Today I am starting to tackle the 3 Cs of building a culture of leadership. The first one is Clarity. We can’t know where we’re going if we don’t first have a clear understanding of where we are. In order to start building an engaging culture of leadership, you have to have a clear understanding of what’s happening within your organization and how your employees are actually feeling.

We’ve all heard of the Great Resignation and much of what we’re hearing is focused on those who are leaving. But what about your team members who have stayed?

While it’s important to understand what may be causing people to leave, we really want to make sure that those who are there feel valued.

A friend of mine who is a college professor always says to always start class for the students who came on time, not for the ones who are on their way. It’s the same for zoom calls — don’t wait for people to trickle in. Honor the time of the people who are there. So what can you do to make sure that you have your finger on the pulse of what your team members actually need and want?

  1. Connect with team members regularly – Get direct input from employees in terms of what is working and what is not. Address concerns with a plan of action based on the input, share the plan, and start acting on it. Conducting “stay interviews
  2. Show appreciation. Employees want to feel valued and appreciated for their contributions. In fact, 79 percent of people leave jobs because they feel unappreciated at work. “Recognition plays a huge part in building a delightful culture.” You can also emphasize people-first practices. These include an employee rewards system (think spot bonuses, paid time off or donations to a staffer’s favorite charity, for example) and team performance rewards when meeting revenue goals. Yet recognition does not always have to be monetary or tangible. Verbal appreciation can be equally effective.
  3. Offer growth and opportunity. Career professionals want to see a clear path for growth at their companies, so employers should clear that path as much as possible. What we’ve done is make it clear that our company is a place for you to start, explore and grow a career, no matter who you are. We’ve put in place learning and development programs for existing employees to ensure they are continually being challenged and developing their own professional paths.

This might include encouraging an innerpreneur mindset. Managers should create opportunities for employees to realize their entrepreneurial ambitions inside the company. At the same time as we are facing the Great Resignation, we have new business starts surging to four times the pre-pandemic level, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. By unleashing a worker’s entrepreneurial spirit, companies can not only retain the best staff, but also help generate new sources of growth. “Think of these [employees] as ‘corporate explorers’ and equip them to pursue innovative business ideas inside, not outside, the corporation.

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