Last week we looked at six core needs and how they applied to your customers. This week we will explore how you can get the most out of your employees by understanding how they think and what motivates them. Your employees are your biggest asset, and getting the best return on your investment is advisable for a successful and profitable business. We know from our last blog that these six core needs shape our everyday behavior. These needs are a force that determines our actions, and how we live our lives.
According to Anthony Robbins, our actions and achievements will depend on which of these six core needs – certainty, uncertainty, significance, connection, growth, and contribution – is more important.
I often have discussions with frustrated business owners who don’t understand their employees. They don’t get their decisions or actions, nor do they understand what makes them tick. Each person will think and act differently based on his or her past, beliefs, and values. As a leader, it is your job to understand how your employees function, what is important to them, how you can get the best from them, and how you can help them reach their full potential.
Good communication is imperative. Most leaders take a cookie cutter approach to leadership and don’t take into account the fact that each employee needs to be managed differently. In the interview phase, before your employee begins working for you, you need to ensure that he or she is aligned with your company’s values, beliefs, and strategic vision. Employers and managers can get so caught up in their own stuff that they forget to keep the lines of communication open. Every employee wants certainty. They must know they will have a job to come back to tomorrow. They want to be part of the future vision of the company, which they have contributed to. Once employees are included in some of the decisions that are made, they will take ownership and be part of the company’s success. Everyone wants to be part of a winning team that is growing and moving forward. They want to feel validated and appreciated. Autocratic-style of leadership works in most cases when done well. Scare tactics are short-term solutions and only create angst with people not working at their best. This type of uncertainty only leads to lackluster performances, which affect profits.
Let’s look at how each core need relates to your employees:
Your employees want certainty. They want to know the company has a vision and a future, and that they will be paid for the work they have done. They want to trust their leader, wanting the company to do the right thing by them, to keep their employees safe, and to deliver what they promise. Employees also want to know the systems and procedures they can follow and what is exactly expected of them.
Employees want to have fun at work. Even though they want certainty, it doesn’t mean that you can’t add a little uncertainty that affects people in a positive way. They don’t want to be bored or uninspired; they want special or creative projects that will help them grow and keep them interested. Employees want to be challenged.
Even though a company has systems, your staff wants to know that when necessary, the system can be changed to get a better result.
As your clients want to feel special, so do your employees. They want to know you care about them and their happiness, and that their voice is heard. They want to know they matter. The mistake employers make is that they think employees should be happy because they are paid. A study done many years ago found that money was low on the list of what motivates employees. Instead, they want a sense of self-worth and to know their opinion is valued. If you tell someone long enough they are incompetent or worthless, then that is exactly how they will act. On the other hand, if you let your employees know that you trust their ability, then they will always find ways to please you and be better at what they do. When you invest in your employees by training them, you invest in their abilities to be better at their job.
Employees want camaraderie and teamwork, and to be a bigger part of the business picture. They want to know they are important to the business. The connection can be with the team, though it can be with their clients, too. I found that in the luxury industry, I especially loved my clients. There was a strong connection as if we were lifelong friends. I loved going into work knowing that I would see many of my favorite clients, and when I left these places of employment, I missed seeing them and connecting. Everyone wants to feel loved and respected; love is the oxygen of life.
We all want to learn and grow, whether it is sharing experiences about the products or about the company. There is a great saying, “You are either ripe and rotting, or green and growing.” Everyone wants to grow or they get bored and stagnate at work. Then they are unhappy, and this leads to an unmotivated workplace. Employees want to be in a business that is innovative; always finding better ways to do things, growing, and moving forward. Growth must also incorporate employee training and development so they can reach their full potential and contribute more to the business.
Employees want to feel they can contribute to the success of the business. Find ways to get employees to participate, recognize their contribution, and encourage more of it. People want to be noticed when they are doing something right. Contribution comes in many forms: to the business, to our teammates, or to clients. It doesn’t matter which one it is as long as we feel we have something to share and can contribute to other people’s happiness. It’s a sense of fulfillment in the workplace.
Your employees will not be driven by all six-core needs, but notice which ones are more important to them and then take action to ensure their needs are met. A great leader finds ways to connect with his or her employees and to get the best out of them.
To book a free 90-minute consultation, and to find out how to increase your profits, email me: firstname.lastname@example.org.