear goals and they are achieveing them, then you shouldn’t need to be quite as concerned about how they spend every minute of their time. And in reality, if you are working staff to capacity it can have a negative impact on their development, motivation and engagment. Here are 5 positive reasons for giving employees some room to wiggle which will directly have a positive impact on your business.

Customer satisfaction
Phrases such as ‘The customer is king’ and ‘the customer is always right’ suggests that if you have happy customers then you have every chance of growing a successful business, and what is the best way of making customer s happy? By giving employee the time and automnomy to provide customers with a service that surpasses their expectations will have a postive effect on the bottom line. Alternatively, if staff have ridiculous targets and unsufficent time to provide a positive customer experience then your business will suffer.

Interdepartmental interaction
It is much better to encourage employees to interact with all aspects of the business so that they feel like part of a wider team rather than as only part of a division or department, so allow people the time to go and speak to colleagues face-to-face rather than rapidly firing off email or making 3 second phone calls. The more people feel like part of the organsation of a whole the less interdepartment politics there will be and it will generate a much more collaberative approach to solving problems that will benefit the organisation. I have been in meetings at a previous employer to discuss the design and implement of a new CRM where each department was fighting their own corner and not considering the business as a whole (or the customers) and it wasn’t pretty.

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Personal development
There are plently of free resources online that employees can take advantage from blogs and white papers to infographics and e-booklets. By giving employees the time to continuisously develop themselves and learn about the latest technologies and techniques within their sector will not only improve their personal satisfaction, but will also make them a much greater asset to the business. It may even reduce the amount of money that is needed to send employees out on expensive external courses. To give one example, I regualrly read Marketing blogs which give me hints and tips on how to manage Twitter and effectively generate leads from the platform.

Be creative
When employees are stressed they will only focus on the task at hand and they are more likely to make mistakes as they rush to meet ever looming deadlines. By giving them some space they will not only check their work more thoughly, but they will also have opportunities to reflect on how they work and ways to improve internal processes to increase the efficency and effectiveness of the business. For example in a previous role, although it wasn’t in my direct area of responsibility, I was given the autonomy to implement an idea because it would benefit the organisation. I created and developed a subscription finder for the company website which made it easier for customers to find out how much they needed to pay and helped reduce the number of incoming calls to the membership department.

  • To have fun!
    Having fun doesn’t mean you have to allow staff to travel around the office on space hoppers or replace the stairs with a slide from the upper mezzanine, it simply means giving staff enough wiggle room to have the time to converse with their colleagues and contribute to a supportive company culture. Rather than having an environment where staff think if they look up from their desk for a second the boss may think they not working hard enough, trust your staff to achieve their objectives on their own terms. A fun company culture will help greatly towards staff retention and retention as employees will become positive ambassadors for your business.

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